This savage event, staged as a retributive measure, after an assassination attempt on Marshal Rodolfo Graziani
, Benito Mussolini's viceroy to Italian East Africa, is essentially a half-forgotten one.
Oliver Reed played the part as the Italian General Rodolfo Graziani
In 1937, the Italian viceroy in Ethiopia, General Rodolfo Graziani, retaliated against an assassination attempt on him by Ethopians by ordering the genocide of native civilians, with one of his subordinates (http://books.google.com/books?id=aOZKULYp5FAC&lpg=PP1&pg=PP1&redir_esc=y#v=snippet&q=carte%20blanche&f=false) saying , "Comrades, today is the day when we should show our devotion to our Viceroy by reacting and destroying the Ethiopians for three days.
No park or memorial should be named in honor of Rodolfo Graziani and those who perpetuate it should be stopped from doing so.
Finally, the Vatican cooperated with the Fascist provisions for racial segregation in the Italian empire and objected to General Rodolfo Graziani
's bloody repression of Ethiopians' guerrilla warfare only when the victims happened to be Catholics.
When Mukhtar learned that Mussolini assigned General Rodolfo Graziani
, the butcher of Fez, as the governor of Libya as the attempts of other governors to suppress Libyan insurgencies failed, he knew war was inevitable."They come to us like lions," Mukhtar, smirking, announced before a fellow tribesman added: "And run away like goats." But history sadly claims otherwise; for the goats eventually won and Mukhtar was hung after a mock trial.Lion of the Desert stars Oliver Reed, Rod Steiger, Irene Papas, John Gielgud, Takis Emmanuel, Eleonora Stathopoulou, Rodolfo Bigotti, Ihab Werfali and Anthony Quinn, as Omar Mukhtar, who was 72-years old at the time of his capture.
A mausoleum and park in the village of Affile was dedicated to the memory of Field Marshall Rodolfo Graziani
, known as the "Butcher of Fezzan" and the "Butcher of Ethiopia" for the brutal military campaigns he led in Libya and Ethiopia under the dictatorship of Benito Mussolini.
Pietro Badoglio, the Italian commander in Ethiopia, claimed half the silver Maria Theresa dollars in the Bank of Ethiopia--which enabled him to build a palatial house back home--as well as over a hundred cases of miscellaneous loot, while his successor, Rodolfo Graziani
, carried off over 70 such cases.
Richard O'Connor's spectacularly successful offensive against Marshal Rodolfo Graziani
's Italian Tenth Army in Egypt and eastern Libya (December 9, 1940-March 1941); was compelled to suspend operations to send troops under Gen.