History

Wars & Campaigns

Boer War
First World War

►►Western Front

►►►Trench Warfare: 1914-1916

►►Allied Offensive: 1916

►►►Allied Offensives: 1917

►►►German Offensive: 1918

►►►Advance to Victory: 1918

►►Siberia
Second World War
►►War Against Japan

►►Italian Campaign

►►►Sicily

►►►Southern Italy

►►►The Sangro and Moro

►►►Battles of the FSSF

►►►Cassino

►►►Liri Valley

►►►Advance to Florence

►►►Gothic Line

►►►Winter Lines
►►North-West Europe

►►►Normandy
►►►Southern France
►►►Channel Ports

►►►Scheldt
►►►Nijmegen Salient

►►►Rhineland

►►►Final Phase
Korean War
Cold War
Gulf War

Operations 

GAUNTLET Aug 1941

(Spitsbergen)

HUSKY Jul 1943

 (Sicily)

COTTAGE Aug 1943

 (Kiska)

TIMBERWOLF Oct 1943

(Italy)

OVERLORD Jun 1944

(Normandy)

MARKET-GARDEN Sep 44

(Arnhem)

BERLIN Nov 1944

(Nijmegen)

VERITABLE Feb 1945

(Rhineland)

Battle Honours

Boer War

►Paardeberg

18 Feb 00

First World War
Western Front
Trench Warfare: 1914-1916

Ypres, 1915

22 Apr-25 May 15

Gravenstafel

22-23 Apr 15

St. Julien

24 Apr-4 May 15

Frezenberg

8-13 May 15

Bellewaarde

24-25 May 15

Festubert, 1915

15-25 May 15

Mount Sorrel

2-13 Jun 16

Allied Offensive: 1916

►Somme, 1916

1 Jul-18 Nov 16

►Albert

.1-13 Jul 16

►Bazentin

.14-17 Jul 16

►Pozieres

.23 Jul-3 Sep 16

►Guillemont

.3-6 Sep 16

►Ginchy

.9 Sep 16

Flers-Courcelette

15-22 Sep 16

Thiepval

26-29 Sep 16

►Le Transloy

. 1-18 Oct 16

Ancre Heights

1 Oct-11 Nov 16

Ancre, 1916

13-18 Nov 16

Allied Offensives: 1917

►Arras 1917

8 Apr-4 May 17

Vimy, 1917

.9-14 Apr 17

Arleux

28-29 Apr 17

►Scarpe, 1917

.3-4 May17

►Hill 70

.15-25 Aug 17

►Messines, 1917

.7-14 Jun 17

►Ypres, 1917

..31 Jul-10 Nov 17

►Pilckem

31 Jul-2 Aug 17

►Langemarck, 1917

.16-18 Aug 17

►Menin Road

.20-25 Sep 17

►Polygon Wood

26 Sep-3 Oct 17

►Broodseinde

.4 Oct 17

►Poelcapelle

.9 Oct 17

►Passchendaele

.12 Oct 17

►Cambrai, 1917

20 Nov-3 Dec 17

German Offensive: 1918

►Somme, 1918

.21 Mar-5 Apr 18

►St. Quentin

.21-23 Mar 18

►Bapaume, 1918

.24-25 Mar 18

►Rosieres

.26-27 Mar 18

►Avre

.4 Apr 18

►Lys

.9-29 Apr 18

►Estaires

.9-11 Apr 18

►Messines, 1918

.10-11 Apr 18

►Bailleul

.13-15 Apr 18

►Kemmel

.17-19 Apr 18

Advance to Victory: 1918

Amiens

8-11 Aug 18

►Arras, 1918

.26 Aug-3 Sep 18

►Scarpe, 1918

26-30 Aug 18.

