Note on Sources
The primary sources for the New Zealand operations are the 2 NZEF war diaries, General Freyberg’s diary and other contemporary records, the files of the Prime Minister’s Department, various reports and accounts, most of them in the archives of War History Branch, and private documents including diaries and wartime and post-war correspondence and interviews. For the hardest phases of the fighting, particularly at Sidi Rezegh, the testimony of other ranks has been invaluable, because many of the officers concerned are dead; but in military history of this kind two and two do not make four. Where a company commander died his platoon commanders cannot jointly replace his account; they can perhaps establish what happened but not all he had in mind. No amount of post-war research, moreover, can altogether make up for the loss of the records of 5 Brigade Headquarters at Sidi Azeiz or for those of 24 and 26 Battalions at Sidi Rezegh.
On the enemy side there is a serious imbalance. Photographic copies or translations of almost all relevant German war diaries except those of Panzer Group Africa from 19 November onwards (which are missing) heavily outweigh the few Italian contemporary documents which have come to hand and published sources do little to rectify this. Kriebel’s unpublished Feldzug in Nordafrika, however, is helpful and there are some excellent and well-documented appreciations prepared by the Enemy Documents Section of the Historical Branch of the Cabinet Office (though these, too, inevitably lack adequate Italian sources).
For details which seemed critical to New Zealand operations the United Kingdom official histories, narratives, and draft administrative history have been augmented by copies of United Kingdom war diaries and other documents supplied by the Cabinet Office. There are also New Zealand copies of many official Middle East records, including General Ritchie’s report. Similarly the drafts of the official South African history and a narrative of the operations of 2 South African Division in the frontier area have been supplemented by comments on the New Zealand narrative and by an extensive correspondence with the Union War Histories’ Section of the Prime Minister’s Department, Pretoria, in which copies of some contemporary South African documents have been made available. Indian operations have been covered by the United Kingdom narratives, a narrative of the operations of 4 Indian Division (dated 17 April 1942) supplied by the Historical Section, India, and published sources. The Australian Official War History section has elucidated some points in correspondence, but for details of Australian operations published sources are the main ones.
Agar-Hamilton, J. A. I., and L. C. F. Turner, Crisis in the Desert and The Sidi Rezeg Battles, 1941 (Oxford).
Anson, T. V., The New Zealand Dental Services (War History Branch).
Armstrong, Major C. N., Life Without Ladies (Whitcombe & Tombs).
Auchinleck, Field Marshal Sir Claude, Despatches, Operations in the Middle East, 5 July–31 October 1941, and 1 November 1941–15 August 1942, Supplements to The London Gazette, 1946 and 1948.
Bagnold, Brigadier R. A., Libyan Sands (Hodder & Stoughton).
Barnett, Correlli, The Desert Generals (Kimber).
Bates, P. W., Supply Company (War History Branch).
Bayonets Abroad (2/13 AIF Battalion Association, Sydney).
Behrens, Miss C. B. A., Merchant Shipping and the Demands of War (HMSO).
Bharucha, Major P. C., The North African Campaign, 1940–1943 (Combined Inter-Services Historical Section, India & Pakistan).
Borman, C. A., Divisional Signals (War History Branch).
Bragadin, Commander Marc’Antonio, Che ha fatto la Marina? (Garzanti, Milan).
Brett-James, Antony, Ball of Fire (5 Indian Division) (Gale & Polden).
Bright, Joan, History of the Northumberland Hussars Yeomanry, 1924–1949 (Mawson, Swan & Morgan).
Bryant, Arthur, The Turn of the Tide (Collins).
Burdon, R. M., 24 Battalion (War History Branch).
Butler, Professor J. R. M., Grand Strategy, Vol. II (HMSO).
Campbell, N., ‘British Armoured Battles, The Tank Versus Tank Phase – “ Sidi Rezegh”‘, Royal Armoured Corps Journal, July 1947.
Carver, Lieutenant-Colonel R. M. P., ‘Desert Dilemmas’, Parts I and II, Royal Armoured Corps Journal, October 1948 and January 1949.
Cavallero, Ugo, Comando Supremo (Capelli).
Churchill, Winston S., The Second World War, Vol. I, The Gathering Storm; Vol. II, Their Finest Hour; Vol. III, The Grand Alliance (Cassell).
