About this Product
When Italy surrendered in 1943, it sparked a resistance movement of anti-German, anti-fascist partisans. This book explores the tactics, organizational structure and equipment of the brave Italian resistance fighters. Beginning with low-level sabotage and assassinations, the groups continued to grow until spring 1944 when a remarkable, unified partisan command structure was created. Working in close co-ordination with the Allies, they received British SOE and American OSS liaison teams as well as supplies of weapons. The German response was ferocious, and in autumn 1944, as the Allied advance stalled, the SS and Italian RSI looked to eradicate the partisans once and for all. But when the Allies made their final breakthrough in the last weeks of the war the partisans rose again to exact their revenge on the retreating Wehrmacht. From an expert on Italian military history in World War II, this work provides a comprehensive guide to the men and women who fought a desperate struggle against occupation, as well as the German and Italian fascist security forces unleashed against them.
Pier Paolo Battistelli earned his PhD in Military History at the University of Padua. A scholar of German and Italian politics and strategy throughout World War II, he is active in Italy and abroad writing titles and essays on military history subjects. A contributor to the Italian Army Historical Office, he is currently revising his PhD thesis for publication: The War of the Axis: German and Italian Military Partnership in World War Two, 1939-1943. Piero Crociani acts as a consultant for the Italian Army Historical Branch and is the author of several articles, essays and books on Italian military history. Amongst his published words are The Albanians in the Italian Armed Forces (Rome, 2001) and The Neapolitan Army 1806-15 (Milan, 1987).Peter Dennis was born in 1950. Inspired by contemporary magazines such as Look and Learn he studied illustration at Liverpool Art College. Peter has since contributed to hundreds of books, predominantly on historical subjects, including many Osprey titles.
Introduction: Italian surrender and German occupation
From early resistance to partisan warfare
Peak of operations: collapse of RSI army security forces and mobilization of Fascist Party ‘Black Brigades' - SS take over from Wehrmacht - creation of partisan CVT command, and ‘free zones' - partisans fight with Allied troops - resistance in Florence - the struggle on the Franco-Italian border
Crisis of September 1944-March 1945: major anti-partisan operations - deployment of German combat units against partisans
The Allies and the partisans
The ‘operational zones': the NW Italo-French and NE Italo-Yugoslav frontiers
Equipment, tactics, and assessment of Italian partisan groups
Equipment, tactics and assessment of German and Italian Fascist anti-partisan forces