BRIGATE ROSSE RED BRIGADE Submitted by: Course: Date: Table of Contents. Introduction… 1. II. History & Ideology… 1 III.
Activities… 2 IV. Strength and Area of Operation… 3 V. Conclusion…
3 VI. Bibliography… 4 Introduction During the 1970’s and 1980’s, great fear had been spread throughout Italy. A group known as the Brigate Rosse, or Red Brigade, had developed and left its mark on the Italian political scene. Fear was commonplace as bomb plots, kneecapping’s, and assassinations became the norm. As we go through this paper, the fascinating yet horrifying story, including the history, ideology, and current activity of the Red Brigade will be told.
History & Ideology The history of the Red Brigade can be traced back to the year 1969. It arose out of the student protest movements of the late 60’s. It was a Marxist-Leninist group whose aim was to separate Italy from the Western Alliance. It borrowed the name, methods, and moral justifications from the earlier Italian Resistance movement during World War II.
It’s ideology advocated violence in the service of class warfare and revolution, and with Italy in political turmoil at the time, the Red Brigades enjoyed a certain degree of support from the Left. When the group first formed, it mostly concentrated on the assassinations and kidnappings of Italian Government members and private-sector targets, such as judges, corporate executives, university professors, and policemen. The idea behind that was to instill fear in the normal working class. That fear would not have been seen had the targets been a head of a company or a prime minister. Very few would have been afraid of that same fate.
The Red Brigade emerged in 1968 in Italy, a time of social and political turbulence around the world. For the Red Brigades, their fight with the Italian state was the continuation of the fight that the Italian Left Wing Resistance waged against Nazi Fascism during the Second World War. Offspring of classic Marxist/Leninists, their fight was ideological, and they feared the resurgence of Fascism in ...
During the years of 1975 to 1981, Italy experienced the worst the group had to offer. These years are affectionately known as the Years of Lead. It is a clear reference to the bullets that killed close to five hundred people during this period. Activities While a civil war was slowly burning throughout Italy, the Red Brigade, causing an entire society to live in fear, dealt out nearly eight thousand terrorist attacks. In addition to the aforementioned private sector targets, the Red Brigade conducted kidnappings and murders on high political targets, as well. In 1978, the Red Brigades kidnapped the former prime minister of Italy, Aldo Moro.
He was held captive for nearly two months, before his body was finally dumped in the heart of Rome. Unfortunately for the Red Brigade, this had an adverse affect on its supporters, and the party quickly lost the support it had enjoyed earlier that decade. This did not stop them, however, as in 1981, Red Brigades operatives managed to kidnap General James Dozier, an American who held a position with NATO in Italy. He was eventually freed in a raid on the Brigades hideout. In 1984, they claimed responsibility for murdering Lemon Hunt, the US chief of the Sinai Multinational Force and Observer Group. Things quickly went downhill for the Red Brigades soon after that.
A severe crackdown on the organization followed, in which most of the group’s leaders were arrested, and in 1984 split into two factions: the Communist Combatant Party and the Union of Combatant Communists. Since 1988, the group has largely been inactive when Italian and French police arrested many of the group’s members. However, Italian leftists claiming ties to the Red Brigades appear to be attempting the revival of the group. In 1996, three individuals in a stolen car fired seven shots and threw a hand grenade into the US Airbase in Avia no. Callers saying they represented the Red Brigades phoned three Italian newspapers in September of that year to claim responsibility for the attack.
With pounding fists and brutal charisma, Benito Mussolini (1883-1945) invoked the myth of a new Roman Empire... and made himself its Caesar. The father of Italian Fascism, Mussolini seized power through a potent combination of terror and persuasion. Promising glory while crushing his enemies, he held Italy firmly in his grasp from 1922 to 1943. Benito Amilcar e Andrea Mussolini, named after the ...
Police captured nine individuals connected with the attack and identified two of them as members of the Red Brigade. In 1999, Massimo D’Antona, a senior Italian Labor Ministry adviser, was shot three times in the chest. A document bearing a familiar five-pointed red star logo, that of the Red Brigades, claimed the responsibility of the shooting in the name of the organization that was thought defunct. Strength and Area of Operation The Red Brigades was based and operated solely in Italy. Some members, it is believed, are probably living clandestinely in other European countries. Back in its heyday in the late 1970’s, the Red Brigades reportedly consisted of around 400 to 500 full time members.
They also enjoyed an active support base of around 200, 000-300, 000. These were men and women whose ties to the organization went back to the student revolutions and had since moved on to take positions in the government and industry. Today the group active strength is only estimated to be around 50 members, with an unknown amount of supporters. Conclusion Today, the Red Brigades is now usually regarded as history in Italy. It enjoyed early success as a terrorist group, killing hundreds and throwing an entire society in constant fear and turmoil.
However, as the targets began to get more political, the support the group once had quickly faded, and eventually spelled the demise for the once powerful faction. Bibliography Giorgio. (1981).
Memoirs of An Italian Terrorist. New York, NY: Carroll & Graf Publishers. Pike, J.
Brigate Rosse Red Brigades. [On-line] Federation of American Scientists. Web site: web Kar mon, E. (2001).
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[On-line] International Policy Institute for Counter-Terrorism. Web site: web ter/. = 36#article Sanction, T. (1999).
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Time Magazine. [On-line] Web site: web.