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Moro River Campaign order of battle is a listing of the significant formations that were involved in the fighting during the Moro River Campaign in December, 1943, part of the Italian Campaign of World War II. [41] At 08:30, C Company began their assault toward the manor house in Casa Berardi, some 2,000 yd (1,800 m) away. The Moro River Campaign was a military campaign during the Second World War fought between units of the British 8th Army and the LXXVI Panzer Corps (LXXVI Panzerkorps) of the German Tenth Army (10. [63], After the 5th Infantry Division had achieved its objectives, the New Zealand 5th Infantry Brigade attacked at 04:00 on 24 December. Two companies had advanced against strong and well prepared German defences of the 200th Panzergrenadier Regiment. [50] By that afternoon, 5th Brigade was well established on the Orsogna to Ortona lateral road and had driven a shallow salient into the German forward defensive line. One correspondent described the scene "as though a giant had trodden on a child's box of blocks". Delayed by logistical problems, they were not able to attack the next line of defences (the Barbara Line) behind the Trigno river until 2 November. [25][26] However, the single rifle company making the attack achieved little territorial gain and Lieutenant-Colonel Kennedy—commander of the Hastings & Prince Edward Regiment—ordered a withdrawal at 15:40. [67], Throughout the remainder of the week, the Battle of Ortona degenerated into a small-scale version of the Battle of Stalingrad, with vicious house-to-house fighting through the narrow streets and debris of Ortona. [65], Throughout the week of 11–18 December, the 1st parachute battalion from the German 1st Parachute Division—with supporting units—had prepared strong defences within the Italian coastal town of Ortona. [47], On 20 December 1943, the under-strength Loyal Edmonton Regiment moved toward Ortona, with the Seaforth Highlanders covering their eastern flank. The attack was quickly abandoned. Soldiers of the 1st Canadian Division, engaged in brutal house-to-house fighting in Ortona, Italy in 1943 during the Second World War. As spring approached in 1944, Alexander concentrated his forces in great secrecy by thinning out the Adriatic front and bringing the bulk of 8th Army's striking power to the Cassino front. [46] For his efforts to capture Casa Berardi, Triquet was awarded the Victoria Cross. Contents. Under intense artillery and anti-tank fire, the tanks and infantry became separated and the tanks became a target rather than a threat. [66] Major streets were mined, with demolition charges throughout the main piazza, and booby traps littered the town. While Canadian crossed the Moro River, the New Zealand Division launched a two brigade attack, Operation Torso, against Orsogna at 14:30 on 7 December. In the afternoon, the British 5th Infantry Division attacked on the right wing of the Corps front toward the Arielli stream. [28] At 16:00, the Saskatoon Light Infantry support battalion joined in, hitting German positions with bursts of machine gun fire. Italy articles missing geocoordinate data, Articles incorporating text from Wikipedia, World War II operations and battles of the Italian Campaign, Battles and operations of World War II involving India, Battles and operations of World War II involving New Zealand, Battles of World War II involving the United Kingdom, Battles of World War II involving Germany, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, British 2nd Independent Parachute Brigade, http://www.legionmagazine.com/en/index.php/2006/11/overcoming-the-moro/, http://www.legionmagazine.com/en/index.php/2007/01/clearing-the-gully/, http://www.legionmagazine.com/en/index.php/2007/03/into-ortona/, http://www.legionmagazine.com/en/index.php/2007/05/winning-the-streets-of-ortona/, http://www.dnd.ca/dhh/collections/books/engraph/details_e.asp?BfBookLang=1&BfId=25&cat=6, http://www.nzetc.org/tm/scholarly/tei-WH2-1Ita.html, https://military.wikia.org/wiki/Moro_River_Campaign?oldid=4201654. Assault on The Gully . [38], With both the Canadian and New Zealand Divisions finding progress difficult, it was decided to bring the Indian 21st Infantry Brigade into the attack with orders to seize Caldari. [41], On 20 December, Canadian forces tried again and The Royal Canadian Regiment attacked Cider Crossroads at noon. By the end of 16 December, further attacks from the 15th Punjab Regiments 3rd Battalion had secured positions on the lateral road, ensuring that the 8th Indian Division was firmly embedded in the main German defences. Armee). [24] As a result, Forin was ordered to prepare for a withdrawal from the San Leonardo bridgehead. Armee).Lasting from 4–26 December 1943, the campaign occurred primarily in the vicinity of the Moro River in eastern Italy. [18], By mid-morning, German counterattacks on PPCLI positions in the town had begun, involving tanks from the 7th Company of the 26th Panzer Regiment (26. von Vietinghof went to Germany on sick leave in late November and Lemelsen commanded the Tenth Army during the major actions on the Bernhardt Line in December. [62] Montgomery—realising his Army no longer had the strength or conditions to force its way to Pescara and the Via Valeria to Rome—recommended to Alexander that the 8th Army offensive should be halted. The 1st Battalion Royal Fusiliers stormed the village in a wild night's fighting while the 