This year marks the 71st Anniversary of the Battle of Crete, markedly the first mainly airborne invasion in military history.
It began on the morning of 20 May 1941, when Germany launched an airborne invasion of Crete under the code-name Unternehmen Merkur ("Operation Mercury"). Greek and Allied forces, along with Cretan civilians, defended the island.
After one day of fighting, the Germans had suffered very heavy casualties and none of their objectives had been achieved. The next day, through miscommunication and the failure of Allied commanders to grasp the situation, Maleme airfield in western Crete fell to the Germans, enabling them to fly in reinforcements and overwhelm the defenders. The battle lasted about 10 days.
A week's long commemoration on the island, from 20 May 2012 to 27 May 2012 is being marked by a number of events. For more detailed information, see the link below.
Add a Comment