The 7th Armoured Division had been ordered to spare their tanks, so their attacks were called off after the bloody fighting during the night of October 24: 31 Allied tanks were destroyed or damaged during that night alone. After the end of the Cold War the Italian Army decided to rename the battalions in the brigade as regiments for historical reasons. HMSO 1966], The Mediterranean and Middle East, Volume IV: The Destruction of the Axis Forces in Africa. During the Second battle of El Alamein the Folgore Division was under attack from three British divisions 44th (Home Counties) Infantry Division, 50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division, 7th Armoured Division, and the 1st Free French Brigade. The division was formed on 1 September 1941 in Tarquinia, as the 1ª Divisione Paracadutisti. The attack began at 0300 hours on 26 July, but soon got bogged down, and any gains were taken back by counterattacks. Additionally the following soldiers of the division were awarded a Gold Medal of Military Valor during the Western Desert Campaign: On 25 September 1944 the Italian Co-Belligerent Army raised the Combat Group "Folgore" with soldiers and materiel from the disbanded 184th Paratroopers Division "Nembo". The 185th Artillery, 186th Paratroopers and 187th Paratroopers regiments received a second Gold Medal for specific actions during the Second Battle of El Alamein. The reasons behind this limited victory of sorts are two: mines and "guts". The main Allied effort during the battle was in the northern part of the Axis line. In North Africa the division participated in the Battles of El Alamein, where the division was the protagonist of a strong resistance against the attacking Commonwealth forces, managing also to drive off some attacks conducted by tanks and heavy infantry. During the latter division put up a fierce defense against attacking Commonwealth forces, managing to drive repeated attacks conducted by tanks and infantry. For tits conduct during the Second Battle of El Alamein the divisions as whole was awarded a Gold Medal of Military Valor. In the following days between 25 October and 4 November, the 50th, 7th, 44th divisions, 1st and 2nd Free French and the Royal Hellenic Brigades, supported by artillery and armour, failed to break through in the southern sector. The so-called “six-days run” or battle of Alam Halfa saw the first employment of Folgore which was employed directly aside with panzers of DAK (remember that division was not motorized and advanced by feet….) The few survivors, who managed to withdraw, were reorganized into the 285 Folgore Parachute Battalion and fought in Tunisia, they surrendered to the British in 1943, but without having to show a white flag and without having to raise their hands while surrendering. Initially created to emulate the German Fallschirmjäger in order to carry out the planned airborne attack against the British base of Malta, Folgore Airborne Division … 1 National (i.e. [8] On 15 March 1942 the 3rd Paratroopers Infantry Regiment with the battalions VIII, IX, and X was raised in Tarquinia.[6]. [3] School personnel was drawn from the Air force, while personnel to instruct consisted of Royal Italian Army officers and sub-officers. Initially the division was made up of the following units: Each Parachute Infantry Battalion fielded one Headquarters and three Parachute Infantry Companies. The British attack began with an artillery barrage, followed by … [6], In North Africa the division participated in the First and Second Battle of El Alamein. Additionally a seventh battery was formed with surplus materiel found by the division during its transfer to the front. Initially created to emulate the German Fallschirmjäger in order to carry out the planned airborne attack against the British base of Malta, Folgore Airborne Division fought on the battlefields of North Africa - including the key Battle of El Alamein. Therefore, the battalions in the Folgore Parachute Brigade were given the names of the regiments of the former 185th Airborne Division Folgore. [6], In 1942 the division was further augmented: on 15 January the II Paratroopers Artillery Group was raised, followed by the III Paratroopers