D.A.K. War Diary Entry 12 April 1941

12 April 1941

Weather: max. temp. 17 degrees Celsius

Arrival and Departure of Subordinated Troops:

Arrived in the operational zone:
2x fast artillery regiments (Articelere)
Colonel Grati (Corps Artillery Regiment)

Reinforced A.A.3 reported 10.00 hours: “Bardia occupied without fight.”

Forward Detachment Knabe, advancing on Trigh Enver Bei, reached area G. el Arid by evening, there at 18.15 hours clash with three enemy tanks.

The encirclement ring around Tobruk was closed in the east on both sides of Sidi Daud by Detachment Graf Schwerin. An attack of Panz.Regiment 5 on Tobruk from the southeast had to turn around in front of the anti-tank ditch.

Order to 5.lei.Div. for the occupation of Tobruk, see the same.

Order to Div.Trento see the same.

In front of Tobruk arrived: 1.) Artillery Regiment Grati, task to go into position during morning 13 April. 2.) Detachment Fabris task to take over securing south and southeast at El Adem airfield.

The D.A.K. was not informed about the exact position and status of the permanent fortification works of Tobruk by 12 April. Conduct of operations and orders were based solely on the 1:400,000 map. No information from the Italian High Command was received.

On the morning of 12 April the command post of the Afrikakorps was 4km west of the road Tobruk – El Adem, about 22km south of Tobruk.

The tanker Persiana with 2,200 cubic metres of petrol was torpedoed and sank.[1]

[1]The actual name was Persiano. She was a small, old tanker, built in 1889. She was sunk by HM/Sub Tetrarch.

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