In 1940, a British offensive in the Western Desert provoked a major Italian military disaster. By early February 1941, the whole of Cyrenaica had been lost, and German help became necessary to avoid the loss of the entire of Libya. On 14 February 1941, the first echelons of German troops hurriedly arrived at the port of Tripoli, starting the 27-month German engagement in Northern Africa. This book covers the complex and oft-changing organisation and structure of German forces in North Africa from their first deployment through to the conclusion of the battle of El Alamein, an engagement that irrevocably changed the strategic situation in the Western Desert.
Pier Paolo Battistelli earned his PhD in military history at the University of Padua. A scholar of German and Italian politics and strategy throughout World War II, he is active in Italy and abroad writing titles and essays on military history subjects. A contributor to the Italian Army Historical Office, he is currently revising his PhD thesis for publication: The War of the Axis: German and Italian Military Partnership in World War Two, 1939-1943.