The Winter Line, a WW II MTO Tactical Battle
Before AVALANCHE the Combined Chief’s had concluded that the Germans would and could only make an effective defensive stand in Italy on or north of the Pisa-Rimini line, and in the face of successful Allied landings would carry out the fighting withdrawal from the south. The German reaction was quite to the contrary, and any illusions on the part of the Allies that the advance on Rome, some 120 miles distant, would be anything other than slow and painful, was soon swept away.
The Winterstellungen, (winter positions) or the Winter Line, as it came to be known to the Allied soldiers, was in fact three separate defensive belts that girdled the Italian waist. The first was the Barbara Line, then the Bernhard Line and finial the Gustav Line. The fighting took place in desolate mountains creased by narrow valleys and deep gorges, on brush-covered heights and bald slopes; along unpaved roads, mule tracks, and mountain ledges. Late autumn weather added fog, rain, and mud to the difficulties of terrain, and snow would soon bring more hazard and discomfort.
Winter fighting, under the conditions imposed by the mountainous terrain, had taxed the worn Fifth Army units to their limit. Non-battle casualties showed an increase, further reducing the combat strength of front-line units; fresh reserves were lacking to follow up initial successes. Supply and evacuation became more and more of a problem, and increasing efforts were needed in the struggle with snow and mud in the mountains, mud and rain in the valleys.
This series of tactical battles to be held each October at Camp Siman Events will be based on the various operations against the Winter Line.
This event is themed for the Itialian Theatre but all WW II impressions are welcome. All WW II Military vehicles are welcome.
Camping from Friday - Sunday.
$15 at the gate.