1st Battalion 5th Gurkha Rifles seized Point 198 nearby, holding it against determined counterattacks, including from tanks in the afternoon of 14 December. Having conducted reconnaissance on their objective during the night of 5 December 1943,[12] an attack plan was devised by the battalion's commander—Lieutenant-Colonel Cameron Bethel Ware—detailing the objectives of all four rifle companies. [29] Eventually, however, both companies managed to establish strong positions on the western ridge overlooking San Leonardo. [41], At 07:30 on 15 December, two companies of the Carleton and York Regiment attacked. Canadian forces served in the heat, snow and mud of the grinding, nearly two-year Allied battle across Sicily and up the Italian peninsula—prying the country from Germany's grip, at a cost of more than 26,000 Canadian casualties. The Moro River Campaign was a campaign fought by the British Eighth Army across the Moro River in eastern Italy in December 1943 against divisions of the German Tenth Army 's LXXVI Panzer Corps. [27], As the 48th Highlanders secured their positions west of San Leonardo, the Royal Canadian Regiment was involved in intense fighting southwest of San Donato. While the 48th Highlanders of Canada and Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry resumed the assault on San Leonardo from the southwest side of the town, the Royal Canadian Regiment (RCR) would break out of the bridgehead created by the Hastings and Prince Edward Regiment, then move southwest towards San Leonardo to link up with the 48th and PPCLI. However, only 14 men of C Company remained fit to continue fighting. That evening, 1st Battalion 12th Frontier Force Regiment attacked on the left of the Gurkhas and established positions on the lateral road between Ortona and Orsogna running parallel to the Moro some 1,000 yd (910 m) north of the "Impossible Bridge". This time, Vokes was determined that the operation would be successful, with armoured forces of the Three Rivers Regiment moving to the start lines well before 07:00. [63] Despite intensive artillery support (272 guns on a 3,500 yd (3,200 m) front), the tired and understrength New Zealand battalions struggled to make progress. In late 1943, Allied armies under General Harold Alexander were fighting their way northward in Italy against determined German opposition commanded by Field Marshal (Generalfeldmarschall) Albert Kesselring, whose forces had prepared a succession of defensive lines. Armee).Lasting from 4–26 December 1943, the campaign occurred primarily in the vicinity of the Moro River in eastern Italy. Panzerdivision) under Brigadier General Smilo Freiherr von Lüttwitz with their right flank on Orsogna. [26], While Canadian crossed the Moro River, the New Zealand Division launched a two brigade attack, Operation Torso, against Orsogna at 14:30 on 7 December. Further inland, facing XIII Corps, was the 65th Infantry Division (65. Beginning on 4 December, four infantry divisions—one British, one Canadian, one Indian and one New Zealand (which included an armoured brigade)—and two armoured brigades (one British and one Canadian) of the British V and XIII Corps attacked heavily defended German positions along the Moro River, achieving several exploitable bridgeheads by 8 December. Furthermore, the New Zealand Division was, for the time being, fought out and needed a period of consolidation and reorganisation. While the PPCLI had taken 68 casualties, German casualties were estimated at 120. [43] The assault started poorly, when Canadian artillery plans were captured by soldiers of the 90th Panzergrenadier Division's 200th Regiment. [69] German counterattacks on 24 and 26 December caused significant casualties to Canadian forces in the town. an important battle of the Italian Campaign during the Second World War, fought between elements of the British Eighth Army and LXXVI Panzer Corps (LXXVI Panzerkorps) of the German 10th Army (10. [9], On 6 December 1943, Canadian forces began a series of large-scale assaults on major crossing points along the Moro River with the objective of securing a large bridgehead along the defensive line. When the 48th Highlanders reached the Cider Crossroads, the Royal Canadian Regiment would move north, overrunning Cider itself, then advance up the Ortona-Orsogna road. [14], At 00:00 on 5 December, two companies of the PPCLI crossed the Moro River, moving towards Villa Rogatti. With no river crossing available, the Indian engineers rushed to build a bridge across the Moro which was completed on 9 December and allowed infantry and supporting armour to cross and expand the bridgehead on the far bank. On 6 December, Canadians assaulted the Moro River defences. Montgomery hoped to punch through the Winter Line, capture Ortona and Pescara and advance to Rome. The campaign was designed as part of an offensive … After being held at the Gully for 10 days, the 1st Canadian Infantry Division succeeded in outflanking German defences, and forcing a withdrawal to the Ortona–Orsogna Line. [56], On 18 December, Vokes planned what would be the largest assault on The Gully during the campaign. Alexander agreed but ordered him to maintain aggressive patrolling in order to pin the units of the LXXVI Panzer Corps in the Adriatic sector and prevent Kesselring moving them to reinforce the XIV Panzer Corps front opposite U.S. 5th Army where the Allied offense would continue. 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