By P. Crociani, Pier Battistelli, J. Shumate (illustrator)
This quantity through best Italian historian, Pier Paolo Battistelli, appears on the elite and distinctive forces devices of the Italian military in the course of global struggle II (1939-1945). This contains a large array of troop varieties together with paratroopers, attack engineers, sea-landing and swimmer devices, long-range recce and ski devices, or even hand-picked Fascist 'Mussolini' devices. It additionally delves into the professional tank and armoured devices that have been created to emulate the German armoured devices. The Italian devices mentioned the following loved combined good fortune however the quantity does draw awareness to the superb difficult scuffling with performed by means of a few, fairly within the deserts of North Africa and the frozen wastelands of Russia. Illustrated with infrequent archival photos and especially commissioned art this can be a interesting perception right into a little-studied element of Axis forces.
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Extra info for Italian Army Elite Units and Special Forces 1940-43
This time personnel were taken from every Alpini unit, about one-third of them volunteers; this mixed composition was made necessary by the simple fact that not many mountaineers actually had skiing skills. com 41 A patrolling soldier of the Monte Cervino Bn in full white clothing , including a knitted Balaclava under his helmet; he retains the black feather of the Alpini, attached by a pompon to his helmet cover. The Balaclava was sometimes seen worn in the field without the steel helmet. (Piero Crociani Collection) additional items of special clothing were provided: white capes, to camouflage men lying on the snow; sleeveless sheepskin jerkins; gauntlets with waterproof covers and fur-lined gloves; and knee-high overboots lined with lambskin.
In this case, however, they were to hide in case of an Allied invasion, and let the enemy advance beyond them before starting operations. Actual experience proved to be somewhat different. In Sicily the 6ª Armata, defending the island, formed one 66-man Compagnia Speciale, assigning its patrols to non-military duties close to the coast. The men were dressed as much as possible in civilian clothing, being intended to wear their uniforms only in action, and were given a dozen mines and anti-tank bombs.
There was also a limited improvement in the weapons scales, with the issue of some 9mm Beretta M38A sub-machine guns to officers and NCOs, and the addition of a heavy machine-gun squad to one of the companies. The battalion’s journey to the Russian Front in southern Ukraine lasted more than a month, from 13 January to 18 February 1942. The unit was A ski-mounted stretcher sled, part of the battalion’s special equipment. The two Alpini behind it (probably medics) are wearing black leather belts.
Italian Army Elite Units and Special Forces 1940-43 by P. Crociani, Pier Battistelli, J. Shumate (illustrator)