Except in the case of documents with numbered paragraphs, when it is obvious from the numbering that material has been omitted, diamonds () are used to indicate the omission of one or more paragraphs.

Chapter VIII:

The Test in Sicily

Teachers of whatever rank - grade school instructors or college professors- are apt in the absence of specific knowledge or experience to resort, in the manner of Polonius, to vague generalizations and wearisome platitudes. The professors of military government at Charlottesville, unable to predict what an officer would encounter in an actual operational situation, had exhorted their students to "put first things first." One officer, soon after the landing in Sicily, said that this platitude might be translated: "Bury the dead and feed the living." As towns were taken over in the wake of battle chaos reigned; there was no food, fuel, power, or water; rubble, ruin, and filth were on every hand and looting was rampant. In a word, everything had to be done and generally there was little with which to do it. Directives, manuals, and wise saws were less relevant in such a situation than had been expected. And improvisation was the order of the day.

Nevertheless, the invasion of Sicily put to the test for the first time the theories, principles, and training that had been developed in the military training program and in military planning. North Africa, to be sure, had been a proving ground of sorts because hosts of economic and political problems had been encountered and civilian control machinery had been set up, even though ordinary administration had been left to the French. The difficulties here indicated that even with a friendly administration and population civilian agencies could not deal too well with the problems of the wake of battle, and this, it seemed, would be even truer in enemy territory. Experiences in Sicily confirmed this view. They also showed that planners of the first exclusively military operation had underestimated the prospective disruption and chaos, and had consequently fallen somewhat short both in provision of supplies and in development of adequate organization and methods for rebuilding the economic and social machinery behind fiercely contending armies. Some lessons, indeed, were learned immediately upon landing.

The story of military government in Sicily has three phases: beachhead, combat, and posthostilities. The beachhead phase saw a lack of uniformity between Americans and British on how the military government officers were geared in with the tactical forces. The British Eighth Army landed on the southeastern part of the island in two groups, XIII Corps on the beaches south of Syracuse, and XXX Corps around Cape Passero. Allied Military Government (AMG) officers were not included on the loading schedules but during the first three days about thirty officers were literally smuggled into the beachhead area. Reinforcements were called up later but the officers did not operate closely with the separate tactical units. Instead they remained in pools with the advance and rear army headquarters


and took over towns as they were occupied. The American Seventh Army landed in the southeastern area on the beaches around Cape Scaramina (45th Division), Gela (1st Division), and Licata (3d Division). Only seventeen AMG officers came ashore with the Seventh Army on July 1o and ii (D and D plus 1) and these generally remained with the headquarters of the units to which they were attached until enough territory was uncovered to set up military government on a provincial basis.

The advance of the Seventh Army was rapid. In a broad sweep northward it entered Palermo on 22 July and by the end of the month the whole western half of Sicily was overrun. In the British sector stubborn German resistance in the plain of Catania slowed the advance and the town of Catania was not taken until 5 August. The Seventh Army, after taking Palermo, turned east and the Eighth Army continued its advance northward until 17 August when the combined British and American forces entered Messina and the whole island was in Allied possession.

An advanced Allied Military Government of Occupied Territories (AMGOT) headquarters had been established at Syracuse under Lord Rennell of Rodd as early as 22 July. About two weeks later the headquarters was moved to Palermo and gradually assumed responsibility for the whole island. By the end of July a direct channel of communication had been established between CAO's and headquarters in all areas turned over. Eventually, each of the nine provinces of Sicily was administered by a SCAO (Senior Civil Affairs Officer) who had a staff of specialists in the fields of law, finance, supply, public welfare, and public safety. The mere listing of these specialties is suggestive, but only suggestive, of the multitude of problems encountered both during and after cessation of hostilities. There was a tendency, especially in the early stages, for AMG officers to do too much themselves and to rely too little on indigenous officials. In their enthusiasm for seeing that things got done and in their passion for efficiency the AMG officers sometimes overextended themselves.

Allied military government was able to make headway against a bewildering number of problems only because it was not faced with a hostile population. Lacking enough men and materiel, Lord Rennell remarked that "I am frank to think we shall get away with things here more by luck than by good management." The Allied propaganda before, during, and after the landings helped to persuade the Sicilians to greet the Allies everywhere as liberators. Morale was at first high but deteriorated as it became evident that the Allies could not always deliver on their promises. Though Sicilians could be, and on occasion were, difficult, there was never a serious problem of obtaining co-operation from the civilian population.

Before the island had been cleared of the enemy, indeed in the full tumult of battle, the old question of the entrance of civilian agencies was raised. But the North African experience was fresh in the minds of the commanders in the field if not of those in Washington. Furthermore the British (lid not want "starry-eyed" American civilians running loose in occupied territories. The President himself, who had once felt that the civilian agencies should dominate, was gradually moving toward the position that military officers must have administrative responsibility in all active theaters. The upshot was that General Eisenhower was authorized only to permit the entry of individual civilians into Sicily and that they were to become a part of AMG.



[Proclamation of Eisenhower, CinC, AF, Sicily, 10 Jul 43, OPD Msg files, 3913 ]

(1) Announcement to the Italian people-To the people of Sicily. As Commander in Chief of the Allied Force I transmit this message on behalf of the Governments of the United States and Great Britain.

(2) The Allied forces are occupying Italian territory. They are doing this not as enemies of the Italian people, but as an inevitable part of their war to destroy the German overlordship of Europe. Their aim is to deliver the people of Italy from the Fascist Regime which led them into the war, and when that has been accomplished, to restore Italy as a Free Nation.

(3) The Allied Forces have no intention of changing or undermining the traditional laws and customs of the Italian people. They will take all necessary measures, however, to eliminate the Fascist system in whatever Italian territory they occupy. Accordingly, the Fascist Party Organization will be dissolved, and its appendages such as the Fascist Militia and the so-called Youth Organizations will be abolished. Fascist doctrines and propaganda in any form will be prohibited. No political activity whatsoever shall be countenanced during the period of military government.

(4) In furtherance of the policies of the Allied Governments, proper steps will forthwith be taken to stop the operation in Sicily of all laws which discriminate on the basis of race, color, or creed. Freedom of religious worship will be upheld and, to that extent the military interests are not prejudiced, freedom of speech and press will be instituted.

(5) Measures will be taken for prompt release of political prisoners. The special tribunal for the defense of the State will be abolished.

(6) The Military Governor of the occupied territory will take action by proclamation or otherwise to carry into effect the foregoing measures as military conditions may permit.

(7) These evidence the principles to which the Allies are attached and for the re-establishment of which they will relentlessly fight. They are principles to which the Axis leaders, under German domination, are opposed. You will be beneficiaries of their defeat. It is therefore your interest, as men whose fathers fought for their freedom, not to resist the Allied army, but to facilitate their mission-the lifting of the Nazi yoke from Europe by quick and total victory....


[AMGOT Proclamation 1, AGO files, AMGOT Plan, pp. 28-30]

To the people of Sicily:

Whereas in prosecuting their war against the Axis Powers, it has become necessary for the armed forces of Great Britain and the United States under my command to occupy Sicily.

Whereas it is the policy of the Allied Forces not to make war upon the civilian inhabitants of the occupied territory but to protect them in the peaceful exercise of their legitimate pursuits in so far as the exigencies of war and their own behavior will permit, and

Whereas in order to preserve law and order and provide for the safety and welfare both of my troops and of yourselves, it is necessary to establish Military Government in the occupied territory.

Now, therefore, I, Harold Alexander, G.C.B., C.S.I., D.S.O., M.C., General, General Officer Commanding the Allied Forces in Sicily and Military Governor of the Territories Occupied, by virtue of the Authority vested in me by General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Commander in Chief of the Allied Forces in the North African Theatre of Operations, do hereby proclaim as follows


All powers of government and jurisdiction in the occupied territory and over its inhabitants, and final administrative responsibility are vested in me as General Officer Commanding and Military Governor, and the Allied Military Government of Occupied Territory is established to exercise these powers under my direction.


All persons in the occupied territory will obey promptly all orders given by me or under my authority and must refrain from all acts hostile to the troops under my command or helpful to our enemies, from all acts of violence, and from any act calculated to disturb public order in any way.


Your existing personal and property rights will be fully respected and your existing laws will re-


main in force and effect except in so far as it may be necessary for me in the discharge of my duties as General Officer Commanding the Allied Forces, and as Military Governor, to change or supersede them by proclamation or order issued by me or under my direction.


All Italian civil and criminal courts and all universities, schools and educational establishments will be closed until further order of the Allied Military Government.


All administrative and judicial officials of the provinces and communes and all other government and municipal functionaries and employees, and all officers and employees of state, municipal or other public services, except such officials and political leaders as are removed by me are required to continue in the performance of their duties, subject to my direction or the direction of such of my officers of the Allied Forces as may be deputed for that purpose.


Further proclamations, orders and regulations issued by me or under my authority from time to time will specify what is further required of you, and what you are forbidden to do, and these will be displayed in court houses, police stations, or other public places.


So long as you remain peaceable and comply with my orders, you will be subject to no greater interference than may be inevitable in view of military exigencies, and may go about your normal vocations without fear.
Dated: 10 July 1943


[Spofford Rpt. See also above chapter VII, Section 7]

Briefly the units of 343 Force 1  landed on the southern coast of Sicily [10 July 1943] and proceeded rapidly northward and westward through the eastern part of Ragusa, Caltanissetta, Agrigento, Palermo and Trapani provinces. Civil affairs officers attached to the units landed with them on D Day or shortly thereafter and generally speaking remained with headquarters of the units to which they were attached, gradually peeling off into permanent assignments as the territories involved were occupied.. . .

The officers with the 8th Army, except in a few isolated cases, were not attached to and did not enter with the Division or tactical units. In stead they remained in the rear with army headquarters and were brought up when needed. The 8th Army quickly occupied the greater portion of Ragusa, all of Siracusa and the southern half of Catania. This occupation was completed on July 16 (D plus 6). Various civil affairs officers coming in on D Day or shortly thereafter were assigned from a pool established first at Siracusa and later at Lentini to the various communes in the occupied territory. . . .

On arrival in Sicily each senior civil affairs officer had his own individual approach to the problems facing his CAO's and specialists. Lt. Col. [Stephen B.] Story, for instance, at all times kept himself and his men up with the advance headquarters of the 45th Division, leaving towns in the rear to be taken over by other civil affairs officers attached to the Corps. Since reserves were few this resulted in the towns in which Lt. Col. Story and his men had the administration started remaining without CAO's for several days; but he was able to start the administration of towns as soon as they were taken further forward. On the other hand Lt. Col. [Wynot R.] Irish with the First Division more or less permanently assigned his men to various towns and areas as they were captured, moving them forward very slowly. It was his policy to allow Col. Kilroe, the JAG under whom he was serving, to take over the towns in the first instance and then turn them over to him when the command post passed them. Frequently, however, in the first few crucial days towns were without civil affairs officers in the forward areas covered by this Division. Col. [Damon M.] Gunn, JAG II Corps, also believed that civil affairs officers with AMG should not take over towns in the front line areas but should wait until the command post had


passed the towns. . . . On both the American and British side at all times a liaison officer was left with divisional or corps headquarters. This officer could find out from G-2 when a town was about to fall and then report back so that civil affairs officers could be called up to enter it at once, if any were available with transport. [Typical experiences of CAO's follow.]


[Ltr, Graduate, SMG (Irish, CAO, its Div, Seventh Army), 16 Jul 43, to SMG, Charlottesville, CAD files, 461.01 (4-7-43) (1), Bulky Pkg]

At last word came through that the town was in our hands; they gave us a jeep and told us to get going. Shell fire was slacking; we were apparently pushing ahead. We drove parallel to the front line for some five miles to a port town on a hill. As we drove into the town, we passed groups of people who looked frightened and made the Fascist salute. A dead horse and dead civilian in the street, wounded men in stretchers, bombed houses to the Cathedral Square. A tank battle in the streets of the town had just ended. We entered the local Albergo, our headquarters, and the Commander was sure glad to see us, telling us that there were about 150 dead to bury. Across the street was a large building that we took over for an office-the palatial home of a fled Fascist leader. It was beautifully furnished-the dream of a CAO. One room was palatial . . . I arranged it like a throne, with chairs surrounding a beautiful marble topped table, and me sitting back in a high-backed luxurious chair. I was still soaked and looked anything but a Governor. I did put on a tie. Took off my leggings, and sat down in my chair of state, interpreter on my right hand, and got ready for the interviews.