►Drocourt-Queant

.2-3 Sep 18

►Hindenburg Line

.12 Sep-9 Oct 18

►Canal du Nord

.27 Sep-2 Oct 18

►St. Quentin Canal .29 Sep-2 Oct 18
►Epehy

3-5 Oct 18

►Cambrai, 1918

.8-9 Oct 18

►Valenciennes

.1-2 Nov 18

►Sambre

.4 Nov 18

►Pursuit to Mons .28 Sep-11Nov

Second World War

War Against Japan

South-East Asia

Hong Kong

 8-25 Dec 41

Italian Campaign

Battle of Sicily

Landing in Sicily 

   9-12 Jul 43

Grammichele 

15 Jul 43

Piazza Armerina

16-17 Jul 43

Valguarnera

17-19 Jul 43

Assoro 

  20-22 Jul 43

Leonforte

 21-22 Jul 43

Agira

24-28 Jul 43

Adrano 

29 Jul-7 Aug 43

Catenanuova

29-30 Jul 43

Regalbuto

29 Jul-3 Aug 43

Centuripe

  31 Jul-3 Aug 43

Troina Valley

 2-6 Aug 43

Pursuit to Messina

 2-17 Aug 43

 Southern Italy

Landing at Reggio

 3 Sep 43

Potenza 19-20 Sep 43
Motta Montecorvino 1-3 Oct 43
Termoli 3-6 Oct 43
Monte San Marco 6-7 Oct 43
Gambatesa 7-8 Oct 43
Campobasso 11-14 Oct 43
Baranello 17-18 Oct 43
Colle d'Anchise 22-24 Oct 43
Torella 24-27 Oct 43

The Sangro and Moro

The Sangro

19 Nov-3 Dec 43

Castel di Sangro

.23-24 Nov 43

The Moro

5-7 Dec 43

San Leonardo

8-9 Dec 43

The Gully

..10-19 Dec 43

Casa Berardi

 ..14-15 Dec 43

Ortona

20-28 Dec 43

San Nicola-San

.31 Dec 43

Tommaso

.
Point 59/ 29 Dec 43-

Torre Mucchia

4 Jan 44

Battles of the FSSF
Monte Camino

.5 Nov-9 Dec 43

Monte la Difensa-

2-8 Dec 43

 Monte la Remetanea

.
Hill 720

25 Dec 43

Monte Majo

3-8 Jan 44.

Radicosa

4 Jan 44

Monte Vischiataro

8 Jan 44

Anzio

22 Jan-22 May 44

Rome

.22 May-4 Jun 44

Advance

.22 May-22 Jun 44

to the Tiber

.
►Monte Arrestino

25 May 44

►Rocca Massima

27 May 44

►Colle Ferro

2 Jun 44

Cassino
►Cassino II

11-18 May 44

►Gustav Line

11-18 May 44

►Sant' Angelo in

13 May 44

Teodice

.
►Pignataro

14-15 May 44

Liri Valley
Liri Valley

18-30 May 44

►Hitler Line

18-24 May 44

►Aquino

18-24 May 44

►Melfa Crossing

24-25 May 44

►Ceprano

26-27 May 44

►Torrice Crossroads

30 May 44

Advance to Florence
Advance

17 Jul-10 Aug 44

to Florence

.
Trasimene Line

20-30 Jun 44

Sanfatucchio

20-21 Jun 44

Arezzo

4-17 Jul 44

Cerrone

25 - 31 Aug 44

Gothic Line
►Gothic Line

25 Aug-22 Sep 44

►Monteciccardo

27-28 Aug 44

►Montecchio

30-31 Aug 44

►Point 204 (Pozzo Alto)

31 Aug 44

►Monte Luro

1 Sep 44

►Borgo Santa Maria

1 Sep 44

►Tomba di Pesaro

1-2 Sep 44

►Coriano

3-15 Sep 44

►Lamone Crossing

2-13 Sep 44

Winter Lines
►Rimini Line

14-21 Sep 44

►San Martino-

14-18 Sep 44

San Lorenzo

.
►San Fortunato

18-20 Sep 44

►Casale

23-25 Sep 44

►Sant' Angelo

11-15 Sep 44

 in Salute

.
►Bulgaria Village

13-14 Sep 44

►Cesena

15-20 Sep 44

►Pisciatello

16-19 Sep 44

►Savio Bridgehead

20-23 Sep 44

►Monte La Pieve

13-19 Oct 44

►Monte Spaduro

19-24 Oct 44

►Monte San Bartolo

11-14 Nov 44

►Capture of Ravenna

3-4 Dec 44

►Naviglio Canal

12-15 Dec 44

►Fosso Vecchio

16-18 Dec 44

►Fosso Munio

19-21 Dec 44

►Conventello-

2-6 Jan 45

Comacchio

.
►Granarolo

3-5 Jan 44

Northwest Europe
Dieppe

19 Aug 42

Battle of Normandy
Normandy Landing

6 Jun 44

Authie

7 Jun 44

Putot-en-Bessin

8 Jun 44

Bretteville

8-9 Jun 44

       -l'Orgueilleuse .
Le Mesnil-Patry

11 Jun 44

Carpiquet

4-5 Jul 44

Caen

4-18 Jul 44

The Orne (Buron)

