A detailed, illustrated exploration of the land, sea and air units that defended Malta, and the repeated Axis attempts to bring the crucial Allied island fortress to its knees.
On 11 June 1940, the British crown colony of Malta – which dominated the central Mediterranean and all-important sea routes to and from North Africa – was bombed for the first time by aircraft of the Italian Regia Aeronautica. The Italians were joined in their efforts by the German Luftwaffe in January 1941. Malta was effectively beleaguered for nearly two and a half years, dependent for survival on naval supply convoys and reliant for defence on often-outnumbered fighter aircraft and anti-aircraft guns.
Anthony Rogers provides a retelling of these events, drawing on accounts from both sides. This work features carefully selected photographic images, some previously unpublished. Seven specially commissioned colour maps explore the stategic situation in the Mediterranean in this period, the military sectors into which Malta's defence was divided, and German minelaying operations around the island. The three stunning battlescene artworks and 3D bird's-eye views show key events from the battle, including the 26 July 1941 German attack on the Grand Harbour, and the major Luftwaffe raid 21 March 1942.
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Table of Contents
INTRODUCTION CHRONOLOGY OPPOSING COMMANDERS British Axis OPPOSING FORCES British Axis OPPOSING PLANS THE BATTLE Start of the air war First naval surface engagements Operation 'Hurry' Malta Convoys Operation 'Excess' and the 'Illustrious Blitz' Messerschmitt Bf 109s join battle Spring–summer, 1941 Italian seaborne attack on Grand Harbour Autumn, 1941 Destruction of 'Maestrale' Convoy Early U-Boat operations Return of the Luftwaffe Schnellboot operations Spitfires join battle 'M.W.10' April, 1942 'C3'/'Herkules' May, 1942 3.Schnellbootflottille Axis clandestine operations Operation 'Julius' Operation 'Pedestal' Autumn 1942 and the final Axis offensive SUMMARY THE BATTLEFIELD TODAY ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS BIBLIOGRAPHY INDEX
Aug 18 2022
Colour illustrations throughout, including battlescene artworks, maps, 3D diagrams and photographs.