The War at Sea in the Mediterranean 1940-1944

B2003

Another primary source book where official reports have been collected and presented to provide an impressive account of a theatre of WWII. For any readers starting into WWII, and naval actions, this is an important book. It provides an unvarnished account written by senior officers to develop the knowledge resources on which future generations of naval officers can draw. A good photo collection has been assembled to support the accounts, together with charts and maps.

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NAME: The War at Sea in the Mediterranean 1940-1944
DATE: 200814
FILE: R2003
AUTHOR: John Grehan, Martin Mace
PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword
BINDING: hard back
PAGES: 191
PRICE: £25.00
GENRE: Non Fiction
SUBJECT: WWII, World War Two, Second World War, battleships, battle cruisers, heavy cruisers, aircraft carriers, naval architecture, naval tactics, armoured ships, shore bombardment, Mediterranean, Suez Canal, North Africa, Malta, Greece, Crete, Battle of Calabria, Taranto, FAA, Swordfish, Battle of Matapan
ISBN: 1-78346-222-1
IMAGE: B2003.jpg
BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/pm52dw7
LINKS:
DESCRIPTION: Another primary source book where official reports have been collected and presented to provide an impressive account of a theatre of WWII. For any readers starting into WWII, and naval actions, this is an important book. It provides an unvarnished account written by senior officers to develop the knowledge resources on which future generations of naval officers can draw. A good photo collection has been assembled to support the accounts, together with charts and maps.

The Mediterranean was in several respects more important than any other WWII naval theatre. Vital though the Atlantic convoy routes may have been, Britain could have survived for a period after those routes were cut and draconian rationing might have extended that survival until the supplies were re-established. The Mediterranean was potentially much more immediate. It provided a two way route for supplies and reinforcements between Britain and the most important colonial concentrations. Australia, New Zealand, India and the islands of the Pacific supplied many thousands of troops, raw materials, fuel and support. Britain fed troops and equipment back to Egypt and then to India. Most importantly, the Mediterranean tied down a heavy proportion of Axis resources. Had the naval battle been lost in the Mediterranean, the Axis troops and equipment could have been turned to an invasion of the British Isles and the war would have been lost for the British.

The Mediterranean progress was variable. As elsewhere, the opening years saw the British beaten back and a series of rearguard actions cost British resources and lowered morale. Then the Allies began to gain the upper hand and beat the Axis forces back and down to defeat. However, the naval war in the Mediterranean included some heartening victories in the early days. The Italian Fleet comprised modern and capable warships that could have done serious damage to the RN warships there. In fact, the Italians proved indecisive and timid in surface actions and the FAA air attack on the Italian Fleet in harbour crippled the best Italian ships and bought a six month advantage for the RN in that theatre. Malta held out against all odds and three crated FAA Sea Gladiator biplane fighters were assembled on the island and wrote a vivid page in aerial history against the Italian Air Force.

This is a valuable book that provides the official words of the victors.

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