Biography of Rodolfo Graziani (1936-1955)

Military and Italian politician, born in Filettino in 1882 and died in Rome in 1955.

In 1932 it reached the grade of general. At the beginning of the thirties of the twentieth century it was under the command of the Italian troops in Libya. Later as Governor of Somalia, between 1935 and 1936 he/she took part in the campaign of Abyssinia and once this was appointed viceroy of Ethiopia (Abyssinia) in lieu of the general Badoglio. In 1938 he/she was appointed Governor of Italian East Africa. He/She returned to his destiny of Libya in 1939 with the appointment of Supreme Chief of the Italian forces in North Africa. From there started at the beginning of 1940 the offensive against British troops stationed in Egypt, but the continuous defeats and the loss of more than 130,000 soldiers before the British troops commanded by general Wavell, precipitated the German intervention through the Afrika Korps commanded by general Erwin Rommel and Grazziani resigned in 1941.

With the dismissal of Mussolini by the King, a Government whose head was Badoglio, who surrendered to the allies in 1943 armies was formed in Italy. Benito Mussolini , along with some of his followers among them Rodolfo Graziani withdrew to the North of Italy, where under the patronage and protection of the German Army founded the Italian Social Republic. As Minister of Guerra between 1943 and 1945, Graziani was commissioned to organize the army of the Republic mentioned with the remains of Italian units that had remained loyal to Mussolini. In April 1945 the Italian Social Republic surrendered to the allies and Rodolfo Graziani was captured by partisans of the new Italian Government of Rome. In the trials after the end of the second world war Rodolfo Graziani was sentenced to nineteen years in prison, but because of their State of health he/she was amnestied in August 1950. After his release he/she was a prominent leader of the reborn Italian fascist movement until his death, few years later.

His tour as Italian Governor in Libya was reflected in the film El León of the desert, which chronicles the resistance of the various Libyan Arab tribes against the Italian occupation.


WILLIAMSON and Ron VOLSTAD, Gordon: Afrika Korps. Editions RBA, Madrid, 2001.