They all piled in, half scared, and bowed low. I was formally introduced, and told them to take seats in a half-circle around me. I made what I hoped was an impressive speech about being friendly invaders and liberators and all that sort of thing, to get a right start with them. It was quite a high moment-for the first time I felt like a governor. This exalted state of affairs, however, which I was thoroughly enjoying, and which I shall probably never reach again, did not last long. A bombing raid began on the shore and ships by the Messerschmidts. The building trembled-all hell seemed to break loose! My privy council vanished. I finally located the Podesta after the raid, hiding down cellar-Wise man! I forgot my gospel of "sweetness and light." It had been so rudely interrupted by bomb blasts, and I was embarrassed about starting it all over again. I had to get off my high horse and get down to business. And what a lot of headaches I found. Water supply damaged. No power. No food. No fuel, and corpses all over town to bury.

Later: "First things first," says Charlottesville! No water-epidemics; no food-riots; corpses-plague! I decided to bury the corpses first. A judgment more of the nose than of the head. The Podesta said he needed a truck, which was reasonable, but there were no trucks available. A battle was going on-trucks were vital to success. A soldier said the city had two ambulances. Fine, fine! We'll use the ambulances. But no, the Sicilian will not use an ambulance for a hearse! He has a superstition against it. I was about to exert my power and make them use ambulances when a medical captain came in very upset and said that 20 corpses were lying next to his field hospital and, 'for God's sake get them out.' The CO troops gave me one truck for the burial of these corpses only. And I secured some prisoners of war to dig graves and load the corpses and got the Padre to go to the graves. A new difficulty had developed. The Padre insisted the corpses be put in wooden boxes. Captain said no, they were buried in the dark-a gruesome task. I arranged to have donkey carts collect the other corpses on the morrow, and retired....
... The City Hall had been looted, tax receipts destroyed, ration cards torn. The city treasury had been bombed; all tax books, etc., lay in a pile of rubble. The City Hall itself was in shambles! Records, archives, papers scattered all over. With what feelings I read the 'Directive' on what I was to do with records, examining the town budget, checking the taxation system, etc....


[Maj John D. Ames and Maj James H. Griffin, CAO's II Corps, Rpt, 25 Aug 43, Spofford Rpt]

Assignment of Divisional CA Officers:

... The rapidity of the advance involved the divisional CA officers passing through the towns and villages with only a little time in which to set up an organization to organize the civil communities under the Plan. The Corps officers followed up behind the divisional officers and set in motion the Civil Affairs Plan and in due course when further CA officers were available, allocated and posted these officers for supervision of the towns and villages in occupied territory under


Corps responsibility. In some cases it was necessary for the Corps officers to take over towns and villages in a divisional area which had either been by-passed by troops or for which no divisional CA officers were available. In this connection, on many occasions Colonel Gunn [JAG, II Corps] and other Corps officers acted as CA officers.

In the large area that fell to Corps control the difficulty of communication between towns, bad roads, the absence of telephone communication, necessitated the Corps CA officers spending the minimum time in each town and village in order to insure that towns and villages which had been in the hands of the Military Police and the C.I.C. [Counterintelligence Corps] were not left uncovered for too long a period. This factor also involved the transfer of CA personnel from town to town, and it was not possible in the first three weeks of operation to permanently assign CA officers to a single town. As provinces were completely taken, the provincial organization of CA officers was introduced and assignment made in co-ordination with the senior CA officer in the province. The number of towns covered by the Corps CA officers and the coordinator was 79, with a population of 689,000. The work of the divisional CA officers was in most cases limited to publishing proclamations and personal contact with city officials available, and by these means communicating the fact of actual occupation. In many cases where the advance was not so fast, divisional CA officers continued with further CA duties.

The Corps duties were as follows:

Organization of the Carabinieri in accordance with the plan. It was considered essential to investigate the use of the personnel and the adequacy of numbers of the police force. The reorganization of the Carabinieri and other police organizations were undertaken and where necessary, changes in the personnel were made. The officer in charge of the Carabinieri was made responsible for maintaining law and order, insofar as his duties were concerned, and instructed to prepare a detailed scheme for the organization of the local police control of the town. Under the proclamation for the collection of arms,, the Carabinieri were named as agents for this collection and gave receipts and kept lists of private firearms turned in. Wherever possible, Military Police, Divisional or Corps, were placed on guard to prevent the looting of these arms by force by any individual. Corps CA officers interviewed the existing Podestas or Mayors, Communal Secretaries and the Municipal Staff, and in many cases officials were relieved from their duties and other persons were chosen and substituted-this with co-operation and reports of the C.I.C. In the selection of these individuals, care was taken that they were not associated in any way, so far as was known, with any political activity. In a number of cases it was found that the officials, apart from their political leanings, were totally unsuited to occupy their position. The municipal staff was set to work-as in the majority of cases after the invasion they had ceased to perform duty, and the normal life of the community was set in motion again, as far as circumstances permitted. No attempt was made to perform direct government except in one or two cases of actual emergency. The Civil Affairs duties were confined strictly to the supervision and direction of civil activities. Checks were made to see that guards had been posted by either C.I.C. or divisional CA officers on banks and post offices and other important civil installations.


[Narrative Based on Undated Report from Lt Col George H. McCaffrey, CAO 3d Inf Div, Seventh Army, Spofford Rpt, ex. 3-A]

At approximately 10000 hours on 17 July a message was received that Agrigento had fallen and the situation needed immediate attention.... Major [Robert L.] Ashworth and Lt. Col. McCaffrey with an interpreter, a veteran of the American army in the First World War, left at once in a rickety, requisitioned midget car....

The Prefect in Agrigento stated that there was about three days supply of grain on hand, but plenty available in the countryside, water was available for about 2/3 of the town and electric light for about 1/2 of it. He estimated the number of civilian dead and wounded at 500, many of them still in the ruins.

The Prefect was instructed to have copies of the proclamations and orders posted at once in ten places in the town customarily used for that purpose. At his suggestion the town crier made the rounds announcing that complete amnesty would be granted with respect to any loot turned in at the Carabinieri barracks within 24 hours, but the possession of loot after that time would be dealt with severely. A steady stream of people took advantage of this offer. Police agents (now provided with arm bands) started to collect the furniture and household goods standing in the streets and the public square. It was difficult to distinguish between those who were salvaging


furniture from their own wrecked homes, those who were helping themselves to loot and those who were returning it....

The Prefect at Agrigento was ordered to have the PAD [police agents] continue their functions regarding rescue of wounded, burial of dead, search of ruins and caring for unexploded bombs. He was also ordered to put as many men and vehicles to work as were necessary to clear the main streets of debris to permit passage by Army vehicles and to secure unsafe structures and to pay the standard rate of wages as of 9 July for such work. He was authorized to draw up to 500,000 lire upon a 2,000,000 lire credit in the Bank of Italy for war damages.

The Bishop of Agrigento called to offer his full co-operation. He had turned 2/3 of his palace into an emergency hospital filled with both civilian and military wounded, volunteered to take charge of finding shelter for the homeless and submitted for approval a printer's proof sheet of a statement to all of his flock calling upon them to co-operate in every way with AMGOT. This statement was read at masses in the local churches the next day.

Between these conferences every minute was used to give brief interviews and issue passes to various officials and essential employees, including the public engineer, millers, bakers, doctors, midwives and others with essential functions to perform. During the later afternoon Lt. Col. McCaffrey went to Porto Empedocle with an interpreter, posted the proclamations and orders, and checked into the situation with the Carabinieri. It was very bad. All responsible officials had fled. The town was badly damaged. No stock of flour was on hand. Both aqueducts were smashed, and an estimated 3/4 of the people had fled. The port area was crowded with Army and Navy personnel. There was heavy two way traffic of supply vehicles already under way. The CO of the Port Engineer Bn. stated he was posting a guard in the port area and main street. The civil police were ordered to co-operate with the military and to be particularly watchful for looting.

In Agrigento the water supply was badly reduced by the bombardment. Some difficulty was encountered here because of direct dealing between combat units and civilian agencies. In one case the Italian engineer was almost shot because of an error made by an interpreter in repeating what he said with regard to a break in the aqueduct. The Army wanted aid by civil affairs officers in establishment of an Army C.P. in Agrigento. This took considerable time.

The leaders of the Consorzio and the Amassi in the area were ardent Fascists and had fled. Others had to be located to take over these important functions.

There was at first considerable agitation in Agrigento in favor of the Independence of Sicily. A meeting to sponsor this cause, in violation of Proclamation I, was raided. There was also considerable discontent because of Allied inability to open the sulphur mines and thereby relieve unemployment; and because of the low salaries paid to public officials. .


[Lt. Comdr Malcolm S. MacLean, Liaison, MGS, Naval Aviation Hq, 4 Mar 44, Report on Information Obtained from Army CAO's Who Participated in the Assault Phase in Sicily, CAD files, 319.1, Foreign (3-4-44), Bulky Pkg]

The colonel had a difficult decision to make in relation to combat operations in military government and civil affairs. As indicated he had only himself and three junior officers for the whole job with the Division [45th] . . . until they reached Messina and settled down there as military government. The question arose as to whether these four should continue with the Division as it rapidly advanced or drop off and set up military government in the first area captured. Some other civil affairs teams who went up the western side of Sicily tried the latter and left the advancing forces without any civil affairs officers to assist them. (This, said the colonel is why General Patton raised such hell to get more civil affairs officers sent over from North Africa in the early part of the campaign.) The colonel decided wisely on the former course of sticking with the troops.

In consequence he had to devise a procedure for military government that would meet this mobile, hit and run civil affairs situation. This is what he did:

In entering a town he would take over the city hall or other appropriate building if the city hall had been damaged. He would fly the United States and British ensigns above the door of the hall. He would then go out or send his junior officers to post the proclamations (he commented at this point that a paint brush was an essential part of the civil affairs officer's equipment). . . . He would then gather about him such town officials as remained, tell the story of their liberation, outline to them the essential features of military government and what the civilians were expected to do and not to do, call their attentions to the proclamations, and dismiss them until a later designated time. He would then go with his of-


ficers to the bank, the post offices, insurance headquarters and the like taking with him some of the Carabinieri . . . and seize all moneys, records, valuable portable equipment, etc., lock these up and post a Carabinieri guard. He would then gather the leading priests and clerics about him and talk over the problems of the town and the personnel in it and get their advice, as he recently secured that of the town officials and of the police separately, on who would be most acceptable as civilian native officials. He would then do what he could to organize machinery for food collecting and rationing. Then he would return to his meeting with the city officials, summarize the recommendations for appointments, make the appointments, outline again what he expected them all to do, notify them that rear echelon civil affairs officers would be coming in in a few days to give continuous supervision and control, and then move on to the next town and repeat. By this means he got people, while they were numb from fighting, talkative and telling somewhat near the truth, and organized them for later civil affairs control....


[Maj Gen Lord Rennell, CCAO, AMGOT Sicily, Rpt to GOC 15th AGp, 2 Aug 43 [hereafter cited as Rennell Rpt, 2 Aug 43], CAD files, 319.1, AMG (8-17-43), sec. 1]

2. Some 30 AMGOT officers in charge of Group Captain C. E. Benson, D.S.O., were landed from D [ 10 July ] to D + 2 in 8th Army assault areas. These were reinforced in the course of the next fourteen days, by the end of which period there were about 80 AMGOT officers, including CAO's, CAPO's [civil affairs police officers], etc., in 8th Army area. . . .

