Sir Claude Auchinleck

Erwin Rommel’s Determined Assault on Tobruk

During the early morning hours of May 27, 1942, the men of the 3rd Indian Motor Brigade braced themselves for another mundane assignment in the broiling heat of the Libyan Desert. Read more

Sir Claude Auchinleck

Sir John Dill and Winston Churchill: A Clash in Strategy

By Jon Diamond

In describing the relationship between British General Sir John Dill and his political superior, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Dill’s biographer, Alex Danchev, noted, “It was … an association strikingly lacking in empathy or understanding, etched in fundamental disagreement, and scarred by a mutual disaffection welling up at times into personal distaste.” Read more

The British defeat of Panzerarmee Africa at Alam El Halfa in 1942 was a turning point in the North African campaign.

Sir Claude Auchinleck

Rommel’s Failed Gamble: The “Six Days’ Race”

By Arnold Blumberg

An old cliché admonishes, “Bad things always come in threes.” Whether it was thought of as a law of nature or merely coincidence, a rapid succession of events in North Africa during the summer of 1942 seemed to confirm this widely held notion among the officers and men of the British Eighth Army. Read more

Major General Eric Dorman-Smith was an architect of the strategy that won the first battle of El Alamein in June 1942.

Sir Claude Auchinleck

Eric Dorman-Smith: Churchill’s Scapegoat in North Africa

By Jon Diamond

When one gazes upon the bookshelves in the Military History section of a well-endowed library, one cannot help but notice the number of volumes dedicated to the battles for North Africa during World War II and particularly to the Battle of El Alamein in October 1942. Read more

An attempt to capture of kill the Desert Fox failed but the effort made a hero of Geoffrey Keyes.

Sir Claude Auchinleck

Raid on Rommel

By John Brown

By early April 1941, Lt. Gen. Erwin Rommel’s German Afrika Korps, combined with Italian units, had cleared the British from Libya except for the seaport of Tobruk. Read more

Sir Claude Auchinleck

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

Sir Claude Auchinleck

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

Sir Claude Auchinleck

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

Sir Claude Auchinleck

The Afrika Korps at El Alamein: Beginning of the End

By John Brown

Tobruk, the vital Libyan seaport on the coast of Cyrenaica, fell to General Erwin Rommel and his victorious Afrika Korps in less than 24 hours after an unexpected and devastating air, armor, and infantry attack on June 21, 1942. Read more