The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front 1915-1919

Front Cover
Basic Books, Mar 17, 2009 - History - 352 pages
3 Reviews
In May 1915, Italy declared war on the Habsburg Empire. Nearly 750,000 Italian troops were killed in savage, hopeless fighting on the stony hills north of Trieste and in the snows of the Dolomites. To maintain discipline, General Luigi Cadorna restored the Roman practice of decimation, executing random members of units that retreated or rebelled.

With elegance and pathos, historian Mark Thompson relates the saga of the Italian front, the nationalist frenzy and political intrigues that preceded the conflict, and the towering personalities of the statesmen, generals, and writers drawn into the heart of the chaos. A work of epic scale, The White War does full justice to the brutal and heart-wrenching war that inspired Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms.

 

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The white war

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We barely remember that Italy fought against the Central Powers in World War I, in the Alps and the Dolomites. A million soldiers died, and the political echoes of the disastrous, if victorious ... Read full review

Review: The White War: Life and Death on the Italian Front 1915-1919

User Review  - Goodreads

A fantastic, readable history of the Italian Front in WWI. Normally our knowledge of that war is limited to the Western and Eastern fronts and the trenches of Gallipoli, as these are the fronts most ... Read full review

Contents

Italians Go back
1
A Mania for Expansion
7
We Two Alone
18
Free Spirits
39
Cadornas Clenched Fist
52
The Solemn Hour Strikes
61
A Gift from Heaven
76
Walls of Iron Clouds of Fire
87
The Return Blow
159
Victorys Peak
169
Starlight from Violence
178
Whiteness
193
Forging Victory
207
Not Dying for the Fatherland
217
Into a Cauldron
240
Mystical Sadism
261

Trento and Trieste
95
From Position to Attrition
106
The Dreaming Barbarian
114
Walking Shapes of Mud
124
Year Zero
136
A Necessary Holocaust?
148
Another Second of Life
277
The Flashing Sword of Vengeance
294
Resurrection
328
From Victory to Disaster
369
End of the Line
383
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

Mark Thompson holds a PhD in Social Sciences from Cambridge. The author of Forging War and A Paper House, he lives in Oxford, England.

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