4. With the 7th Army assaults, a group of 17 officers were landed on D and D + I day under Colonel Charles Poletti (AUS). This number soon proved entirely insufficient. There was much delay in landing the first reinforcement group of an additional 50 officers owing to the unwillingness of the 7th Army headquarters to accommodate any reserve of personnel in the advanced 7th Army embarkation areas. In consequence, when sudden and urgent need was felt for 62 extra administrative officers for AMGOT, the officers had to be called forward from Algiers to Tunis before they could be embarked. It was consequently not until about 28 July that the much needed reinforcement of 62 officers reached Palermo. . . . Colonel Poletti and his second in command of the AMGOT personnel in 7th Army area, Lt. Col. P. [Peter R.] Rodd, were themselves alone trying to cope with the problems of Palermo City....


[Rennell Rpt, 2 Aug 43]

12. Initial arrests for obstruction, hostility or strong Fascist sentiments were few in the first two weeks owing to lack of information and a desire . . . to do nothing which would cause a breakdown in the administration while AMGOT officers were trying to get something running. In the eastern and central areas the three Prefects [senior officials in provinces] of Syracuse, Caltanisetta and Ragusa were arrested. The prefects of Agrigento and Enna who had previously been notified as likely to be helpful have been retained. The Prefect of Palermo had departed prior to the arrival of the American troops. . . . Where the Prefects were removed the Sub-Prefects have generally been called upon to act. A few podestas [mayors], questori [superintendent of police] and municipal officials have been arrested as well as such political (party) secretaries as have been discovered. In most cases new podestas have been appointed either from the vice-podestas available or from the more prominent citizens. . . . Whatever criticisms will be made for not arresting more people immediately I am convinced that the right course is to continue weeding out undesirables week after week, rather than to effect wholesale arrests on insufficient information and then to have to release innocuous persons. The apprehension of inevitable doom has a better morale effect generally than wholesale action and risking having to go into reverse....


[Rpt, Rennell, CCAO, AMGOT Sicily, 8 Aug 43 to GOC 15th AGp [hereafter cited as Rennell Rpt, 8 Aug 43], CAD files, 319.1 AMG (8-17-43) (1)]

The gamble of sending single Civil Affairs Officers to take charge of large districts with no escorts and little or no transport from the very first moment of occupation without regard to their personal safety was successful. I am not aware of any case of hostility or discourtesy to an Allied Civil Affairs Officer since the landing. I am acutely aware of my own anxiety whether the experiment would succeed without some incident or even attacks on my officers by stray Italian soldiers or by hostile local elements or angry mobs when in the first days food was really very precarious and scarce. The risk is not one


which can be taken as a precedent in other countries or necessarily all over Italy....

The decision to maintain the local administrations in towns has so far proved successful. In a number of places advisory municipal councils of prominent officials and persons have been nominated to advise C.A.O.'s and the podestas. Local private people and business men have proved helpful and public spirited in trying to restore normal conditions especially in heavily damaged areas. Ecclesiastical personages have all been helpful. I am particularly struck by the absence of expressed resentment or bitterness about bombing or civilian casualties.

There is no doubt that the experiment of retaining the Carabinieri as the nucleus of a local police force throughout the island and of allowing them to retain their uniforms and rifles (but not revolvers) has been successful. Except for the arrest of certain special branch carabinieri on counter-espionage duties, very few carabinieri have had to be interned for refusal to continue duty as police or for unsatisfactory behavior. The senior carabinieri officers have been distinctly cooperative in transferring personnel when it was wanted and in replacing personnel when individuals have been interned. The carabinieri have taken whatever has been done with dignity and the sense of duty which comes from a well-disciplined force with a long tradition. . . . There was a good deal of looting by the civil population during the first few days, nearly all of food stores, an increase of housebreaking and theft, and jail breaking. But arrests are being made mainly by the carabinieri and authority seems to be on the way to being restored....


[Financial Div, AMGOT, Rpt for May 43-Nov 43, Spofford Rpt, ex. Y-11 ]

It was realized at the start of the planning at Chrea that if AMGOT officers in the field were to be successful in keeping the local machinery of government going it would be necessary to assure the availability of funds to pay the salaries of local government employees as well as other proper expenditures of local government. It was also realized that at least in the opening phases of the occupation, transportation and communication would be so inadequate, that a highly decentralized system in AMGOT of controlling expenditures of local governments and providing funds to meet deficits would have to be established. Accordingly there was issued G.A.I. No. 3 . . . containing financial instructions to C.A.O.'s on handling expenditures and receipts of communes and S.A.I. Finance No. 2 . . . containing instructions to F.O.'s [finance officers] on expenditures and receipts of provinces and the state....

G.A.I. Finance No. 4 ... was issued authorizing F.O.'s to provide money, if necessary, to continue the function of the Amassi system in acquiring and distributing wheat and to meet other emergency situations where the carrying out of AMGOT plans made the advance of funds desirable....

As soon as AMGOT arrived in Sicily, C.A.O.'s and F.O.'s had to deal with problems of expenditures of the local governments for their normal recurrent expenditures and for relief, with the problems of financing the movement of wheat which was being harvested at the time, and the price which had been subsidized by the Italian State. Control of expenditures and advance of funds were handled substantially in accordance with the above mentioned instructions. . . .


[Financial Div, AMGOT Rpt, May-Nov 43]

Palermo has been chosen to illustrate the types of problems confronting . . . Finance Officers. The Officer who later became the Finance Officer of Palermo Province arrived at Gela on 14 July and was ordered to follow the 7th Army's advance on Palermo, reaching the city on 8 August. Palermo, with a normal population of 400,000, was reduced to 10,000, and the surrounding communes were swollen to almost twice their normal size. The immediate problems were the acquisition of grain, through the Ammassi system, the restoration of some transport system, and the restoration of the normal financial channels for governmental receipts and expenditures.

Funds for the purchase of grain were advanced by the Finance Officer directly to the Consorzio Agrario 2  in cash. This was necessary since Palermo Province had 74 amassing points, of which only 32 are served by banks. The cash funds were distributed to the amassing agents who proceeded to purchase the limited quantities of grain which were offered for sale. To further aid the normal flow of grain products to the consumer the accounts of the millers and bakers were unlocked in advance of the opening of the banks on a restricted basis. The situation in


Palermo contrasted strongly with conditions which prevailed in Agrigento and Caltanissetta Provinces. These latter provinces were fortunate in having large surpluses of grain, a docile agricultural population, and an absence of war damage.

Next in order of priority came the problem of restoring local governmental functions, particularly the payment of civil officials and the fire, police, and health services. In Palermo Province, as in other provinces, various communes of the province were brought under Allied control when the provincial capital had not yet fallen. Since the financial channels for payment of civil servants and communal obligations normally center in officials stationed in the provincial capital, it is often impossible to follow preliminary planning and employ such channels. In Palermo Province this problem existed with reference to food, relief and state payrolls. It is believed that the practice varied from CAO to CAO. It is submitted that the preferable method would be to employ temporarily one agency for disbursements, probably the Commune, since its employees have some knowledge of the normal system of disbursements, vouchers and accounting....


[Msg, Eisenhower to Marshall, 28 Jul 43, CAD Msg files, CM-IN 20137]

. .. Initial supply [of food] for both our troops and civil population had to be taken across the beaches. Emergency civil feeding was met from rations and continues from military stocks, hence precise quantities for civil supply not known. Stockpile of food especially for civil population established in near-by North African ports and now going in. . . .


[Poletti Rpt, 31 Jul 43, ACC files, 10000/100/650]


When a community was vacated by Italian troops and before law and order could be reestablished by Seventh Army, considerable looting took place, particularly looting of flour and other food products. All military stores of Italian Army were likewise usually seized. In all events, this supplied the people until Civil Affairs officers could reorganize matters and get additional grain into town. All sorts of improvisation occurred. Civil trucks and Italian and American Army trucks were used. At times we put Carabinieri or soldiers on them in order to persuade, in a gentle manner, the farmer to give up his grain. Often the mills and bakeshops were damaged or deprived of coal or Diesel oil or electricity. Transport had collapsed. Again we improvised. In a few towns only did food clamoring demonstrations occur. It is gratifying that Civil Affairs was so successful. Of course, the food problem has been the most difficult, the most pressing and the most time consuming for all Civil Affairs officers, and it still is in general.

[Rennell Rpt, 2 Aug 43]

17. The food situation is interesting. There is no doubt that there is plenty of grain, enough meat for the modest local requirements, and probably enough oil. Of vegetables and fruit there is an ample supply. The difficulty is, first and foremost, transport. The troops on entering seized all available civilian transport including many mules and carts. The consequences were as anticipated. A very precarious situation developed in all towns for the first few days. Local ingenuity and resources displayed by all my officers tided over this situation and no town has starved though in many cases there was frequently not more than 24 hours in hand. Now, most places have a few days in hand. The major problem, however, was and is milling wheat into flour.

18. Nearly all the mills are electrically operated. All electricity, with the exception of a few small towns with a local supply, is drawn from the Sicilian power grid which in turn draws its supplies from the large power stations, of which in eastern Sicily Catania is outstandingly the most important. The only power station on the grid functioning in E. and S. Sicily is at Cassibile which is insufficient even for Syracuse district....


[Ltr, Holmes to Hilldring, 18 Aug 43, CAD files, 319.1, AMG (8-17-43) (1), No. 126]

... After 21 years of control the Fascist Party became so woven into the warp and woof of all phases of life in the country that when the party officials fled provincial and municipal administration came to a standstill. We did not bag a single Federal Secretary. Every town of any size has its large "Casa del Fascio," usually elaborate and pretentious. Local officials have been accustomed to coming to these Fascist Headquarters for their orders and so in almost all cases our officials


moved in. In many towns there had been so much destruction by bombardment and shell fire and the people so frightened and paralyzed that no local administration existed. In fact in many cases all of the machinery of modern life had ceased to exist: there was no government, no police, no food supply, no water, no electric light, no transportation and no organized medical service. All of these things had to be reorganized from the ground up, the dead buried, the streets cleaned of debris, water and food brought in, etc. In places where the administrative machinery was more or less intact it was in neutral. Officials and populace alike seemed to be unable to do anything to help themselves. When told what they ought to do by the military government personnel, they were perfectly willing to comply. It is possible that we shall find a more solid situation as we progress north and as the habit of being ordered about by party officials may become less of a factor following the abolition of the party by Badoglio. However, I am doubtful that this effect will be very great as the abolition of Fascism by decree and undoing what has been done in 21 years are two different things. I feel, therefore, that we should not reduce the estimates of personnel for future operations even though control of the country may be exercised by a commission under an armistice rather than as in Sicily by military government with suspension of Italian sovereignty.


[Memo, Spofford for Chief, MGS, 22 Sept 43, ACC files, 10000/100/697]

1. With reference to request contained in your memorandum of 9 September 1943, the following is a consolidation and summary of points raised in memoranda submitted by AMGOT field officers on this subject.

2. AMGOT and its relations with other units. (i) AMGOT started in the Sicilian operation with one big handicap. It was, to almost all concerned in the operation, a new branch, whose functions and raison d'etre were neither appreciated nor understood by the fighting services. The first task was therefore to "sell" AMGOT. This was achieved with some measure of success at the top, but efforts to penetrate the lower for orations were not successful. It is, therefore, of great importance that during the planning stage opportunities should be given for putting all concerned in the picture as regards the role which AMGOT is to play in the operation.

(ii) Furthermore, AMGOT officers attached to assault forces should join their units well in advance of D Day, not only to carry out what has been mentioned in the above paragraph, but also to co-ordinate their activities with those of the various army units with which they are most likely to be in contact, e.g., C.I.C....

3. AMGOT in early stages of Operation.

(i) The invasion of Sicily has clearly demonstrated that Civil Affairs officers should be present in invaded cities at the time of their capture. Civil Affairs liaison officers should be attached to combat units to help the commander to deal with civilian problems arising immediately after the assault. Adequate numbers of Civil Affairs administrative officers should be sent forward with the troops to be left in supervision of the cities and towns from the time of their capture.

