Divisão de Infantaria Expedicionãria

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     Brazil was neutral at the beginning of World War II, until German submarines attacked and sank Brazilian merchant ships killing over 1000 civilians. The Brazilian Expeditionary Force (BEF) was created in August 1943 under the command of Major General João Baptista Mascarenhas de Moraes. It consisted of an infantry division, an artillery division, an engineering battalion, a medical battalion, a reconnaissance squadron and other small service units.
     The BEF was shipped to Italy in July 1944, and went into action in September. The units joined the U.S. 5th Army and served with distinction through the North Apennines and Pó Valley campaigns to V-E Day.
     When General Mascarenhas de Moraes returned to Brazil and was made a Marshal in 1946. He served as Chief of Staff during the second Vargas government (1951-1954). He died in 1968.
     On the map the stamp shows the battles in which the BEF participated.

SCN 1891

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