Ciano’s Diary, 1939–1943, ed. Malcolm Muggeridge (Heinemann).
Ciano’s Diplomatic Papers, ed. Malcolm Muggeridge (Odhams Press).
Clarke, Brigadier Dudley, The Eleventh at War (Joseph).
Clay, Major E. W., The Path of the 50th (Gale & Polden).
Clifford, Alexander, Crusader and Three Against Rommel (Harrap).
Clifton, Brigadier George, The Happy Hunted (Cassell).
Cody, J. F., 21 Battalion, 28 (Maori) Battalion, and (in preparation) New Zealand Engineers (War History Branch).
Collier, Basil, The Defence of the United Kingdom (HMSO).
Collins, Major-General R. J., Lord Wavell (Hodder & Stoughton).
Connell, John, Auchinleck (Cassell).
Coulter, Surgeon Captain J. L. S., The Royal Naval Medical Service, Vol. II, Operations (HMSO).
Crew, Professor F. A. E., The Army Medical Services, Campaigns, Vol. I (HMSO).
Crisp, Robert, Brazen Chariots (Muller).
Cunningham, Admiral of the Fleet Viscount, of Hyndhope, A Sailor’s Odyssey (Hutchinson).
Curie, Eve, Journey Among Warriors (Heinemann).
Davin, Dan (D. M.), Crete (War History Branch) and For the Rest of Our Lives (Nicholson & Watson).
Davy, Brigadier G. M. O., The Seventh and Three Enemies (7 Hussars) (Heffer).
De Belot, Rear-Admiral Raymond, The Struggle for the Mediterranean, 1939–45 (Princeston).
De Guingand, Major-General Sir Francis, Operation Victory (Hodder & Stoughton).
Documents Relating to New Zealand’s Participation in the Second World War, Vols. I and II (War History Branch).
Duffus, Louis, Beyond the Laager (Hurst & Blackett).
Eighth Army (Ministry of Information) (HMSO).
Evans, Lieutenant-General Sir Geoffrey, The Desert and the Jungle (Kimber).
Evans-Pritchard, Professor E. E., The Sanusi of Cyrenaica (Oxford).
Fleet Air Arm, The (Ministry of Information) (HMSO).
Fearnside, G. H., Sojourn in Tobruk (Ure Smith, Sydney).
Fullarton, John H., Troop Target (Hutchinson).
Fergusson, Bernard, The Black Watch and the King’s Enemies (Collins).
Gerard, J. D., Unwilling Guests (A. H. & A. W. Reed).
Gill, G. Hermon, Royal Australian Navy, 1939–42 (Australian War Memorial).
Gillespie, Lieutenant-Colonel O. A., The Pacific (War History Branch).
Goodheart, David, The History of the 2/7 Australian Field Regiment (Rigby, Adelaide).
Guderian, General Heinz, Panzer Leader (Joseph).
Gwyer, J. M. A., and J. R. M. Butler, Grand Strategy, Vol. III (in preparation) (HMSO).
Hancock, W. K., and M. M. Gowing, The British War Economy (HMSO).
Hall, Duncan H., and C. C. Wrigley, North American Supply (HMSO).
Halton, Matthew, Ten Years to Alamein (Drummond).
Hargest, Brigadier J., Farewell Campo 12 (Joseph).
Harris, Marshal of the Royal Air Force Sir Arthur, Bomber Offensive (Collins).
Hasluck, Paul, The Government and the People, 1939–41 (Australian War Memorial).
Hastings, Major R. H. W. S., The Rifle Brigade, 1939–1945 (Gale & Polden).
Hattersley, Professor Alan F., Carbineer (R. Natal Carbineers) (Gale & Polden).
Hay, Ian, Arms and the Men (HMSO).
Heckstall-Smith, A., Tobruk (Blond).
Henderson, Jim, Gunner Inglorious (Whitcombe & Tombs) and RMT and 22 Battalion (War History Branch).
Hetherington, John, Blamey (Cheshire, Melbourne).
Higgins, Trumbull, Winston Churchill and the Second Front (Oxford).
Hill, Russell, Desert War (Jarrolds).
