F.J. Jacobs


At the outbreak of the Second World War in September 1939 the only anti-aircraft guns available in the Union of South Africa were eight 3-inch 20-cwt guns. This fact not only points to the grave conditions under which the Union Defence Force was to defend its harbours and other strategically important installations, but is also indicative of the fact that a formal anti-aircraft organisation in pre-war times was virtually non-existant. The serious shortage of effective aerial defence is also emphasised by the fact that the above-mentioned guns and six searchlights (which accounted for all anti-aircraft equipment in the Union) were taken on charge by 1 Anti-Aircraft SA Artillery Brigade and despatched to East Africa shortly after hostilities started. Light machine-guns were the only protection remaining to SA ports.


Second World War; Union of South Africa; nti-aircraft guns; 3-inch 20-cwt guns; 1 Anti-Aircraft SA Artillery Brigade; SA Air Force and AA; 43 Infantry Battalion South African Air Force

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Copyright (c) 2018 F.J. Jacobs

ISSN 2224-0020 (online); ISSN 1022-8136 (print)

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