WHERE IS Tobruk

AND WHY WAS IT SO IMPORTANT IN 1941 ?

The deserts of North Africa were an important battleground in World War II. Controlling North Africa would give the Allied forces a base from which to attack occupied Europe, across the Mediterranean.  Control of the major oil fields in the Middle East was vital to provide fuel for tanks, aircraft and transport. Tobruk is the most important port in Northern Africa. It's a deep water port which allows large ships to dock and offload troops and equipment.  The city is also surrounded by steep escarpments, which make it easy to fortify against attack from the land.

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ALLIES

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(AUSTRALIA)

Lieutenant General

Sir Leslie James Morshead

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(AUSTRALIA)

Lieutenant General

Sir John Dudley Lavarack

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(POLAND)

General Stanisław Kopański

AXIS

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(GERMANY)

Generalfeldmarschall

Erwin Rommel

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(ITALY)

Tenente-General

Gastone Gambara

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(GERMANY)

Generalfeldmarschall

Friedrich Paulus