8-9 Jul 44

Bourguιbus Ridge

18-23 Jul 44

Faubourg-de-

18-19 Jul 44

       Vaucelles .
St. Andrι-sur-Orne

19-23 Jul 44

Maltτt

22-23 Jul 44

Verriθres Ridge-Tilly--

25 Jul 44

         la-Campagne .
Falaise

7-22 Aug 44

►Falaise Road

7-9 Aug 44

►Quesnay Road

10-11 Aug 44

Clair Tizon

11-13 Aug 44

►The Laison

14-17 Aug 44

►Chambois

18-22 Aug 44

►St. Lambert-sur-

19-22 Aug 44

       Dives

.

Dives Crossing

17-20 Aug 44

Forκt de la Londe

27-29 Aug 44

The Seine, 1944

25-28 Aug 44

Southern France
Southern France

15-28 Aug 44

Channel Ports
Dunkirk, 1944

8-15 Sep 44

Le Havre

1-12 Sep 44

Moerbrugge

8-10 Sep 44

Moerkerke

13-14 Sep 44

Boulogne, 1944

17-22 Sep 44

Calais, 1944

25 Sep-1 Oct 44

Wyneghem

21-22 Sep 44

Antwerp-Turnhout

   24-29 Sep 44

Canal

.

The Scheldt

The Scheldt

1 Oct-8 Nov 44

Leopold Canal

6-16 Oct-44

►Woensdrecht

1-27 Oct 44

Savojaards Platt

9-10 Oct 44

Breskens Pocket

11 Oct -3 Nov 44

►The Lower Maas

20 Oct -7 Nov 44

►South Beveland

 24-31 Oct 44

Walcheren

31 Oct -4 Nov 44

Causeway

.

Nijmegen Salient
Ardennes

Dec 44-Jan 45

Kapelsche Veer

31 Dec 44-

.

21Jan 45

The Roer

16-31 Jan 45

Rhineland
The Rhineland

8 Feb-10 Mar 45

►The Reichswald

8-13 Feb 45

►Waal Flats

8-15 Feb 45

►Moyland Wood

14-21 Feb 45

►Goch-Calcar Road

19-21 Feb 45

►The Hochwald

26 Feb-

.

4 Mar 45

►Veen

6-10 Mar 45

►Xanten

8-9 Mar 45

Final Phase
The Rhine

23 Mar-1 Apr 45

►Emmerich-Hoch

28 Mar-1 Apr 45

Elten

.
►Twente Canal

2-4 Apr 45

Zutphen

6-8 Apr 45

Deventer

8-11 Apr 45

Arnhem, 1945

12-14 Apr 45

Apeldoorn

11-17 Apr 45

Groningen

13-16 Apr 45

Friesoythe

14 Apr 45

►Ijselmeer

15-18 Apr 45

Kόsten Canal

17-24 Apr 45

Wagenborgen

21-23 Apr 45

Delfzijl Pocket

23 Apr-2 May 45

Leer

28-29 Apr 45

Bad Zwischenahn

23 Apr-4 May 45

Oldenburg

27 Apr-5 May 45

Korean War
Kapyong

21-25 Apr 51

Domestic Missions

FLQ Crisis

International Missions

ICCS            Vietnam 1973

MFO                 Sinai 1986-

Peacekeeping

UNMOGIP

India 1948-1979

UNTSO

 Israel 1948-    ....

UNEF

Egypt 1956-1967

UNOGIL

Lebanon 1958    ....

ONUC

 Congo 1960-1964

UNYOM

Yemen 1963-1964

UNTEA

W. N. Guinea 1963-1964

UNIFCYP

 Cyprus 1964-    ....

DOMREP

D. Republic 1965-1966

UNIPOM

Kashmir 1965-1966

UNEFME

Egypt 1973-1979

UNDOF

Golan 1974-    ....

