Current History

Current History

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Excerpt: the machine gunners of the navy. The duty of defending the approaches along the seacoast was given to the sailors, and that of observing the battlefields on the lagoons to the aviators. The torpedo boats were asked to guarantee the extreme right wing against surprise from the sea. BATTERIES ON THE LAGOONS The artillery employed by the navy in the defense of the lower Piave and of Venice may be divided into three groups: Floating batteries on pontoons, batteries set up on the ground, and armed ships. Most of the floating pontoons came from Monfalcone on the lower Isonzo and from the marine defense of Grado. The crews working these guns had given magnificent proof of their valor during all the battles of the Carso, fighting in the open in almost impossible positions. The sailors suffered great fatigue and difficulties during the retreat in transporting these floating batteries along the waterways to their present position in stormy weather; but still greater were the sacrifices the naval gunners had to undergo in order to transform the intricate canals and muddy ground into solid positions. This life in the midst of swamps is a melancholy one. The officers and men working the guns have to live and sleep inside the pontoons between the depots of powder and projectiles. The tides and currents are continuously displacing the floating batteries, and constant work, day and night, is necessary to maintain the defense. It is due to the Italian sailors to recognize that this gigantic work, so rapidly undertaken, saved Venice and gave the army, its retreat having been accomplished, a strong support on its right wing. They helped to repel all the Hungarian attacks around Zenson. At the side of these floating batteries the British monitors held the bridges which the Austro-Hungarians were obstinately throwing across the new Piave under the fire of their guns, and destroyed them with surprising accuracy. ENEMY BRIDGES DESTROYED When the enemy succeeded more

Product details

  • Paperback
  • 189 x 246 x 8mm | 277g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236732987
  • 9781236732989