The Siege of Malta was a military campaign in the Mediterranean Theatre of the Second World War. From 1940-1942, the fight for the control of the strategically important island of Malta pitted the air forces and navies of Italy and Germany against the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy.
The Axis resolved to bomb or starve Malta into submission, by attacking its ports, towns, cities, and Allied shipping supplying the island. Malta was one of the most intensively bombed areas during the war. The Luftwaffe and the Regia Aeronautica flew a total of 3,000 bombing raids over a period of two years in an effort to destroy RAF defences and the ports. Success would have made possible a combined German—Italian amphibious landing supported by German airborne forces. It was never carried out. In the event, Allied convoys were able to supply and reinforce Malta, while the RAF defended its airspace, though at great cost in material and lives.