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Two soldiers of a Long Range Desert Group (LRDG) patrol on a road watch in North Africa, 25 May 1942.

The LRDG - founded in June 1940 and originally known as the Long Range Patrol (LRP) - was a British reconnaissance and raiding force, established to fight back against the Italians in the Libyan desert campaign.

Initially founded heavily by New Zealanders, they were soon joined in the ranks by Southern Rhodesian and British volunteers, with new sub-units being formed. The LRDG never numbered more than 350 men, all of whom had volunteered for the work.

Except for a period of 15 days, they operated continuously throughout the Desert War campaign, from 1940 through until 1943, behind Axis lines. Here, they assisted other Allied elite forces such as secret agents and the SAS in their desert crossings.

One of the LRDG's most vital roles was carrying out the task depicted here - 'Road Watch' - during which they clandestinely monitored traffic on the main road from Tripoli to Benghazi, transmitting the intelligence to British Army Headquarters.
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