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The minefields of Alamein

During the Second World War, there were no natural features in the desert wastes that fringe the north coast of Egypt to provide cover for the belligerent armies. Troops had to protect themselves by digging slit trenches and planting minefields. When the troops moved...

The British-Indian Army and its officer class

On 3rd September, 1939, with all the powers invested in him by the British crown, the Viceroy of India brought India into the war against Germany. He did so without bothering to consult with any of India’s political leaders and by failing to do so lost the support of...

When the Dominions stood with Britain

The Australian troops were all volunteers. They didn’t need to come and fight and die in the desert. They came out of loyalty to Britain at a moment of desperate need. They came inspired by the national saga of Australian audacity and courage at Gallipoli. They came...
Italy and the North African Campaign

Italy and the North African Campaign

When Britain first went to war in North Africa, it was not with Germany, but with Italy.  Hostilities had been initiated by Italy launching an invasion of Egypt from its colony in Libya, and though British and Commonwealth forces managed to repel the attack, they were...