The Wehrmacht's trail of destruction
13th August 1943: The US Army Engineers must rebuild bridges and roads across Sicily as the Germans retreat - accomplishing some remarkable engineering
On Sicily the Allies were pushing to completely take the island. The U.S. forces under Patton were moving east across the top of the island towards the port of Messina, whilst the British and Canadians, under Montgomery, were moving up to the same objective. The Germans had now moved to a fighting withdrawal, intent upon preserving their forces intact as far as possible and evacuating them to Italy.
Frequently the Germans, by blowing up a road carved out of the side of a sheer cliff, caused us more trouble than by bridge-blowing. In those instances, it was often impossible to bypass at all, so traffic had to be held up until an emergency bridge could be thrown across the gap.