The implication of what you write in this post is that it was an initial either/or scenario: Malta or Egypt; they couldn't be done simultaneously and that Mussolini won the bitch-fight with Grazziani.Wargames wrote: ↑06 Nov 2018 09:28The Army called for the capture of Malta in 1939 to secure supply lines to Libya. In the spring of 1940 the Army planned out the troops required to take Malta with a planned invasion date of June 29, 1940. It was rejected on June 5.thaddeus_c wrote: ↑05 Nov 2018 23:58my initial thought was if Italy decided to invade during that timeframe? why not attempt to seize Crete? (they were planning an invasion of Greece)
my understanding Souda Bay on Crete was the coveted port? did not think Malta was perceived to be necessary to Axis until later.
It did not stay rejected. In July, the Navy made it's own proposal for invading Malta, making improvements to the Army's plan. This was followed by the Regia Aeronautica which made further improvements to the Navy's plan culminating in an argument with Mussolini that began August 8 through August 21. The military lost. Stupid won.
The "time frame" then was Mussolini's thinking. He wanted Italian boots be on British soil at the time that Hitler brought Britain to its knees with Operation Sea Lion. It's very similar to how he got himself included at the table for the surrender of France ("I only need a few thousand dead to sit at the peace table."). He either needed boots in Egypt or boots in Malta when Sea Lion took place. Grazziani, head of Tenth Army, argued for Malta while Mussolini had bigger eyes - Egypt. I have the arguments of all five sides; Il Duce, the Army, the Navy, the Regia Aeronautica, and even Germany's naval adviser attache.
And yet, in response to my post you stated that the invasion of Egypt would go ahead as planned on 9th September as it did in history.
Seems a bit of confused or contradictory thinking in there.