Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Day 515 January 27, 1941

Operation Compass. The harbour at Tobruk, Libya, is cleared of wrecks and opened to British ships. The first vessels in are troopship Ulster Prince (which takes Italian POWs back to Alexandria, Egypt) and supply ships Cingalese Prince, Rosaura and Chakla which unload men and supplies in a severe sandstorm. Tobruk will become an important supply point for the continued Allied advance across Libya. 100 miles Northwest along the coast from Tobruk, Australian 6th Division takes Fort Rudero overlooking the small town of Derna (capturing 290 Italian prisoners and 5 field guns). However, they meet stiff resistance from Italian troops and artillery dug in the far side of Wadi Derna (a steep ravine, a mile wide and 700 feet deep).

100 miles North of Tripoli, Libya, Fairey Swordfish of Fleet Air Arm 830 Squadron from Malta sink German steamer Ingo (crew rescued by Italian torpedo boat Orione).

Minesweeping trawler HMT Darogah sinks on a mine in the Thames Estuary.

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