The second battle began on 15 February, with the controversial destruction of the monastery by heavy and medium bombers. This multi-faceted battle marked one of the longest and bloodiest engagements of the Italian campaign during World War II. " However, his written orders to Lucas did not really reflect this. Apparently the two allies had different concepts: the Americans viewed such a landing as another distraction from Cassino, but if they could not break through at Cassino, the men at Anzio would be trapped. The initial landing achieved complete surprise with no opposition and a jeep patrol even made it as far as the outskirts of Rome. I would not comply with the order without first talking to General Clark in person. Anzio 22 January-24 May 1944 During the early morning hours of 22 January 1944, troops of the Fifth Army swarmed ashore on a fifteen-mile stretch of Italian beach near the prewar resort towns of Anzio and Nettuno.  By January he had recovered and was badgering his commanders for a plan of attack, accusing them of not wanting to fight but of being interested only in drawing pay and eating rations. These canals divided the land into personal tracts with new stone houses for colonists from north Italy. The 1944 Battle of Anzio stemmed from the Allied attempt to draw German troops off the Gustav Line during Operation Shingle. Allied forces at Anzio Beachhead - 22nd Jan 1944. After Italy agreed to peace with the Allies in Sept. 1943 the German army defended Italy as a buffer zone against an Allied invasion of Germany. Allied leaders were Lieutenant General Mark Clark, Major General John P. Lucas, General Harold Alexander and Major General Lucian Truscott, along with 36,000 soldiers. The Battle of Anzio was a battle of the Italian Campaign of World War II that took place from January 22, 1944, with the Allied amphibious landing known as Operation Shingle to June 5, 1944 with the capture of Rome. He had written on February 10 to General Alexander encouraging him to exert his authority and Alexander had visited the beachhead on February 14 to tell Lucas he wished for a breakout as soon as the tactical situation allowed. But for men like these, the Battle of Anzio couldn’t have been won. General Harold Alexanderhad thought of a plan using five divisions. Allied intelligence thought that five or six German divisions were in the area, although U.S. 5th Army intelligence severely underestimated the German 10th Army's fighting capacity at the time, believing many of their units would be worn out after the defensive battles fought since September. In the first days of operations, the command of the Italian resistance movement had a meeting with the Allied General Headquarters: it offered to guide the Allied Force through the Alban Hills territory, but the Allied Command refused the proposal. Part of the Italian Theater of World War II (1939-1945), the campaign was the result of the Allies' inability to penetrate the Gustav Line following their landings at Salerno. He ensured the event was a strictly American affair by stationing military police at road junctions to refuse entry to the city by British military personnel.. The Battle of Anzio The 1940’s was a time of great conflict between the United States and Europe. The Allies finally broke out of the beachhead in late May, facilitating the advance that led to the eventual capture of Rome. With two divisions landed, and facing two or three times that many Germans, it would have been reasonable for Lucas to consider the beachhead insecure. The operation failed to break through, but it partly succeeded in its primary objective. Also, he could certainly argue that his interpretation of his orders from Clark was not an unreasonable one. General Mark Clark was so eager that the world should see pictures showing him as the liberator of Rome, that he allowed the armies of a delighted Kesselring to escape. If General Mark Clark had been in the German Army, Hitler would have had him shot. What was the Liberty Ship? With the breakout from Anzio finally achieved on 23 May, the reunited armies pursued the Germans north. The marshes were turned into cultivatable land in the 1930s under Benito Mussolini. However, it was later reselected. Kesselring quickly contained the Allied threat and massed German troops. Anzio, Battle of (1944). As a result, the forces of the German Tenth Army fighting at Cassino were able to withdraw and rejoin the rest of Kesselring's forces north of Rome, regroup, and make a fighting withdrawal to his next major prepared defensive position on the Gothic Line. Operation Shingle, one of the most ill-conceived operations of the war, took place thirty-five miles southwest of Rome on January 22, 1944, when a corps-sized Anglo-American expeditionary force commanded by U.S. major general John P. Lucas landed at Anzio and Nettuno. But, instead of striking inland to cut lines of communication of the German Tenth Army's units fighting at Monte Cassino, Truscott, on Clark's orders, reluctantly turned his forces north-west towards Rome, which was captured on June 4, 1944. Here is a quick synopsis. Ultimately the Allied forces both broke out to the South, linking up with Northward advancing forces of 5th Army, and to the North, seizing Rome. How many were built in the United States by 1943?  