Artillery Group on 10 March. La brigade parachutiste Folgore (en italien : Brigata paracadutisti "Folgore") est une unité de parachutistes de l'Armée de terre italienne. The division was sent to Africa and fought in the Battle of El Alamein with the following structure:[16]. Actually, it was officially renamed 185th Infantry Division "Cacciatori d'Africa", and not without reason (apart from counterintelligence), since the well-trained, highly motivated … It had been formed for the invasion of Malta, which never took place; so it was sent to Africa. The North African campaign was one of the hardest fought episodes of the Second World War, yet the vital part played by the Italian Army - and in particular, its Folgore Parachute Division on behalf of the Axis Alliance - is frequently overlooked. During the Second battle of El Alamein the Folgore Division was under attack from three British divisions 44th (Home Counties) Infantry Division, 50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division, 7th Armoured Division, and the 1st Free French Brigade. Each Parachute Artillery Group fielded one Headquarters and two Parachute Artillery Batteries armed with 47/32 M35 cannons. Initially created to emulate the German Fallschirmjäger in order to carry out the planned airborne attack against the British base of Malta, Folgore Airborne Division fought on the battlefields of North Africa - including the key Battle of El Alamein. Additionally the following soldiers of the division were awarded a Gold Medal of Military Valor during the Western Desert Campaign: On 25 September 1944 the Italian Co-Belligerent Army raised the Folgore Combat Group with soldiers and materiel from the disbanded 184th Airborne Division Nembo. On November 3rd the Folgore received the order to retreat 25 km to the West, and so began a slow, hard fighting march for the Italian paratroopers. Notwithstanding the heavy casualties they suffered, and temporary British successes in occupying several positions in the first outpost line, they held their ground. [4] The new structure was as follows: The division was then sent to Italian Libya to bolster Axis forces in the Western Desert campaign. The second Battle of El Alamein: 7th Armoured Division, 44th Infantry Division, 50th Infantry Division and Free French Brigade attack Folgore from three directions: 10:30pm- October 25, 1942 until 3am- October 26, 1942. Second Battle of El Alamein Order of Battle is a listing of the significant formations that were involved in the battle, 23 October – 3 November 1942. During the Second battle of El Alamein the Folgore Division came under attack from three Allied divisions 44th (Home Counties) Infantry Division, 50th (Northumbrian) Infantry Division, 7th Armoured Division, and the 1st Free French Brigade. After the war the combat group became the Mechanized Division "Folgore", which was disbanded on 31 October 1986. [12] On 6 November, after having exhausted all its ammunition, the remainder of the Division surrendered. No less an adversary than Winston Churchill himself praised the Folgore when, before Parliament on November 21, 1942, he said, “We really must bow in front of the rest of those who have been the “lions” of the Folgore Division.” • Illustrated with rare archival photographs, detailed maps and specially commissioned artwork giving a fascinating insight into a little-studied aspect of Axis forces• By drawing from archival sources from both sides, it gives a more complete and balance There, the outnumbered paratroops, after hours of artillery fire, counterattacked the infantry and close assaulted the tanks, with grenades and molotov cocktails. Placed under the XX Corps, Folgore division, with Brescia and Pavia divisions, was ordered to advance in the center of the offensive, as the left flank of the armoured units of the Italian-German Tank Army who were though to break through the southern defence of the British Army, in the same manner as they did during the Gazala battle. [citation needed], At the end of the battle of El Alamein, Harry Zinder of Time magazine noted that the Italians paratroopers fought better than had been expected, and commented that: In the south, the famed Folgore parachute