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Il Sim e la prima controffensiva britannica in Africa settentrionale
Author/s: Filippo Cappellano 
Year:  2008 Issue: Language: Italian 
Pages:  26 Pg. 123-148 FullText PDF:  245 KB

The SIM and the first British counter-offensive in Northern Africa (by Filippo Cappellano) - ABSTRACT: This study is based on the relation of January 1941 by colonel Cesare Amè, chief of the Military Information Service, related to the activity of the Italian Military Intelligence in the previous period of the first British counter-offensive in Northern Africa which brought to the defeat of the 10th Army. The importance of the document is due both to the relevance of the author and to the period in which it has been written, almost contemporary to the war events and, therefore, not filtrated by later knowledge. Therefore it is possible to give a judgment on the performances of SIM relating the informative opinions made at that time by the men of colonel Cesare Amè with the effective composition of the enemy’s forces and the description of the war operations based on the British archives. Even if the SIM outguessed the enemy offensive, it is clear that the real opponent force was over valuated and no indication concerning the real figure of the British army was given. Particularly, there was no information concerning the kind of the armoured forces and their performances which largely helped the British victory. The document also underlines the lack of cooperation between the National central and the peripheral information centers means and, more generally, the inexperience and the disorganization of the SIM in the first part of the war.

Filippo Cappellano, in "MONDO CONTEMPORANEO" 1/2008, pp. 123-148, DOI:


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