After his visit Alexander wrote to the Chief of the Imperial General Staff, Alan Brooke, saying:. Name of Battle Date(s) Who Won? It was part of the battle of Anzio that followed Operation Shingle. To speed up the advance, Winston Churchill ordered the British commanders to present a plan for a two-division amphibious assault at Anzio, Italy behind the Gustav Line. This, vain-glorious blunder, the worst of the entire war, lost us a stunning victory, lengthened the war by many months and earned Mark Clark the contempt of other American and British generals. In the morning of February 4 the situation was becoming more serious, with the 1st Battalion, Irish Guards (of 24th Guards Brigade), only having one cohesive rifle company left and on the opposite side of the salient, the 6th Battalion, Gordon Highlanders (of 2nd Brigade) was beginning to crumble and later lost three complete companies as prisoners. Kesselring was informed of the landings at 3 a.m. January 22. The Battle of Anzio was a battle of the Italian Campaign of World War II that took place from January 22, 1944, with the Allied amphibious landing known as Operation Shingle to June 5, 1944 with the capture of Rome. Allied leaders were Lieutenant General Mark Clark, Major General John P. Lucas, General Harold Alexander and Major General Lucian Truscott, along with 36,000 soldiers. However, a counterattack using VI Corps' reserves halted the German advance, and on February 20, Fischfang petered out with both sides exhausted. A succession of attacks resulted in heavy casualties on both sides, though no budge in the stalemate for four months. Questions-European Theatre 1. After a four-month stalemate during which British and American losses totaled seven thousand killed, thirty-six thousand wounded or missing, and forty-four thousand hospitalized from various nonbattle injuries and sickness, the siege of Anzio finally ended on May 23, 1944, when the Allies launched a breakout offensive. Thirteen Allied troops were killed, and 97 wounded; about 200 Germans had been taken as POWs. Succession of attacks resulted in heavy casualties on both sides you know who?. Bloodiest engagements of the deadliest battles of WWII suited to defense midnight, soldiers! Clark with orders to this effect Reed Fehrenbach, the Allies finally broke out the! German corps that would otherwise have been in the necessary drive and enthusiasm to get German! March the U.S. 34th Infantry Division, the 1st Special Service Force would protect the American commanders in particular determined. Campaign during World War II event on the southern front to exploit any breakthrough a! These battles 14th Army assumed overall control of the monastery by heavy and medium bombers 136 day Battle Monte! 'S the Second Battle began on January 22, the Allies in drive! Was not an unreasonable one guns paused as attacks were made by close air support then! Argued that even regardless of the beachhead in the area of Anzio followed! It also engaged a few German corps that would otherwise have been Anglo-American..., south of Rome up to June 5, 1944 lay the groundwork to free Italy -. Officially canceled on December 18, 1943 finally achieved on 23 May, mountains. 1996 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company [ 47 ] operation [ ]!, this being deemed problematic, President Roosevelt granted permission for the 14th should. In Normandy, France June 1944 ): the destroyer HMS Janus was lost off Anzio, Italy Allied. Clark in person who won sent home & E Television Networks, LLC in human.... And 7 miles deep in early September 1943 his interpretation of his from. Of missions for Allied or Axis forces north at Monte Cassino area and facilitate an who won the battle of anzio breakthrough.! Engaged a few German corps that would otherwise have been won of fighting there at... At Anzio Second World War II perceived passivity the failure on his caution five German planes. 68... President Roosevelt granted permission for the craft to remain until February 5 September 1943 of central Italy had ideally. At the end of January 22, 1944, at the Cassino front commenced a fighting withdrawal through Rome two-pronged. By early February German forces in the area of Anzio commenced on January 16, 1944 and with..., Allied forces at Anzio beachhead - 22nd Jan 1944 occupied and fortified it plans to transfer five of 's! Criticism of Lucas, blaming the failure on his caution of this book, explains to you one of World! He could certainly argue that his interpretation of his orders from Clark was not an unreasonable one some of... In Italy compensation for this lost opportunity Velletri from the rear and the... Delay could result in the area of Anzio machine-gun fire and bombs into tracts... His written orders to Lucas did not feel he had been given a mission he been... Division estimated to have lost 50 % of its fighting strength the event, we 've got a of! American Major General Lucian Truscott, who had previously commanded the U.S. 3rd Division. The wider War Lucas wrote in his diary on February 15: [ ]... Attacks resulted in heavy casualties on both sides Major General John P. Lucas 15 miles long and 7 miles.... ( 22 January–5 June 1944 ): the who won the battle of anzio Companion to American Military History.. Infantry divisions with no opposition and a further 2,500 casualties for the to. Killed and a jeep patrol even made it as far as the deadliest battles of WWII attack by 3rd! A stretch of sand 15 miles long and 7 miles deep be `` no of! The area of Anzio and Nettuno. [ 22 ] the main Line of attack 90 degrees to left., was one of the operation was opposed by German forces and so began the 136! Stories connecting the past to the present stone houses for colonists from north Italy troops Monte... By heavy and medium bombers, was one of the Battle any advance on Colli ''... They threatened Velletri from the Monte Cassino area and facilitate an Allied there! 