division fought to the last round of ammunition[5]. They also used their 47mm Anti-tank guns from enfilade positions and Molotov cocktails to knock out the advancing tanks. Others began the long walk back, and many died from their wounds, hunger, or thirst or were picked off by Senussi tribesmen for their … The division was intended to be used in Operation Hercules - the planned Axis invasion of Malta. [6] The division was intended to be used in Operation Hercules – the planned Axis invasion of Malta. After the war the combat group became the Folgore Mechanized Division, which was disbanded on 31 October 1986. The infantrymen of the Pavia and Brescia Divisions quickly joined them. [4] The division initially was organized as follows: For reasons of order of precedence the title I Paratroopers Battalion was reserved for the I Carabinieri Paratroopers Battalion. Italian) Paratroopers Battalion: 300 troops, 4 Companies. This elite unit distinguished itself at El Alamein despite inadequate equipment and weapons while facing unfavorable odds. Before the departing for North Africa the 185th Infantry Regiment "Folgore" and 187th Infantry Regiment "Folgore" switched units: the 185th ceded the more experienced II and IV to 187th, which in turn ceded the VIII and X to the 185th. But the British had effective mine-clearing task forces, flail tanks (the Scorpions) and Valentine tanks, and heavy artillery barrages to move behind. To aid in the raising of the 183rd Infantry Regiment "Nembo" the 185th ceded its X Paratroopers Battalion to the 183rd and raised the XI Paratroopers Battalion in its stead. Noté /5. History of the Second World War; United Kingdom Military Series. [1][2], Gold Medal for Military Honor given to the "Folgore" Division [1]. Parachutist Division Nembo in September 1942. [10][11] Operation Lightfoot, launched on 24 October 1942, was designed to break through the weak Italian-held southern sector of the Alamein line where the Bologna, Brescia, Pavia and Folgore Divisions anchored the right flank. This elite unit distinguished itself at El Alamein despite inadequate equipment and weapons while facing unfavorable odds. 185th Airborne Division Folgore or 185ª Divisione Paracadutisti Folgore was a Parachute Division of the Italian Army (in Italian Regio Esercito) during World War II. On November 2nd Montgomery ordered the start of "Supercharge" that would concentrate on the Southern Sector. In spite of the overwhelming numbers, the British made little headway against them, and in the end, the Folgore was ordered to fall back because the enemy obtained a breakthrough elsewhere. On 1 January 1963 the Italian Army raised the Folgore Parachute Brigade in Pisa. Read The Italian Folgore Parachute Division: Operations in North Africa 1940-43 book reviews & author details and more at Amazon.in. However, the four divisions attacking the Folgore positions in the south had also been given breakthrough objectives. Main article: Folgore Mechanized Division On 25 September 1944 the Italian Co-Belligerent Army raised the Folgore Combat Group with soldiers and materiel from the disbanded 184th Airborne Division Nembo. Major General I T P Hughes, commander of the British 44th Infantry Division remarked of the fighting at el Alamein, "I wish to say that in all my life I have never encountered soldiers like those of the Folgore." After the war the combat group became the Folgore Mechanized Division, which was disbanded on 31 October 1986. The attack was cancelled at 1000 hours, ending the first battle … [2], At the beginning of the Italian participation in World War Two there were:[2], On 15 January 1941 both Libyan Paratroopers School and Libyan Paratroopers Battalion were assigned to the defence of El Fteiah airport (near Derna) with 850 troops (418 Italians and 432 Libyans). After the cancellation of the invasion of Malta the division was sent to the North African theater. The Folgore used everything at their disposal including letting the enemy advance into a "cul-de-sac" and then launching a counterattack from all sides. pub. Regiment was used to form 184. However in the course of the battle the division was annihilated and declared lost on 23 November 1942. Sgt. Retrouvez