Urmel wrote:This was the radio intercept unit of XXI C.A. during CRUSADER, called 'Information Office'. Does anyone know more about it? In particular effectiveness, targets, and whether other Corpi had their own units too during the period?
Not quite. The Ufficio "I" (informazioni) was not a specific radio-intercept units but a generic term for the intelligence office, tasked with the collection, elaboration and presentation of all sort of available informations about enemy strenght, intentions and activities, obtained by any available means (signal intercepts, recons, air photos, prisoners, HUMINT etc). Every Army, Corps and Division had this office as part of its Staff, in the Italian Army like in every other Army.
AFAIK, there were not specific signal-intelligence field-units in the Italian Army in North Africa (like the the German 621st coy) but monitoring of enemy signals was pretty standard operational routine for every radio unit (particularly for the units directly assigned to Corps and Divisional HQs and Staff). If anything was intercepted (and often it was, as the CW radio discipline was reportedly quite bad), the contents were forwarded to the higher HQ to be processed by their own Uffico "I", that if needed forwarded the intercept to the upper echelon, and so on. All very "Standard Operational Procedure", like in most other armies.