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Propaganda: Allied unity

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"Grand Harbour, Malta under air attack" by Rowland Hilder, 1942, Charcoal & gouache on paper.

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Grand Harbour, Malta under air attack

"Grand Harbour, Malta under air attack" by Rowland Hilder, 1942

Catalogue ref: INF 3/1265Links to the Catalogue


An image illustrating Grand Harbour, Malta under air attack, for the series War in Pictures. As can be seen, Grand Harbour was the most heavily bombed location in Malta during the Second World War, (Malta being the most bombed country anywhere in the world per square mile) with most of its buildings reduced to rubble. In this image, a solitary figure looks on with binoculars at the dogfight going on in the sky whilst smoke billows from the harbour.

British-controlled Malta was protected by a limited military force, and was bombarded by Axis forces for two years, because of its strategically vital location in the heart of the Mediterranean. Whoever controlled Malta, would almost certainly control the Mediterranean and the outcome of the war in Southern Europe. Operation Pedestal, the most famous of a number of attempts to relieve British-controlled Malta took place in August 1942.