The White War

The White War

Life and Death on the Italian Front, 1915-1919

Book - 2010
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"In May 1915, Italy declared war on the Habsburg Empire, hoping to seize its "lost" territories of Trieste and Tyrol. The result was one of the most hopeless and senseless wars of modern times. Nearly 700,000 Italians and perhaps half as many Austro-Hungarian troops were killed, with most of the deaths occurring on the bare, stony hills north of Trieste, and in the snows of the Dolomites. Outsiders who witnessed these battles were awestruck by the incredible difficulty of attacking on such terrain. To maintain discipline in the face of desperation and low morale, the Italian chief of general staff restored the Roman practice of decimation, executing random members of units that retreated or rebelled. Italy was plunged into chaos and, eventually, fascism. Some would say it has never recovered from the havoc of World War I." "Mark Thompson relates the saga of the Italian front. Not merely a history of the cruelty and destruction of battle, The White War tells the story of the nationalist frenzy that preceded the conflict, the poetry it inspired, the haunting landscapes and political intrigues, and the outsize personalities of the statesmen, generals, and writers who were drawn into the heart of the chaos."--BOOK JACKET.
Publisher: New York, NY : Basic Books, 2010
Edition: 1st paperback ed
ISBN: 9780465020379
Branch Call Number: 940.3 Thompson 2010
Characteristics: x, 454 p., [16] p. of plates : ill., maps ; 24 cm


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Dec 09, 2011

A fantastically written account of the Italian-Austrian front of WWI. This is a combat area that is rarely discussed, and is still part of Italy's fraudulant self-history of grandeur that fed and defends later fascism.

Both sides are discussed, and in a mostly balanced way. I really ejoyed reaing this history. Worthwhile for anyone interested in WWI, Italian history, Austria-Hungarian Empire, or the beginning of the Baltic States.

May 17, 2010

A detailed, facinating account of this front which was unpublished until 2005. Unfortunately the map references included are poor and do little to aid the reader in following many events.


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