UNIFIL

 Lebanon 1978    ....

UNGOMAP

Afghanistan 1988-90

UNIIMOG

Iran-Iraq 1988-1991

UNTAG

Namibia 1989-1990

ONUCA

C. America 1989-1992

UNIKOM

Kuwait 1991    ....

MINURSO

W. Sahara 1991    ....

ONUSAL

El Salvador 1991    ....

UNAMIC

Cambodia 1991-1992

UNAVEM II

Angola 1991-1997

UNPROFOR

Yugosla. 1992-1995

UNTAC

Cambodia 1992-1993

UNOSOM

Somalia 1992-1993

ONUMOZ

Mozambiq. 1993-1994

UNOMUR

 Rwanda 1993    ....

UNAMIR

Rwanda 1993-1996

UNMIH

Haiti 1993-1996

UNMIBH

Bosnia/Herz.1993-1996

UNMOP

Prevlaka 1996-2001

UNSMIH

Haiti 1996-1997

MINUGUA

Guatemala 1994-1997

UNTMIH

Haiti 1997    ....

MIPONUH

 Haiti 1997    ....

MINURCA

C.Afr.Rep. 1998-1999

INTERFET

E. Timor 1999-2000

UNAMSIL

Sie. Leone 1999-2005

UNTAET

E. Timor 1999-2000

Exercises

 

Italian Campaign
 

The Italian Campaign was one of the major campaigns Canadians fought during the Second World War. Canadian soldiers served in Italy from 10 July 1943 to the spring of 1945.

The Italian campaign included Canadian participation in several major periods of action;

  • Battle of Sicily

  • Southern Italy

  • The Sangro and Moro

  • Battles of the FSSF

  • Cassino

  • Liri Valley

  • Advance to Florence

  • Gothic Line

  • Winter Lines

The FSSF (First Special Service Force) served as a joint Canadian-American unit as part of the US Army and served in several battles.

Italian Campaign

Battle of Sicily - Southern Italy - The Sangro and Moro -
Battles of the FSSF - Cassino - Liri Valley - Trasimene Line - Advance to Florence - Gothic Line - Winter Lines

Sicily

Sicily was the first campaign to which Canadians would contribute a division sized formation. The Allied operations on the island have been subjected to much criticism; it took 38 days after the initial landings on 10 July 1943 to seize the island, with the majority of the German forces on the island crossing to the mainland in safety. Nonetheless, the battle allowed for both men and commanders of the Canadian Army to gain battle experience, and by all accounts Canadian soldiers (of the 1st Canadian Infantry Division and the 1st Canadian Army Tank Brigade) performed exceedingly well in the tasks allotted them. Politically, the battle brought an end to Italy's official alliance with Germany. Italian leader Benito Mussolini was deposed in late Jul. In early Sep, after the invasion of the Italian mainland, Italy quickly surrendered, prompting a German invasion of the country to continue the fight, with a fascist puppet state established in the north.

The German way of war was revealed in Sicily and would be their way throughout the Italian Campaign. Delaying actions were to be fought along lines of resistance rather than a solid line of defence. Each line of resistance was spaced far enough apart to prevent Allied artillery from engaging more than one at a time. Lines of resistance were optimally located on forward ridges, from which the enemy could be engaged, and then withdrawn from under cover when the Allies concentrated overwhelming force against it.

 

Southern Italy

The invasion of Italy proper commenced on 3 September 1943 with landings at Reggio di Calabria against no opposition. Further landings by the British and Americans farther north at Salerno occurred six days later. The newly-renamed 1st Canadian Armoured Brigade supported the advance of the British up the west coast to assist the Salerno landings. The 8th Army formed on the right of the Allied line, and began the march up the east coast of Italy with he US 5th Army on the left, advancing up the west coast. The 1st Canadian Infantry Division was employed here as well; the controversial decision to commit Canadians indefinitely in the Mediterranean had run counter to General McNaughton's wishes to return the Canadian units to the United Kingdom after the Battle of Sicily had concluded. McNaughton was no longer in command of the Canadians overseas, and in early 1944, the 1st Division would be joined by other formations.

