By U.S. Army Center for Military History

Occasions bringing the U.S. military to North Africa had began greater than a 12 months prior to the japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. For either the Axis and the Allies, the Mediterranean Sea region was once one among doubtful precedence. at the Axis facet, the site of Italy made obvi-ous Rome’s curiosity within the quarter. however the more desirable German companion pursued pursuits hundreds and hundreds of miles north. an identical department of emphasis characterised the Allies. To the British the Mediterranean Sea was once the very important hyperlink among the house islands and long-held Asian possessions in addition to center jap oil fields. To the american citizens, despite the fact that, the world had by no means been certainly one of very important nationwide curiosity and was once no longer visible because the top path to Berlin. however the fall of France in June 1940 had additionally introduced a brand new size to the area. The hand over of Paris left 120,000 French troops in West and North Africa and masses of the French fleet in Atlantic and Mediterranean ports. either the Axis and Allies observed abroad French forces because the decisive virtue that might let them in attaining their contradictory goals within the Mediterranean.

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The views of armor commanders are to be found in George S. , War As I Knew It (1947), and Ernest N. Harmon, Combat Commander: Autobiography of a Soldier (1970). The most exhaustive treatment of the campaign remains George F. Howe, Northwest Africa: Seizing the Initiative in the West (1957), a volume in the series United States Army in World War II. CMH Pub 72–11 Cover: Troops and tank of 7th Infantry, 3d Division, inland of Fedala.

As troops of the 7th Regimental Landing Group neared an objective they requested continuation of naval gunfire. At the same time, 30th Regimental Landing Group officers asked 30 the ships to hold fire for the moment, since their troops were nearing the impact zone. Safety concerns dictated a halt of fire support missions but at the cost of delay in the advance ashore. The Center and Eastern Task Force landings highlighted several operational differences between the two leading Western Allies. Most striking was the British preference for antisabotage thrusts directly into objective areas, a tactic Americans considered suicidal.

On the American side, much work remained to be done before airborne operations could exercise decisive influence on the battlefield. S. Army a hopeful sign for the future: American troops would soon close the experience gap with their British comrades and enable the Allies to field well-coordinated forces of overwhelming power. 31 Further Readings The Algeria–French Morocco Campaign is well documented in broader studies of either Operation TORCH or the European Theater of Operations, as well as the accounts of key participants.

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