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Italian "Africa" Division
Posted 23 February 2010 - 11:11 AM
210 Inf Reg
211 Inf Reg
3 CCNN Batt
15 CCN Batt
18 Eng Batt
+ an Artillery Regiment.
I had never heard of this unit before, can anyone give any more info?
Posted 23 February 2010 - 06:16 PM
Largely an improvised unit, fought in Northern sector in early 1941. Splitted in subunits, I believe its last elements were definitely destroyed at Amba Alagi in April 1941
Posted 24 February 2010 - 12:45 AM
210° rgt. f. with two battalions
211° rgt. f. with two battalions
III btg. CC.NN. (from the X legione) with three cp.
XV btg. CC.NN. (from the X legione) with three cp.
XVIII btg. misto genio d’Africa (one cp. Artieri, one cp. Trasmissioni)
gruppo artiglieria motorizzata d’Africa with three btr. da 77/28 (four guns each)
These units are technically part of this division, but formed the garrison of Addis Abeba and were under the control of Forze Armata dell’A.O.I.
gruppo btgg. CC.NN. d’Africa consisting of four btg.
btg. mitragliatori CC.NN. d’Africa with two cp. mtr., one cp. carri leggeri, one cp. autoblindo
Autoraggruppamento Speciale d’Africa
From Le operazioni in Africa orientale vol II pages 60-61.
Posted 27 February 2010 - 02:52 PM
George Nafziger collected a tremendous amount of material from sources many individuals don’t have access. In this he did a great service. Unfortunately, his methods were less than rigorous and lacking documentation. In this, the user must understand the nature of the material and use it accordingly.
Nafziger basically flipped through books of all languages and copied any charts, tables or diagrams. What he presents is the raw information without cross-checking or analysis. Nothing is wrong with this approach except his citing is terrible. At best one finds a book title listed at the end of the OB, at worst, there is nothing. No page numbers or comments.
The transcription process itself is incomplete and not error free. For example is 941IGAA (Ariete Division July 41). Here the III Heavy Weapons Battalion is shown as a separate unit. But his source document (Greene’s Mare Nostrum page 55) correctly shows the unit as the III/8° reggimento bersaglieri. Or a case where a WWI A-H OB duplicates two divisions and omits another. In many cases, notes elaborating points in the original material are missing from the OB. Then there are translation errors. A case in point is his A-H OBs from 1914. He lists many battalions as machinegun battalions. Having access to Österriech-Ungarns Lezter Krieg (his source document), a quick check shows these are March battalions (see his OB 914AHAB pages 3-4 for an example). Another is 941IKAA (Ariete Division Nov 41). The name of the unit discussed above itself is an incorrect translation for 'battaglione armi d'accompagnamento e contro carri'. While Heavy Weapons battalion might be an appropriate indication of the units capability or role, the correct Italian name, followed by his thoughts (heavy weapons) in parenthesis would have been a much better documentation of the source.
It is apparent to me that he never read the accompanying text which framed the material presented. The data presented might reflect proposed or theoretical organizations, not actually used-on-the-ground units. Or the text will modify what is presented, or offers explanations/details not presented in the list or chart. In all, because these errors are too numerous to ignore, the ability to check the original source is important. Hence the lack of complete citing is, in the end, the main problem.
This is not to 'dis' what George Nafziger has accomplished over the years. His material is valuable. But because of the lack of rigor in the process, the material must be considered raw and can’t be used without validating what is presented. George's strength is he has perused books many will never see. He has added sources and made them available to the masses. From that viewpoint, he has done a great service for the wargaming community.
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