When Churchill grandly stated that "Before Alamein we never had a victory" he was grossly and unfairly in error. The epic of Alamein had been preceded a year before by the British 8th Army's first victory: Operation Crusader, 8th Army's first desert offensive, launched on 18 November 1941. Crusader not only cracked the myth of Rommel, the 'Desert Fox', but also the invincibility of his Afrika Korps. Crusader was the mobile battle incarnate. It was not dominated, as were Gazala, Tobruk, Alamein or the last battles in Tunisia, by attempts to breach or turn o fortified line. Minefields and fixed defences played little or no part. Crusader was nearly all pure manoeuvre in the virtually featureless open desert, governed by the efforts of either side to locate and destroy the enemy's armoured forces: the battle of the desert. Though glaring errors of judgement were made on both sides during Crusader, the Germans made most. Crusader is remembered as the worst handled of all Rommel's battles - but Rommel's mistakes did not hand 8th Army the gift of a freak or opportunist victory. "Crusader" is the first in-depth account of this unique battle. It draws on personal and official accounts from both Axis and Allied sources, and neglects neither the human nor the material element.
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Book Description Leo Cooper, 1987. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110850522846