By U.S. Army Center for Military History

ISBN-10: 0160381053

ISBN-13: 9780160381058

Occasions bringing the USA military to North Africa had began greater than a yr sooner than the japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. For either the Axis and the Allies, the Mediterranean Sea sector used to be one in all doubtful precedence. at the Axis aspect, the site of Italy made obvi-ous Rome’s curiosity within the quarter. however the more suitable German associate pursued pursuits enormous quantities of miles north. the same department of emphasis characterised the Allies. To the British the Mediterranean Sea used to be the very important hyperlink among the house islands and long-held Asian possessions in addition to center japanese oil fields. To the american citizens, even if, the realm had by no means been one in all important nationwide curiosity and used to be now not visible because the top path to Berlin. however the fall of France in June 1940 had additionally introduced a brand new measurement to the zone. The hand over of Paris left 120,000 French troops in West and North Africa and lots more and plenty of the French fleet in Atlantic and Mediterranean ports. either the Axis and Allies observed in a foreign country French forces because the decisive virtue that will let them in attaining their contradictory pursuits within the Mediterranean.

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In coordinating with friendly troop movements ashore, however, problems arose. Most landings took place near urban areas, which placed troops in civil-military minefields. Since Allied leaders looked forward to eventual French cooperation against the Axis, gunnery officers aboard ships and field commanders ashore had to exercise great care to avoid civilian housing as well as port facilities and oil supplies they hoped to use. With surface units ten or more miles offshore, naval gunfire margins of error could not be ignored.

The most exhaustive treatment of the campaign remains George F. Howe, Northwest Africa: Seizing the Initiative in the West (1957), a volume in the series United States Army in World War II. CMH Pub 72–11 Cover: Troops and tank of 7th Infantry, 3d Division, inland of Fedala.

Since Allied leaders looked forward to eventual French cooperation against the Axis, gunnery officers aboard ships and field commanders ashore had to exercise great care to avoid civilian housing as well as port facilities and oil supplies they hoped to use. With surface units ten or more miles offshore, naval gunfire margins of error could not be ignored. Such considerations forced Army units to operate without some of the largecaliber support that could have shortened the duration—and reduced the casualty total—of some battles.

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Algeria - French Morocco by U.S. Army Center for Military History


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