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The Battle from Folgorito to Belvedere, 5-9 April 1945 (with tourist guide to the battlefield)

 Autore: Davide Del Giudice  Categoria: Gothic Line, Reviews  Editore: Associazione Culturale SARASOTA  Pubblicato il...: 2024  ISBN: Senza ISBN  Pagine: 110  Dimensione: 165x235mm

Book NOT FOR SALE at Mugot – Gothic Museum

This book comes directly from the volume published in 2010 "The breakthrough of the Gothic Line in Massa and Versilia". The need to focus on the most important event of that battle, which extended from the shore of the Ligurian Sea to Garfagnana, led me to publish it. The fight that led to the capture of Monte Folgorito was the keystone of the US offensive in the front sector between Versilia and the Apuan Alps. Having occupied Monte Folgorito and thus blinded the vital eye of the German artillery, not only was the German artillery in crisis but the "triangle of death", that natural bulwark constituted by the mountains east of Massa, by Lake of Porta and the Versilia River which block access to the north to an advancing troop; this has been happening for centuries and was repeated regularly in the 20th century. Unlike in the past, in 1945 modern technology made this defensive bastion even more lethal, enriched by extensive minefields, trenches, fences, bunkers, artillery and light weapons positions and other deadly defensive works. This portion of the front of about ten km in extension, from the sea to Monte Carchio, defended by just over a thousand Germans, had withstood every attack carried out by the 92nd US Division since September 1944. Colonel Pursall's intuition to directly attack the highest altitudes before the plain and the hills, combined with the extraordinary value of the Nisei, allowed the front line to be broken through in a few hours. The Germans of the 148th Reserve Infantry Division, although masterfully directed by Lieutenant General Otto Fretter Pico, were unable to recover from this blow, which was inflicted on them at the point that was considered the strongest in their formation. 20 days of very hard clashes followed which led the Germans and their RSI allies to retreat to the Parma area and towards Genoa, places where the war finally ended with their defeat and the final victory of the Allies and partisans. This volume, in addition to narrating in detail the fighting on the Folgorito-Carchio-Belvedere ridge, presents a hiking guide complete with maps and a summary text of the battle of the Western Gothic Line, written in English.

Review by Daniele Baggiani

A small volume, apparently. Instead: an exemplary book for those who want to follow the events of the Second Conflict on the Gothic Line in detail, proposing to visit the places of the battle with targeted excursions. In this way, exactly as Gotica Toscana proposes for the Battle of Passo del Giogo, the immersion in the events of war is total. History, nature, physical commitment bring us closer to the reality encountered by the soldiers in their time - 1944 - on these rugged mountains between the Apuane and Garfagnana, where the Gothic Line remained intact and under the control of the German forces almost until the Liberation. At that point Folgorito/Belvedere the Gothic Line will be conquered on April 9th, only three weeks before the end of the war, at the cost of many deaths, thanks to the heroism of the Nisei - Japanese of American origin - and the intuition of Colonel Pursall to bring an attack at high altitude. Here are some tidbits from the book:


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