- Rodolfo Graziani
Infobox Military Person
11 August 1882– 11 January 1955
Rome, Italy(age 72)
allegiance= (1943 – 1945)
serviceyears=1915 – 1945
Vice Governor of
Governor of Italian Cyrenaica
Italian Somaliland Marshal of Italy
Italian East Africa Viceroyof Italian East Africa
Minister of Defense (RSI)
unit=Italian Tenth Army
Oliver Reedin " Lion of the Desert"
Rodolfo Graziani, Marchese di Neghelli (
August 11, 1882— January 11, 1955), was an officer in the Italian Royal Army (" Regio Esercito") who led military expeditions in Africabefore and during World War II.
Rise to prominence
Rodolfo Graziani was born in
Filettino(near the town of Frosinone) in the Province of Frosinonein the Kingdom of Italy. He served in World War Iand became the youngest colonelin the Italian Royal Army.
In the 1920s, Graziani commanded the Italian forces in
Libya. He was responsible for pacifying the Senussirebels. During this so-called " pacification," he was responsible for the construction of several concentration camps and labor camps, where tens of thousands Libyan prisoners died, if not Killed [ [http://education.guardian.co.uk/higher/humanities/story/0,,512212,00.html Italian atrocities in world war two | Education | The Guardian:# Rory Carroll # The Guardian, # Monday June 25 2001] ] directly by hanging, like Omar Mukhtar, or bullets, then indirectly by starvation or disease. His deeds earned him the nickname "the Butcher of Libya" between the Arabs, but was called by the Italians "the Pacifier of Libya" ("Pacificatore della Libia").
From 1926 to 1930, Graziani was the Vice Governor of
Italian Cyrenaicain Libya. In 1930, he became Governor of Cyrenaica and held this position until 1934 when it was determined that he was needed elsewhere. In 1935, Graziani was made the Governor of Italian Somaliland.
From 1935 to 1936 during the
Second Italo-Abyssinian War, Graziani was the commander of the southern front. His army invaded Ethiopiafrom Italian Somaliland. Graziani's effort was secondary to the main invasion launched from Eritreaby General Emilio De Bonoand then Marshal Pietro Badoglio. It was Badoglio and not Graziani who entered Addis Ababain triumph. But it was the ruthless Graziani who said: "The Ducewill have Ethiopia, with or without the Ethiopians." Addis Ababafell to Badoglio on May 5 1936. Graziani had wanted to reach Hararbefore Badoglio reached Addis Ababa, but failed to do so. Even so, on May 9, Graziani was awarded for his role as commander of the southern front with a promotion to the rank of Marshal of Italy("Maresciallo d'Italia").
After the war, Graziani was made
Viceroyand Governor-Generalof Ethiopia. Graziani survived an assassination attempt on February 19 1937and, in response, directed the bloody repression that followed. He became known as "the Butcher of Ethiopia". [An account of this event, known in Ethiopia as "Yekatit 12", is chapter 14 of Anthony Mockler's "Haile Selassie's War" (New York: Olive Branch, 2003).]
From 1939 to 1941, Graziani was a Chief in the Royal Army's General Staff.
In World War II
At the start of
World War II, Graziani commanded the Italian Tenth Armystationed in Cyrenaicain Italian Libya. He became the Commander-in-Chiefof Italian North Africaand the Governor Generalof Libya after the death of Italo Balbo. Balbo was killed in a friendly fireincident on 28 June 1940.
Initially giving Graziani a deadline of
8 August, Italian dictator Benito Mussoliniordered Graziani to invade Egypt. Graziani expressed doubts about the ability of his largely un-mechanized force to defeat the British and put off the invasion for as long as he could. However, faced with demotion, Graziani ultimately followed orders and elements of the Tenth Army invaded Egypt on 9 September. The Italians made modest gains into Egypt and then prepared a series of fortified camps to defend their positions. In 1941, Graziani resigned his commission after the British counterattacked and the Tenth Army was completely defeated by them during Operation Compass.
25 March 1941, Graziani was replaced by General Italo Gariboldi.
Graziani was the only one of the Italian marshals to remain loyal to Mussolini after
Dino Grandi's Grand Council of Fascismcoup. He was appointed Minister of Defence of the Italian Social Republicand oversaw the mixed Italo-German LXXXXVII "Liguria" Army ("Armee Ligurien").
At the end of the war, Graziani spent a few days in San Vittore prison in Milan before being transferred to Allied control. He was brought back to Africa in Anglo-American custody, staying there until February 1946. Allied forces then felt the danger of assassination or lynching had passed and returned him to
Procidaprison in Italy.
In 1950, a military tribunal sentenced Graziani to prison for a term of 19 years as punishment for his collaboration with the Nazis, but he was released after serving only a few months of the sentence. He died in
Romea few years later in 1955.
* ? - 1918 -- Service in World War I
* 1921-1934 -- Service in Libya
* 1926-1930 -- Vice
Governor-Generalof Italian Cyrenaica
* 1930-1934 -- Governor-General of Italian Cyrenaica
* 1935-1936 -- Governor-General of
* 1936-1937 -- Governor-General and Viceroy of Ethiopia; promoted to
Marshal of Italy
* 1940-1941 --
Commander-in-Chiefof Italian North Africaand Governor-General of Libya
* 1943-1945 -- Minister of Defence for the
Italian Social Republic
* He is related to
Tony Graziani, a former NFL and current Arena Football Leaguequarterback for the Philadelphia Soul.
* He was portrayed by actor
Oliver Reedin the movie " Lion of the Desert".
Frontier Wire (Libya)
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Look at other dictionaries:
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Graziani — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Achille Graziani (1839–1918), italienischer Archäologe Antonio Graziani (1930–2007), italienischer Politiker Ariel Graziani (* 1971), ecuadorianischer Fußballspieler Bonifazio Graziani (1604/05 1664),… … Deutsch Wikipedia
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Graziani — Graziani, Rodolfo, Marchese di Neghelli [ne gɛ ] (seit 1936), italienischer Marschall (seit 1936), * Filettino (Provinz Frosinone) 11. 8. 1882, ✝ Rom 11. 1. 1955; leitete 1921 31 die Rückeroberung Libyens, befehligte im Krieg gegen Äthiopien… … Universal-Lexikon