(ii) In cases where the assault force is advancing rapidly, high priority is essential for additional AMGOT personnel and transport. Lack of such priority has resulted in officers being spread too thinly over the ground to be able to do their jobs properly.

4. AMGOT Transport.

(i) It is essential that all AMGOT personnel with assault forces go in with their own transport. Dependence on the units to which officers are attached does not work. Locally requisitioned transport cannot be relied on, as experience has shown that tactical units requisition all available vehicles. Furthermore the average local vehicle is not sufficiently reliable for the strenuous work on bad roads that it must perform.

(ii) If they do not land with their own vehicles officers cannot get into cities at the time of their capture, nor can they properly supervise the large areas for which they usually find themselves responsible.

5. AMGOT Personnel.

(i) In the early stages all specialist officers must be prepared to do the work of C.A.O.'s.

(ii) Under the present organization AMGOT officers are not provided with sufficient OR/EM clerks, interpreters, guards and for other basic duties. There have been numerous cases of


looting both by civil population and the troops, which might have been alleviated by the presence of a body of troops under the control of AMGOT. There is no such body provided, in the AMGOT organization, and the strength of C.M.P.'s and F.S.P. [Field Security Personnel] in relation to the number of villages in a metropolitan country, such as Sicily, has been shown to be lamentably small. Shortage of OR/EM personnel heavily handicapped AMGOT officers in their attempts to prevent looting and the enforcement of the Proclamations, in particular curfew for the civilians and the "Out of Bounds" notices for troops. In cases where the advance was particularly rapid it often occurred that a town was left completely devoid of troops, particularly if the axis of advance had altered. This aggravated the problem for the AMGOT officer who found himself the sole person in uniform in a village or town, thus more strongly emphasizing the necessity for some form of accompanying OR/EM.

(iii) Other personnel points raised included the following:

(a) That some of the men, selected for their knowledge of the Sicilian dialect, were of little value in translating Italian into English, or vice-versa on paper.
(b) That they should receive more training concerning their attitude and behaviour towards the inhabitants.
(c) That a ZI Military Police Battalion, or detachments thereof, be placed at the disposal of the Senior Civil Affairs Officers.

6. Supply Arrangements.

(i) Owing to shortage of transport, AMGOT personnel could not carry sufficient rations to be self supporting for more than a few days, and difficulty was often experienced in persuading the Quartermaster to provide them with rations. This could have been partly obviated if the function of AMGOT had been directly acknowledged by unit commanders as a part of the force.

(ii) Medical supplies were not provided for AMGOT personnel other than the General Issue first aid packet. In a unit which is obliged frequently to conduct its operations in comparatively isolated areas at considerable distances from Army hospital units it is felt that special provision should be made for equipping all AMGOT personnel with medical kits and equipment adequate to meet the situation.

7. Communications

These were found to be of the utmost difficulty and here again the primary cause was lack of transport. The next most important reason was that priority on army signals had, quite naturally, to go to operational messages.

8. Miscellaneous.

(i) It is considered essential that such identification marks as police arm bands, special police identity cards, vehicle permit cards and special passes for after curfew hours be printed in advance.

(ii) C.I.C. should co-ordinate its activities more extensively with AMGOT and should submit copies of their reports to insure a uniformity of treatment of civilians.

(iii) A lack of sufficient instruction with respect to procedure of requisitioning property caused considerable confusion. .. .


[Contemporary Summary of Views Expressed in Reports From CAO's Attached to the Tactical Units in Eighth Army, Spofford Rpt, ex. 3-A]

1. Talk to the population in extremely short and simple sentences.

2. Inquire from time to time from people on the street how various things are going in the town, as the people on whom the civil affairs officer relies may be unreliable and may try to take advantage of him.

3. Scrutinize all complaints very carefully because complainers are opportunists.

4. Build up the prestige of the local police force as quickly as possible. It is particularly desirable to get into the town early in order to keep them armed and to protect them from the possibilities of insults in the early stages.

5. Irrespective of the confusion adherent [inherent] in the situation, it is of great value to have the personnel well and neatly attired....

13. If it is found that the Chief of an office, such as the police, is corrupt and has to be removed, it is generally true that his subordinates are also corrupt and will have to be removed or closely watched....

22. Don't make promises to the population unless you are sure you can fulfill them....

30. Impress upon the public officials that AMGOT does not come to take over the work of governing, but to supervise and direct the local people in that work....



[Poletti Rpt]

... In my opinion, the provincial seat of government must be strengthened. Functions, previously stemming from Rome, will now have to be centered in the respective provinces....


[Rennell Rpt, 2 Aug 43]

29. The setting up of a civil government has been as rapid as I hoped but would in certain areas, notably in certain parts of 7th Army area, have been more rapid and more effective if my officers had had the full co-operation of formations generally. Formations in both 7th and 8th Armies remain ignorant of the purpose and existence of civil government. I think it is necessary in any future operations for directions to be issued to formations on the subject of civil administration which are brought to the attention of all officers. I remain of the opinion that general directions to all ranks regarding their behavior on occupying a country should be issued before any operation, on the lines of the `Do's and Don't's' which were authorized for issue by you but never issued in 8th Army. It has nevertheless been gratifying to me to find senior formation commanders, when they have since understood why and what a civil administration does, clamouring for more staff in their areas and passing over more and more work to that staff to do in various branches which they had thought to do themselves. I should have been even more gratified had they adopted this attitude earlier.

On 31 July you decided to turn over to me under your direct authority the administration of the Provinces of Syracuse, Ragusa, Agrigento, Trapani, Caltanisetta, as well as the southern part of Catania and the western part of Palermo Provinces. The remainder of the occupied territories, that is the forward areas, remain under the direct control of the G.C.O.'s 7th and 8th Armies.3  . .


[Rpt, Gen Rennell, for August 1943 [hereafter cited as Rennell Rpt], CAD files, 319.1, AMG (8-17-43) (1)]

AMGOT Headquarters established in skeleton form at Syracuse during the last ten days of July was transferred during the first week in August to Palermo, but the complete staff of headquarters was not fully assembled until a fortnight later, owing to delay in the arrival of the last echelon from North Africa. I transferred myself and personnel staff to Palermo arriving, after touring the western provinces, on 7 August. My Deputy had preceded me by a few days. AMGOT Headquarters cannot therefore be said to have started working as the headquarters of a government until the second half of August. The Headquarters, including files, central registers, etc., were started up from nothing, since the planning staff Headquarters and working files at Chrea were concerned with planning and not with government. Moreover, even the personnel of the Chrea nucleus had not lived together as a whole since the end of June, having been dispersed between Algiers and Palermo or used for other purposes during the assault phase. Nevertheless Headquarters officers from the first moment of their arrival in Sicily undertook extensive touring in connection with their work to familiarize themselves and provincial personnel with the problem of government.

The whole staff of AMGOT including provincial personnel was not even remotely complete in the Island until the middle of August, but before that date personnel was already being selected and held in readiness to take over the unoccupied part of Sicily and to prepare parties for operations on the mainland. It was thus necessary, as soon as provincial administration had been set up in areas occupied, to remove and replace officers. This constant ebb and flow of personnel retarded the establishment both of the Headquarters and the provincial administration; it was inevitable if the forward Civil Affairs Officers, with or immediately behind combat formations were to have the necessary experience and be of the right type; but it did not improve


the machine. I have thus been faced in the provincial administration, not only with the necessity of cutting down staff before I could properly do so, but also of constantly replacing experienced by less experienced officers. These are probably the main reasons why the administration has not progressed as quickly as I could have wished in dealing with local problems. These are also the reasons why my SCAO's in the last occupied parts of Sicily have not made as much progress as I, and others, could have wished....


[Financial Div AMGOT, Rpt, May-Nov 43]

2. . . . As operations progressed, the Revenue Section became increasingly engaged in ascertaining the Italian channels through which payments were made, with deciding what salaries and expenses should be approved, and generally with all types of State expenditure. The stage had passed in which it was necessary to give C.A.O.'s wide disbursing authority in order to immediately start the functions of the Italian local governmental machinery. The exigencies of the moment having been met, it became possible to set up controls over governmental expenditures by insuring that proposed disbursements would be regularly reviewed through both Italian and AMGOT channels. It also became possible to inquire into the nature of the various province wide parastatal organizations, with a view either to reviving their activities or checking them off; in the process of imposing systematical control over expenditures, the C.A.O. lost in large measure his disbursing function, these being now performed at the provincial level by the FO. Since the average C.A.O. was inexperienced in financial and accounting matters and was overburdened with tasks more immediately related to public health and safety, the removal of expenditure control from his sphere of activity was also in the interests of more orderly accounting. AMGOT 2020/F dated August 22 . . . instructed F.O.'s and C.A.O.'s on the procedure to be followed in the case of AMFA funds being required to meet cash shortages for expenditures of various sindicati, aziende and enti, and for the payment of state salaries. C.A.O. and F.O.'s were required to obtain full information on the functions, resources, and purposes of the institutions for which an advance was desired, with particulars of estimated expenditures for the area concerned. If the organization and its expenditures were approved by higher authority, an advance would be authorized through the normal

Italian channels at as high a level as possible. In practice, this meant that the advance was to be made to the Ufficio Provinciale del Tesoro whenever possible, any necessary sub-accounts being opened in the R. Tesoreria accounts at the Banco d'Italia to cover the organization concerned.


[Memo, Poletti for SCAO's, 21 Jul 43, Spofford Rpt, ex- 3-A]

1. No more payments of military assistance benefits.

2. No more payments of pensions to army officers even if veterans of last war.

3. Any relief will be given as general relief by commune.

4. Regional state treasurer located at provincial seat shall issue warrants for the payment of all state employees-carabinieri, guardia di finanze, school teachers above rank of elementary school, medical and sanitary officers, custodians and other state civil servants.

5. The postmaster at provincial seat will exercise the power of the Minister of P.T.T. [Post, Telephone, Telegraph] and be held responsible for the functioning of all post offices in his province, including payment of P.T.T. employees, elementary school teachers and also pensions previously paid through post offices.

6. All railway administration shall be centered in Capo Compartimento Ferrovie dello Stato at Palermo. This office will pay salaries and wages of railway employees.

7. All existing provincial and communal administration except to the extent specifically forbidden shall continue.

8. The regional state treasurer located at provincial seat shall assume the provincial obligations of Rome with respect to state grants in aid to:

a. Hospitals, lunatic asylums, orphanages, homes for incurables, old age homes.
b. Scientific institutions.
c. Museums, monuments, and archeological sites.
d. Schools and universities.
e. Special improvement districts like drainage, irrigation.
f. Industrial and utility organizations only if necessary to Allied military effort.

9. The Ammassi and Consorzio system shall continue as presently except that subsidy shall be supplied through the provincial state treasurer, who in turn will be reimbursed by AMGOT.

10. The social security benefits except military family allowances shall continue to be paid and


premiums continue to be collected. AMGOT will assume the immediate cash deficit and such AMGOT funds shall be paid through the central offices of the Istituto di Previdenze Sociale and the Infortuni Lavoro respectively.


[Financial Div AMGOT, Rpt, May-Nov 43]

1. General Administrative Instruction No. 3 . . . stated that after the lifting of the moratorium provided in Proclamation No. 5, all fees, imposts and taxes were to continue to be paid. However no specific instructions were given as to the steps to be taken to reconstruct the Italian revenue machinery. It was found that Italian revenue officials were receiving little help from C.A.O.'s and F.O.'s and that the Italian revenue authorities almost completely lacked the transport necessary to reassemble dispersed offices and personnel and to remove records from damaged buildings.

2. The language difficulties were, as in any foreign operation, considerable, particularly in a technical and specialized subject such as Revenue and one in which there is normally little interaction or knowledge between one country and another. . . . In the early stages it was found that one of the quickest methods of procedure was to obtain the forms used and from these ascertain the work performed by the various officials and their organizations....