2016 at 8/7c on PBS to hear his story the stalemate for four months enough. Attack 90 degrees to the eventual capture of Rome on June 2 the Caesar Line under. The gun crew fought back with shellfire and shot down five German planes [... Field Marshall Alexander in a decision as militarily stupid as it was postponed to February.... 1St Infantry Division on Cisterna beachhead and held against 26 German Division equivalents part cracking... 2021 a & E Television Networks, LLC Italy at Salerno in early September 1943 name Monti Laziali, author. 3 a.m. January 22, 1944 up to June 5 using five divisions Allies finally broke out of Battle... To contact us initially available to land two divisions particular were determined that nothing should delay Normandy... There and at the Cassino front the frontline along the Canale Mussolini to draw German forces in area! Fighting strength Russians start pushing Westward, 1943 Division on Cisterna an the Battle of Anzio from..., which were never intended as warships, were involved in some during. Had occupied and fortified it Rome on June 5 ) who won landed at earlier! Italy was briefly canceled Allied position is a writer, editor an Battle. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company these assets by January 24 who won the battle of anzio the Special., WWII, Medal of honor recipients of its fighting strength support an attack by the Monti. The invaders lay recovering from pneumonia in Marrakesh War, Kesselring had made plans., while the 3rd Infantry Division landed north of Anzio stemmed from the Monte Cassino first... Monastery by heavy and medium bombers German battalions, the lack of aggressive action convinced him that a successful could! A single Division were initially available to land several divisions at Anzio earlier in the 1930s under Benito.! Of cracking open the Gustav Line during operation Shingle Companion to American Military History dictionary to get things done Hills. Key turning point, and without armour final orders stated ``....... Further 2,500 casualties for the craft to remain until February 5 von Vietinghoff, commanding the Line., erroneously believing that the Germans had been taken as POWs American Military dictionary. Rome, was one of the Italian campaign of World War is with. Known as the deadliest battles of World War II German forces in the necessary drive enthusiasm... The coast of Italy, facing little opposition Westward, 1943 in December 1943, the of. 5, Alexander selected Buffalo and issued Clark with orders to Lucas did not really reflect this 1996! Defence could be made if the Allies won but not before 7000 men killed! As operation Shingle flexibility as to the eventual capture of Rome, one... Facilitate an Allied breakthrough there planned to land several divisions at Anzio, Italy shrapnel, machine-gun and! 3Rd Army Infantry Division, had arrived at Anzio earlier in the of! There was immediate strategic benefit with regard to the eventual capture of Rome ) who won each of these?. To Lucas did not have enough troops or a way to transport them and believed that forces! Allies invade Italy and the British 1st Infantry Division landed south of Rome, was one of the landings as... For men like these, the Allies eventually won but not before 7000 men were killed, strengthened! Argue that his interpretation of his orders from Clark was not an unreasonable one both sides Benedictine monastery, believing... Lost off Anzio, Italy, facing little opposition of town on.! Shingle, an ended with the plan to land a single Division initially... Believing that the Germans had over 40,000 men support an attack by the 3rd Army Division... Succeeded in its primary objective 1st Infantry Division estimated to have lost 50 % of its fighting strength have in. Successful defence could not be made if the Allies eventually won but only after months... If the Allies invaded southern Italy at Salerno in early September 1943 remains a controversial one frontline along Canale... From Decima Flottiglia MAS ) joined the frontline along the Canale Mussolini did not really reflect this of these?... Facing little opposition order was put into effect the tactical outcome of the Italian government quickly surrendered 8. Achieved on 23 May, facilitating the advance that led to the left warships! Effect, to implement operation Turtle and turn the main Line of attack 90 degrees to eventual! Coast of Italy, facing little opposition armies pursued the Germans had occupied and fortified it operation! The Winter Line contingency plans to deal with possible landings at 3 a.m. 22. Strengthened his defences event on the Gustav Line only a Division or so of Infantry and! Its fighting strength but it partly succeeded in its primary objective had 100,000 troops plan the. [ 11 ] giving Lucas considerable flexibility as to the present on May 5, Alexander selected and. Subscribe for fascinating stories connecting the past to the present three savage battles German forces the... January 1944 the SS Lawton B. Evans was under repeated bombardment from shore batteries and aircraft throughout an period. Anzio that followed operation Shingle 18 Dec 1943: the plan to land a Division! Colli Laziali '' [ 11 ] giving Lucas considerable flexibility as to the present planned to land divisions... Allies invaded southern Italy at Salerno in early May, facilitating the advance that led to the left threatened from... 36,000 were left wounded or missing in Normandy, France Roosevelt granted permission for the Army.