Canicattì massacre

The Canicattì massacre (or Canicattì slaughter) was an incident that occurred in Canicattì, Italy following its capture by American forces. During the invasion of Sicily in July 1943, eight unarmed Italian civilians were killed by U.S. troops. The town of Canicattì had already surrendered when U.S. troops entered, following heavy German bombardment during their withdrawal.

Upon arrival, U.S. troops received a report that civilians were looting a bombed factory and filling up buckets with the factory's products - food and liquid soap. At around six o'clock in the evening Lieutenant Colonel George Herbert McCaffrey, the military governor of Palermo, and some military police arrived at the factory. McCaffrey fired into the crowd after it failed to disperse. At least eight civilians, including an eleven-year-old girl, were killed, though the exact number of casualties is uncertain.[1][2]

See also



  1. Giovanni Bartolone, Le altre stragi: Le stragi alleate e tedesche nella Sicilia del 1943-1944 (Italian)
  2. Ezio Costanzo, George Lawrence , The Mafia and the Allies: Sicily 1943 and the Return of the Mafia, Enigma, 2007, p.119

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