1918-1941 History of Italy 1943-1949

Malta in World War II

Malta was an important British stronghold in the Mediterranean, important as a stop on the route from the Suez Canal to Gibraltar. War began for Malta on June 10th 1940, with Italy having declared war. Malta immediately became the target of air raids.
Throughout the war, the Axis Powers did not manage an invasion of the islands, although it was attempted in July 1941 and again in July 1942. The RAF dominated the sky over Malta. The standoff, however, caused food shortage on the islands which depended so much on food imports. The arrival of convoys bringing food was critical to Malta's ability to hold out, as were Victory Gardens.
When Rommel's Afrikakorps moved into Egypt, threatening Alexandria, Malta, the Unsinkable Carrier as it was called, functioned as a basis for RAF planes bombing German supplies, especially on the sea, contributing considerably to the German/Italian defeat. US President Franklin D. Roosevelt, en route to Cairo, visited Malta in September 1943.

The Three Cities during World War II (3 cities on Malta), from Bormla Homepage
DOCUMENTS List of Governors etc., from World Statesmen by Ben Cahoon
Historical Population Statistics : Malta, from Population Statistics, Univ. Utrecht
REFERENCE Article : Malta, in : Statesman's Year Book 1943 pp.85-88 [G]
Article : Malta, in : Americana Annual 1943 p.450 [G]
Article : Malta, in : Funk & Wagnall's New Standard Encyclopedia Year Book 1942 pp.274-275, 1943 p.280 [G]
Article : Malta, in : New International Year Book, Events of 1941 pp.346-347, 1942 pp.393-394, 1943 pp.353-354 [G]

This page is part of World History at KMLA
First poted on April 26th 2002, last revised on August 24th 2007

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