8 September 1943 proved to be a fateful day for the Acqui Division,part of the predominantly Italian force occupying Cefalonia: it was the day the Allies concluded an armistice with Italy. Confusion now reigned between the Italian and German troops stationed on the island. The Italians longed to return peacefully to their homeland, but the Germans - now their enemies - feared that the Italians might use their munitions in a hostile act. As Nazi reinforcements invaded the island, the Italian troops did something extraordinary. Following a democratic referendum involving soldiers of all ranks, rather than surrender to the Germans they elected to fight.