Posts Categorized: Caithness at War Blog

Caithness at War Blog

Caithness at War: Week 218

On 1 November Allied forces in Italy attacked the Germans on the River Trigno, crossing the river early on 2 November. On 3 November the German commander decided to make a fighting retreat to the next line of defence at the river Sangro. In the Pacific, US troops landed on the island of Bougainville on… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 217

As the Allies prepared to renew their offensive in southern Italy, Soviet forces in Russia were pressing the Germans along the line of the Dnieper River. Soviet troops were able to secure footholds on the eastern bank and advanced towards the city of Kiev. In the Crimea, 150,000 German and Romanian troops were now encircled… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 216

In Italy the German forces had retreated north to the Barbara Line, the latest in a series of defensive positions stretching across the Italian peninsula. The Allies meanwhile regrouped and resupplied their armies. On 24 October for the first time Allied planes launched an air raid from bases inside Italy. Also this week, on 19… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 215

On 12 October the American Fifth Army crossed to the north bank of the Volturno River in Italy; the German army retreated to the Barbara Line a few miles further back. On 13 October the Italian government declared war on Germany. On 14 October inmates at the Sobibór extermination camp in Poland staged an uprising,… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 214

Advancing up the Italian peninsula British forces crossed the River Biferno this week and, after driving off a German counter-attack, pushed the German forces back. On 7 October Japanese forces on Wake Island massacred 98 US civilian prisoners of war after an American air raid, for which war crime the commanding officer was executed after… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 213

This week the Allies continued to make progress as they advanced up the Italian peninsula. On 30 September the people of Naples rose up against the German occupiers; next day the Allies entered and took possession of the city and port. Also this week, the Germans abandoned the Italian province of Foggia, but took control… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 212

The British and American forces that had landed in southern Italy now began to advance up the country. The Italian Acqui division on the Greek island of Cephallonia finally surrendered to the Germans on 21 September, and over 4,500 soldiers were subsequently executed. Also this week the Soviet army recaptured the town of Smolensk; and… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 211

On 13 September a counterattack by German forces against the Salerno bridgehead in Italy almost succeeded in driving the Allies back, but after three days of heavy fighting Allied troops, supported by guns from naval warships, forced them to retreat. On 15 September the newly-liberated Mussolini met with Hitler and agreed to assume leadership of… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 210

On 8 September General Eisenhower announced that Italy had surrendered to the Allies. German forces at once began to disarm their Italian counterparts and prepared to resist the coming invasion. On 9 September the Allies landed at Salerno and went on to take Brindisi, Taranto and Bari; on 10 September German troops occupied Rome. Also… Read more »Read more

Caithness at War: Week 209

After the overthrow of Mussolini, on 3 September Italy signed a secret armistice, effectively surrendering to the Allies; the treaty was kept secret initially until the Allied invasion of the mainland was well under way. Also on 3 September the British XXIII Corps landed in Calabria in Italy. In the Pacific, Australian and US forces… Read more »Read more