ATTACK AND PURSUE

OPERATION CRUSADER BY NUMBERS

Directed at relieving the beleaguered garrison at Tobruk, Operation Crusader became known for its see-saw engagements as gains were reversed as quickly as they were made. Tom Baker deciphers the chaos

THE BRITISH ENJOYED A HEALTHY ADVANTAGE IN TANK NUMBERS PRIOR TO OPERATION CRUSADER
NIDAY PICTURE LIBRARY/ALAMY

10½ hours

Time was a precious commodity in the desert. Circa November 1941, Allied planners had just 10½ hours of daylight available and with the onset of darkness and extreme cold a prerequisite was to keep operations to daylight hours.

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