By the end of September 1943, all three Canadian armoured regiments were being shuttled back and forth between the two corps making up the 8th Army, providing mobile fire support for the infantry. Canadian infantry found themselves supported most often by British tanks, while the Canadian armour operated in support of British formations. The terrain was arduous, with narrow unpaved roads and steep elevation changes which could easily be defended by small groups of the enemy, or blocked by demolition of culverts and bridges. The Germans began a "leisurely, calculated retreat to the Alpine redoubt,"1 and events would show their ability to draw this retreat out for over a year and a half. At the tactical level, small scale skirmishes were the order of the day, delaying for short periods and then withdrawing to the next geographical obstacle, be it a mountain or a river, to inflict more punishment on the advancing Allies.

The Germans settled in for the winter on a line drawn across the narrowest, and highest, part of the Italian peninsula. The Gustav Line and Monte Cassino were turned into formidable defensive works, and the Hitler Line was prepared to defend the Liri Valley - the road to Rome.

 

The Sangro and Moro

The end of the Gustav Line settled in the vicinity of the Sangro River, and Canadian and British attacks in the area made slow progress for high cost. Across the Sangro lay the Moro River, which took three days to cross, followed by fighting at a feature called The Gully, which saw attack and counter-attack over the period 10 to 19 December. The fighting shifted towards the small port city of Ortona and heavy fighting outside the town (marked by the award of the Victoria Cross to Major Paul Triquet of the Royal 22e Regiment) and within took place. The fight for the city became known as "Little Stalingrad" in the press and took on significance well in excess of its strategic importance. Shortly after Christmas, the city was abandoned by the Germans, and the Canadians settled in to a three month period of stalemate on the Arielli Front. During that time the headquarters of I Canadian Corps became operational, as the 5th Canadian (Armoured) Division arrived in theatre.

 

Battles of the FSSF

The First Special Service Force was a unique and highly trained special operations unit made up of Canadian and American soldiers. Service in the Aleutians Campaign had been uneventful, and the mission for which the unit had been created - commando raids on hydroelectric plants in Norway - was called off. They arrived in the Mediterranean in late 1943 and promptly put to work, clearing German defenders from a number of high features in November and December, first at Monte Camino, then Monte la Difensa-Monte la Remetanea, and finally Monte Majo. Redeployment to Anzio followed in January 1944, where the Force spent four months pinned down in the beachhead there, responsible for a stretch of front line out of proportion to their numbers. The Advance to the Tiber and Rome followed.

Battles of the FSSF

Monte Camino – Monte la Difensa-Monte la Remetanea –
Hill 720 – Monte Majo – Radicosa – Monte Vischiataro –  Anzio – Rome – Advance to the Tiber – Monte Arrestino – Rocca Massima – Colle Ferro

 

Cassino

As the Canadians waited out the winter on the Arielli Front in a series of patrols and small unit actions (including the first combat actions of the 5th Canadian (Armoured) Division), the fighting at Anzio had also quickly reached a stalemate. Intended to put the Allies in Rome, a timid expansion of the beachhead and a rapid German response stalled the attack for four months. The Allied command looked to Monte Cassino for a solution. Several armies had tried to take the heights at Cassino, including the Americans, the Free French, and the New Zealanders. The commander of the 15th Army Group, General Harold Alexander, opted to assault along a broad front with as many formations as possible. American, French, British and Polish formations lined up on a 35-kilometre wide line, and once they attacked, the Anzio force, too, would try once more to break out. Canadian tanks assisted in the initial attacks at Cassino beginning on 13-14 May 1944, while the Canadian Corps waited in reserve to play its part in the breakout down the Liri Valley.

Cassino

 Cassino II – Gustav Line – Sant' Angelo in Teodice – Pignataro

 

Liri Valley

The British and Indian XIII Corps failed to break the Hitler Line as planners of the Cassino battle had hoped, and I Canadian Corps was moved up in the middle of May to take on the task. The line was heavily wired and mined and studded with concrete emplacements and armoured gun turrets. Nonetheless, at the cost of 1,000 casualties, the Canadians breached the line in a day, inflicting almost as many casualties. Other offensive actions were equally successful; the Americans crossed the Garigliano and advanced along the coast; the French Expeditionary Corps also broke through German defences, and the forces at Anzio managed to breakout as the Poles were finalizing their capture of Monte Cassino. After the Hitler Line came the Melfa Crossing, garnering a Victoria Cross for Major John K. Mahoney of The Westminster Regiment (Motor). On 4 June 1944, Rome fell to the Allies. The battle marked the first divisional level operations of the war for the 5th Canadian (Armoured) Division.

