3rd Blackshirt Division (21 April)
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The 3rd CCNN Division (CCNN standing for Camicie Nere, Black Shirts; also known as 3rd CCNN Division XXI Aprile) was one of the seven Italian Black Shirt militia Divisions (similar to SS in Nazi-Germany), formed to participate in the Second Italo-Abyssinian War against Ethiopia in the mid-1930s. The name 21 Aprile was in honor of the legendary date of the founding of Rome, and also the date of the publication of the Manifesto of the Fascist Intellectuals on 21 April 1925.
Its commander was Generale di Divisione Giacomo Appiotti .
Order of battle (3 October 1935)
- 230th Blackshirts Legion "L'Aquila"
- 230th "L'Aquila" Blackshirts Bn
- 236th " Tre Monti" Blackshirts Bn
- 230th MMG Company
- 230th pack-artillery battery
- 252nd Blackshirts Legion "Acciaiata"
- 252nd "Acciaiata" Blackshirts Battalion
- 256th "Lucano" Blackshirts Battalion
- 252nd MMG Company
- 252nd pack-artillery battery
- 263rd Blackshirts Legion "T.Gulli"
- 263rd "T.Gulli" Blackshirts Battalion
- 264th "Scalfaro" Blackshirts Battalion
- 263rd MMG Company
- 263rd pack-artillery battery
- 3rd Blackshirts MMG Battalion
- 3rd Artillery Bn (65L17 - Army)
- 3rd Special Engineers Coy (mixed Blackshirts and Army)
- 2 x Replacements Battalions
- Additionally the division had a medical section, logistics section, and transport of a pack-mules unit (1600 mules), and a mixed trucks unit (80 light trucks).
- The division took actively part in the Italian war crimes in Ethiopia.
Order of battle (9 December 1940)
- 181. CCNN Legion
- 71. "Manfreda" CCNN Battalion
- 81. "A. di Barbiano" CCNN Battalion
- 102. "Cacciatori del Tevere" CCNN Battalion
- 203. CCNN Legion
- 103. "Clitunno" CCNN Battalion
- 110. "Picena" CCNN Battalion
- 143. "Clino Ricci" CCNN Battalion
- 3. CCNN Anti-tank Company
- 203. CCNN MMG Battalion
- 203. Artillery Regiment
- 203. Mixed Engineer Battalion
- Took part in the invasion of Egypt and was destroyed during the retreat to Libya Dec 1940.
- Ettore Lucas and Giorgio de Vecchi, "Storia delle Unità Combattenti della MVSN 1923-1943", Giovanni Volpe Editore, 1976. pages 63 to 116 plus errata
- George F. Nafziger - Italian Order of Battle: An organizational history of the Italian Army in World War II (3 vol)
- Del Boca, Angelo. Il gas di Mussolini. Il fascismo e la guerra d'Etiopia.
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