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Mercol was a flying column created by the British Army shortly after the Anglo-Iraqi War had ended.

Creation and composition[edit]

Mercol was a truck-borne flying column created in early June 1941 specifically with the task of rounding up irregular troops under Fawzi al-Qawuqji.[1] In addition to Mercol, two other columns were created in early July. Gocol, commanded by Major R. E. S. Gooch, with the task of capturing Dr. Fritz Grobba, the German Ambassador to the Kingdom of Iraq[2] and Harcol, under Major R. J. Hardy, with the task of securing Kirkuk.[3]

Mercol was named for its commander, Major E. J. H. Merry. The column comprised A Squadron of the Household Cavalry Regiment, two Royal Air Force armoured cars, and two antique 5.5 inch (18 pounder) field guns from the Habbaniya arsenal. Merry and his command took enough fuel, rations, and water for one week.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Lyman, p. 87
  2. ^ Lyman, p. 86
  3. ^ Lyman, p. 88
  4. ^ Lyman, pp. 87-88


  • Lyman, Robert (2006). Iraq 1941: The Battles for Basra, Habbaniya, Fallujah and Baghdad. Campaign. Oxford, New York: Osprey Publishing. p. 96. ISBN 1-84176-991-6. 
  • Wavell, Archibald (1946). Despatch on Operations in Iraq, East Syria and Iran from 10th April, 1941 to 12th January, 1942. London: War Office.  in "(Supplement) no. 37685". The London Gazette. 13 August 1946. pp. 4093–4102. Retrieved 2009-10-14. 

External links[edit]