Liri Valley

Liri Valley – Hitler Line – Aquino – Melfa Crossing –Ceprano – Torrice Crossroads

 

Advance to Florence

I Canadian Corps was taken out of the line to rest and reorganize, made changes in command, and, absorbing lessons from the costly battles of the spring, created a new infantry brigade in the 5th Armoured Division to change the balance of tanks and infantry. This new organization remained in effect until Canadian troops left the theatre in early 1945, and the brigade was disbanded before the 5th Division went into action again in North-West Europe. In the meantime, the 1st Canadian Armoured Brigade continued its service to British formations during the Advance to Florence, seeing action at the Trasimene Line, Sanfatucchio, Arezzo, and Cerrone.

Advance to Florence

 Advance to Florence – Trasimene Line – Sanfatucchio – Arezzo – Cerrone

 


Canadian Armour in the Advance to Florence (click to enlarge)
(adapted from map compiled by Historical Section, General Staff and originally published in Official History of the Canadian Army in the Second World War, Vol II

Gothic Line

The Canadian Corps returned to the line in August 1944 as the 8th Army was driving north of Florence to a new series of positions called the Gothic Line. (The First Special Service Force left the theatre to take part in the invasion of Southern France.) General Alexander proposed a joint attack by his two Armies on the Florence-Bologna axis, where the mountains were less rugged. His army commanders, General Oliver Leese of the 8th Army and General Mark Clark of the 5th Army, "want(ed) as little as possible to do with each other and (Leese) being particularly vehement in his opposition to a combined assault. As usual, Alexander was unwilling to assert himself; and he agreed that the Eighth Army's attack should be shifted to the Adriatic coast while the Fifth would make the thrust towards Bologna unassisted, starting a few days later."2

For the Canadians, the main German defensive line was 7 to 8 miles from their Start Line beyond a range of hills. The attack began on 25-26 August with a largely ineffective barrage, and an opening attack by the 1st Canadian Division so slow that the 5th (Armoured) Division, in reserve, was brought up within 48 hours. Both divisions plunged into the wire, minefields, concrete and steel fortifications. The Cape Breton Highlanders attacked Montecchio three times before The Perth Regiment captured the place with a flanking move. Point 204 fell on 31 August, a key position in the German line, once again the Perths were responsible for its capture, supported by The British Columbia Dragoons. The two divisions began to leapfrog past each other. On the left, the British struggled to keep up, and left high ground in enemy hands to their rear in their haste to do so.

On 5 September, resistance from the town of Coriano stopped the Canadians. Five days of failed assaults by the British, despite offers by the Canadian corps commander (Lieutenant General E.L.M. Burns) to take the place from the flank, followed. Finally the British and Canadians attacked together on 12-13 September 1944 and inflicted 1,200 casualties. The Canadians had lost 200 men killed and wounded.

 

Winter Lines

Action at the Rimini Line followed, where the Germans had used the time Coriano had gained them to strengthen defences on the San Fortunato Ridge. San Fortunato was taken on 19 and 20 September by the 1st Division, and at last the Canadians looked down upon the Lombard Plain.

For the Eighth Army commanders and staff, the Lombard Plain had long been seen as 'the Land of the Lost Content' - a great broad plain stretching to the horizon and beyond where armour could run riot, as it had in the Western Desert of blessed memory, driving the enemy before it like sheep to the slaughter. It was all a great self-inflicted delusion. The army went down into the Romagna, the southeast quadrant of the plain, and found it laced with rivers and canals, many of them channelled between steep embankments which inhibited tank movement as thoroughly as the southern hills and ridges had done, and made life inconceivably difficult for the decimated and embittered infantry.3

Here the Canadians fought from one water obstacle to the next, from the Marecchia to the Fiumicino to the Rubicon to the Pisciatello to the Savio Bridgehead where Private E.A. "Smokey" Smith earned a Victoria Cross for close action with German armour on 22 October 1944. The sequence of river crossings carried on through to Dec, and after the Savio came the Ronco, the Lamone and the Capture of Ravenna on 4 December. The Senio followed, where the Canadians tried several times to effect a crossing. Once again, winter stalemate set in. The Canadians wiped out to German bridgeheads on the Senio in Jan, and settled in to wait.

