Operation ‘Tracer’ – a British oddity in the defence of Gibraltar

Gibraltar was rightly seen by the British in World War II as one of the three keys to the Mediterranean, and thus the prosecution of the war against Italy after that country had declared war on the UK on 10 June 1940. With the Far East and Australasia vital to British strategic, political and economic …

The Raduga Kh-22

Succeeding the turbojet-powered Raduga KS-1 Komet and K-10S (AS-1 ‘Kennel’ and AS-2 ‘Kipper’) subsonic and supersonic missiles in the stand-off role against major surface forces, especially those centred on an aircraft carrier, the Raduga Kh-22 is known to NATO as the AS-4 ‘Kitchen’. This substantial long-range missile is still in service, and in an air-launched …

Amphibious Warfare – The Tank Landing Ship (III)

For a transoceanic passage, the LST Mk 2 could carry one landing landing craft (LCT Mk 5 or LCT Mk 6) for side-launching, and this was a feature which was sometimes also used for the carriage of LCTs to the vicinity of an amphibious assault. In LST beaching operations, a satisfactory manner to bridge the …

The anti-aircraft cruiser – the US ‘Worcester’ class

The world’s first powered, sustained and controlled aeroplane flight had been made only in 1903 by the Wright brothers. Furthermore, technical developments were made only slowly up to the start of World War I (1914/18),where many pioneers foresaw the emergence of the aeroplane as a weapon. The potential of the aeroplane as a war machine was …

Operations ‘FV’ and ‘Ostfront’ – The battle of the North Cape

The Battle of the North Cape in which British and German navies clashed in December 1943: the British had launched Operation ‘FV’ to cover convoys in northern USSR and the Germans launched ‘Ostfront’ to destroy the convoys.