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Destiny in the Desert: The road to El Alamein - the Battle that Turned the Tide by Jonathan Dimbleby

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– TWENTY-ONE –MONTGOMERY MAKES HIS MARK

‘He told us everything … what his plan was for battle, what he wanted the regiments to do, and what he wanted me to do … What a man.’

Regimental sergeant major on Montgomery

In his first two weeks as commander of the Eighth Army, Montgomery had been exceptionally industrious. Initially his troops were sceptical, if not cynical, about the new arrival. Dubious about all senior ranks, their loyalties were first and foremost to their immediate colleagues in the platoons and units on which they depended for survival in the chaos of battle and for the camaraderie which sustained them in between. The higher the chain of command rose, the more remote it seemed to those at the bottom. Those senior officers who despatched ...

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