While the North African campaign has been studied in
detail over the years, much of this study has been
dedicated to the battles between the British 8th Army and
Rommel's Afrika Korps. There has been little serious
study of Wavell's campaign against Italian forces in 1940-
41, nor of the role played by the Australian 6th Division
in the eventual Italian defeat. Part of this can be
attributed to wartime propaganda that labelled the
Italian Army dilettantes and mocked their courage.
The truth is much different. Many Italian units showed
incredible bravery, and the Australian assaults on
fortress towns such as Bardia were far from a walkover.
Today's aspiring military commanders need look no further
than the early Western Desert campaign for historical
examples of brilliant leadership, detailed planning,
deception, surprise, manoeuvre warfare and relentless
pursuit, all against overwhelming odds.
Western Desert Campaign 1940-41
Big Sky Publishing
Non Fiction /