Dear All,
Following on from my investigations into the Azores I have found a paragraph in another reference which may be of interest to the several Gladiator aficionados on the Forum.

http://www.lajes.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=3999

As German forces under Adolf Hitler made advances against the rest of Europe in 1939, beginning World War II, many European countries were lining up for and against this act of aggression. The Portuguese government saw neutrality as its best line of defense against Germany. However in 1941, Portuguese officials recognizing the dangers of the Azores in German hands, expanded the runway and sent additional troops and equipment to Lajes including Gladiator aircraft. The Portuguese declared the base capable of air defense on 11 July 1941. The military activities in the Azores grew in 1942 as the Gladiators evolved into flying cover missions for allied convoys, reconnaissance missions and meteorological flights. Also in July 1942, the first JU52 arrived flying cargo transportation missions.

The bit that caught my eye was in the penultimate sentence ("flying cover missions for allied convoys, reconnaissance missions and meteorological flights.!!!). This hardly seems like the actions of a "Neutral"?!!!! One presumes these were Portugese Gladiators, and flown by Portugese AF crews? - or is there yet another story to tell?
Forward Hakan and his friends to tell us!
Yrs Aye
Peter Davies