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MALTA POTENTIAL BASE FOR AIR AND SEA ATTACKS
Malta could play a vital role in a campaign for the defence of Egypt, according the UK Cabinet. At a meeting today, British Ministers recognised the role of the Island as a potential centre for an air offensive against Italian or German operations in the Mediterranean. It is hoped that the reinforcement of the anti-aircraft defence of the Island and its re-occupation by the Mediterranean Fleet would provide a base for launching offensives against enemy convoys, and even against Italy itself. Malta’s role would form part of a two-pronged strategy, with defence the main focus from Alexandria inland and to the east, and attack from the west using sea power. Given sufficient breathing space, the Cabinet agreed, plans might be implemented as soon as October elsewhere, but preparations in Malta would take longer.
FORMER MALTA PM LORD STRICKLAND DIES
Lord Gerald Strickland passed away peacefully today at his residence, Villa Bologna in Attard. Throughout his brief illness he was surrounded by his family.
The Right Honourable the Lord Strickland GCMG, Count della Catena was a former Prime Minister of Malta (1927-30) who also served as a Member of Parliament in the United Kingdom House of Commons until he was made a Peer in 1928, becoming Baron Strickland. In 1939 he became leader of the elected majority of the Malta Council of Government. Lord Strickland was also owner of newspaper publisher Progress Press.
He will be buried in the family crypt of St Pauls Cathedral, Valletta.
STORES ARE ON THE WAY
Telegram from War Office today confirmed that the following stores for Malta are being despatched by fast convoy round the Cape in three ships:
- First ship: 554 tons of ammunition, six heavy and five light tractors, 2 x 3.7” Ack Ack guns, 746 tons Royal Engineers stores including 625 tons timber in bundles, 613 tons ordnance stores including 355 tons sandbags and barbed wire and 152 tons AG stores, 1435 tons supplies, 72 tons medical stores.
- Second ship: ammunition 1334 tons, 12 x 3.7 Ack Ack mobile guns, 36 x 3.7” barrels, 10 x 40mm Bofors each with spare barrels, Royal Engineers stores 70 tons, ordnance stores 241 tons, supplies 770 tons.
- Third ship: ammunition 639 tons, six tractors heavy, five tractors light, 2 x 3.7” Ack Ack guns, 36 cases 3.7” barrels, ten 4.5” barrels.
AIR RAIDS DAWN 22 AUGUST TO DAWN 23 AUGUST 1940
No air raids.
OPERATIONS REPORTS THURSDAY 22 AUGUST 1940
ROYAL NAVY One enemy submarine reported off Gozo. A search by trawlers was unsuccessful. One floating mine was sunk by Beryl ten miles off Gozo. Nubian, Mohawk, Hostile and Hero arrived and sailed.
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