On the Eighth Army front, British XIII Corps had made two strongly opposed crossings of the Garigliano (by British 4th Infantry Division and 8th Indian Division). General Juin was convinced that Cassino could be bypassed and the German defences unhinged by this northerly route but his request for reserves to maintain the momentum of his advance was refused and the one available reserve regiment (from 36th Division) was sent to reinforce 34th Division. 2 Central Italy [8] The capture of Monte Cassino resulted in 55,000 Allied casualties, with German losses being far fewer, estimated at around 20,000 killed and wounded.[4]. D'Oro, Ausonia and Esperia were seized in one of the most brilliant and daring advances of the war in Italy... For this performance, which was to be a key to the success of the entire drive on Rome, I shall always be a grateful admirer of General Juin and his magnificent FEC. [30], On 11 February 1944, the acting commander of 4th Indian Division, Brigadier Dimoline, requested a bombing raid. Pope Pius XII was silent after the bombing; however, his Cardinal Secretary of State, Luigi Maglione, bluntly stated to the senior U.S. diplomat to the Vatican, Harold Tittmann, that the bombing was "a colossal blunder … a piece of a gross stupidity". Alexander's strategy in Italy was to "force the enemy to commit the maximum number of divisions in Italy at the time the cross-channel invasion [of Normandy] is launched". However, it is more likely that he just had too much to do, being responsible for both the Cassino and Anzio offensives. In addition, subsidiary battle honours were given to some units which participated in specific engagements during the first part. February 2019 Monte Cassino (today usually spelled Montecassino) is a rocky hill about 130 kilometres (81 mi) southeast of Rome, in the Latin Valley, Italy, 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) to the west of the town of Cassino and 520 m (1,706.04 ft) altitude. Despite their fierce fighting, the 34th Division never managed to take the final redoubts on Hill 593 (known to the Germans as Calvary Mount), held by the 3rd Battalion of the 2nd Parachute Regiment, part of the 1st Parachute Division, the dominating point of the ridge to the monastery. However, a surprise and fiercely pressed counter-attack from the monastery on Castle Hill by the German 1st Parachute Division completely disrupted any possibility of an assault on the monastery from the Castle and Hangman's Hill whilst the tanks, lacking infantry support, were all knocked out by mid-afternoon. ... such was the order that turned the main effort of the beachhead forces from the Valmontone Gap and prevented destruction of Tenth Army. Behind the monastery, the ground rose even more steeply to form what the military historian John Ellis has called 'a vile tactical puzzle'. Artillery could not be used in direct support targeting point 593 because of the proximity and risk of shelling friendly troops. On the western front, the American Fifth Army, commanded by Lieutenant General Mark W. Clark, which had suffered very heavy casualties during the main landing at Salerno (codenamed Operation Avalanche) in September, moved from the main base of Naples up the Italian "boot" and on the eastern front the British Eighth Army, commanded by General Sir Bernard Montgomery, advanced up the Adriatic coast. The first assault was made on 17 January. [35] Many Allied soldiers and war correspondents cheered as they observed the spectacle. Damningly, the air raid had not been coordinated with ground commands and an immediate infantry follow-up failed to materialize. De Slag om Monte Cassino, ook weleens de Slag om Rome genoemd, was een reeks aanvallen van de geallieerden tijdens de Italiaanse Veldtocht waarmee zij probeerden door de Gustav-linie te breken. On the night of 17 February the main assault took place. The idea was to clear the path through the bottleneck between these two features to allow access towards the station on the south and so to the Liri valley. The deception was successful. In one respect, however, the plan was working in that Kesselring's reserves had been drawn south. Responding to Senger's concerns, Kesselring ordered the 29th and 90th Panzergrenadier Divisions from the Rome area to provide reinforcement. The German cemetery (Deutsche Kriegsgräberstätte Cassino) is approximately 2 miles (3.2 km) north of Cassino in the Rapido Valley. In spite of its potential excellence as an observation post, because of the fourteen-century-old Benedictine abbey's historical significance, the German commander in Italy, Generalfeldmarschall Albert Kesselring, ordered German units not to include it in their defensive positions and informed the Vatican and the Allies accordingly in December 1943.[10][11].