Dates of Operation Crusader

Discussions on WW2 in Africa & the Mediterranean. Hosted by Andy H
MarkN
Member
Posts: 2473
Joined: 12 Jan 2015 13:34
Location: On the continent

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by MarkN » 08 Aug 2019 11:43

I hold a very low opinion of wiki and the ability of its contributors to relate history to the world accurately and reliably. Earlier l posted this offhand comment.
MarkN wrote:
05 Aug 2019 13:45
Attrition wrote:
05 Aug 2019 09:30
... the most convincing one for me has Crusader "petering out" near El Agheila in December.
That's a great advertisment to discourage one from relying on other storytellers for your history. It's the sort of nonsense one sees regurigitated endlessly on the internet especially on sites such as wiki.
I've now had a look at wiki and, guess what!!!!

Apparantly, Op CRUSADER finished on 30 December 1941 and everything after about 15 December gets lumped into the "aftermath" section.

That's just the sort of historically inaccurate and shoddy storytelling that I had in mind. It misleads, misinforms and is generally deterimental to historical understanding. Who writes that garbage? Is it a deliberate attempt to sell a false history?

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3676
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Attrition » 09 Aug 2019 12:56

Stop carping and start writing.

MarkN
Member
Posts: 2473
Joined: 12 Jan 2015 13:34
Location: On the continent

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by MarkN » 18 Aug 2019 17:05

It's a shame the wiki author doesn't read this thread. It is still showing 30 December and still spreading shoddy falsehoods.

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3676
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Attrition » 20 Aug 2019 17:56

Still carping? Get writing.

MarkN
Member
Posts: 2473
Joined: 12 Jan 2015 13:34
Location: On the continent

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by MarkN » 25 Aug 2019 18:15

Get writing? Who to? The Times? The Telegraph? My MP? Trading Standards? The Fraud Office? Do you think they're interested in the historical mis and disinformation being spread on wiki by anonymous posters?

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3676
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Attrition » 25 Aug 2019 21:25

Wah!

Tom from Cornwall
Member
Posts: 1842
Joined: 01 May 2006 19:52
Location: UK

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 26 Aug 2019 20:26

Gents,

What did the Operation Instructions / Op Orders give as the 'Aim' of 'Crusader'? According to the S.A OH (pp.59 - 60) it seems that during the planning phase the 'scope of the high-level planning widened'. Crusader ('the plan for the reconquest of Cyrenaica') 'merged into its logical continuation of 'Acrobat', which was the capture of Tripolitania' (and also a putative invasion of Sicily - 'Whipcord').

Does anyone have a copy of a primary source for 8th Army's orders to its Corps?

Regards

Tom

MarkN
Member
Posts: 2473
Joined: 12 Jan 2015 13:34
Location: On the continent

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by MarkN » 26 Aug 2019 22:28

Tom from Cornwall wrote:
26 Aug 2019 20:26
What did the Operation Instructions / Op Orders give as the 'Aim' of 'Crusader'? According to the S.A OH (pp.59 - 60) it seems that during the planning phase the 'scope of the high-level planning widened'. Crusader ('the plan for the reconquest of Cyrenaica') 'merged into its logical continuation of 'Acrobat', which was the capture of Tripolitania' (and also a putative invasion of Sicily - 'Whipcord').

Does anyone have a copy of a primary source for 8th Army's orders to its Corps?
Tom,

Off the top of my head, the theatre aim was to evict the Axis from North Africa. That task fell to GHQ ME (Auchinleck). Doing this in one operation was not considered feasible and thus the task was broken down into seperate operations/stages.

The initial operation, CRUSADER, was thus passed down to 8th Army (Cunniningham) as a take Cyrenaica mission. No more. I don't recall a specific geographical point to make being in the orders, but Auchinleck's own post-operation report shows his intention was not to repeat the mistakes of Wavell/Neame and try to defend at Mersa el Brega but to defend the el Agheila line. He also clearly identifies CRUSADER as being the first stage of a multi-stage advance.

If you are looking for evidence of conflation between the objectives of the different stages, it's more likely to be on GHQ ME level files not 8th Army or below.

Hope that helps.

Tom from Cornwall
Member
Posts: 1842
Joined: 01 May 2006 19:52
Location: UK

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Tom from Cornwall » 28 Aug 2019 16:13

Mark,

Thanks. It looks like a trip to the National Archives is required.

Regards

Tom

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3676
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Attrition » 30 Aug 2019 17:11

"General Cunningham's idea was to cross the undefended frontier between Sidi Omar and Fort Maddalena. The main body of the British armoured forces would move north-west with the object of engaging the hostile armour near Tobruk, after which the siege would be raised in conjunction with a sortie by the garrison. Meanwhile another force would contain and envelop the enemy's frontier defences and would then clear up the area between Bardia and Tobruk. Later still it would reduce any pockets of enemy which remained in the frontier area....In the final plan the idea of an independent Centre Force was discarded. Instead the 30th Corps...was given the tasks of destroying the enemy's armoured forces and preventing them from attacking the left flank of the 13th Corps, the formation that was to operate in the frontier area." Playfair III pp. 6-7. Looks to me that the terminus date of Crusader is the raising of the siege of Tobruk.

User avatar
Urmel
Member
Posts: 4077
Joined: 25 Aug 2008 09:34
Location: The late JBond

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Urmel » 30 Aug 2019 22:25

I have it somewhere. Let me look.

Original aim was to destroy Axis armoured force, nothing more nothing less, and everything else flows from that. Then clear out North Africa in two steps, 1) CRUSADER for Cyrenaica and 2) ACROBAT for Tripolitania. GYMNAST was the follow on for invasion of Sicily.

Operational planning for ACROBAT had started when Rommel counter-attacked.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

User avatar
Urmel
Member
Posts: 4077
Joined: 25 Aug 2008 09:34
Location: The late JBond

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Urmel » 30 Aug 2019 22:25

No, terminus was not lifting the siege. That was incidental.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

User avatar
Attrition
Member
Posts: 3676
Joined: 29 Oct 2008 22:53
Location: England

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Attrition » 31 Aug 2019 00:43

Tell that to Playfair.

User avatar
Urmel
Member
Posts: 4077
Joined: 25 Aug 2008 09:34
Location: The late JBond

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Urmel » 31 Aug 2019 15:24

I am fundamentally not interested in what you choose to believe.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

User avatar
Urmel
Member
Posts: 4077
Joined: 25 Aug 2008 09:34
Location: The late JBond

Re: Dates of Operation Crusader

Post by Urmel » 31 Aug 2019 16:46

Tom from Cornwall wrote:
26 Aug 2019 20:26
Gents,

What did the Operation Instructions / Op Orders give as the 'Aim' of 'Crusader'? According to the S.A OH (pp.59 - 60) it seems that during the planning phase the 'scope of the high-level planning widened'. Crusader ('the plan for the reconquest of Cyrenaica') 'merged into its logical continuation of 'Acrobat', which was the capture of Tripolitania' (and also a putative invasion of Sicily - 'Whipcord').

Does anyone have a copy of a primary source for 8th Army's orders to its Corps?

Regards

Tom
Here you go Tom. This is from the GOC 8 Army report.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

Return to “WW2 in Africa & the Mediterranean”