100. Telegram From the Commanding General, U.S. Army South European Task Force to the Commander in Chief, U.S. Army in Europe 1

P-4-480. Warning sensitive sources and methods involved.

(S-NoForn) Source 916 reported 430th MI DET 23 Jun 64. Information received highly reliable informant, name not given due explosive nature information, that possible coup d’etat in Italy near future. Plan being drafted for national demonstration during next few months by rightist economists and politicians, i.e., liberals, monarchists and members Italian social movements (Movimento Social Italiano) (MSI). Desired result demonstration is to bring to Rome strong groups war veterans, war wounded, ex-prisoners war, etc. under pretext reawakening patriotic feelings Italian people create favorable atmosphere for ending current political trend in Italy and installing new order founded on traditional moral and political values of nation.
(S-NoForn) Individual selected coordinate plans for demonstration is Senator Randolfo Pacciardi, former leader Italian Republican Party, known to oppose current economic and political trend. Funds would be supplied by industrial and agricultural confederations. Appears Pacciardi could count on moral support and collaboration highly placed political rightists, armed forces, national police (Carabinieri) and leaders veterans associations.
(S-NoForn) The MSI agrees with planned demonstration but not in favor Pacciardi due past tenure office Defense Minister and could count on armed forces and Carabinieri. If demonstration should be opposed by counterdemonstration of extreme leftists, Carabinieri would be immediately called to action [garble] by armed forces. Armed forces would then assume law and order maintenance Italy. Local police cannot be counted on because politically controlled. President Segni aware this plan.
(S-NoForn) G2 comments:
Information pertaining to “rightist” plans for a coup d’etat in Italy was forwarded your headquarters by ltr dated 15 July 58 subject coup d’etat Italy (S) and SETAF message P0205 25 Feb 59.
On 14 Feb 59, info was received that an anti-Communist committee had allegedly been formed to ensure that the Communists [Page 199] would not succeed in gaining power in Italy. The committee is reportedly composed of Italian parliamentarians, predominantly Christian Democrat rightists, monarchists and Italian Liberal Party members, as well as Italian general staff officers. Financial backing for the organization is reportedly to come from several well known Italian industrialists.
Most recent information concerning subject is contained OARMA Rome report 2850034564 28 May 64, subject Lt Gen De Lorenzo’s comments on security and political subject, as follows:

“Randolfo Pacciardi’s Democratic Union for the Second Republic was not taken seriously by Italy’s security and military leaders. Pacciardi had some good ideas and was honest and in earnest, but his [omission in the source text]attract all kinds of people and to draw everybody in his movement who had a grudge against the present Italian Republic, from the extreme left to the extreme right. This motley group of people had no political or ideological cohesion; their only common denominator was dissatisfaction with the status quo. Particularly weak and uninfluential were old ex-military officers who had flocked to Pacciardi’s banner. Pacciardi’s movement will end like Giannini’s Qualunquismo of the late 1940’s.” Copy of above cited report is being mailed to your office attn: PDN-CI.

  1. Source: Johnson Library, National Security File, Country File, Italy, Vol. 1. Secret; Noforn. Repeated to the Commander in Chief, U.S. Army, Europe in Paris and to DIA and the Department of State. Printed from the copy sent to the Department of State.