Thursday, February 18, 2016

Italian Partisans gave up Their Arms to American MPs

Every 25 April, Italian people celebrate the liberation from the Nazi-Fascist Forces and the Resistance’s fight against the same forces side by side of the Allies. This photo show the U.S. MPs (Military Police) disarming the Italian partisans, dressed with worker coverall and white band over the left hand, at Bologna, Piazza Vittorio Emanuele, late April 1945. They were disarmed after the end of the fights and the formal disbandment of their organization ordered by the Allies Authorities. During the Second World War, the campaign in Italy was one of the most destructive fought in Europe – a long, bitter and highly attritional conflict that raged up the country’s mountainous leg. For frontline troops, casualty rates at Cassino and along the notorious Gothic Line were as high as they had been on the Western Front in the First World War. There were further similarities too: blasted landscapes, rain and mud, and months on end with the front line barely moving. And while the Allies and Germans were fighting it out through the mountains, the Italians were engaging in bitter battles too. Partisans were carrying out a crippling resistance campaign against the German troops but also battling the Fascists forces as well in what soon became a bloody civil war. Around them, innocent civilians tried to live through the carnage, terror and anarchy.

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