Non-Fiction Books:

The Secret War in Italy

Sorry, this product is not currently available to order

Here are some other products you might consider...

The Secret War in Italy



Customer rating

Click to share your rating 0 ratings (0.0/5.0 average) Thanks for your vote!

Share this product

The Secret War in Italy by Will Fowler
Sorry, this product is not currently available to order


The war in Italy was characterised by a host of special forces actions. The fact that the Italians had formed two governments, one backing the Allies and one a puppet German government, meant that the secret war was vital to the Allies conventional forces and partisans, the SAS, SOE, the US OSS (precursor to the CIA) all played important roles. On the night of 20/21 April 1945 the last operational jump of World War 2 took place - Operation Herring. The airborne action was undertaken by No 1 Italian SAS, trained by British SOE (Special Operations Executive) forces who were dropped by the USAAF, in support of the 8th Army attack into the Po Valley. Operation Herring lasted over 72 hours instead of the 36 initially foreseen, but it turned out to be a success. With some help on the part of the local partisan groups, according to some sources 481 German soldiers were killed, 1,083 surrendered, 44 vehicles were destroyed and many captured including some tanks, armored cars and guns, 77 telephone lines severed, three bridges taken intact, and an ammunition storage site blown up. The price the Italians paid for the success was 31 dead (including a British paratroops sergeant) and 10-12 wounded. An Italian lieutenant and a private were posthumously awarded the Gold Medal for Valor. The action did presage the end of the Italian campaign and the war in Italy, but until now little has been written about this, and other secret operations, on the Italian front. It will be an essential reference for students of World War 2.

Author Biography

Will Fowler has written over 30 books on military technology and conflicts from the 19th century to the Second Gulf War. He has also broadcast on historical and defence related topics and recently appeared as an interviewee on the Discovery Channel in a series of programmes on military tactics. He was interviewed by the Daily Mirror in connection with the Hollywood film Blood Diamond, as his book Operation Barras: The SAS Rescue Mission in Sierra Leone (2000, Weidenfeld & Nicolson) contains chapters that cover the civil war in Sierra Leone that is the centre of the film. He also leads army battlefield tours, including of SAS operations in Italy.
Release date Australia
April 1st, 2010
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
Ian Allan Publishing
Product ID

Customer reviews

Nobody has reviewed this product yet. You could be the first!

Write a Review

Marketplace listings

There are no Marketplace listings available for this product currently.
Already own it? Create a free listing and pay just 9% commission when it sells!

Sell Yours Here

Help & options

  • If you think we've made a mistake or omitted details, please send us your feedback. Send Feedback
  • If you have a question or problem with this product, visit our Help section. Get Help
Filed under...