Hinsley, F. H., Hitler’s Strategy (Cambridge).
Howard, Captain Michael E., and Lieutenant-Colonel John H. A. Sparrow, The Coldstream Guards, 1920–1946 (Oxford).
Jackson, Francis, Passage to Tobruk (A. H. & A. W. Reed).
Joly, Cyril, Take These Men (Constable).
Kay, Robin, 27 (Machine Gun) Battalion and Long Range Desert Group in Libya (War History Branch).
Kennedy, Major-General Sir John, The Business of War (Hutchinson).
Kesselring, Field Marshal Albert, The Memoirs of Field-Marshal Kesselring (Kimber).
Keyes, Elizabeth, Geoffrey Keyes, VC (Newnes).
Kippenberger, Major-General Sir Howard, Infantry Brigadier (Oxford).
Latham, Brigadier H. B., ‘The Advance and Attack of German Armoured Formations in Libya, 1941–42’, Journal of the Royal Artillery, Vol. LXIX, No. 4.
Leighton, Richard M., and Robert W. Coakley, Global Logistics and Strategy, 1940–1943 (Department of the Army, Washington).
Libyan Campaign, The (War Department, Washington).
Liddell Hart, B. H., This Expanding War (Faber & Faber), The Tanks, The History of the Royal Tank Regiment, Vol. II (Cassell), The Other Side of the Hill (Hamilton), and ed. The Rommel Papers (Collins).
Llewellyn, S. P., Journey Towards Christmas (1 NZ Ammunition Company) (War History Branch).
Long, Gavin, To Benghazi and Greece, Crete and Syria (Australian War Memorial).
McClymont, W. G., To Greece (War History Branch).
McCorquodale, Colonel D., Major B. L. B. Hutchings, and Major A. D. Woozley, History of the King’s Dragoon Guards, 1938–1945 (Regimental Association).
McKenzie, Sir Compton, Eastern Epic, Vol. I (Chatto & Windus).
McKinney, J. B., Medical Units of 2 NZEF in Middle East and Italy (War History Branch).
MacLean, Brigadier Fitzroy, Eastern Approaches (Cape).
Manzetti, Brigadier Ferruccio, Seconda offensiva britannica in Africa settentrionale e ripiegamento italo-tedesco nella Sirtica orientale (18 November 1941–17 Gennaio 1942) (Ministry of Defence, Rome).
Maravigna, General Pietro, Come abbiamo perduto la guerra in Africa (Tosi).
Martel, Lieutenant-General Sir Giffard Le Q., Our Armoured Forces (Faber & Faber).
Martienssen, Anthony, Hitler and his Admirals (Secker & Warburg).
Martin, Colonel T. A., The Essex Regiment 1929–1950 (Regimental Association).
Mason, W. Wynne, Prisoners of War (War History Branch).
Masters, David, With Pennants Flying (Eyre & Spottiswoode).
Matloff, Maurice, and Edwin M. Snell, Strategic Planning for Coalition Warfare 1941–1942 (Department of the Army, Washington).
Mediterranean Fleet, The (Ministry of Information) (HMSO).
Military Report on Libya, 1936, amended to 1940 (War Office) (HMSO).
Military Report on North-western Desert of Egypt, 1937 (War Office) (HMSO).
Monk, J. A. C., et alia, 7 Medium Regiment, RA, During World War II, 1939–1945 (Regimental Association, now 32 Medium Regiment, RA).
Moorehead, Alan, A Year of Battle and African Trilogy (Hamish Hamilton).
Murphy, W. E., Point 175, The Battle of Sunday of the Dead (War History Branch).
Nazi-Soviet Relations, 1939–1941, ed. Raymond James Sontag and James Stuart Beddie (Didier, New York).
Norton, Frazer D., 26 Battalion (War History Branch).
Owen, Lieutenant-Colonel D. L., The Desert my Dwelling Place (Cassell).
Owen, Roderic, Tedder (Collins) and The Desert Air Force (Hutchinson).
Playfair, Major-General I. S. O., et alia, The Mediterranean and the Middle East, Vols. I, II and III (HMSO).
Postan, Professor M. M., British War Production (HMSO).
Pringle, D. J. C., and W. A. Glue, 20 Battalion and Armoured Regiment (War History Branch).
