[Lone Sentry: Artillery in the Desert]
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Artillery in the Desert, Military Intelligence Service, Special Series No. 6, November 1942
[DISCLAIMER: The following text is taken from the wartime U.S. War Department publication. As with all wartime intelligence information, data may be incomplete or inaccurate. No attempt has been made to update or correct the text. Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent those of the website.]


a. General

The Italians have mainly supplied the Axis forces in Libya with infantry and motorized units, but they have also employed two armored divisions.

b. Armored, or "Corazzata", Division

The Italian armored division at war strength is composed of 4,858 officers and men using 1,534 motor vehicles, 138 medium tanks. The organization is—

Division headquarters.
1 Bersaglieri regiment (2 motorcycle battalions).5
1 antitank battery of 47/32-mm AT guns (Mtz).
1 tank regiment of—
4 battalions of light tanks (eventually medium);
1 battalion of medium tanks (eventually heavy).
1 artillery regiment of—
2 battalions of 75/27-guns, tractor-drawn.
2 20-mm antiaircraft batteries (Mtz).
1 mixed engineer company (engineers and signals).
1 medical company,
1 commissary company,
1 gasoline and oil supply platoon.

c. Artillery Regiment

The artillery regiment in the Italian armored, or corazzata, division consists of—

Headquarters battery.
2 battalions of 75/27-mm guns (tractor-drawn) each with 12 guns and 6 machine guns.
Each battalion is composed of a headquarters, headquarters battery, three firing batteries, and a combat train. The war strength of the regiment is 55 officers and 1,180 enlisted men.

5 Because of the unsuitability of motorcycles for the desert, they may have been replaced by light cars. If used at all, motorcycles are probably employed in rear areas.

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