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Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume I

427 — The [Greek] Higher Command, Crete, to the Commander-in-Chief, Allied Forces — [Translation]1

The [Greek] Higher Command, Crete, to the Commander-in-Chief, Allied Forces

26 May 1941

We have the honour to inform you that, according to information we have collected, the position of the Greek forces is so difficult that they have begun to disintegrate at many points as a result of the hard and constant struggle which has been waged for so many days. This must be attributed to the lack for many days of war material, food supplies, and Red Cross supplies.

The enemy air force, acting with conspicuous brutality while it is itself safe owing to the lack of friendly aircraft, is razing to the ground cities and villages without pause. This destroys the morale of the fighting forces and civilians. The army, despite all this, has maintained its spirit until now and destroyed single units.

According to the statements made by Mr. Churchill, which we had the honour to hear also from your lips, it was necessary for the successful conduct of the war to await the timely despatch of impressive forces which if sent at this, the last moment, may prove decisive for victory. Otherwise the end of the struggle in Crete is revealed as near at hand and disastrous.

Achilles Scoulas,

Commanding Greek Army

1 This translation appears in General Freyberg's report on Crete. The text differs, in small details only, from another copy on the GOCs files.