Erwin Rommel

Tactical Thunder: The Ninth Air Force

By Sam McGowan

As the landing craft carrying the invading Allied ground forces of Operation Overlord motored toward the Normandy beaches on June 6, 1944, they were protected and supported by the largest aerial armada the world has ever seen. Read more

Wearing distinctive pith helmets, British soldiers assume prone positions as their commander scans the horizon for enemy activity. These troops were photographed near Ramadi, Iraq, as the British attempted to secure Middle Eastern oil reserves.

Erwin Rommel

Auchinleck of the Indian Army

By Jon Diamond

Many students of World War II history know General Sir Claude Auchinleck as the Commander-in-Chief Middle East, who, after taking over for General Sir Archibald Wavell in late June 1941, oversaw the fluctuating fate of Britain’s Eighth Army while combating German General Erwin Rommel’s Afrika Korps during Operations Crusader and Gazala. Read more

Located at Helwan, Egypt, the Middle East Command Camouflage Development and Training Center was a think tank and laboratory for the deception efforts of A Force. Taken in 1941, this photo shows a British tank with its sunshield split during vehicle servicing on the workshop floor.

Erwin Rommel

Magic in the Desert

By Jon Diamond

In July 1939, Archibald Wavell was named General Officer Commanding-in-Chief (GOC-in-C) of Middle East Command with the rank of full general in the British Army. Read more

Erwin Rommel

Battle at Bir el Gubi

By Arnold Blumberg

February 1941 saw the fortunes of war favor the British in the North African wasteland of Cyrenaica (modern Libya). Read more

Erwin Rommel

Subhas Chandra Bose: Champion of Indian Nationalism

By Blaine Taylor

When British diplomat Lord Halifax arrived at the Berghof in the Bavarian Alps on November 19, 1937, he mistook German Reich Chancellor Adolf Hitler for a footman and was about to hand him his coat and hat when Foreign Minister Baron Constantin von Neurath hissed, “The Führer! Read more

Erwin Rommel

Nomads of War: The Long Range Desert Group

By John W. Osborn, Jr.

“The problem,” a member said, “is to make yourself so much master over the appalling difficulties of nature—heat, thirst, cold, rain, fatigue—that, overcoming these you yet have physical energy and mental resilience to deal with the greater object, the winning of the war.” Read more

Erwin Rommel

Tale of the Biscuit Bomber: The C-47 in WWII

By Sam McGowan

Even though, technically at least, it was not a combat airplane, the performance of the Douglas C-47 transport led General of the Army Dwight Eisenhower to label it as one of the most important weapons of World War II. Read more

Erwin Rommel

Operation Pedestal: The Rescue of Malta

By Michael D. Hull

Located 58 miles south of Sicily in the Mediterranean Sea, the rocky, 122-square-mile island of Malta was the hinge upon which all Allied operations in the Middle East turned during the first half of World War II. Read more

Erwin Rommel

Italy’s North African Misadventure

By Walter S. Zapotoczny

When most people think of the Italian Army in North Africa during World War II, they tend to believe that the average Italian soldier offered little resistance to the Allies before surrendering. Read more

Erwin Rommel

Six-Pounder Versus Panzer

By Christopher Miskimon

Sergeant Charles Callistan looked through the sights of an antitank gun at an approaching enemy tank. His weapon, a six-pounder cannon, was in the perimeter of a surrounded British outpost named Snipe. Read more

Erwin Rommel

General Douglas MacArthur’s Navy

By Glenn Barnett

In November 1941, the U.S. Asiatic Fleet weighed anchor in Shanghai, China, for the last time. Alarmed by the growing hostility and aggressiveness of the Japanese, Admiral Thomas Hart ordered the outnumbered and outgunned American vessels moved to the relative safety of Manila Bay in the Philippines. Read more

Erwin Rommel

The Nazi March on Baghdad

By John F. Murphy, Jr.

With Rommel driving on Egypt and the British pushed out of Greece, a sudden pro-Nazi coup d’état in Iraq lay rich oil fields and more at Germany’s feet. Read more

Embattled Tobruk lies under a pall of smoke during Rommel’s push to capture the vital North African port city in the spring of 1941.

Erwin Rommel

The Siege of Tobruk: WWII’s Debacle in the Desert

by Michael D. Hull

Sidi Barrani, Bardia, Sollum, Sidi Rezegh, Mersa Matruh, Bir Hacheim, El Agheila, Beda Fomm, Sidi Omar, Benghazi … The names of many remote villages in North Africa were written into history in 1941-1942 as British and Axis armies battled back and forth across the scrubby desert wastelands of northern Egypt and Libya. Read more

Even as the Allies Sweated Over Deceiving Hitler About the Destination of Operation Overlord, von Roenne, a German Officer, Was Aiding Their Efforts.

Erwin Rommel

Operation Overlord’s Colonel Alexis von Roenne

During the early part of 1944, an event took place that would change the outcome of World War II. It seemed insignificant at the time, but would have a profound influence upon Operation Overlord, code name for the invasion of German-occupied France, as well as the resulting Battle of Normandy and the breakout that followed.;
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