On 3rd September the Allied after having invaded Sicily, were on the Italian mainland. The Italian were quite ready to make peace with the Allied and they were ready to re-enter the war this time on the Allied side. After having invaded the south of Italy on 9th September the Allied landed in Salerno and it was planned to sent the 5th Army in the direction of Rome. At the beginning the troops involved were Canadians, Americans, British and French, but during the long way to Rome, the Allied facied a very difficult defence in an area called Mignano Gap. Mark Clark The American General in charge of the 5th Army decided to divide the attach to the Winter Line in three actions. First on La Defensa massive, then on Monte Lungo hills and then at San Pietro Infine and Mount Sammucro. It seamed that the days of the battle could not finish and the men lost on the battlefields were so many. The troops were sent further more. They had to conquered San Vittore, Mount la Chiaia and then Colle Cedro, Porchio hill, and at the end, rerady to accack the Germans on Trocchio hill, they discovered that the Germans were already retreated. In front of the 5th Army there was the so called "Liri Valley", the town of Cassino and the Abbey of Monte Cassino, but even more important the Gustav Line. And the 4 Battles of Monte Cassino could start!
WWII history is helping us to understand the world!
The "Countdown to Cassino" tour (about 6 hours) includes:
1) pickup from your arrival at the railway station in Cassino everyday at 10.00am (Main Square, near the Green Kiosk)
2) about 6h30 guided tour of the American most meaningful sites of Cassino:
- San Pietro Infine and the Mignano Gap
- Mount La Chiaia, Porchio Hill, colle Cedro
- Trocchio hill
- Rapido River Crossing and the Peace Bell
- Sant'Angelo in Theodice and the 36th Division Monument
1 hour break for a light lunch with different kind of pizza slices (Price of lunch not included but calculate less than 10 euros each)
- The Commonwealth war cemetery
- Cassino town center
- Caste Hill
- The Panoramic point
- The Germans' caves
- The Abbey of Montecassino.
3) return to the railway station in Cassino at 05.30pm
Dr. Anna Maria Priora Ph.D
WW2 Monte Cassino Battlefield expert, researcher and tour guide