Flawed Commanders and Strategy in the Battles for Italy, 1943–45

Andrew Sangster, Pier Paolo Battistelli

The flawed leadership of the five senior military commanders in the Italian campaign led to lost lives and squandered opportunities.
Date Published :
March 2023
Publisher :
Illustration :
B&W illustrations
Format Available    QuantityPrice
Binding. : Hardback
ISBN : 9781636243122
Pages : 288
Dimensions : 9 X 6 inches
Stock Status : Not Yet Published. Available for Pre-Order


Wars never run according to plan, perhaps never more so than during the Italian campaign, 1943–45, where necessary coordination between the different armies added additional complexity to Allied plans. Errors in the strategies, tactics, the coalition tensions, and operations at campaign command level can clearly be seen in firsthand accounts of the period. This new account examines the Italian campaign, from Sicily to surrender in 1945, exploring the strategy, intentions, motives, plans, and deeds. It then offers a detailed insight into the five commanders who led the battles in Italy—the two British commanders, Montgomery and Alexander; two American, Patton and Clark; and the leading German commander, Field Marshal Kesselring.

Their personal notes and accounts, taken alongside archival material, provides some surprising conclusions—Montgomery was not quite the master of war he is portrayed as; Patton had serious flaws, exposed by wasting men’s lives to save a relative and overlooking the shooting of prisoners of war; Clark lost lives to bolster his image; Alexander the gentleman was far too vague to be effective as a senior leader. Meanwhile, condemned war criminal Kesselring appears to be the most efficient and also, like Alexander, one of the most popular leaders.

About The Author

Dr Andrew Sangster holds his doctorate in Modern European History as well as degrees in Law, Theology, History and English. He has written several biographies including Lord Alan Brooke, Beria, Franco, Göring, Goebbels, Himmler, a history of France 1936–46 and an account of the main European Secret Services before 1939.

Dr Pier Paolo Battistelli gained an MA degree in the University of Perugia, Italy, and was awarded a Ph.D. degree at the University of Padua, Italy, with a thesis on the German–Italian military partnership during WWII. Dr. Battistelli is active as a translator, a military history consultant, and author, publishing a number of books on different subjects of history related to WWII.



Western Allied Strategy
German-Italian Strategy
Operation Husky and Sicily
Italy Invaded
To Rome
Mark Clark
The D-Day Dodgers After Rome
The End of the War In Italy


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