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Preparation: Naval Craft - Submenu
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Preparation - Naval craft

At the beginning of the hostilities Italy was found with a numerous Navy, but, for type of unit and training, little it was prepared for the war that then had to face: as operative capability was still much similar to a typical fleet of the first World war, therefore thought for a diurnal fight with the guns between battleships.

The greater deficiency was the lack of aircraft carriers, and, beyond that, a serious misunderstanding with Aviation.

The main problem was, like always, the money: Italy was, all adding, a young Country, without large economic means; consequently, Navy was been structured on determined choices based on the war hypotheses: the most considered was, at least until 1936, a war against France, even supported from Greece, while it was excluded a war against England. It was totally excluded a hypothesis of war against France and England together. This hypothesis was seen like a case without hope. Nevertheless the foreign politics of Mussolini and the friendship with Germany made evident the possibility of a war in which England could be involved in, in fact in 1938 a plan for the transport of men and supplies in Libya, in sight of a possible conflict with the English forces, was prepared by the Navy headquarters.

The guideline of Italian foreign politics of the time, decidedly anti-British, would have had therefore to modify the planning given to the shipbuilding, but it is right also to recognize that at that point it was too much late to obtain some concrete result before the beginning of the hostilities.

Regia Marina warships in formation

It is then necessary to add that the ships of Italian Navy of 1940 were decidedly of optimal quality under all the aspects, because Italy has a very good tradition of shipbuilding, appreciated also by the foreign countries.

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