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War in Africa: The North African Campaign

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Destiny Yeakey

The North African Campaign lasted from 1941-1943 ("Erwin Rommel" History.com). During this campaign, Adolf Hitler created The Afrika Korps; they were lead by Erwin Rommel. The Afrika Korps was the German expeditionary force in Africa. The Korps also had different groups of panzer divisions. Panzer divisions were the armoured divisions in the army branch of the Wehrmacht and of Nazi Germany during World War II. The Afrika Korps was beneficial for Erwin Rommel because they helped him maintain territorial gains in North Africa ("Rommel in Africa" History.com), gain immortality in the North African Campaign, and fight a clean war.

The Western Desert Campaign

The campaign started when rommel arrived in libya ("Western desert campaign: Egypt and Libya" ushmm.org, ). In Libya he tried to take control of troops. Those troops were sent to reinforce the German's allies ("Western desert campaign: Egypt and Libya" ushmm.org, ). He also tried to reinforce other things. He tried to reinforce the Italians position in the war ("Western desert campaign: Egypt and Libya" ushmm.org,).

The Deutsches Afrika Korps were also created during this time. They were created for the purpose of keeping up with territorial gains in North Africa ("Rommel in Africa" History.com). They were first called the Army Korps ("Western desert campaign: Egypt and Libya" ushmm.org,). The name was changed by Adolf Hitler the creator of the korps. During the korps' first battle they only had about 30 tanks ready for war ("North Africa Campaigns" Britannica).

The struggle of the Suez Canal also became a problem during this time. The struggle started when hitler ordered attack in the canal and the u.s. embassy Cairo"Erwin Rommel" BHS). He ordered attack during the summer of 1942. The struggle was a big deal because the canal had main access to oil from the middle east ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" History.com). The canal also had main access to raw materials to parts of Asia ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" History.com).

The North African Campaign

Hitler causing the attack on Cairo and the canal cause oil to become a critical strategic. It became critical due to the increase of modern armies ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" Historynet.com). During this time they realized the naval battle and the campaign were mainly just extensions of each other ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" Historynet.com). The naval battle was a battle of the Pacific. The naval battle ended February 19, 1915 - January 9, 1916.

Italy attacked Ethiopia from its colony ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" Historynet.com). At this point the total control of Africa started struggling ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" Historynet.com) . The Egyptians eventually granted britain permission to stations ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" Historynet.com). Stations were large forces in their territory. The Italians also invaded Egypt ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" theatlantic.com).

The Egyptian forces captured almost 130,000 italians in their attempt to invade Egypt ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" theatlantic.com). The outcome would have been better if the Italians would have stayed to themselves. For example if the Italians would have stayed neutral the British access to sea lanes would have remained assured ("World war 2: North Africa Campaign" Historynet.com). The Italians wouldn't have lost 130,000 troops either.

Panzer Divisions

The panzer divisions were another force in the Afrika Korps. They were supplied very well. They had multiple kinds of weapons. Some of the weapons including tanks, assault guns, tank destroyers, etc ("German technological superiority" topedge.com). The main division that was based around guns was division 3 ("German technological superiority" topedge.com).

The Germans were the ones who controlled the divisions. Saying that they had many divisions. The panzer divisions were 1,2,3 and a few 4 ("German technological superiority" topedge.com). There was only two divisions based around tanks, that being divisions 3 and 4 ("German technological superiority" topedge.com).

The Afrika Korps relied on the panzer divisions. They relied on them for tanks and backup. They mainly relied in panzer divisions 3-4 though ("German technological superiority" topedge.com). Considering panzer division had about 8,553 tanks ready for each battle. The others were used as backup supplied with many various guns.

In conclusions the afrika korps was beneficial for Erwin Rommel because they helped him maintain territorial gains in North Africa, gain immortality in the North African campaign, and fight a clean war. It was the only land based fight that the allies could take to axis power. And the war ended with most allied victories. The war ended in 1943. Erwin soon died on October 14, 1944.


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