By John Weal
This quantity follows the Luftwaffe's twin-engined Wunderbomber southwards to explain its deployment in North Africa and the Mediterranean Theater in the course of international struggle II (1939-1945), from the Straits of Gibraltar within the west, through the beleaguered island of Malta, to the Aegean and the Suez Canal within the east. it's a tale of 2 targeted components - the preliminary lightning successes, after which the lengthy, gradual technique of retreat and defeat. it all started early in 1941 with the 1st sporadic air raids on Malta, within the spring by means of the crusade within the Balkans which ended in the conquests of Yugoslavia, Greece and Crete. After aiding land operations in North Africa in the course of the latter half 1941, the Ju 88s resumed their attack on Malta.
Such used to be their decline, although, that through the ultimate month of the warfare there has been only one computing device left within the Mediterranean - a better version Ju 188, which was once used to drop Axis brokers at the back of the Allied strains in Italy. Bringing the tale to existence are own bills of a few of the extra well-known activities - the bombing of the evacuation transport off the coast of Greece and the sinking of 3 Royal army destroyers south of Crete via the popular 'Helbig Flyers' of LG 1, all illustrated with infrequent photos and whole colour profiles.
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Extra resources for Ju 88 Kampfgeschwader of North Africa and the Mediterranean
Initially assuming that the large number of vessels converging on the Straits of Gibraltar were the makings of a vast convoy intended to reinforce Gen Montgomery's Eighth Army in Egypt, the Luftwaffe reacted with its customary speed. Among the first, and most important, counter-measures taken- nearly a week before the actual landings occurred - was the order ro transfer five anti-shipping Kampfgruppendown from northern olwayand Finland to the Medi terranean. 1KG 26, Ii. /KG 60. The transfers themselves took anything from five ro eight days.
At first all went well, for he managed to turn the southern flank of the British front at EI Alamein, but then instead of being able to advance on Cairo and Alexandria as planned, his forces suffered a crushing defeat at the Battle of Alam Haifa. 1n six days it was all over and he was forced back to his original positions. /KG 54 and KG 77. And whereas the former were employed primarily on convoy protection duties, the other units provided the Afi"ika Korps with at least a measure of direct support during the Alam Haifa fighting.
UJ UJ e: :c l- e: UJ ICL « :c u employed by the RAF when it began its 'lean in(O France' in the summerof 1941. Raids at this level, amounting little more than harassing attacks, wOlud continue (0 be flown against Malta until early March. There were, however, twO fundamental differences from the earlier RAF (0 :J:J o operations over northwest Europe - a succession ofsuch missions would be sent against Malta nearly every day, up (0 a maximum of some 40-50 individual bomber sorties, and the Luftwaffe also attacked the island by night.