World War II

Start Free Trial

What is the significance of the invasion of Italy (Italians surrender to Allies, September 1943)?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The Allied invasion of Italy was significant for several reasons. One reason was that the invasion of Italy meant that the Allies were successful with their invasion of North Africa. The Allies wanted to control North Africa before invading Italy. Once the Allies had secured North Africa, they were able...

See
This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Get 48 Hours Free Access

The Allied invasion of Italy was significant for several reasons. One reason was that the invasion of Italy meant that the Allies were successful with their invasion of North Africa. The Allies wanted to control North Africa before invading Italy. Once the Allies had secured North Africa, they were able to invade Italy. It also allowed the Allies to secure the Mediterranean Sea. This showed people back at home in the Allied countries that the Allied plan was working.

Another reason why this invasion was significant was that it got the Allies closer to Germany. The Allies wanted to bomb Germany. By controlling Italy, the Allies were able to begin the bombing of Germany. Planes could fly to and from Italy to bomb southern Germany without having to refuel.

The invasion of Italy also forced Germany to move some of its troops from the Eastern Front to Italy and from northern France to Italy. This was necessary because the Germans didn’t want the Allies so close to Germany. Moving these troops to Italy weakened the German presence in the Soviet Union on the Eastern Front. There also was a belief that the presence of Allied troops in Italy would help the Allies with the invasion of Normandy.

The Allied invasion of Italy was an important event in World War II.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The Italian surrender to the Allies did not have that much of an effect on the war.  The Germans held all the defensive positions in Italy anyway and they were the major problem for the Allies even before the Italians surrendered.

The invasion was significant mostly for the following reasons:

  • It was practice for the D-Day landings, which would be much more important.
  • It boosted morale in the military and at home -- we were doing something to push the enemy back.
  • It opened a second front on the continent of Europe to help take some pressure off the USSR, which had been the only country left fighting Germany (on the ground) since 1940.
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team