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Liberation celebration

“[Colonel] Howze at twilight led a tank company toward the central rail station to find boulevards empty and windows shuttered. Then a sash flew open, a voice shrieked ‘Americano!,’ and Romans by the thousands swept into the streets despite the occasional ping from a sniper round. Delirious citizens flung themselves on to Howze’s jeep and ‘kissed me until I threatened to shoot some of them,’ he reported. ‘Vino offered in glasses, in pitchers, in bottles, and even in kegs,’ the 88th Division noted. “Kisses were freely bestowed by both male and female citizens and suffered or enjoyed by the recipients accordingly.’ Signoras offered plates of spaghetti and bowls of hot shaving water. Italian men with ancient rifles and red sashes clapped their liberators on the back, then stalked off in search of Germans and fascists. Communists and Blackshirts traded potshots, and the pop of pistol fire near the colosseum signaled another summary execution.” – Rick Atkinson, The Day of Battle (emphasis in original)

Published inRick AtkinsonThe Second World War

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