Operation Halberd

Operation Halberd

Operation Halberd

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During World War II, Operation Halberd was a British naval operation in September 1941 to escort a convoy from Gibraltar to Malta.

The convoy of nine merchant ships sailed on 24 September 1941, with a close escort under the command of Rear Admiral Harold Martin Burrough. It was also accompanied by Force H, under the command of Admiral James Sommerville. This consisted of the one aircraft carrier (HMS Ark Royal), three battleships (HMS Nelson, HMS Rodney and HMS Prince of Wales) to protect the convoy against Italian surface ships. The British warships also included five cruisers and 18 destroyers.

The Italian fleet attempted to intercept the convoy on 26 September but did not make contact with it as they turned away after learning that the Royal Navy force included several battleships and an aircraft carrier.The Italian Navy in WW2, Sadkovich, p181 HMS Prince of Wales, followed by the slower HMS Rodney, attempted in vain to intercept the Italian force.The Royal Navy and the Mediterranean Convoys, p28 HMS Nelson was hit in the bows by a torpedo launched from an Italian torpedo bomberThe Royal Navy and the Mediterranean Convoys, p21. This account states that the torpedo attacks were carried out by SM-79 and BR-20 torpedo bombers. on 27 September south of Sardinia and seriously damaged. On the evening of 27 September Force H turned back and sailed for Gibraltar. The Italian Air Force lost 21...
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