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Old October 20th, 2012, 08:23 PM   #1
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Thumbs up October 23 -70th anniversary of el alamein


October 23 2012 will mark the 70th anniversary of the Battle of El Alamein when the Eight Army under General Montgomery at last, turned the tide pemanently in the Western Desert against the Axis bogeyman Rommel.
As Churchill said in the House of Commons while hailing the victory of Commonwelth forces at El Alamein-''this is not the end or even the beginning of the end but it is the end of the begnning...'' (on the road to ultimate victory)
The wartime newsreel footage of the legendary intensity of the opening barrage by allied guns gives the impression that after that sustained bombardment the attacking Commonwealth troops just moseyed in and rolled up at their leisure, the Axis defenders but it wasn't like that,
The battle was a sustained, brutal, attritional slog in most cases exmplified by the case of Sergeant Calistan and his sole 6 pounder gunn in the region of Hill 37 where British 6 pounders in this sector were handicapped (shades of Isandalwana 1879!) by acute shortages of 6 pounder ammo.
Neverthless, when the Italians charged forward with eight tanks and several Semovente S.P guns.Sergeant Calistan and his single 6 pounder crew quickly knocked ut six italian tanks and the Semoventes initially then when the the three Italian tanks left sprayed Calistan's gun position with machine gun fire at close range he and his mates calmly knocked them out too. Thus halting the Axis atempted counter attack.
It was spirit like that enabled the Eighth Army to triumph at EL Alamein and athough Monty basked in the glory of that victory-when elevated to the House of Lords he incorporated ''El Alamein'' into his title -but credit must also be given to Australian General Morehead and the ordinary soldiers like Sgt. Calistan who did the actual fighting on the ground.
Meanwhile, I've travelled all around the world visiting war memorials but the strangest location I've encountered for one is the Australian El Alamein monument which is located in King's Cross -the red light district of Sydney N.S.W. Australia.Although the actual memorial itself is quite impressive and dignified.
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Old October 20th, 2012, 11:02 PM   #2
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As important for British morale (and political survival of Churchill), the Battle of El Alamein did not turn the tide in North Africa. Operation Torch did. Even without El Alamein Rommel will be obliged to retread to Tunisia after Allied landing in Morocco and Algeria
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Old October 21st, 2012, 01:38 AM   #3
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El Alamein was a very important battle, not just for British Morale

Yes, Monty could have waited for the Torch landings to take their effect on Rommel and his army, but at the time, nobody knew if it was going to be a success. Even if they were, it was dangerous to let an enemy army leave to fight another day; here Monty and the Commonwealth army had the opportunity to smash their already fuel depleted and hungry foes.

Even if the Torch landings hadn't been successful, and Alamein was, then the back and forth that had been the Africa campaign, would have come to an end, allowing the British to turn their eyes on Italy.

Furthermore, the battle wasn't just for British morale, it represents the last time that Britain would fight the axis alone, without american help, and that was important for the British public
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Old October 21st, 2012, 01:41 AM   #4

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It's correct title is the Second Battle Of El Alamain, even though it was the third battle fought in this area

First Battle Of El Alamein
[ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Battle_of_El_Alamein]First Battle of El Alamein - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]

Battle of Alam el Halfa (known to the German's as, 'The Six Day Race')
[ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Alam_el_Halfa]Battle of Alam el Halfa - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]

Second Battle Of El Alamein
[ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Battle_of_El_Alamein]Second Battle of El Alamein - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
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Old October 21st, 2012, 03:50 AM   #5

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Quote:
Originally Posted by redcoat View Post
It's correct title is the Second Battle Of El Alamain, even though it was the third battle fought in this area

First Battle Of El Alamein
First Battle of El Alamein - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Battle of Alam el Halfa (known to the German's as, 'The Six Day Race')
Battle of Alam el Halfa - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Second Battle Of El Alamein
Second Battle of El Alamein - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
In my view it should be called either "third El Alemein" or "third Alam el Halfa"for that very reason. Some historians are starting to change the nomenclature, but in popular history it's still "El Alamein"
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Old October 21st, 2012, 04:35 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Belisarius View Post
In my view it should be called either "third El Alemein" or "third Alam el Halfa"for that very reason. Some historians are starting to change the nomenclature, but in popular history it's still "El Alamein"
El Alamain alone alwys ment for methe October 1942 battle. First Alamein I will alwys connect to Auchinleck Battle, and Alam Halfa between thouse two. That what I'm used to but the name is not important.
The First Alamein and Alam Halfa were probably military more important than the Second El Alamein, but politically Second Alamein was of immense importance for British.
I try to be objective and by no means I have any anti-British agenda here. It is just a pure military assasment.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 07:23 AM   #7

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The victory at El Alamein was far short of the decisive battle that it was hailed to be at the time. But it was still an important victory. The army was the achilies heel of the British armed forces. Both the navy and air force had proved themselves equal to the Germans. The army had tasted defeat in France, Greece, Crete and at Gazala. For too long we fought the wrong war with the wrong weapons and with the wrong generals. El Alamein put the heart back in to thr British Tommy.

General Brooke was of the opinion that the men who should have been the commanders of WW11 were burried at the Somme, Ypres and Passendale
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Old October 25th, 2012, 09:32 AM   #8

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Quote:
Originally Posted by king4l View Post
El Alamein was a very important battle, not just for British Morale

Yes, Monty could have waited for the Torch landings to take their effect on Rommel and his army, but at the time, nobody knew if it was going to be a success. Even if they were, it was dangerous to let an enemy army leave to fight another day; here Monty and the Commonwealth army had the opportunity to smash their already fuel depleted and hungry foes.

Even if the Torch landings hadn't been successful, and Alamein was, then the back and forth that had been the Africa campaign, would have come to an end, allowing the British to turn their eyes on Italy.

Furthermore, the battle wasn't just for British morale, it represents the last time that Britain would fight the axis alone, without american help, and that was important for the British public
It certainly was a boost to British morale - Winston Churchill's speech after the battle: "This is not the end, it is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning" gave hope to the British nation.
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