The italian Frogmen

The Undoing of the 10th

When Mussolini was deposed and imprisoned, Hitler sent his crack troop to free his strange bedfellow. Setting up a new government in German-held Italian territory, Mussolini incredibly continued the war from his headquarters at Saki. Those Italians, who had refused to be a part of what they considered a betrayal, continued to fight against the Allies and against Italy itself, except for the Xth under the command of Valerio Borghese and his youngest frogman, Sergio Denti The latter fought the last battle of the 10th Light Flotilla. Strangely, both men were the product of Fascism.

Aristocrat by birth, Borghese, who studied in London as a young man, was a graduate of the Italian Royal Navy Academy. He supported Mussolini and Fascism and fought for Italy with distinction and honor. He earned many military awards because he was intelligent and courageous. He even designed a daring raid on New York Harbor, which, luckily, never came. During the last days of the war, however, he continued to support Mussolini, antl commanded what was left of the Xth Light Flotilla (the letter X now replaced the digits 101 In this capacity, Borghese kept on fulfilling his duties from his headquarters at La Spezia. Unexpectedly, he was summoned to a meeting with Mussolini at Salo Strangely, Sergio Denti was also asked to be present. The meeting was foreboding. Without the usual bluster, Mussolini thanked Borghese for his service, and Borghese answered that he did it for his country.