Operation Husky: The Canadian Invasion of Sicily, July 10–August 7, 1943
Added to the invasion force at the last minute, the Canadians sailed from Great Britain through U-boat infested waters to join more than two thousand ships off Sicily’s shores. Allied commanders feared disaster on the landing beaches, but July 10 went well and the troops were solidly aground by day’s end. From their beach, code-named Bark West, the Canadians marched inland on the extreme left flank of General Montgomery’s Eighth Army. As the Italian troops facing them crumbled, some soldiers thought the invasion would prove little more than a hard walk under a blazing Sicilian sun through the island’s rough interior.
But as the Canadians entered the increasingly mountainous country west of Mount Etna’s towering volcanic cone, elite German troops rushed to meet them and illusions of a swift victory were quickly dashed. Suddenly they faced a determined and skilful foe, even as the division led Eighth Army’s advance across the island. In a brutal battlefield christening, these Canadians learned how to not only survive but win in combat.
Meticulously researched from personal diaries, military records, and interviews with veterans, Operation Husky dramatically retells the story of a campaign in which the courage, skill, and sacrifice of some twenty thousand Canadians brought the nation its first World War II army victory.