New Zealand

The Advance from El Alamein to Tripoli, War History Branch narrative by R. L. Kay.

The Campaign in Tunisia, War History Branch narrative by I. McL. Wards.

‘These preliminary narratives are based on the divisional, brigade, and unit war diaries of the 2nd New Zealand Expeditionary Force, supplemented by miscellaneous reports, records of interviews, eyewitness accounts, signal messages, strength states, sketches, citations, and unofficial material yielded by correspondence and interviews with participants. The narratives also contain the comments of those who read them in New Zealand or the United Kingdom.

GOC’s Papers: a diary kept by Lieutenant-General Freyberg (or for him by his Personal Assistant), supplemented by relevant papers and reports grouped in files.

File 26, General (Employment of Division).

File 27, Turning El Agheila Position.

File 28, Nofilia to Tripoli.

File 29, Rommel’s Attack at Medenine.

File 30, The Mareth Operations.

File 31, Akarit to Enfidaville.

File 32, General (Administration, Sicily and Italy).

File 39, Manpower, Reinforcements, the Furlough Scheme.

File 40, Notes for History of Left Hook.

File 41, Conference in Tripoli, Feb 1943.

File 42, Cables to Prime Minister (policy, administration, and reports).

File 45, GOC’s Diary, Part III, 3/9/42–3/9/43.

Policy files, Army Headquarters, Wellington.

Policy files, Prime Minister’s Department, Wellington.

Operations Pugilist and Supercharge II, a Study of Command, unpublished thesis by I. McL. Wards.

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United Kingdom

Narratives prepared or in preparation for the United Kingdom Historical Section.

War Communiqués, Middle East.

War Office: Military Report on Libya, 1936 (with amendments to 1940).

German and Italian

Many of the enemy documents captured during the progress of the war were translated and appended to the relevant war diaries. After the war the bulk of the material captured in Germany – generally speaking, complete documentation at divisional level and above – was transferred to Washington, USA. Mr W. D. Dawson was sent to Washington by the War History Branch to appraise this material and translate whatever had reference to the War History Branch programme. He also traced copies of many maps and diagrams. In addition, the author had access to the United Kingdom Enemy Documents Section. Unfortunately, as the enemy became hard-pressed, his documentation in Tunisia petered out.

Little lower-level Italian material for this period has survived the war. Most of the documents, usually at command level, that were consulted have survived only because they had been duplicated to a German command.

The chief enemy documents consulted were:

German-Italian Forces in Africa, 23 October 1942–23 February 1943. (German war narrative.)

German-Italian Army reports.

Appreciations by Colonel-General von Arnim, General Messe, and Field-Marshal Rommel of the situation in Tunisia, February–March 1943.

Report by Marshal Bastico on operations in Libya, 16 November 1942–3 February 1943.

Reports by General Messe on actions from Mareth to Akarit, 16–31 March 1943.

Reports from 1 Italian Army to Italian Supreme Command, 14 March–13 May 1943.

1 Italian Army reports.

Africa Corps war diaries and appendices.

10 Panzer Division war diaries and appendices.

15 Panzer Division war diaries and appendices.

21 Panzer Division war diaries and appendices.

90 Light Division war diaries and appendices.

164 Light Division war diaries and appendices.

135 Anti-Aircraft Regiment war diaries.

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United Kingdom

Alexander of Tunis, His Excellency Field Marshal the Viscount, Despatch, The African Campaign from El Alamein to Tunis, from 10 August, 1942 to 13 May, 1943, in Supplement to The London Gazette, 3 February 1948.

Anderson, Lieutenant-General K. A. N., Despatch, Operations in North West Africa from 8th November 1942 to 13th May 1943, in Supplement to The London Gazette, 5 November 1946.

Wilson, General Sir H. Maitland, Despatch, Operations in the Middle East from 16 February, 1943, to 8th January, 1944, in Supplement to The London Gazette, 12 November 1946.

