Gazala – British and Commonwealth Forces (Op Crusader)

Forces built up piecemeal in the desert on both sides, so I have taken an arbitary snapshot round about the time of the first GAZALA battles (November 1941) as the basis for a mini campaign. As ever, I am open to suggestions and comments from those with a better knowledge of the period.

British and Commonwealth Forces

Commander-in-Chief Middle East Command: General Claude Auchinleck

8th-armyBritish Eighth Army

Lieutenant-General Alan Cunningham, succeeded on 26 November by Lieutenant-General Neil Ritchie
Model of a Nissen hut with a Campari sun umberella outside.

30th-corpsXXX Corps

Lieutenant-General Willoughby Norrie
Comd Car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Ammo Truck (s3), POL Truck (s3), Ambulance Truck (s3), Workshop Truck (s3)
Comd Car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Ammo Truck (s3), POL Truck (s3)
  • Divisional troops
    • 4th South African Armoured Car Regiment – Marmon Harrington Armd Car (s3)
  • 102nd Royal Horse Artillery – FOO (s1), Limber (s3), 25pdr (s3)
  • 1st Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment RA – Bofors 40mm (s3) + limber (s3)

1st-south-african-division1st South African Division (Major-General George Brink) – Comd car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Ammo Truck (s3), POL Truck (s3), Ambulance Truck (s3), Workshop Truck (s3)

  • 1st Royal Natal Carabineers SA Infantry Corps (Lieutenant Colonel Len Hay, M.C.) (As above)
  • 1st Transvaal Scottish SA Infantry Corps (As 1DoE above)
  • One Sqn 3rd SA Armoured Car Regt SA Tank Corps – Marmon Harrington Armd Car (s1)
  • 3rd and 4th Anti-Tank Batteries SA Artillery Corps – FOO (s1), Limber (s2), 2pdr (s2)
  • 1st Light Anti-Aircraft Battery SA Artillery Corps – Truck (s1), 20mm AA (s1) (or portee)
  • 1st Field Company SA Engineering Corps – Truck (s1), Engr (s1)
  • 11th and 15th Field Batteries of 4th Field Regt SA Artillery Corps – FOO (s1), Limber (s2), 25pdr (s2)
  • 7th, 19th and 20th Field Batteries of 7th Field Regt SA Artillery Corps  –FOO (s1), Limber (s3), 25pdr (s3)
  • 5th South African Infantry Brigade (As 1st bde above)
  • 22nd Guards BrigadeComd Car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Rifle stand (s3) (Defence Platoon)

    • 9th battalion Rifle BrigadeComd (s3),  3 Rifle Stands (s3), VickersMMG (s3), 3″Mortar (s3), ATkRifle (s3), 2 3ton Trucks(s3)
    • 3rd battalion Coldstream Guards Comd (s3),  3 Rifle Stands (s3), VickersMMG (s3), 3″Mortar (s3), ATkRifle (s3), 2 3ton Trucks(s3)

13th-corpsXIII Corps

Lieutenant-General Reade Godwin-Austen
Comd car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Ammo Truck (s3), POL Truck (s3), Ambulance Truck (s3), Workshop Truck (s3) 40mm Flak + Truck (s3)

2nd-new-zealand-infantry-division2nd New Zealand Division (Major-General Bernard Freyberg)

Comd car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Ammo Truck (s3), POL Truck (s3), Ambulance Truck (s3), Workshop Truck (s3), 40mm Flak (s3) + Truck (s3)

  • 4th New Zealand Infantry Brigade – Comd (s3), Signals Vehicle (s3), Rifle stand (s3) (Defence Platoon)
  • 18th Infantry Battalion – Comd (s3), 3-4 Rifle Stands (s3), VickersMMG (s3), 3″Mortar (s3), ATkRifle (s3) (Boyes)
  • 19th Infantry Battalion – (As 18 Bn above)
  • 20th Infantry Battalion – (As 18 Bn above)
  • 5th New Zealand Infantry Brigade – (As 4th Bde above)
    • 21st Infantry Battalion
    • 22nd Infantry Battalion
    • 23rd Infantry Battalion
  • 6th New Zealand Infantry Brigade – (As 4th Bde above)
    • 24th Infantry Battalion
    • 25th Infantry Battalion
    • 26th Infantry Battalion
  • Divisional troops
    • (Reconnaissance) – Marmon Herrington Armd Car (3)
    • 1 Field Regiment, Royal Artillery FOO (s1), Limber (s3), 25pdr (s3)
    • 25 Field Regiment, Royal Artillery FOO (s1), Limber (s3), 25pdr (s3)
    • 31 Field Regiment, Royal Artillery FOO (s1), Limber (s3), 25pdr (s3)
Comd car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Ammo Truck (s3), POL Truck (s3), Ambulance Truck (s3), Workshop Truck (s3)

Tobruk Garrison

Major-General Ronald Scobie
Comd car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), 40mm Flak + Truck (s3), Ambulance Truck (s3), Workshop truck (s3)

british_wwii_6th_infantry_division70th Infantry Division

Comd car (s3), Signals Truck (s3), Ammo Truck (s3), POL Truck (s3), Ambulance Truck (s3), Workshop Truck (s3) 40mm Flak + Truck (s3)
  • Polish Independent Carpathian Rifle Brigade
    • I Carpathian Rifle Battalion
    • II Carpathian Rifle Battalion
    • III Carpathian Rifle Battalion
    • 11 Czechoslovakian Infantry Battalion
    • 2/13 Australian Infantry Battalion
    • Carpathian Machine Gun Battalion
    • Carpathian Field Regiment FOO (s1), Limber (s3), 25pdr (s3)

***The Brigade was a mix of Valentines and mostly Matildas

Oasis Force

Brigadier Denys Reid
  • 29th Indian Infantry Brigade – (As 4th NZ Inf Bde above)
  • 6th South African Armoured Car Regiment – Marmon Harrington Armd Car (3)

Army Reserve

2nd South African Division Sign2nd South African Division (Major-General Isaac de Villiers) (All as 2 NZ Div above)

  • 3rd South African Infantry Brigade
  • 4th South African Infantry Brigade
  • 6th South African Infantry Brigade

Sources

Original text written by:

http://www.enotes.com/topic/Operation_Crusader_order_of_battle

Paolo Marcenaro http://comandosupremo.com/libya1941.html

and http://www.enotes.com/topic/Eighth_Army_%28United_Kingdom%29

Adapted for NQM with images from various sources, as are the following two posts

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Filed under 15mm Miniatures Wargames, 8th Army - British and Commonwealth, DAK, Italian Army, Western Desert, WWII

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