Invasion of Sicily Facts

Invasion of Sicily Facts
The Allied invasion of Sicily, codenamed Operation Husky, took place from July 9 through August 17, 1943. The Allies had been working their way through the Axis forces in North Africa since 1941 with the long-term goal of invading Italy, which would be the first front in Europe. Although the fighting was fierce, the Allies were able to take the island of Sicily due to their overwhelming numbers. The victory did as exactly as the Allies had hoped-Mussolini's regime collapsed and Hitler was forced to take troops from the Eastern Front to defend German occupied Italy and the Balkans. The invasion of Sicily also had the effective of making the Germans removed troops from the Eastern Front against the Soviet. Once the Allied forces achieved victory in Sicily, the Axis offensive at Kursk was cancelled.
Interesting Invasion of Sicily Facts:
The Allied force were nearly evenly split by Americans and British, which included a sizable number of Canadians. The Americans had nearly 3,000 killed, while the British and Canadians combined also had almost 3,000 killed.
The Italian 6th Army, led by General Alfredo Guzzoni, was charged with defending the ports and fortress areas. The Italians were backed by more than 250 German tanks and a German paratrooper division.
The Allies invaded Sicily with an amphibious invasion of two armies on the southern shore of the island. Although the U.S. Marines specialize in amphibious invasion, they were not involved on any large scale in Europe or North Africa during World War II. They did, however, often train Army soldiers in amphibious tactics.
The Allied commanders carried out their planning and overseeing of the invasion from an underground complex on the nearby island of Malta. The complex became known as the Lacaris War Rooms for the nearby Lascaris Battery/fort.
After a heavy naval and aerial bombardment, the invasion began with American and British paratrooper drops. It was the first combat drop of the famed American 82nd Airborne.
The British successfully used gliders to drop some of their first troops on the island.
The amphibious landings took place over 105 stretch of beach.
The port town of Licata was the first major objective captured by the Allies.
General George Patton commanded most of the in the field strategies in the American sector.
Once the Allies established a beachhead, German commander Albert Kesselring ordered the Germans to retreat and create defensive fortification south and west of Mount Etna, in order to hold the northeast section of the island.
The Americans began flanking the Axis line by landing behind it, forcing the Axis forces to abandon Sicily on August 17.
Although the Axis forces were able to evacuate a good portion of their army, the attempted of Sicily proved to be quite costly. Nearly 5,000 Italian soldiers were killed and just over 4,000 German soldiers perished. The invasion also pretty much decimated Axis airpower in Italy.

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