On January 22, 1944, six months after the Allied invasion of Sicily, American and British troops swarmed ashore at Anzio, roughly 30 miles south of Rome.

The brainchild of Winston Churchill and dubbed Operation Shingle, the attack caught German troops stationed along the Italian coast largely by surprise; but after the initial onslaught, the Germans dug in. The next four months saw some of the fiercest, most prolonged fighting in World War II’s European Theater, as the Allies battled German troops for control of the region.

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