The British Empire and the Second World War
In 1939 Hitler went to war not just with Great Britain; he also went to war with the whole of the British Empire, the greatest empire that there had ever been. In the years since 1945 that empire has disappeared, and the crucial fact that the British Empire fought together as a whole during the war has been forgotten. All the parts of the empire joined the struggle and were involved in it from the beginning, undergoing huge changes and sometimes suffering great losses as a result. The war in the desert, the defence of Malta and the Malayan campaign, and the contribution of the empire as a whole in terms of supplies, communications and troops, all reflect the strategic importance of Britain's imperial status. Men and women not only from Australia, New Zealand and India but from many parts of Africa and the Middle East all played their part. Winston Churchill saw the war throughout in imperial terms. The British Empire and the Second World War emphasises a central fact about the Second World War that is often forgotten.
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One of her first tasks was to victual the Eastern Fleet at Addu Atoll, a task which
involved replenishing about forty ships. Beyond its work of supplying the navy
afloat, Taiping had to keep the various British bases topped up with stores.
Landing on the island of Hitaddu (Addu), the party was met by the Sultan's
nephew, Abdullah Af1f Didi. This was the opening shot in the escalation of
facilities at Addu Atoll, referred to in all communications as Port T. What the navy
wanted was ...
As is often the case with military bases rapidly expanded to meet a certain
eventuality, when that eventuality did not arise, Addu Atoll's significance waned
accordingly. From mid-1943 it was very unlikely that Port T would be needed as a