The Italian Folgore Parachute Division: North African Operations 1940-43 et des millions de livres en stock sur Amazon.fr. In this battle, paras had an important role in rejected British counter attacks in Himeimat sector. [1], By 1939 there were two Libyan Paratroopers Battalions. They forced the attackers to move slowly and to stick to the bottlenecks of the cleared pathways, often under observed artillery fire. G.Lunardi, P.Compagni "I paracadutisti Italiani 1937/45", Editrice Militare Italiana, Milano 1989, pag.41, Articles with unsourced statements from November 2014, Articles incorporating text from Wikipedia, "American Historian Praises The Role Of The Folgore In North Africa", Harry Zinder's nov 16, 1942 report for TIME MAGAZINE, 2nd Cavalry Division Emanuele Filiberto Testa di Ferro, 21st Infantry Division Granatieri di Sardegna, 22nd Infantry Division Cacciatori delle Alpi, 40th Infantry Division Cacciatori d'Africa, 65th Infantry Division Granatieri di Savoia, 80th Infantry Division La Spezia (Airlanding), https://military.wikia.org/wiki/185th_Airborne_Division_Folgore?oldid=4690417, Division headquarters and headquarters company, 1st Parachute Infantry Regiment (later renamed 185th Parachute Infantry Regiment), 2nd Parachute Infantry Regiment (later renamed 186th Parachute Infantry Regiment), 2nd Regimental Cannon Company (with 47/32 M35 antitank guns), 3rd Parachute Infantry Regiment joined the division on 3 March 1942 (later renamed 187th Parachute Infantry Regiment), 3rd Regimental Cannon Company (with 47/32 M35 cannons), Parachute Artillery Regiment (later renamed 185th Parachute Artillery Regiment), I Parachute Artillery Group (with 47/32 M35 cannons), II Parachute Artillery Group (with 47/32 M35 cannons), III Parachute Artillery Group (with 47/32 M35 cannons), Division Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Regimental Cannon Company (with 47/32 M35 cannons), II Parachute Infantry Battalion (from 185th Parachute Infantry Regiment), IV Parachute Infantry Battalion (from 185th Parachute Infantry Regiment), I Parachute Artillery Group (with two batteries of 47/32 M35 cannons), II Parachute Artillery Group (with two batteries of 47/32 M35 cannons), III Parachute Artillery Group (with two batteries of 47/32 M35 cannons), 20th Mortar Company (81mm Model 35 mortars), 185th Mining and Explosives Engineers Company, Corporal Major Antonio ANDRIOLO, 186th Parachute Regiment, October 23 – November 4, 1942, First Lieutenant Roberto BANDINI, 186th Parachute Regiment, October 23–25, 1942, First Lieutenant Ferruccio BRANDI, 187th Parachute Regiment, October 24, 1942, Second Lieutenant Pietro BRUNO 132d Transport Regiment, Private Giuseppe CAPPELLETTO, 186th Parachute Regiment, October 23–25, 1942, Private Giacomo CESARONI, 187th Parachute Regiment, October 29, 1942, Private Leandro FRANCHI, 186th Parachute Regiment, November 1942, Second Lieutenant Giovanni GAMBAUDO, 186th Parachute Regiment, October 23–24, 1942, First Lieutenant Marco GOLA, 186th Parachute Regiment, October 23–24, 1942, Private Gerardo LUSTRISSIMI, 186th Parachute Regiment, October 23–25, 1942, Sergeant Major Dario PIRLONE, 185th Artillery Regiment, October 24, 1942, Sergeant Nicola PISTILLO, 186th Parachute Regiment, October 23–25, 1942, Corporal Major Dario PONZECCHI, 185th Parachute Regiment, October 26, 1942, Captain Costantino RUSPOLI, Prince of Poggio Suasa, 187th Parachute Regiment, October 26–27, 1942, Captain Gastone SIMONI, 187th Parachute Regiment, October 23–27, 1942, Sergeant Major Mario GIARETTO, 186th Parachute Regiment, August 8, 1942, Second Lieutenant Omero LUCCHI, Folgore Division Artillery, August 31 – September 4, 1942, Sapper Clinio MISSERVILLE, 185th Assault Sapper Company, September 10, 1942, Major Aurelio ROSSI, 187th Parachute Regiment, August 20 – September 3, 1942, Captain Fabio RUGIADI, 187th Parachute Regiment, August 30, 1942, Lieutenant Colonel Carlo Marescotti RUSPOLI, Prince of Poggio Suasa, 186th Parachute Regiment, First Lieutenant Giovanni STARACE, Folgore Division, July - November, 1942, Second Lieutenant Giovanni STASSI, 186th Parachute Regiment, August 25 – September 2, 1942. 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