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"Malta 1940" Topic

7 Posts

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840 hits since 21 May 2012
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VCarter Supporting Member of TMP22 May 2012 4:34 a.m. PST

Found this over on the Strategy page:

"Early in 1940, shortly before Italy entered World War II, Air Marshal Italo Balbo proposed opening hostilities with a surprise invasion of Malta by the San Marco naval infantry regiment and airborne troops, followed by the 47th "Bari" Infantry Division, and covered by Italy's full naval and air forces; but Mussolini dismissed the plan as impractical."

Any one know what Allied forces would be present?

Sundance22 May 2012 5:05 a.m. PST

Not sure what Allied forces were there, but the plan was resurrected only to be dropped again after the disaster at Crete.

Personal logo Jeff Ewing Supporting Member of TMP22 May 2012 7:14 a.m. PST

A whopping one brigade of infantry, which would eventually become the 231st IB: 1st Royal Hampshires, 1st Dorsets, 2nd Devons. Also King's Own Malta Regiment, a Territorial battalion.

Cornelius Supporting Member of TMP22 May 2012 8:21 a.m. PST

And a big naval dockyard with ratings who could have been armed and used in a conflict.

Oddball22 May 2012 12:37 p.m. PST

One of Il Duce's biggest mistakes was not taking Malta early. It sounds like an very interesting scenario.

NOLA Chris Supporting Member of TMP22 May 2012 1:44 p.m. PST

very interesting "What If"…!

would the Italians have been better than they were against the French?
and what would the Royal Navy have had to oppose the invasion?


Frederick Supporting Member of TMP22 May 2012 4:44 p.m. PST

At the start of the war? They might have had a fighting chance of getting their troops ashore- which would have made for a very interesting battle

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