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Mef (Middle Eastern Forces)

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Posted 02/23/2020   9:00 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
MEF Firebrace
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Posted 02/23/2020   9:52 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add itma to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Rod:

Re your MEF with Rhodesia postmarks.

Could the postmarks be Rhodes rather than Rhodesia? On the 6d pink, I think that the bottom of the "I" in Rhodesia would be visible. And Rhodes in Greece would probably be in the MEF theatre of operations.
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Posted 02/23/2020   10:23 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add nigelc to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I agree itma.

This is a RHODES / DODECANESE postmark.

Here's an example on a commercial cover from a Karamitsos auction:
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Nigel
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Posted 02/23/2020   10:35 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add itma to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Rod:

Should have done this first - check things out. I should also have read the blurb you posted from Terry Steer 2003. The Dodecanese islands includes Rhodes.

Take a look at https://www.stampcircuit.com/de/sta...itsos-public

Can anyone tell me if it is possible to upload pictures - I tried to do it here but the Upload Image link just didn't work - from an iPad. I got a picture from that site into my Files, but the upload link just kept sending me back to Reply panel.
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Posted 02/23/2020   10:38 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add itma to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Nigel:

I looks like we are literally on the same (web) page.
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Posted 02/23/2020   10:41 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Could the postmarks be Rhodes rather than Rhodesia?



Frank, you nailed it.
Not my best moment
Corrected my prev. post, thanks gentlemen.
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Edited by rod222 - 02/23/2020 10:46 pm
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Posted 02/24/2020   10:37 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add itma to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Here's the image I tried to upload yesterday. It turns out that the problem was a Bandaid (Elastoplast to my fellow Brits) on my virtual-keyboard pecking finger. It must have straddled several links with each peck.

It's odd that the Karamitsos collection contains so many MEF letters to Greece. Was there no Greek postal service in operation at the time? Were non-MEF personnel allowed to use their postal facilities? Were there Italians in MEF?
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Edited by itma - 02/24/2020 10:48 am
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Posted 02/24/2020   12:52 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add nigelc to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The Dodecanese Islands were formally occupied by the British as a military protectorate after the German Army surrendered in 1945.

The islands officially became part of Greece in 1947 after the peace treaty with Italy.

The islands had been under Italian control before the war since 1912 (and before that they were Ottoman territory).

I suspect the MEF ran the postal service for the islands until they officially became part of Greece (and probably in close co-operation with Greece).
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Nigel
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Posted 02/24/2020   2:27 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Not seen those Lindner Album Pages before.

The pages are Lindner T Blanko. In this case it is product nr. 802502 as you can see below the Lindner T logo. Pages cost close to 4 and come in packs of 10. The background to the stamps is my own work, using MS Word and a printer. The product code for this particular inlay is 802001. They also exist in black and other formats. There are a few wider pockets in the Lindner T Blanko range.


Quote:
I suspect the MEF ran the postal service for the islands until they officially became part of Greece (and probably in close co-operation with Greece).

I think that is correct. The M.E.F. stamps remained in use on the Dodecanese Islands until the end of the occupation in 1947. Most of the other former Italian territories introduced stamps inscribed with the name of the territory from 1948.


Quote:
Were there Italians in MEF?

The Middle East Forces' theatre of operations included former Italian colonies such as the Dodecanese Islands. Italians lived in their colonies. Many left after the allied forces defeated the Italians, but some remained. Some territories, officially, were Italian colonies until 1947. As such, they were under British or sometimes French occupation. From 1947, the territories were run by a British Military Administration (B.M.A.) until they became independent or united with another country.
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Posted 02/24/2020   3:58 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add itma to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks, Nigel and NSK for helping put all the pieces in order for me.
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Posted 02/24/2020   4:27 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
On 10 February 1947, the Treaty of Peace with Italy was signed. This officially ended the hostilities between the allied powers and Italy. The treaty entered into force on 15 September 1947. The Dodecanese Islands were ceded to Greece, and Italy renunciated claims to its African colonies (Eritrea, Somaliland, Tripolitania, Cyrenaica and Fezzan). The first four came under British military administration.

The current stamps of George VI were overprinted with the initials B.M.A. (British Military Administration) and the name of the territory. From 27 May 1948 the new stamps were used in Somaliland (Somalia) and Eritrea. In a separate operation, the stamps were overprinted with local currency equivalents; i.c. East Africa shillings. The existence of similar varieties in the overprinted values suggests the same plate was used for both territories. On 1 July 1948 similar stamps were issued in Tripolitania.


British Military Administration overprints for Italian Somaliland replacing the E.A.F. stamps.

Since the stamps were overprinted in East Africa shillings, they were not valid for postage in the United Kingdom.
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Posted 02/25/2020   06:42 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add nigelc to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
That's a very nice page NSK.

I use Lindner-T blank pages for a small part of my collection but I haven't yet written up any insert sheets.

As well as the various BA and BMA surcharges the British administrations issued many revenue stamps.

Here are a few from Eritrea from 1946:
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Nigel
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Posted 02/25/2020   10:00 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add KGVIStamps to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
One more aspect of the M.E.F. issues are the differences in the overprints that were applied to the initial lower values. According to the Commonwealth and Gibbons catalogs, the overprints were applied in both Cairo and London. There are differences in the width of the overprint as well as the quality of the characters. You will also see rounded and square stops (periods) on some of the stamps. See blow-ups of the Round and Square stops below.

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Learn more about King George VI stamps at www.KGVIStamps.com
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Posted 02/25/2020   12:49 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Little is known about who overprinted the stamps with the square and round stops.

The GBOS mentions that it is thought the Army Printing Services in Cairo executed the original overprinting. This has a width of 14 mm. The 13 mm printings on the original, pre-war issues may have been executed in Cairo, but there also is a report these were executed near Nairobi.

The 1943 issue was overprinted by Harrison & Sons in London.

It also is interesting to have a good look at pairs of the 13 mm stamps on the pre-war issues. These may have a clean overprint on one stamp and a rough overprint on the adjoining stamp.
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Posted 02/26/2020   2:08 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
On 27 May 1948 stamps with a B.M.A. overprint were also issued in Eritrea. An additional 65 cents value overprinted on the British eight pence bright carmine stamp was issued on 1 January 1949.

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