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REGIA AERONAUTICA TO STEP UP EFFORTS TO SUBDUE ISLAND
Still reeling from the successful Force “K” attack on their convoy, Italian commanders seem to be intensifying their efforts to subdue Malta. The Regia Aeronautica have concentrated almost entirely on night raids since September – and often approached only close enough to trigger the Island’s air raid alarm. Bomb Disposal Officer Lt George Carroll was familiar with their reluctance to encounter the defensive barrage:
“The Italians would fly towards Malta at high speed, then when they got close they would go into a steep turn and open the bomb bays, and the bombs came out sideways.”
Now it seems Italian pilots are ready to attack during daylight hours.
AIR RAIDS DAWN 15 NOVEMBER TO DAWN 16 NOVEMBER 1941
0612-0643 hrs Air raid alarm. Three enemy bombers approach the Island from the East. Bombs are dropped in sea ten miles east of Delimara and anti-personnel bombs at Island Bay Searchlight Station. No engagement by Hurricanes or Ack Ack.
1045-1052 hrs Air raid alarm for two Macchi fighters which carry out reconnaissance. Ack Ack guns fire a barrage; no claims.
Military casualties WO1 Frederick Gates, 12th Field Regiment, Royal Artillery.
OPERATIONS REPORTS SATURDAY 15 NOVEMBER
LUQA AM 18 Squadron One Blenheim of 18 Squadron on SF11 patrol. 107 Squadron Five Blenheims on shipping patrol in the Zante area. PM 107 Squadron One Blenheim took over SF11 patrol. 18 Squadron Five Blenheims flew out to relieve their comrades over Zante.
3rd Bn KINGS OWN MALTA REGIMENT ‘A’ Company transferred from Qrendi to Pawla and ‘B’ Company from Pawla to Qrendi. Armed with machine guns, their task is to defend the shoreline of Malta and Gozo, including manning beach posts. The 3rd Battalion covers the southern area of Malta 1st and 2ndBattalions the north.
FORTRESS ROYAL ENGINEERS Bomb Disposal UXB Reported 20; dealt with 3 (2 x 100kg; 1 x 50kg).
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