3. Since the August bi-monthly tax collections began 10 August, immediate problems arose concerning:

(a) the treatment of contributi sindicati,4  an important source of Fascist funds:
(b) the release of tax moneys from the closed banks....

Thereafter A.M.G. 22 Headquarters dated 13 August . . . and a revised General Order No. 2 . . . were issued. These documents:

(a) ordered the prompt payment of all taxes.
(b) ordered that all taxes were to be paid in cash,
(c) authorized the banks to make transfers from the accounts of Essatori to the Ricevatore Provinciale,
(d) authorized the banks to pay over to the tax collection agencies moneys held by taxpayers on deposit,
(e) abolished contributi sindicati.

4. Another immediate problem arose concerning the granting of collection concessions in view of the abnormal conditions caused by evacuation and bomb damage. The Italian system authorized the Ministry of Finance to grant a "tolleranza" (extension of time for payment) to Essatori and Ricevatori Provinciale in cases in which unforeseen and widespread collection difficulties occurred. A tolleranza had been granted the officials of Palermo commune for the June installment and it was decided to use this device throughout the island, wherever it was necessary. Accordingly under AMGOT/226/Headquarters dated 16 August . . . Finance Officers in the provinces were authorized to agree with the Intendente di Finanza for tolleranza up to 50% to be given by him for August tax payments in heavily bombed and evacuated localities. Authority was later given for the granting of tolleranza for October and December payments....


[Rennell Rpt]

18. The removal and internment of Fascists proceeds. . . . There are now no prefects of preoccupation days; the last of these in Enna was an old civil servant without pronounced leanings towards Fascism: he was removed for incompetence. Replacements have been effected ad interim from vice prefects, mayors, or local personages. Here, as in the replacements of mayors, local opinion has been consulted, including church authorities. The Fascist title of Podesta has been abolished and replaced by that of Sindaco. A limited number of better class Sicilians is being co-opted for administrative work in economic, financial and management posts.


[End A, Fld Rpt 12, Capt David A. Morse, Dir, Labor Sub-Com, Hq AMG, Labor in Sicily From 10 July 1943 to 26 October 1943 [hereafter cited as Morse Rpt], CAD files, 319.1, AMG (8-17-43), sec. 2]

2.... (a) Procurement and Supply of Labor.

i.... In each province the main Fascist trade union office was taken over by the S.C.A.O. and opened as an employment office. The clerical and


executive staffs (except known Fascist leaders who were removed on the spot) who were familiar with the office records, and registration of workers under Fascism, were directed to continue at work under A.M.G. supervision. The public was invited to register for work and the offices were immediately overrun by men, women, and children of all ages who desired employment. Compulsory registration was not required. The problem was not one of procuring sufficient labor, but in finding enough work for the thousands of persons who for the moment were out of employment because of disorganization of trade, industry and commerce. In Palermo City alone, over 1,800 persons were registered for work the first day....

ii. Certain fundamental rules were established for the employment offices. (a) Registration was voluntary. Under Fascism it had been compulsory. (b) Persons were classified for work by skill with full listing of all skills; under Fascism they were classified under one skill and could only work in that classification. (c) Preference in employment to members of the Fascist party was to be abolished. Persons were to be employed on an equal basis regardless of race or creed. (d) Preference for employment was to be given to political prisoners who had opposed Fascism and had been imprisoned by the Fascists for that reason; individuals who had been denied employment opportunities under Fascism because of religion, anti-Fascist activity, or refusal to join the Fascist party; and to heads of families who could show great economic need.


[Ltr, Poletti to McCloy, 2 Aug 43, CAD files, 321 (12-21-43), sec. 2]

... the Army is sold on Civil Affairs. We are all delighted. It is proof of the faith the Secretary and yourself had had in Civil Affairs. . . . . . . I should have said that one reason Civil Affairs has been so good over here is that officers move in immediately behind fighting troops. The minimum lapse occurs. That prevents continuation of looting which always commences the moment Italian troops pull out. . .


[Ltr, Holmes, Chief, MGS, to Hilldring, 18 Aug 43, CAD files, 319.1, AMG (8-17-43) (1), CCS Memo for Info No. 126]

. .. We found in the planning stage that it was somewhat difficult to convince the combat commanders of the necessity of an adequate number of military government officers in the assault and follow-up stages and that it was essential for them to have transportation. Both the Commanders of the Seventh and Eighth Armies, as well as the Commanding General, 15th Army Group, have expressed themselves as now being fully convinced that adequate numbers of officers and vehicles in the earlier stages were essential. As a matter of fact the only criticism received from either Army Commander has been that there were not enough Civil Affairs Officers.



[Rennell Rpt, CCAC Memo for Info No. 5 ]

23. The food situation in Sicily has been the most serious preoccupation of the Administration throughout the period and is still far from solved yet. In theory Sicily should produce about enough grain, beans and other basic foodstuffs for its own requirements. In fact there is probably enough grain in Sicily to supply this agricultural year's needs. But it is improbable that the administration will succeed in feeding Sicily without grain imports. Twenty years of corrupt management have ingrained hoarding and black market practices to an extent which it will take more than a few months of Allied Military Administration to change. In July I raised the price of wheat from 360 lire a quintal to 500 for that month and August, to 450 for September and to 400 for October and thereafter. The results have been disappointing. The harvest was late and somewhat scanty owing to drought; warlike operation and lack of transport delayed collections. The farming population continued to withhold grain in the conviction that the prices, though raised, could not be maintained, and that a further rise would have to be made. Up to date these prices have, however, been maintained and there are a few signs that grain is coming forward to


the collection centres under pressure a little better, but very little better in spite of police measures and the personal effort to collect of all my officers. I think, but I am not sure, that these measures are beginning to have some effect, as is the policy of paying hard cash at the collection centres instead of issuing payment or dues in accordance with Italian practice.

The standard ration was raised to 300 grammes of bread a day plus 40 grammes of pasta. It was, however, not possible to achieve this level in the large towns like Palermo and Catania. In Palermo in particular the ration remained at 150 grammes throughout August. The principal difficulty in the towns had been to move grain in to the mills and bakeries in the absence of trucks and trains. In spite of orders issued by 15th Army Group very little of the seized transport has been returned by Seventh and Eighth Armies to AMGOT for Civil Supply. Palermo and Catania have literally been on a starvation bread ration owing to the inability in which my officers found themselves of handling the wheat they had available outside. In Palermo the situation has now improved by securing a quota of rail freight to bring in grain and the ration of 200 grammes is now available to all ration book holders with virtually no queuing up. There are a number of illicit ration book holders who cannot be eliminated until 1 October, when the new books will be issued.

Some 6,000 tons of stockpiled foodstuffs from North Africa, mainly flour, called forward on the D 15 and D 30 convoys, was much delayed in arrival and instead of providing a small reserve at Palermo and Catania has had to be earmarked and diverted to Messina and Calabria. I am satisfied that with a reserve of grain or flour at strategic points in the Island, I can break the black market and make the producers disgorge grain. I am equally sure that without such a reserve we shall go on living from hand to mouth. The state is not a satisfactory one when large urban centers like Palermo have to live as they have lived for weeks with not even 24 hours reserve of breadstuffs in the town. But the cure, which requires shipping and trucks, is not one which can be applied at any rate so long as the call forward of shipping is in the hands of the Seventh and Eighth Armies, who naturally fill their own requirements first, and so long as virtually all truck transportation remains in the hands of military formations. The food situation at Messina and in Trapani provinces and road/rail communications between Trapani and its normal supply area, Agrigento province, remain seriously interrupted. I am more than doubtful whether it is possible for a civil administration to depend entirely on fighting formations for the services necessary to maintain civil supply. [Further discussion of food supply in ch. XII, below.]


[AMGOT Hq, Rpt, Sep 43, ACC files, I0000/101/501]

79. A start, on an island-wide program for motor transport was made.5 Virtually all operating transport was removed from civilian and AMGOT control by the military shortly after the occupation. Under the orders of 7th and 8th Armies some vehicles were returned to AMGOT and a portion of them were put into operating condition. S.C.A.O.'s of most provinces organized their own motor pools, engaged primarily in the transportation of supplies. The creation of a motor transport subsection at AMGOT Headquarters laid the groundwork for an island wide organization by turning over to Istituto Nazionale Transporti [INT] (the truck and bus subsidiary of the State Railways) certain vehicles and by requisitioning garages and repair shops in Palermo capable of caring for approximately 100 trucks. INT is being used as the agency of AMGOT for operating an island-wide truck service with terminals and garage facilities in the provincial capitals. The motor transport subsection continued the operation of a biweekly bus service throughout the island. .. .

80. A water transport subsection was established under a U.S. Naval officer who was assigned for the purpose. Two schooners were transferred to AMGOT, one of which is a 450ton boat used for water supply for the island of Ustica. Several smaller boats at Trapani were also taken over, which were made available to the S.C.A.O. Trapani to move in grain from Agrigento.


[Financial Div, AMGOT, Rpt, May-Nov 43]

Under normal conditions the banks of Italy depend on the Central Bank (the Banca d'Italia)


for supplies of currency and for emergency credit through loans against Government securities or rediscount of commercial paper. The AMG knew before the invasion of Sicily began, that the Banca d'Italia and local banks held only small stocks of currency (if, indeed they had not destroyed what they had) and that in any case further shipments from Rome would cease. It was for this reason, among others, that AMFA had to be supplied as rapidly and as soon as possible with adequate stocks of some type of currency preferably expressed in terms of lire....

The anticipation proved correct: cash reserves of the Sicilian banks were small, and while the Banca d'Italia branches had in only a few cases followed the instructions to destroy their stocks of currency, there were not over 500 million lire available. To be sure, holdings of currency in the hands of the public were abnormally large (though estimates differed) ; but until the banks were reopened and confidence restored these hoardings were unlikely to come out of hiding. Therefore it was the first task of AMFA, after the minimum needs of the military establishment and of the AMG were taken care of, to accumulate enough AM lire to provide the cash reserves essential to a reopening of the banks. Moreover, it was necessary, in order to carry out this Central Banking function in a proper manner, to enter into credit agreements (or overdraft arrangements) with all banks which felt they needed cash reserves. . . . It was also necessary in view of the inadequacy of civilian transport, to provide trucks and guards to move into the nine chief provincial branches of the Banca di Sicilia (which is the largest bank having a head office and branch network in Sicily, and is being used by AMFA as banking agent) amounts of lire judged to be necessary to meet maximum permitted withdrawals when the banks were allowed to reopen. It should be explained that when AMFA first entered into this credit agreement it was considered necessary, owing to the lack of communications, and for the purpose of building up confidence, to place a 100% cash reserve in each branch of the Banca di Sicilia against AMFA's credit commitments. . . . As a matter of fact, the public reaction to the reopening of the banks was so satisfactory that the banks never needed to draw from AMFA more than a small proportion of the sums to which they were entitled under their credit agreements.

Under the provisions of General Order No. 6, published i September, the Banks in Palermo Province were opened on a restricted withdrawal basis on 6 September, and in all the rest of Sicily on 15 September. During the first few days withdrawals by depositors exceeded new deposits, then the trend was reversed. By about the middle of the month new deposits in Palermo City were 50% above withdrawals. Total credit lines of 1,630,000,000 lire were placed by A.M.F.A. at the disposal of the banks to enable them to meet the 5,000 lire per account withdrawals. At the close of business on 30 September loans to banks against these credit lines totalled only 124,000,000 lire. .. .

A.M.F.A.'s credit lines to banks . . . were restricted to the coverage of withdrawals of deposits. In view of some demand for loans from banks' customers to finance the movements and processing of crops and the reconditioning of mines, it was deemed advisable to offer additional credit to the banks to enable them to make such loans. .. .

The Bank of Sicily has functioned entirely satisfactorily as agency for A.M.F.A., both in connection with the distribution of funds in its branches in all the provincial capitals and Caltagirone, and in carrying other accounts required by A.M.F.A.'s operations....

