Author Topic: FSO: Line Upon Line: Italy, Spring 1944 - 11PM EST SEA1 Fr2  (Read 66 times)

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When the Allied armies in Italy finally broke through at Anzio and Cassino in the Spring of 1944, the next inevitable objective would be the capture or destruction of the German 10th Army in Italy. However, in one of the great Allied blunders of the second world war, 5th Army Commander Mark Clark would turn his forces to Rome instead of cutting off Kesserling’s line of retreat.

On May 30th, the Caesar C Line was breached by the US 5th Army and the road to Rome was wide open. With the 5th US Army’s focus on Rome, Kesserling and the German 10th Army forces escaped North and met up with the German 14th Army for a fighting retreat behind the Trasimene Line. During his fighting retreat that summer, Kesserling used the Arno Line to consolidate his forces along the newly formed Gothic Line to prepare for the Allied advance.

In June, the US 12th Tactical Air Support Command and the RAF Desert Air Force based in Sardinia, Corsica and mainland Italy, flew sortie after sortie in support of the US 5th and British 8th Armies as they advanced up the Italian boot. Air combat was sporadic as the focus turned to supporting the troops on the ground and was not as heavy as it was during the Anzio fighting, but some pilots on both sides continued to see success. After the Invasion of Normandy, the last Luftwaffe units began to return to Germany leaving the Aeronautica Nazionale Repubblicana to fight on alone in Northern Italy.

In this FSO we set the stage for final fights between the Allied Air Forces and the Luftwaffe and Aeronautica Nazionale Repubblicana after the breakouts at Anzio and Cassino to the Liberation of Rome.

FRAME 1: 10 July 2020
FRAME 2: 17 July 2020
FRAME 3: 24 July 2020

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