Headquarters Royal Air Force Middle East, RAF Middle East Review, Nos. 1–3, Middle East, 1942–43.

Montgomery, Field-Marshal Sir Bernard L., El Alamein to the River Sangro, The British Army of the Rhine, Germany, 1946.

Ministry of Information, The Army at War, Tunisia, London, 1944.

Naval Intelligence Division, Tunisia, Oxford, 1945.

War Office, The Tiger Kills, The Indian Divisions in North Africa, HMSO, London. 1944.

United States of America

Howe, George F., The Mediterranean theatre of Operations, Northwest Africa: Seizing the Initiative in the West (US Army in World War II), Military History Department of the Army, Washington, 1957.

New Zealand

(All but the first of the works in this section are published by the War History Branch, Department of Internal Affairs, Wellington.)

The Army Board: The Diamond Track, Wellington, 1944.

Bates, P. W., Supply Company, 1955.

Borman, C. A., Divisional Signals, 1954.

Burdon, R. M., 24 Battalion, 1953.

Cody, J. F., 21 Battalion, 1953. 28 (Maori) Battalion, 1956.

Henderson, J. H., RMT: Official History of the 4th and 6th Reserve Mechanical Transport Companies, Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force, 1954.

Kay, R. L., 27 (Machine Gun) Battalion, 1958. Long Range Desert Group in the Mediterranean, 1950. The ‘Left Hook’ at El Agheila (in The Other Side of the Hill), 1952.

Page 394

Llewellyn, S. P., Journey Towards Christmas: Official History of the 1st Ammunition Company, Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force, 1939–45, 1949.

McKinney, J. B., Medical Units of the Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force in Middle East and Italy, 1952.

Norton, F. D., 26 Battalion, 1952.

Puttick, Lieutenant-General Sir Edward, 25 Battalion, 1960.

Ropp, Theodore, War in the Modern World, Duke University Press, Durham, N.C., 1959.

Ross, A., 23 Battalion, 1959.

Stevens, Major-General W. G., Problems of 2 NZEF, 1958.

Thompson, Wing Commander H. L., New Zealanders with the Royal Air Force, Vol. III, 1959.

Wards, I. McL., Takrouna, 1951.

War History Branch: Documents Relating to New Zealand’s Participation in the Second World War, 1939–45. Vols. I and II, 1949 and 1951.


Butcher, Captain Harry C., My Three Years with Eisenhower, Heinemann, London, 1946.

Churchill, Winston S., The Second World War. Vol. IV, The Hinge of Fate, Cassell, London, 1951, Vol. V, Closing the Ring, London, 1952.

Ciano, Count Galeazzo (ed. Malcolm Muggeridge), Ciano’s Diary, 1939–1943, Heinemann, London, 1947. Ciano’s Diplomatic Papers, Odhams, London, 1948.

Cunningham of Hyndhope, Admiral of the Fleet Viscount, A Sailor’s Odyssey, Hutchinson, London, 1951.

De Guingand, Major-General Sir Francis, Operation Victory, Hodder and Stoughton, London, 1947.

Eisenhower, General Dwight D., Crusade in Europe, Heinemann, London, 1948.

Kippenberger, Major-General Sir Howard, Infantry Brigadier, Oxford University Press, London, 1949.

Montgomery, Field-Marshal Viscount, The Memoirs of Field-Marshal Montgomery, Collins, London, 1958.

Rommel, Field-Marshal Erwin (ed. Captain B. H. Liddell Hart), The Rommel Papers, Collins, London, 1953.

Stevens, Lieutenant-Colonel G. R., Fourth Indian Division, McLaren, Toronto (no date of publication).

Wilmot, Chester, The Struggle for Europe, Collins, London, 1952.

Wilson, Field-Marshal Lord, Eight Years Overseas, 1939–47, Hutchinson, London, 1950.

Young, Desmond, Rommel, Collins, London, 1950.