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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A plan drawn up by Admiral Sir James Somerville , Commander - in - Chief
Eastern Fleet since the end of March 1942 , saw warships concentrate on
Mauritius for the operation against the supply ship . HMS Kenya , Newcastle and
Troops were rushed to Ceylon from other parts of the Empire in March 1942 as a
Japanese attack was anticipated , so that by the end of March the garrison was
equivalent to two divisions . 5000 East African troops were also in Ceylon by ...
They arrived at south coast ports on 20 February and i March 1942 respectively ,
to find a confused situation and little chance of escape . The Dutch authorities
surrendered formally on 9 March , and the two reunited columns of the 2 / 15 ...