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This is a comprehensive history of Italian mountain troops (the Alpine infantry and the mountain artillery, from the 1870s to the present. The Alpini suffered a crushing defeat to the Ethiopian army at Adwa in 1896. During WWI, the Italian mountain troops fought against Austrian Gebirgsjager high in the Alps.
This fighting, known as the war of snow and ice, involved some of the most demanding mountaineering and high-elevation combat of the modern era. Gruelling mountain battles continued during the Second World War, and the Alpini remained ready to fight through the Cold War and beyond. The book addresses unit organisation and development, missions, and uniforms and equipment from the inception of these units, through both world wars, and to the present.
The narrative history of the Alpini is accompanied by over 300 photographs. This is the first English-language history of this elite troop.
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