NATO's Secret Armies: Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe (Contemporary Security Studies)

March 2, 2021
NATO's Secret Armies: Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe (Contemporary Security Studies)

This fascinating new study shows how the CIA and theBritish secret service, in collaboration with the military allianceNATO and European military secret services, set up a network ofclandestine anti-communist armies in Western Europe after World WarII.These secret soldiers were trained on remote islands in theMediterranean and in unorthodox warfare centres in England and inthe United States by the Green Berets and SAS Special Forces. Thenetwork was armed with explosives, machine guns and high-techcommunication equipment hidden in underground bunkers and secretarms caches in forests and mountain meadows. In some countries thesecret army linked up with right-wing terrorist who in a secret warengaged in political manipulation, harrassement of left wingparties, massacres, coup d'états and torture.Codenamed 'Gladio' ('the sword'), the Italian secret army wasexposed in 1990 by Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti to theItalian Senate, whereupon the press spoke of "The best kept, andmost damaging, political-military secret since World War II"(Observer, 18. November 1990) and observed that "The story seemsstraight from the pages of a political thriller." (The Times,November 19, 1990). Ever since, so-called 'stay-behind' armies ofNATO have also been discovered in France, Spain, Portugal, Germany,Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Denmark, Norway, Sweden,Finland, Switzerland, Austria, Greece and Turkey. They wereinternationally coordinated by the Pentagon and NATO and had theirlast known meeting in the NATO-linked Allied Clandestine Committee(ACC) in Brussels in October 1990.