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ISLAND GARRISON ARMED FOR ATTACK AND DEFENCE
Malta is now in a strong position in the war of the Mediterranean. By the end of October 1941, air and submarine attacks launched by Allied forces from the Island had caused massive disruption to German and Italian convoys attempting to run supplies into North Africa. 65% of transports have been destroyed; Mussolini has complained that three quarters of Italy’s shipping on the Mediterranean supply routes have been lost. Rommel’s forces in North Africa are facing starvation.
Thanks to reinforcements in recent weeks Malta is now well supplied. The garrison now boasts 30,000 men with first class equipment, 80 Hurricanes and 105 assorted bombers (Wellingtons, Blenheims, Marylands, Swordfish and Albacores). Ack Ack defences consist of 1400 guns. The Island also has a sufficient food supplies for the next five months.
AIR RAIDS DAWN 3 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 4 NOVEMBER 1941
0607-0646 hrs Air raid alarm. Four enemy bomber aircraft approached from N. Bombs dropped in sea off Madliena.
OPERATIONS REPORTS MONDAY 3 NOVEMBER 1941
ROYAL NAVY Utmost returned from special service in Gulf of Hammamet and patrol off Kuriat, where the only target was an MV aground after Urge‘s attack. As work of unloading seemed to be going, on a torpedo was fired (which hit the bottom) and 50 rounds of high explosive were fired. Sokol returned from patrol of Naples, having obtained hit on Citto de Palermo and destroyed a 4,000 ton MV off Vito by gunfire.
LUQA Four Blenheims 107 Squadron search for aircraft lost in yesterday’s raid. Six Blenheims 18 Squadron search for convoy; nothing sighted.
HAL FAR Two Fulmars on an offensive patrol Linosa area turned back owing to engine trouble. Two Hurricanes 185 squadron made an offensive sweep over southern Sicily and machine gunned two moving goods trains, one at Noto, the other at Rosolini.
FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS Bomb Disposal UXB Reported 132.
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