By I. Williams
Utilizing unique records, the Allied profession of southern Italy, rather Sicily and Naples, is illustrated via studying crime and unrest by way of Allied infantrymen, deserters, rogue troops and Italian civilians from drunkenness, robbery, rape, and homicide to riots, demonstrations, black marketeering and prostitution.
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Extra info for Allies and Italians under Occupation: Sicily and Southern Italy 1943–45
Although there had been four British ‘politico-military courses’ on topics such as the political and economic history of European countries, organized by Cambridge University for groups of officers from January 1940, these had ceased in December 1941. 24 The Americans were slightly ahead of the game. Not only had they published a field manual on military government in 1940, but about a month after Pearl Harbour and America’s subsequent entry into the war in December 1941, the PMG was authorized to set up a School of Military Government (SMG).
There were 12 hours of lectures on subjects roughly corresponding to the various civil affairs divisions of public health, public safety, finance law, supply and so on, and the relevant officers were also familiarized with the workings of the US and British armies. 40 Others had different views on Tizi Ouzu. 41 As well as a training camp, it was also a holding camp where officers could, and did, moulder for several months before actually being sent to Italy. The problem was that while the officers had been trained and assigned assuming a rapid advance up the Italian peninsula, the military campaign did not achieve the rapid advance.
74 As the Military Police and Field Security Police of the Army, they were organized and administered centrally by the Ministry of War, but under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of the Interior they acted as a civilian police force especially responsible for public order. 75 This was the primary reason that they were chosen to be the Italian police force that would support the Allies in their occupation duties. 78 Allied training documents somewhat idealistically described them thus: They are a picked body of men with fine traditions, and command great respect in Italy, although expansion to meet war conditions has necessarily lowered the standard to some extent.