Middle East 1940-1942: A Study in Air Power

“The assembling and manipulation of British air power in the Middle East (an area that often seems to run from somewhere near Gibraltar to the gates of India) is one of the great stories of the war.”

Written in 1943, Middle East 1940-1942 was the first authoritative account of the decisive part played by the RAF in the Middle Eastern, African and Mediterranean theatres in the first half of the war.

Philip Guedalla was attached to the RAF at the beginning of the war, receiving a complete tour of the scenes of operation in the Western Desert, Malta, Syria, Iraq and Eritrea.

Spanning the long series of campaigns fought from the outbreak of war to the capture of Tripoli, Guedalla provides a detailed narrative of these early years.

Supporting the British Army, the RAF bombed targets, dropped leaflets, took down enemy fighters and dropped paratroopers to liberate Crete.

The wide reach of Middle East Command also fell to Malta, where bitter battles for control lead to terrible consequences for the Maltese.

Middle East 1940-1942 is a fascinating insight to the Second World War in the air, written whilst the war continued.

Praise for Middle East 1940-1942

‘The late historian and biographer sought in these pages to recapture the spirit behind the men and the policy that saved the Middle East. As one would expect from Mr. Guedalla, his prose is exciting’ –Foreign Affairs

Praise for Philip Guedalla


‘Polished, witty, lucid, excellently proportioned.’ – The Times


‘A brilliant piece of work.’Spectator


‘Lively, dashing, entertaining.’Daily Telegraph


‘Extremely well done’Kirkus Reviews


Philip Guedalla
(1889-1944) was the Oxford University President of the Union Society. Later he was called to the Bar and contested several Parliamentary elections as a Liberal. Having become interested in British relations with South America, he founded the Ibero-American Institute and was responsible for the Latin-American Division of the British Council. He lectured in both North and South America, and broadcast frequently to South America. Among other distinguished books by him are The Second Empire, Palmerston and Mr Churchill.

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