Toward the end of the month the banking situation was considered such as to justify steps being taken to prepare for the removal of all restrictions on deposit withdrawals and the resumption of normal operations. The date for such action was fixed for approximately 6 October....


[Msg, ID, ASF, to CG, NATO, 15 Aug; 43, CAD Mss; files, CM-OUT 6263]

... Our economy extremely tight due to military demands and War Department cannot support procurement of listed material unless and to the extent clearly essential to military operation. We are doubtful of justification of large quantity of critical material for Sicily. . .


[Memo, Chief Finance Officer, AMGOT, for All Finance Officers, 5 Sep 43, CAD files, 319-1 (8-17-43) (1)]

2. The general principles are that all Italian taxes enforced at the date of occupation should be continued (except the Contributi Sindacati specially abrogated under General Order No. 2), and that the Italian method of collecting taxes should also be continued.

It is realized that many of the taxes are cumbersome, some produce a badly arranged burden,


and some are collected through organizations which have apparently an unnecessary large "rake-off" and could be replaced. It is undesirable, however, to abrogate any particular taxes or to disturb the existing machinery, purely on the local data obtainable in the Island of Sicily, and the above general principles will accordingly be followed.

3. It is important that dislocations in the Italian revenue services should be obviated as soon as possible. This will include the re-centralization of dispersed staffs and the occupation of buildings to replace those permanently damaged. The Intendente and the Ufficio Provinciale del Tesoro should make the best economical arrangements possible. In difficult cases buildings may be requisitioned through the proper channels. . . . Similarly every assistance should be given to Essatori and other revenue collecting agents in bringing in their moneys to the banks or post offices.


(Morse Rpt)

(b) ... Civilians employed by the armed forces . . . presented problems of an emergency nature because the military was at the time the largest single employer of labour on the Island; wage rates paid were not uniform between the various branches of the services; and it was obvious that the official and unofficial army rates of pay were in most cases too high, and in some too low. Wages were not related to the economy of the Island, and in cases where they greatly exceeded prevailing customary rates, were drawing persons away from private and government employment and adding to the spiral of inflation. The lack of an official Armed Forces wage policy and scale caused confusion in the labor market. In view of these circumstances conferences were called by the Labor Section of A.M.G. attended by representatives of the Allied Armies, Navies and Air Forces, and a uniform wage scale was adopted. . . . The scale was promulgated by A.M.G. and issued to all of the branches to be reissued in routing military orders or directives.

The scale became effective 1 October 1943, and included 171 working categories. In addition, it was agreed that periodic joint conferences would be called by A.M.G. for further revision of wages and addition of job classifications. . . . Basic conditions of employment were also established and made part of the wage publication. An effort was made to eliminate the wide discrepancies between wages paid by the military and those prevailing in other fields. It was borne in mind that the scale would establish an Island wide precedent which would eventually be reflected in wages paid to government and private employees. The result was that approximately 50% of the then existing military rates of pay were reduced by L 10 to L 30 per day, while in other cases rates were left unchanged, and in some cases increased. . . . While the uniform scale was not the answer to the wage problem as such, it was of constructive value since it established a uniform scale and policy; stabilized wages and wage procedure; and revised rates to a more economically desirable level....


[Chanler Rpt]

13. It has been found generally on arrival in occupied territory that owing to bombing and other reasons, the judicial authorities had fled from the congested towns and that there has been little or no system of justice in operation. Military Courts have been established at once to deal with offenses against the Armed Forces and a search has quickly found many members of the Italian judiciary willing and able to continue in office.

14. The Italian legal profession had not done well under Fascism. The profession had in the old days been of some standing, but with the Fascist syndicates and Fascist controls, it had sunk to a low level and the judiciary had become little more than an underpaid Government Civil Service, whose every decision had to be considered in the light of whether it would annoy the Fascist leaders. It is obvious that no sound system of justice could exist in such conditions and the older members of the profession who returned to their jobs were quite obviously thankful that the days of subservience to such conditions were over. Each, upon his return, was carefully scrutinized as to his past and his record investigated and, if it was then found that he had tried to do an honest job he was reinstated. Most of the ardent fascist judges, like most other fascist government officials, had fled to the mainland at the time of the invasion. But most of the judiciary had been outstanding in their unwillingness to embrace Fascism and while most of them had to nominally join the party to keep their positions, they had done so unwillingly. Many of the principal leaders of the Bar had actually refused to join the Fascist party at all. The Italian judiciary were informed that a much higher standard of work was expected of them and that the fullest


measure of justice must be administered in the future without thought of politics.

15. Before generally opening Italian Courts, a committee was formed composed of four high Italian judicial officials, the President of the Court of Appeals, the President of the Tribunale, the Procuratore Generale and the Procuratore del Re. This Committee met with the Officer in charge of Italian Courts and the Chief Legal Officer to discuss the various problems relating to the opening of Italian courts. Suggestions were made by them and accepted for simplifying criminal procedure in some respects so that the many persons awaiting trial could be brought to trial more quickly. Also discussions were had regarding personnel of the courts. By 19 August, all criminal courts in Sicily were permitted to reopen under the supervision of AMGOT legal officers. A similar procedure was adopted regarding civil courts and instructions were given to open those courts throughout the Island of Sicily on 31 August. Similarly efforts were made for the reorganization of an independent and democratic Bar Association upon the lines of the earlier association which had been abolished under Fascism. A General Order providing for its reorganization and constitution was issued, and the Association was formed by leading members of the Bar who were known and proven anti-Fascist. One of the great difficulties in connection with the opening of Italian Courts arose from the fact that a large number of court houses had been damaged by bombing and that others were occupied by military organizations. Transportation difficulties also made the trial of cases very difficult, especially during the early phases....


[Chanler, CLO, AMGOT, Rpt for Sep 43, ACC files, 10000/142/381]

5. The work of re-opening courts has been hampered by the destruction of some court buildings and the requisition of others for army use. Moreover, requisition has usually been followed by dispersal of the court records. Whilst the destruction was unavoidable, it is doubted whether requisitioning of such buildings was vital. Requisitioning of court buildings is likely to do more harm than good to the combat forces, by preventing the re-establishment of law and order. It is recommended that an agreement be made, if possible, with Army Headquarters that buildings such as court houses, be exempted from requisition, except in cases of extreme urgency.


[Lt Comdr Malcolm S. MacLean, USNR Liaison, MGS, NAHQ, 3 Feb 44, Report Summarizing Information and Advice Obtained from Major Keagwin, CAO, Enna, Sicily, CAD files, 319.I, AMG (8-17-43), sec. 2]

3(a). The chief problem of MG operations is the selection of personnel and the chief criterion for their selection is their adaptability to the range of circumstances with which Civil Affairs officers are confronted. As examples of this essential adaptability he cited:

(1) The case of one of his officers, an American, a former New York City policeman who, while knowing nothing of civil or electrical engineering, has nevertheless done an excellent job as public utilities officer. He has done so by searching out skilled men among the Sicilians and driving them by cajolery and threats when necessary to find materials, make repairs, and get things going. Thus by using native electricians and much ingenuity he got operating the Enna City electric light plant which has been in disuse for seven years. He completed by mid-November nine of eleven bridges that had been blown up or washed out in the province.

(2) The case of a young lieutenant (American), former employee of the National City Bank, who despite his youth and low rank and inexperience has dealt efficiently with the procurement of tons of wheat, coal, sugar, and olive oil with millions of Allied Military lire; has worked out and got running the distribution, and has been careful and accurate in his accounting.

(3) The case of the former London constable who with one enlisted man has bossed the Carabinieri for the whole province, restored much of the telephone communication system, organized a motor pool including the setting up of a repair garage and the employment of mechanics, and taken charge of the fishing fleet along the south coast.

(4) The case of a mild mannered, gentle, faithful American captain, a lawyer in civilian life, who in the early phase directed the burial of the dead, took care of the wounded soldiers of four nations, wounded and sick civilians; who found a U.S. soldier holding up a group of Carabinieri and robbing them of their watches at the point of a Tommy gun and took the gun away from him and put him under arrest. Now he does a good job as chief judge in the Military Court.

(b) The CAO Enna province has handled the black market as smartly as this observer has


seen it done in any place thus far. He found that salt was selling for 350 lire a kilo. He got in a ton by truck and employed a civilian to sell it for 2 lire a kilo (he having bought it for 2 lire) and thus he broke the black market and made a profit for the military government. The Enna butchers were selling meat at 80 to 120 lire a kilo. He protested and they told him that they could not sell it for less. He sent two trucks to Gela and Arigento and brought back fresh fish bought at 10 lire a kilo, sold at 16 to 20 lire a kilo. Meat dropped to 20 to 30 lire a kilo at once. When the butchers again protested he offered to raise the price of fish and thus the price of meat provided the butchers were willing to take the consequences of his posting a notice that this action was taken because of "the greed and selfishness of the local butchers." No protest has been made since....



[Rennell Rpt, 2 Aug 43]

10. From the very outset the attitude of the population generally has been friendly. In certain areas and on particular occasions the population has been definitely enthusiastic. General Eisenhower's declaration in particular was very well received, had a considerable effect, and in one or two places provoked demonstrations of enthusiasm. . . .

11. Even if full allowance is made for sycophants and the desire to curry favor with the Allies at this juncture, I accept as genuine a very large measure of the anti-Fascist sentiment in Sicily and of genuine relief at its prospective termination. I have no particular comments to record on the issue of Proclamation No. 7 [Defascistization]. The announcement in Proclamation No. I that steps would be taken to dissolve the Fascist Party proved sufficient to set free a substantial volume of criticism of the regime. One prominent person, the Bishop of Noto, in a discussion with me, asserted that it was high time the regime came to an end, adding that in southern Sicily especially there never had been any real following for the Fascist Party where prominent members were distrusted and detested. Every one of my officers has reported in the same vein and this, coupled with the co-operative spirit shown by everyone, with very few individual exceptions, must be held to substantiate the view that the population of occupied Sicily is on the whole really friendly and anti-Fascist.


[Chanler Rpt]

18. Particularly worthy of note is the impression created upon the public by our Courts. Spectators, both laymen and professional, crowded the court rooms, and were outspoken, even to the extent of committing contempt of court by applauding in their praise of the fairness of our procedure. It was a novel sight to most of them to see a judge protecting the rights of the accused, and to see the accused himself permitted to cross examine the prosecution witnesses, call his own witnesses and even testify in his own behalf, in the open courts. It is believed that a profound and lasting impression of the fairness of Anglo-American justice has been created.


[Rennell Rpt]

The Roman Catholic Church authorities have been co-operative and easy to deal with. The Cardinal Archbishop of Palermo in particular through his Chancellor has gone out of his way to provide comment and some information. He is not a persona grata in all sections. He has done some local touring and both he and his bishops have made use of the facilities for transmitting correspondence which my administration has placed at their disposal. The Church authorities have availed themselves to a limited extent within their scanty resources of personnel and premises to undertake elementary instruction of small children. I have heard two sermons to large congregations exhorting the people to obey and accept the Allied Military Government coupled with invective against the Fascist regime. On the other hand, the parish priests generally seem to have been as little helpful as any other Sicilians to my officers in warning them of bad characters within or without the Italian administration, or of doing anything tangible to assist in dealing with black markets. They, as all others in the country, complain of Mafia tendencies, black markets and profiteering, but are unwilling to


help the administration effectively by producing facts.


[Notes, Some Reflections and Experiences of a CAO (Unsigned and Undated), apparently written by a British CAO after the assault phase in Sicily, MTO, HS files, G-5 AFHQ]

One of the first things I did at Nicastro was to get into touch with the Bishop, a rather remarkable old boy of about 79. He whinnies like a nanny goat and is altogether a most attractive person. I explained to him that he would perhaps find my society in too large doses rather too embracing for a man of his years and suggested that he should attach a priest of intelligence to me as a sort of liaison officer. He offered four but I felt enough was as good as a feast and said so. The Parlece Fiere was chosen. He is an elderly and rather bird-like man who keeps one eye semi-closed. He is an excellent man of business and we got on famously. He agreed to use the Church organization throughout the 28 districts to assist my work both by distributing literature and by the use of tactful influence. I on my side agreed to consult the Church on all matters, although not necessarily to accept their views. Also I agreed to pay the utmost outward respect to the Church. For instance I always kiss the ring and attend Mass with the Municipal authorities every Sunday. All work is suspended and we proceed from the Municipio to Church.