Puttick, Lieutenant-General Sir Edward, 25 Battalion (War History Branch).
Rainier, Major Peter W., Pipeline into Battle (Heinemann).
Return to the Attack (Army Board, Wellington).
Richards, Denis, and H. St. G. Saunders, Royal Air Force 1939–1945, Vols. I and II (HMSO).
Rintelen, General Enno Von, Mussolini als Bundesgenosse (Leins, Tübingen).
Ropp, Theodore, War in the Modern World (Duke).
Ross, Angus, 23 Battalion (War History Branch).
Rosenthal, Eric, Fortress on Sand (Hutchinson).
Roskill, Captain S. W., The War at Sea 1939–1945, Vols. I and II (HMSO).
Rowan-Robinson, Major-General H., Auchinleck to Alexander (Hutchinson).
Royal Air Force Medical Services, Vol. III, Campaigns, ed. Squadron-Leader S. C. Rexford-Welch (HMSO).
Royal Artillery Commemoration Book 1939–1945 (RA Association) (Bell).
42 Royal Tank Regiment 1938–1944 (Regimental Association, now 23 London Regiment, TA).
Scoullar, Lieutenant-Colonel J. L., Battle for Egypt (War History Branch).
Schmidt, Captain H. W., With Rommel in the Desert (Harrap, London, and Albatross, Durban).
Shaw, Major W. B. Kennedy, Long Range Desert Group (Collins).
‘Silver John’, Target Tank (History Committee of 2/3 Australian Anti-Tank Regiment).
Smith, E. H., Guns Against Tanks (War History Branch).
Smith, R. Trevor, ‘Military Railway Construction in Middle East, 1941–43’, Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute of Railway Engineers, 1947.
Sinclair, D. W., 19 Battalion and Armoured Regiment (War History Branch).
Stevens, Lieutenant-Colonel G. R., Fourth Indian Division (McLaren, Toronto).
Stevens, Major-General W. G., Problems of 2 NZEF (War History Branch).
Stewart, Colonel H., The New Zealand Division, 1916–1919 (Whitcombe and Tombs, 1921).
Stout, T. Duncan M., New Zealand Medical Services in Middle East and Italy (War History Branch).
‘Strategicus’, The War Moves East (Faber & Faber).
Swift and Bold (King’s Royal Rifle Corps), ed. Major-General Sir Hereward Wake and Major W. F. Deedes (Gale & Polden).
The Tiger Kills (Indian divisions in North Africa) (HMSO).
Thompson, Wing-Commander H. L., New Zealanders with the Royal Air Force, Vol. III (War History Branch).
Underhill, Rev. M. L., Sydney D. Waters, Squadron-Leader J. M. S. Ross, and Rev. N. E. Winhall, New Zealand Chaplains in the Second World War (War History Branch).
Uren, Martyn, Kiwi Saga (Collins, Auckland).
Verney, Major-General G. L., The Desert Rats (7 Armoured Division) (Hutchinson).
Von Mellenthin, Major-General Baron F. W., Panzer Battles, 1939–1945 (Cassell).
Watkins, Major H. B. C., ‘Night Fighting’ (by infantry tanks), The Army Quarterly, Vol. LXVII, October 1953.
Walker, Allan, Middle East and Far East (Medical Series) (Australian War Memorial).
Waters, S. D., The Royal New Zealand Navy (War History Branch).
Wavell, General Sir Archibald, Despatch, Operations of British Land Forces in the Middle East, 7 February 1941 – 15 July 1941, Supplement to The London Gazette, 1946.
Westphal, General Siegfried, The Germany Army in the West (Cassell) (translated from Heer in Fesseln, Athenaum, Bonn).
Wilmot, Chester, Tobruk 1941 (Angus & Robertson).
Wilson, Field Marshal Lord, of Libya, Eight Years Overseas, 1939–1947 (Hutchinson).
Wood, Professor F. L. W., The New Zealand People at War, Political and External Affairs (War History Branch).
Woollcombe, Roger, The Campaigns of Wavell 1939–1943 (Cassell).
Yindrich, Jan, Fortress Tobruk (Benn).
Young, Brigadier Desmond, Rommel (Collins).