Corgi AA36803 RAF Westland Lysander Mk. II Reconnaissance Aircraft - Western Desert, 1940 (1:72 Scale)
"Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."
- British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, commenting on the British airmen in the Battle of Britain
The Lysander is a two-seat reconnaissance and artillery spotting monoplane defined by Specification A 39/34 in response to Operational Requirement OR. 18. Three squadrons of Mk. Is and three of Mk. Us equipped during 1938/39 moved to France with BEF in 1939; about 50 Westland Lysanders were shot down and 30 destroyed on the ground in May 1940.
This particular 1:72 scale replica of a RAF Westland Lysander Mk. II Reconnaissance Aircraft was flown over the Western Desert during 1940. Sold Out!
Wingspan: 8.25 inches
Length: 5.25 inches
Release Date: May 2007
Historical Account: "Back-and-Forth" - The Western Desert Campaign, also known as the Desert War was the initial stage of the North African Campaign of The Second World War. From the start, the Western Desert Campaign was a continuous back-and-forth struggle. In September 1940, the first major move was initiated by the Italian forces in Libya against British and Commonwealth forces stationed in Egypt.
This offensive was quickly halted and, in December 1940, the British made a counterattack. What started as a five-day raid turned into Operation Compass, resulting in massive losses for the Italian forces.
The Italian's Axis partner, Germany, provided a contingent of ground forces (Heer) and air forces (Luftwaffe) to prevent a total collapse, quickly making Germany the dominant partner.
Axis forces would twice more launch large-scale assaults against the Allies. Each time the Axis forces pushed the Allied forces back to Egypt, but both times the Allies retaliated and regained the ground lost. On the second (and final) Axis push, the Allies were driven far into Egypt; however, the Allies recovered at El Alamein and then managed to drive the Axis forces west and completely out of Libya.
The Axis forces were driven back until they reached Tunisia when the "Western Desert Campaign" effectively ended and the Eighth Army and Rommel's forces became involved in the "Tunisia Campaign" which had begun in November 1942.
The Western Desert Campaign was heavily influenced by the availability of supplies and transport. The ability of the Allied forces, operating from besieged Malta to interdict Axis convoys was critical. Allied interdictions denied the German commander, Erwin Rommel, the fuel and the reinforcements he desperately needed at critical moments.
In early 1942, the United States supplied a small US Army Air Forces bomber contingent in support of the campaign, referring to it as the Egypt-Libya Campaign.