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

320 — Headquarters 2nd NZEF (Cairo) to the High Commissioner for New Zealand (London)

Headquarters 2nd NZEF (Cairo) to the High Commissioner for New Zealand (London)

1 July 1940

The following is for General Freyberg from Brigadier Puttick:

A detachment of two subalterns and eighty-five other ranks for special patrols of strategic importance in the Western Desert has been asked for by British Troops in Egypt. This detachment includes page 232 eighteen administrative and technical personnel. All vehicles and equipment other than personal arms are to be provided by British Troops in Egypt. The force operates under the command of a Major, MI (R),1 Middle East, with special topographical knowledge, and undergoes three weeks' training, ending 1 August. The greater part can be provided from the Divisional Cavalry, and the remainder from various units without impairing efficiency, using personnel for whom equipment is not available. The Divisional Cavalry welcome the opportunity of higher training and experience and relief from monotony. I recommend that you approve. I am proceeding with organisation and training and request authority.

1 Military Intelligence (Reconnaissance). The Long Range Desert Group (original title, Long Range Patrol) was raised and first commanded in Egypt by Brigadier (then Major) R. A. Bagnold, OBE.