Allied Spearheads 18 Mi. From Leghorn; Enemy’s Resistance Collapses

From the July 1, 1944 Edition of Stars and Stripes

With the Allies driving forward on an 80-mile front and Fifth Army spearheads only 18 miles from Leghorn and seven from Siena, the Germans yesterday were reported in disorderly retreat to the north.

Speaking of a general advance in Italy from Lake Trasimeno west to the coast, the usually-reserved Allied communique indicated that the enemy’s determined delaying resistance had ended. Front-line dispatches called Kesselring’s retreat a disorganized, headlong flight.

Even in the mountainous sector due west of Lake Trasimeno, where the Nazis for days stubbornly defended well-fortified strongpoints, the Eighth Army broke through to take Castiglione del Lago and a number of other villages.

On the west coast, there apparently was nothing to stem the Fifth Army’s simultaneous thrusts toward Leghorn and Siena. Hot on the heels of the routed German forces, Lt. Gen. Mark W. Clark’s army rolled forward to within a mile of Cecina, only 18 miles southeast of Leghorn, as French troops overran two German-occupied towns and stabbed straight toward the inland communications city of Siena, less than seven miles distant.

Algiers radio said that German units had lost all contact with each other.

Coinciding with the Allied offensive, Gen. Sir Harold Alexander, Mediterranean commander-in-chief, appealed to the citizens of Siena to attack the Germans from the rear “while we attack him from the front and from the air.”

10th mountain division po valley leghorn

Men of the 10th Mountain Division fight at Riva Ridge during the Po Valley Campaign.

For Further Reading Check Out:

From Texas to Rome with General Fred L. Walker: Fighting World War II and the Italian Campaign with the 36th Infantry Division, as seen through the Eyes of its Commanding General

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