- Barbara Line
World War II, the Barbara Line was a series of German military fortifications in Italy, some ten to twenty miles south of the Gustav Line, and a similar distance north of the Volturno Line. Near the eastern coast, it ran along the line of the Trigno river. The line mostly consisted of fortified hilltop positions.
Western breakthrough (U.S. 5th Army front)
Albert Kesselring, commander of the German forces in Italy, ordered his forces to retreat to the Barbara Line on 12 October 1943after the 5th Army crossed the Volturno River, breaching the Volturno defensive line.
By the early November the Barbara Line on the
Tyrrhenian Seaside of the Apennine Mountainshad been breached by U.S. 5th Army, and the Germans fell back to the Bernhardt Line.
Eastern breakthrough (British 8th Army front)
On the Adriatic front
British 8th Armyhad broken the Viktor/Volturno Line defences on 6 October. However, they had had to pause at the Trignoto re-group and reorganise their logistics along the poor roads stretching back to Bariand Taranto120 and 170 miles respectively to the rear of the front.
It therefore was not until the early hours of
November 2that the V Corps on the right of the front on the coast and British XIII Corpson their left attacked across the Trigno river. On the V Corps front British 78th Infantry Division attacked along the coastal road whilst Indian 8th Infantry Division attacked some 10 miles inland. Fighting was fierce but on 3 November78th Division reached San Salvo, some three miles beyond the Trigno, at which point Major-General Rudolf Sieckenius, commanding German 16th Panzer Divisiondecided to make a fighting withdrawal to the Sangroriver and the formidable Gustav defensive positions overlooking the river from the ridge tops on the far side. The Allied advance reached the Sangro on 9 November. [Carver, p. 90]
*cite book | first=Col. Kenneth V.|last=Smith| url=http://www.army.mil/cmh/brochures/naples/72-17.htm |title=Naples-Foggia 9 September 1943-21 January 1944 | series=CMH Online bookshelves: World War II Campaigns |publisher=US Army Center of Military History|location=Washington| year=1990?| id=CMH Pub 72-17
Allied invasion of Italy
British Eighth Army
US Fifth Army
Battle of San Pietro Infine
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