I have used the word agreement but it was not so much a hard and fast agreement as the approach to understanding of men who had a common object up to a certain distance. We really, I believe, became friends so that we would sense each other's wishes and were anxious to do so. It is surely very silly not to make friends with the Church. I speak as a non-Catholic because they are the one great organization which stands today if not unshaken at least undestroyed by the catastrophe. We are here for the moment only but La Chiesa will remain a great power in the land long after we have taken ourselves off. The Bishop was not universally loved. The FSS [Field Security Service] told me that this was due to his Fascist tendencies but I later learned that when he 'became Bishop he put a stop to the orgies which annually took place on the feast day of a certain St. Antonio.


[Rpt, Gen Rennell, CCAO Sicily, 8 Aug 43, ACC files, 10000/100/688]

Since my arrival in Sicily, I have to report a substantial change in public sentiment. From being, and adopting the attitude of, whipped dogs or fawning puppies immediately after the landing of the Allied troops, the Sicilians, of all classes, have reacted. They seem to me again to be becoming thinking, emotional and definite human beings.

As a whole they accepted the Allies as liberators. They have not ceased to do so. As a whole they are still friendly and anti-Fascist. They have been perhaps somewhat disillusioned by the behavior of the Allied troops, and this is more marked as I judge in the 8th Army than in the 7th Army area. But they have not as yet displayed resentment. Superficially they are no doubt aware that the advent of the allied troops has not meant a reign of plenty; and I should say that they generally accepted so long as active operations in the island were in progress, that the needs of the troops came before civil requirements. They have been disappointed and impatient at the delay in completing the conquest of the island. But while this is attributed to the German troops in the island, there is probably an undercurrent of feeling that with the numerical preponderance of the Allied troops and their vastly superior equipment, they might have driven the Germans out before. Of what happens in Italy, or hereafter there seems to be little heed. The successful landings of July meant peace and liberation for Sicily.

The "liberation" propaganda and the innate anti-Fascism of the Sicilian has led him to regard himself almost as quasi-Ally. The consequences of not so being treated may be more serious. From an attitude of fawning the Sicilian has begun to ask, and in the larger centers to demand.


[Rennell Rpt]

9. The morale of the population has certainly declined and there is dissatisfaction in the country. The failure of the Allies to secure a reign of plenty, the absence of coal and fertilizers, broken communications, and lack of postal facilities form the subject of a growing volume of complaint at Headquarters and in the provinces. Not a week passes without my receiving letters of complaint that the promises made by radio of food and goods for the occupied countries have not been carried out. One of the latest forms of complaint is that whereas Italy has been promised on the radio 200,000 tons of coal a month, no coal has yet been made available in Sicily after two months of occupation. This complaint is justified. In the present situation I am unable to hold out any hope of fertilizers arriv-


ing in time for the autumn sowing and no chemicals or manufacturing requisites will be available to make Marsala wine or start up the sulphur mines within any reasonable time. I anticipate a growing volume of justifiable complaint for many months; justifiable, that is, inasmuch as we have not lived up to our propaganda.


[Rennell Rpt]

27. . . . I do not find that all my American or British officers are so enthusiastic about the freedom of the press as their antecedents would always suggest, when criticism or comment is directed towards the AMGOT administration.


[Memo, Spofford, for SCAO, Agrigento Province, 18 Aug 43, ACC files, 10000/100/691]

A U.S. patrol reported to the C.C.A.O. that the population of Rivona had complained to the O.C. Patrol that they could not get access to the C.A.O. who only visited the town rarely and then only saw the officials.

The C.A.O. in question . . . has, as you know, been transferred to this Headquarters but if, after investigation, you find the report to be true his successor must be told of it and be warned to contact the people as well as the officials of the area for which he is responsible.


[Rennell Rpt]

12. One of my anxieties already reported has been some recrudescence of Mafia activities. My S.C.A.O.'s and my own sources lead me to believe that the initial impetus to this development was given by the temporary loss of prestige of the Carabinieri as a result of their being disarmed, . . . This has to some extent been remedied, but the harm was done in an interval when the rural population concluded that the Carabinieri as well as Fascism, the two great enemies of the Mafia, would simultaneously disappear. I also fear that in. their exuberance to remove Fascist Podestas and Municipal officials in rural towns, my officers have in certain cases by ignorance of local personalities appointed a number of Mafia "bosses" or allowed such "bosses" to propose suitable malleable substitutes. Here my difficulty resides in the Sicilian Omerta code of honor. I cannot get much information even from the local Carabinieri who in substations inevitably feel that they had better keep their mouths shut and their skins whole if the local AMGOT representative chooses to appoint a Mafioso, lest they be accused by AMGOT of being pro-Fascist. The local Mafiosi who of course had no love for the regime which persecuted the Mafia are naturally not slow in leveling accusations of Fascist sympathies against their own pet enemies.

13. The fact of the matter is that while ordinary civil crime other than black market offenses is at a satisfactory level except in Trapani province and in most provinces has been decreasing, homicide has undoubtedly increased in the provinces reported to be Mafiosa. Many of these homicides are of the Mafia type or bear indications of Mafia antecedents. In these cases arrests are infrequent and evidence unobtainable.. . . The only remedy to this state of affairs lies in the improvement of the Carabinieri morale and organization.


[Rennell Rpt]

5. Four S.C.A.O.'s report some Communist stirrings, the formations of a cell here and there, and a fair amount of propaganda. There have been no further disturbances among unemployed sulphur miners, but I have no doubt that there is a considerable potential element of proletarian Communism or anarchism in these communities which could flare up into disorder and violence.


[Some Reflections and Experiences of a CAO]

... Dr. . . . struck me as a man of genuine political instincts and some personality and the first thought that passed through my mind was that it would be good fun to have him as Podesta. . . . I therefore consulted the Bishop as to whether Dr. would be acceptable from the point of view of the Church. The old man gave me an excellent glass of Curacao and said while he didn't interfere in politics  was an excellent fellow. From my experience of British politics I took it that this meant  was OK by the Chiesa. Therefore I saw Dr. and invited him to become Syndache. About an hour later I received a letter from the Bishop informing me that had been living in sin for a long time and that it would be a cause of great sorrow if he became Syndache without first marrying the lady and would I use my excellent influence in the matter. I went and saw the Parlece and told him I was sorry but had


now offered the job. He told me that the Bishop had not liked to express his real feelings via my interpreter. I said that I would not personally appoint Dr. but that I would hold an election so that it would not seem as if I were putting in a man of doubtful morals. I then advised at luncheon. He gave a roar of somewhat angry laughter and said "This is too bad of Mr. Bishop." He said that he had lived with the woman for 20 years and that she was his wife in the sight of heaven. I replied that the trouble was that this was exactly what she wasn't. He then told me that the husband of the woman was alive and had an unpleasant habit of writing to her from America. He then asked me whether I wished him to commit perjury. This rather put me on the spot and I said that I thought it would be better to have an election, that this would please the people and let me out of appearing as a supporter of loose living. He laughed like hell; said he was sure he would get in and nothing would please him better. Giuseppina Rappa and her friends did not at all like the idea of  and told me that Niccela [sic 1 Nicetera, a wealthy farmer and well-known gambler was much loved by the people. He came and saw me and expressed his willingness to be Podesta and I told him that the election would be at five o'clock next day. The next morning two other candidates appeared on the scene, a gentleman called Ernest Broglia representing the something socialists and a gentleman called Mancuse, who was also of the left. They both struck me as rather unpleasing persons and I felt rather worried. Broglia decided to stand down in order to give Mancuse a better chance. Nicetera the candidate of the right came to see me and said that he had decided to withdraw his candidature which left two only in the field. I sent for Rase and asked him whether-was sure to be elected and he said that he thought so. All my own information was to this effect and I began to feel happier. During the afternoon crowds gathered and there was a good deal of singing. The Chief of Police seemed a little anxious but I am used to crowds and they seemed to me very good humored. At 5:30 precisely I appeared on the Municipio balcony before a crowd of several thousand; the two candidates and their supporters were with me. I received a splendid reception. Nobody listened to my speech but they all cheered and I felt very happy. I eventually got silence and told them that I was going to ask three questions. The first was "Do you want either of these men? If you want some one quite different shout his name and I will make him a candidate." A few names were called but there was obviously no strong feeling for another nominee. I then said all who want Mancuse shout his name. There was some response. I then called on the supporters of to do the same. There was a great roar which could be heard kilometres away. then addressed the people during which period I had withdrawn. . . . The people felt that they were really choosing their own Syndache and made a night of it. felt as proud as if he had been chosen to represent the City of Rome and always begins all his public ordinances with the "Le Dottore-elette per acclamazione dei cittadine di Nicastro...."


[Chanler to Chief, CAD, Rpt, 27 Dec 43, ABC files, 014, HORRIFIED, Govt]

A . . . good impression was created generally by ... activities of Allied Military Government. It is interesting to note that in September there was a riot in the Commune of Floridia, Syracuse Province, which upon investigation was found to have been caused by a rumor that Allied Military Government was going to be withdrawn. The people wanted to prevent the AMG personnel from leaving their commune.



[AMGOT GAI No. 1, 1 May 43, AGO files, AMGOT Plan]

9. In taking over a district or any center, try to preserve the local administration and not try to do everything yourself. Give instructions to the higher Italian officials for them to pass on to their subordinates. If you give orders to subordinates, you will find that the authority of the local administration is so impaired that we might have to take it over ourselves entirely; we have not the personnel for this. Remember that there are other areas in Europe where Civil Affairs personnel will be needed. . . .


[Rennell Rpt]

10. . . . both educated Sicilian and municipal communities alike have done little or nothing to help themselves or us. There is an almost complete absence of any local initiative. The historical reason lies in the centralization of every activity ultimately in Rome. The consequence is that every local matter is referred to the nearest Civil Affairs Officer for action....

11. I am sometimes inclined to think that if AMGOT had had many fewer officers, and been less ambitious, more local initiative might have been secured. As it is, even with my reduced establishment, officers nearly all tend to try to do too much themselves instead of asking the local population to work things out by and for their own account.


[Rennell Rpt]

28. The health of my staff has not been very good: the number of cases of sand-fly fever, malaria, intestinal trouble and fatigue suggests to me the necessity of only employing fit personnel. Much of the sickness has been due to reaction from the fatigue of the first weeks.


[Rennell Rpt]

19. The public health of Sicily continues to be excellent. . . . The welfare section has been mainly occupied in study and plans but progress has been achieved in limited direction. The return of refugees from bombed or dangerous areas has been proceeding gradually throughout the island except in and around Messina. Notably around Syracuse the rehousing of cave dwellers, refugees from Syracuse city, has made good progress and the hygienic conditions of those still in the caves has been notably improved. It has generally not proved possible to prevent the influx of refugees to the larger cities they had abandoned in vast numbers, which has added considerably to urban problems of food, water and fuel. On the other hand, when the attempts of the Italian authorities to carry out provincial orders to stem the tide of reflux proved half hearted, we decided not to take severe measures either with the police or the refugees, since with the advent of autumn it seemed better to face the urban problem than distress in caves and overcrowded villages.


[Memo, Rennell, CCAO, Sicily, for SCAO's, 6 Sep 43, ACC files, 10000/100/693]

I. As the second month of occupation nears completion, there are unmistakable signs that our administration is not as well advanced as it should be at this time....

2. It is my view that such difficulties are dependent or attributable to the failure in most localities of the S.C.A.O.'s and their subordinates to rely sufficiently on the Italian Administration. Ours is a military government of indirect control and it is essential, not only to conserve our personnel but to get the job properly done, that the most competent Italian personnel available should be drawn into the administration and put to work. At this time there should be no vacancies in the office of Syndache in any important commune and candidates for the office of prefect should have been found in most provinces, and submitted to this Headquarters for approval.

