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Old 05 Feb 17, 00:42
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The Torino and Pausubio divisions were officially listed as "Semi-motorized". There were two types of Semi-motorized units. "Russian" and "North African". They differed only slightly in organization from "regular" infantry divisions. The MAJOR difference was that they did in fact have about 20% more vehicles than a regular division about 400-500 compared to perhaps 150 (if that many) in a regular infantry division . That said? they still had insufficient vehicles to "move" the entire division. Usually they were able on thier own to move about one regiment at a time. If a larger number of troops had to be moved the division had to "request" additional motor vehicles from the corps or army commisariat transportation HQ. Quite often, almost always in fact neither the corps or the army HAD the vehicles to spare which severely crimped the divisions ability to be employed on the move at one time. The Motorized or "Divizione Fanteria Motorizzatta" were intended to operate with armored divisions. They were the ONLY fully motorized infantry divisions in the Italian Army.Three Trento, Trieste and Pistoia all operated in Africa and all were fully motorized with trucks and vehicles of Italian manufacture( although they preferred captured vehicles). Piave was a strange strange formation in that TWO different divisions had the name "Piave". The 10th Piave was motorized and served in Greece, the balkans and occupation in France. As near as I can deduce from Italian sources a SECOND Piave division was formed (the 17th Piave) and that was semi-motorized. One of the original Italian formations based in Libya it lost all its vehicles in 1940 but was reconstituted with new units brought from Italy. Both "Brescia" and "Bologna" were semi-motorized divisions which were no different than other Semi-motorized formations. All the motorized Divisions had a normal establishment of between 800-1200 trucks. This did not include armored cars, artillery tractors or tanks. The "Russian" Divisions Pausabio and Torino did have vehicles but never enough (3-400 each) and they were dependant on sections of draft animals which formed " horsed columns". My great Uncle served in the "Trieste" division and told me there was never enough trucks and they did a lot of walking.
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