September 15, 1943

Unlikely to Join Fight Soon
ALLIED HEADQUARTERS, North Africa—It was revealed here yesterday that eighty Italian warships have fled the Axis control and are in the hands of the Allies in Malta and Gibraltar. Additionally, numerous Italian merchant vessels are steaming toward Allied ports. The list of warships in Allied hands included five battleships, one seaplane carrier, eight cruisers, nineteen submarines, twenty-seven destroyers, twelve torpedo boats, six corvettes, one auxiliary ship, and one hospital ship. The Italian vessels are unlikely to join the fight along the Allies anytime soon. The Allies do not have the caliber and type of ammunition to supply the Italian vessels, so industry will either have to retool or the ships will need to wait until their munitions facilities in Turin and Genoa are wrested from the Nazi grip.

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