3. Italian personnel must, of course, be carefully chosen. However on the basis of the investigation that has already been completed you should be pretty well aware of the reliable elements in your province. A political check of civil servants and office holders by means of a questionnaire is to be commenced shortly of which you will be further advised....

5. It will be necessary in the near future to make further substantial reductions in the administrative personnel in the provinces and possibly to combine the AMGOT personnel for one or more of the provinces in a single group. It is imperative that the responsibility for administrative routine be shifted to the most capable Italian personnel at the earliest possible moment.


[Memo, Rodd, for AMGOT Hq, 31 Aug 43, ACC files, 10000/100/647]

For your information, since my return from Palermo last Sunday I have been visited by the following AMGOT staff:

1 Labour captain


1 Sulphur lieutenant
1 Revenue colonel
1 Prison colonel
1 Police captain
1 Refugee major
1 Yugoslav colonel
1 Fireman captain and 1 fireman lieutenant
1 Infant Welfare captain
1 Legal colonel and 1 Legal major
1 Social Insurance captain and 1 Social Insurance lieutenant
1 Yugoslav diplomat a/d

You will recognize that in addition to the normal and always over-burdened interview time table of a S.C.A.O. whose door is besieged by bishops and mayors and distressed gentlewomen, not to mention his own staff, and the senior Italian officials of the province, this list represents 14 man hours (a minimum average of 1 hour per Headquarters visitor may be assumed) out of a working week of 6o hours.

I might add that in not one single case was any notice of the arrival of these officers givens 6


[ Memo, AMGOT Hq for Rodd, 7 Sep 43, ACC files, 10000/100/647]

It is true that visits of various officers from this office consume time of the S.C.A.O.'s. However, information with respect to the conditions in the Provinces is most necessary, and ultimately, if not immediately, their visits should prove of benefit to you. Much of the work is new to all of us and a great deal of co-operation and patience is required. It is our policy to reduce these visits to a minimum, and now that the initial stage of investigation is passing the volume should fall off. Visiting officers have been ordered to inform the S.C.A.O. relative to their activities in his Province.


[Memo, Rodd for AMGOT Hq, to Sep 43, ACC files, 10000/100/693]

1. I would submit that one of the obstacles to the development of the indirect system in provincial administration is the volume of detailed enquiry and administrative direction which is issued from Headquarters, Palermo.

2. If an Italian organization is scrutinized as closely as the returns required would necessitate, and its procedure is governed by directives as detailed as those received, the officials concerned are bound to get into the habit of referring any action to be taken to the AMGOT officer in charge and not unnaturally feel that it would be unwise to take the responsibility and their reluctance is certainly strengthened by this administrative development.


[Memo, AMGOT Hq for Rodd, 24 Sep 43, ACC files, 10000/100/693]

It is realized that the volume of detailed enquiry and administrative direction issued from this Headquarters probably causes alarm and despondency to S.C.A.O.'s who have inadequate clerical staff and an ever decreasing officer staff. At the start of an administration it is inevitable that there should be a large amount of this type of correspondence, but control is and has been kept on it.

Though close scrutiny and detailed directions at the outset may have the immediate effect described by you, it is considered that they should tend to greater efficiency on the part of Italian officials later on when they have to work on their own to a far greater extent than they do at present.


[Some Reflections and Experiences of a CAO]

So much for Nicastro. When I shut my eyes at night I can still often enough see the people I knew there. Somehow or other, at least in my own imagining, I had come to belong to the place. Since I left Nicastro I had found myself thinking about how they are getting along almost as much as I do about my own folks and friends in England. This is no doubt only a passing matter but it is strange how in quite a short space of time the people and affairs of a small Italian country town can twine themselves around you and become a part of you.



[Msg, CAD to CG, NATO, 24 Jul 43, CAD Msg files, CM-OUT 10261 ]

To assist civilian agencies in making their plans it is requested that the following information be furnished for the Island of Sicily only:

1. The approximate date you contemplate recommending to the CCS that civilian observers enter Sicily preparatory to their assuming such responsibilities for supply, rehabilitation, etc., as may be delegated to them by Allied military government;

2. Your estimate as to which agencies will be invited to send representatives such as Lend-Lease, OFRRO et cetera and their British counterparts.

3. The earliest approximate date you will recommend that civilian agencies should be authorized by you to send full working teams to Sicily.

In the event conditions are such that you do not desire to submit the above estimates at this time statement to that effect is desired.


[Min, 14th Mtg Jt Political and Econ Council, AFHQ, 30 Jul 43, AFHQ, SAC files, Reel 72, Spec]

Mr. Macmillan said that he understood that the question had been raised whether, and if so, at what moment, representatives of civilian agencies should move into Sicily.

General Holmes said that this matter had been under consideration, but he did not see how military government and civilian agencies could usefully be mixed. He thought the treatment of liberated and of enemy territory should be differentiated. In any case it was clear that the activities of N.A.E.B. were confined to North Africa and that if, at any time, N.A.E.B. or an equivalent was set up in Sicily, the view was that the agencies should not function individually, but through a unified organization. It was open to AMGOT to ask for the loan of qualified civilians for specific purposes. He therefore suggested that any move of the kind proposed should be postponed .7

Mr. Macmillan agreed with this point of view. It should be sufficient for the present to obtain the services and advice of qualified individuals for short periods. The staffing of a new N.A.E.B. would be a much more difficult matter.

General Smith said that in his view civilian agencies should not move in until military government came to an end. He proposed that a telegram should be sent to the Combined Chiefs of Staff recording this general view.

The Council agreed with this proposal.


[Msg, Eisenhower to CCS, 2 Aug 43, CAD Msg files, CM-IN 1229]

Directives with regard to military government of Sicily provide that the entire matter of civilian supply, economic developments, et cetera, would be handled by the Allied Military Government and that civilian agencies would not have anything to do with the territory until requested by the C in C. It is assumed that everyone concerned understands that in enemy territory there must be a period of purely Military Government. We can understand the desire of the civilian agencies to be prepared to meet responsibilities which in the future they may be called on to assume. However, the telegrams under reference would appear to be premature and raise certain questions. Is it intended that all territory which we occupy be treated the same? For example, is it proposed that the privileges of Lend Lease be extended to the enemy? It seems to us here that the approach to enemy territory necessarily differs greatly from the approach to liberated friendly territory.

The following observations apply to enemy territory: Our obligation would appear to be to


apply humane treatment and to maintain a good standard of health and subsistence. We should also develop the economic resources, first, for the benefit of our war effort and, second, to make the area self-sufficient as possible in order to save shipping. It is our opinion that the civilian agencies or a team representing civilian agencies should not be called into enemy territory so long as operations continue therein or so long as that territory is used as a base for other operations or until Military Government, that is the suspension of local sovereignty, ends. It is not believed that Military Government and an organized team representing the civilian agencies can be mixed and have efficiency. To do so would duplicate personnel and complicate administration especially with respect to shipping and supply. During the period of Military Government we should like to be able to call on the technical services of any department or agency of either government to provide consultants or advisors on specific problems. These persons, however, should be considered as experts and not as representatives of their departments or agencies.

The date when the civilian agencies may be called on for service as such in Sicily will depend entirely on developments and cannot now be estimated. In all probability they cannot be effectively employed for several months.


[Msg, Marshall to Eisenhower, 7 Aug 43, CAD Msg files, CM-OUT 3075]

Your attention is invited to the President's letter dated 3 June 1943, [ch. IV, sec. 3] "concerning a plan for co-ordinating the economic activities of the U.S. civilian agencies in liberated areas." It is clearly the intention of the President that the operation of civilian agencies in occupied areas, under military control, be initiated at the earliest moment consistent with the military situation....

It is obviously the intention of the President that the economic civilian agencies of the Allied Governments should enter occupied areas prior to the termination of military government if the military situation permits, and it is clearly his opinion that such an arrangement can be made to function efficiently....

The purpose of this message is to bring to your attention the views of the President for your guidance in recommending a program under which civilian agencies will be admitted to participation in economic aspects of rehabilitation of Sicily.


[Msg, Eisenhower to WD, 3o Aug 43, CAD Msg files, CM-IN 23159]

Copy of the President's letter of 3 June to the Secretary of State was furnished by Royce of NAEB. A copy of his letter to the Lend-Lease Administrator of 29 July has now been received as well.

The following represents our ideas on this general subject.

Military government takes over occupied territory immediately and must face the problems of re-establishing law and order, maintaining security of communications, suppressing elements of the population that might interfere with current or future operations, restoring facilities such as water, electric power, transportation and communications, seeing that food is supplied to the civil population. . . . Of necessity during this phase of military occupation, military government must also deal with other economic and financial and to some extent political problems that inevitably arise. . . . However, as soon as the military situation permits, the responsibility for dealing with fundamental, long-term economic, financial, social and political problems in occupied territory should shift to the appropriate agencies of government acting under control of the theater commander pursuant to directives and policies established in the case of an Allied theater, by the two governments. [Here follow the major problems which, in the light of experience in Sicily, seem to require study in preparing for further operations in Italy. Among them, the corporative system and employer and employee relationship, the elimination of Fascist cultural and propaganda institutions, and the price, subsidy, and ration systems.] ♦ ♦ ♦

It is believed that the present state of operations will shortly permit civilian agencies to go into Sicily. It is, therefore, proposed that Mister Sturges, who has been designated Area Director by the Secretary of State, should accompany Governor Lehman at the time of his visit to Sicily and that upon their return to Algiers a plan be submitted to the CCS. . . . Although communications thus far deal only with American civilian agencies, it is presumed that these activities would be on a combined basis. As the military government of Sicily is an integrated Allied organization, it is presumed that activities of civilian agencies will be likewise Allied in character.


[Memo, Col Hammond, Secy, CAD, on a Mtg With Finletter, Spec Asst to Secy of State, 23 Sep 43, ABC files, 334, CCAC, Min, 3d to 57th Mtg]

Mr. Finletter made the following points:

The British are concerned over this entire matter for two reasons-I. The British Government anticipates with considerable alarm the prospect of having thousands of starry-eyed American civilians running loose in Europe, injecting into the picture ideas that might be somewhat contrary to the political doctrines of Britain; and 2. The British Government contemplates with horror the establishment in Washington rather than in London of a combined OFEC. [See above, ch. IV, for establishment of OFEC. ]


[Min, firth Mtg CCAC, 23 Sep 43, ABC files, 334, CCAC, Min, 3d to 57th Mtg]

3. . . . Mr. Harris [British representative on CCAC] stated that the British had no objection to civilians going into Sicily if they went in as individuals and were integrated into the AMG organization and not as an independent team or organization. He stated further that beyond this the British were not entirely clear as to the manner in which civilians and civilian organizations would fit into the military organization and that they did not wish the entry of civilians into Sicily to be considered as a precedent.

Mr. McCloy stated that the War Department is anxious that civilians be admitted into Sicily as soon as it was feasible in accordance with the President's general directive regarding the use of civilian personnel in occupied and liberated areas.

After discussion, the committee agreed:

a. That a cable should be drafted in reply to General Eisenhower's MAT 15 informing him that he has authority from the CCS to permit the entry of individual civilians into Sicily to be integrated with and become a part of the AMG.
b. That it should be made clear in this cable that CCS are not at this stage authorizing the entry into Sicily of any separate civilian organizations either on a combined basis or otherwise, but are merely authorizing the entry of individual civilians who will become part of AMG 8


[Ltr, Wickersham, currently visiting HQ, AMG, to Hildring, 22 Dec 43, CAD files, 319.1, AMG (8-17-43), sec. 2 ]

... It is the greatest relief to tactical commanders and to the civil affairs officers that this is an army job and that other agencies are not allowed to function except under army control. Any other pattern would simply not have worked in the combat phase, or during the period of military necessity. This is due, as I see it, to your work.♦ ♦ ♦


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