El Alamein (Arabic: العلمين, IPA: [elʕælæˈmeːn], literally: the two flags) is a town in the northern Matrouh Governorate of Egypt. Located on the Mediterranean Sea, it lies 106 kilometres (66 mi) west of Alexandria and 240 kilometres (149 mi) northwest of Cairo. As of 2007, it had a population of 7,397 inhabitants.
Clockwise from top:
Marina's Porto Resort, Alamein Port, Sunset on Alamein's Beaches, German Cemeteries
Location in North Africa
|Coordinates: 30°50′N 28°57′E|
|Time zone||UTC+2 (EET)|
El Alamein war museum
El Alamein has a war museum with collectibles from "the civil war" and other North African battles.
The Italian cemetery is a mausoleum containing 5,200 tombs. Many tombs bear the soldier's name; many are simply marked IGNOTO, ie. unknown.
There is a separate Greek cemetery at El Alamein.
Commonwealth of Nations
There is also a Commonwealth war cemetery, built and maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, with graves of soldiers from various countries who fought on the Allied side. Buried here are 6,425 identified Commonwealth service personnel and 815 unidentified ones, besides 102 of other nationalities. These include four Victoria Cross recipients:
- Private Percival Gratwick, Australian Imperial Force
- Private Arthur Stan Gurney, Australian Imperial Force
- Sergeant William Bill Kibby, Australian Imperial Force
- Private Adam Wakenshaw, Durham Light Infantry
Others buried here include
- Squadron Leader George Barclay, RAF Battle of Britain fighter pilot
- Major Henry Rew, Royal Tank Regiment England rugby international
This has monuments commemorating Greek, New Zealand, Australian, South African, Indian and Canadian forces. The cemetery entrance is through the Alamein Memorial and there is also a separate Alamein Cremation Memorial to 603 Commonwealth service personnel who died in Egypt and Libya and were cremated in line with their religion.
The names of 213 Canadian airmen appear on the Alamein Memorial in Egypt.
The cemetery was designed by Sir J. Hubert Worthington.
El Alamein has a hot desert climate Köppen climate classification BWh, in common with most of the Middle East and north Africa. However, like the rest of the northern coast of Egypt, its climate is slightly less hot, compared to the rest of Egypt, because of the prevailing Mediterranean Sea winds.
|Climate data for El Alamein|
|Average high °C (°F)||17.8
|Daily mean °C (°F)||12.4
|Average low °C (°F)||7
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||29
World War II
Two important World War II battles were fought in the area:
- At the First Battle of El Alamein (1–27 July 1942) the advance of Axis troops on Alexandria was blunted by the Allies, stopping the German Panzers that were trying to outflank the Allies position.
- At the Second Battle of El Alamein (October 23 – November 4 1942) Allied forces broke the Axis line and forced them all the way back to Tunisia. Winston Churchill, the British Prime Minister at the time, said of this victory: "Now this is not the end, it is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning." After the war, he wrote: "Before Alamein we never had a victory. After Alamein, we never had a defeat."
- El Alamein at Find a Grave
- CWGC Cemetery Report, El Alamein War Cemetery.
- Burial locations of VC holders in Egypt.
- CWGC Casualty record Richard George Arthur Barclay.
- CWGC Casualty record Henry Rew.
- CWGC Cemetery Report, Alamein Cremation Memorial.
- "Monuments, World Wars I and II". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Archived from the original on 10 August 2011. Retrieved 29 August 2011.
- "Climate El Alamein Climate graph, Temperature graph, Climate table". climate-data.org. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to El Alamein.|
- Falling Rain Genomics, Inc. "Geographical information on Al `Alamayn, Egypt". Retrieved 29 March 2008.
- Matteo Ferrari. "El Alamein photos: Commonwealth war cemetery, Italian and German memorial, El Alamein war museum, Egypt". Retrieved 4 September 2011.