Throughout 1944, the Allied forces in Italy managed to pin down 40 divisions there and in the Balkans, about 20% of the total German military ground forces, preventing their use in the Soviet Union, in Normandy, Southern France, the Scheldt, and the Ardennes.

Winter Lines

Rimini Line – San Martino-San Lorenzo – San Fortunato – Casale – Sant' Angelo in Salute – Bulgaria Village – Cesena – Pisciatello – Savio Bridgehead – Monte La Pieve – Monte Spaduro – Monte San Bartolo – Capture of Ravenna – Naviglio Canal –  Fosso Vecchio – Fosso Munio – Conventello-Comacchio – Granarolo

 

Click to Enlarge

Return to First Canadian Army

The forces in Italy were relocated to North-West Europe in early 1945 in an administrative move known as Operation GOLDFLAKE.

There was no more serious fighting in Italy after I Canadian Corps sailed from Leghorn for southern France, en route to the Netherlands...Of the 92,757 Canadian soldiers who served in Italy, more than a quarter became casualties. Nearly 5,500 were killed and almost 20,000 wounded, with another 1,000 taken prisoner. During the whole campaign, Allied casualties totalled about 190,000 in the American Fifth Army and 123,000 in the Eighth Army (including the Canadians). Approximately 435,000 German soldiers were lost, including 214,000 officially recorded simply as "missing".4

Battle Honours

The following Canadian units were awarded the Battle Honour "Italy" for participation in these actions:

"ITALY, 1943-1945"

Image:1corpgif.gif I Canadian Corps

  • The Elgin Regiment

  • The Lorne Scots (Peel, Dufferin and Halton Regiment)

Image:1gif.gif 1st Canadian Division

  • 4th Reconnaissance Regiment (4th Princess Louise Dragoon Guards)

  • The Saskatoon Light Infantry (MG)

Image:1gif1bde.gif 1st Canadian Brigade

  • The Royal Canadian Regiment

  • The Hastings and Prince Edward Regiment

  • 48th Highlanders of Canada

Image:1gif2bde.gif 2nd Canadian Brigade

  • Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry

  • The Seaforth Highlanders of Canada

  • The Loyal Edmonton Regiment

Image:1gif3bde.gif 3rd Canadian Brigade

  • Royal 22e Regiment

  • The Carleton and York Regiment

  • The West Nova Scotia Regiment

Image:5gif.gif 11th Canadian Brigade

  • The Irish Regiment of Canada

Image:5gif.gif 12th Canadian Brigade

  • IV Princess Louise's Dragoon Guards

Image:1tankbde.gif 1st Canadian Armoured Brigade

  • 11th Canadian Armoured Regiment (The Ontario Regiment)

  • 12th Canadian Armoured Regiment (The Three Rivers Regiment)

  • 14th Canadian Armoured Regiment (The Calgary Regiment)

"ITALY, 1943-1944"

  • 1st Canadian Special Service Battalion (First Special Service Force)

"ITALY, 1944-1945"

Image:1corpgif.gif I Canadian Corps

  • 1st Armoured Car Regiment (Royal Canadian Dragoons)

Image:5gif.gif 5th Canadian (Armoured) Division

  • 3rd Armoured Reconnaissance Regiment (The Governor General's Horse Guards)

  • The Princess Louise Fusiliers

Image:5gif.gif 5th Canadian Armoured Brigade

  • 2nd Armoured Regiment (Lord Strathcona's Horse (Royal Canadians))

  • 5th Armoured Regiment (8th Princess Louise's (New Brunswick) Hussars)

  • 9th Armoured Regiment (The British Columbia Dragoons)

  • The Westminster Regiment (Motor)

Image:5gif.gif 11th Canadian Brigade

  • The Perth Regiment

  • The Cape Breton Highlanders

Image:5gif.gif 12th Canadian Brigade

  • The Lanark and Renfrew Scottish Regiment

Notes

  1. Marteinson, John. We Stand on Guard: An Illustrated History of the Canadian Army (Ovale Publications, Montreal, PQ, 1992) ISBN 2894290438 p.263
  2. Ibid, p.281
  3. Ibid, p.287
  4. Ibid, p.290

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