This fascinating new study shows how the CIA and the British secret service, in collaboration with the military alliance NATO and European military secret services, set up a network of clandestine anti-communist armies in Western Europe after World War II.
These secret soldiers were trained on remote islands in the Mediterranean and in unorthodox warfare centres in England and in the United States by the Green Berets and SAS Special Forces. The network was armed with explosives, machine guns and high-tech communication equipment hidden in underground bunkers and secret arms caches in forests and mountain meadows. In some countries the secret army linked up with right-wing terrorist who in a secret war engaged in political manipulation, harrassement of left wing parties, massacres, coup d'états and torture.
Codenamed 'Gladio' ('the sword'), the Italian secret army was exposed in 1990 by Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti to the Italian Senate, whereupon the press spoke of "The best kept, and most damaging, political-military secret since World War II" (Observer, 18. November 1990) and observed that "The story seems straight from the pages of a political thriller." (The Times, November 19, 1990). Ever since, so-called 'stay-behind' armies of NATO have also been discovered in France, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland, Austria, Greece and Turkey. They were internationally coordinated by the Pentagon and NATO and had their last known meeting in the NATO-linked Allied Clandestine Committee (ACC) in Brussels in October 1990.
About the Author
Daniele Ganser is a Senior Researcher at the Center for Security Studies at the Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich, Switzerland. He studied at Basel University in Switzerland, at Amsterdam University (UVA) in the Netherlands, and at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in England. He has published on the role of the United Nations in the Cuban conflict, Switzerland's path towards the United Nations and Switzerland's position outside the European Union.
Table of Contents
Introduction 1. A Terrorist Attack In Italy 2. A Scandal Shocks Western Europe 3. No Comment From NATO, CIA And MI64. The Secret War In The United Kingdom 5. The Secret War In The United States 6. The Secret War In Italy 7. The Secret War In France 8. The Secret War In Spain 9. The Secret War In Portugal 10. The Secret War In Belgium 11. The Secret War In The Netherlands 12. The Secret War In Luxemburg 13. The Secret War In Denmark 14. The Secret War In Norway 15. The Secret War In Germany 16. The Secret War In Greece 17. The Secret War In Turkey Conclusion
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This path-breaking work by Daniele Ganser, a Senior Researcher at the Center for Security Studies at Zurich¿s Federal Institute of Technology, exposes the secret anti-communist terrorist organisation set up across Europe by the US and British states after World War Two. They created the Gladio network in all 16 NATO member countries and in the neutral nations of Sweden, Finland, Austria and Switzerland. They recruited former SS members as part of Germany¿s network. As Ganser writes, these networks ¿became activists in political causes as a rule and not as an exception.¿ The US and British states used them ¿to manipulate and control the democracies of Western Europe from within, unknown to both European populations and parliaments. This strategy led to terror and fear, as well as to `humiliation and maltreatment of democratic institutions¿.¿ They created and manipulated a terrorist threat, developing a `strategy of tension¿ to strengthen Europe¿s ruling classes. Ganser points out, ¿Sometimes these efforts involved violence, even terrorism, and sometimes the terrorists made use of the very equipment furnished to them for their Cold War function.¿ He observes, ¿The secret armies ¿ were involved in a whole series of terrorist operations and human rights violations that they wrongly blamed on the Communists in order to discredit the left at the polls. The operations always aimed spreading maximum fear among the population and ranged from bomb massacres in trains and market squares (Italy), the use of systematic torture of opponents of the regime (Turkey), the support for right-wing coups d¿etats (Greece and Turkey), to the smashing of opposition groups (Portugal and Spain).¿ The Gladio terrorists massacred 38 people in Turkey in 1977, 491 people in Italy between 1969 and 1980, and 28 people in Belgium in 1983-85. They assisted coups in France in 1958 and 1961, in Greece in 1967 and in Turkey in 1960, 1971 and 1980. They carried out the assassinations of Eduardo Mondlane, the leader of Mozambique¿s national liberation movement, in 1969, and of Aldo Moro, who had been Prime Minister of Italy, in 1978. The USA and Britain thus became state sponsors of terrorism. Ganser concludes, ¿Many of these state-sponsored terrorist operations, as the subsequent cover-ups and fake trials suggest, enjoyed the encouragement and protection of selected highly placed governmental and military officials in Europe and in the United States.¿ As an Italian parliamentary commission reported in 2002, ¿Those massacres, those bombs, those military actions had been organised or promoted or supported by men inside Italian state institutions and, as has been discovered more recently, by men linked to the structures of United States intelligence.¿ The British state still uses the Gladio `strategy of tension¿, exploiting fundamentalist terrorists to increase state powers. For example, MI5 ran Abu Hamza: for ten years they let him recruit and train terrorists for use abroad. Inevitably, some, like the 7/7 London bombers, turned on their hosts. Even now the state protects Hamza, refusing to prosecute him on terrorism charges.
This changes everything...it shatters the myths/lies we've been propagandized with by our own leaders. "Foreign terrorists hate us because we are free"...it would be laughable if it weren't so tragic and if there weren't such a solid history contradicting such non-sensical statements. America today is being subjected to a level of propaganda not seen since Nazi Germany...yes, that's right, since the Nazi regime provided the model for our own "power elites". Perhaps the most striking example is the erasing of the history that Ganser reveals: it is a history that if Americans were aware of it would change their entire perception of the world and our place in it. And even more, it would force us to re-examine our military misadventures. Bottom line, the citizens of the West have been systematically lied-to for the past 50+ years and duped into wars that were not just avoidable, but launched on behalf of other interests...namely banking and military industrial complex interests...and of course, in the interests of empire. Today the Anglo-American Empire is on the move...watch out! And Ganser gives us something of an orientation to its true nature, and provides us with a corrective to the "news" and propaganda peddled by our politicians and media elites. WITHOUT A DOUBT A MUST READ FOR ALL SEEKING AN UNDERSTANDING OF INTERNATIONAL GEO-POLITICS.