Started 1947 by OSS and Secret Intelligence Service post WW2.
Operation Gladio was initially started as a “stay behind” group in case the Soviets invaded Europe. They would be the resistance fighters behind the lines. They were trained and equipped with cashes of weapons and equipment stashed away just in case. Over time though the “gladiators” were used to do the dirty work for other intelligence agencies via “neo-fascist” groups, former Nazis and facists. Most of the leadership of these neo-fascist groups were members of their host countries military intelligence, special police and former military members.
Exposed in Italy initially in 1990 during a session of parliament there.
“On November 22, 1990, the European Parliament passed a resolution condemning Gladio, requesting full investigations – which have yet to be done – and total dismantlement of these paramilitary structures – which, as of 2005, has not been proven.”-Emphasis my own.
Interesting that as of 2005 still no evidence of Gladio being disbanded. Now if this kind of thing has been going on since the end of WW2 makes you wonder in Gladio has switched from communists to “terrorists” ( as well as 9-11 truthers and other free thinking types).
Im not entirely sure though why so many keep referring to Gladio as “NATO’s secret army” when in the technical sense, NATO really had nothing to do with it and there was only a notional link through ITAC (Intelligence Tactical Assessment Centre) which has a NATO desk. ( Could be that this has changed but I doubt it) Otherwise ITAC would have more to do with Gladio than NATO would in any real sense. Initially run by O.S.S. and later CIA in most of Western Europe and by MI6 in more British influenced countries such as Spain, Portugal, Netherlands and Belgium. NATO did have other stay behind groups trained for starting up resistance movements but the “Gladiators of Operation Gladio” were in a league of their own.
In time many of these groups were used to carry out political assassinations of “leftist” politicians and leaders or anyone else the intelligence agencies wanted to get rid of but still have plausible deniability. Eventually the line between Gladio groups and the right wing groups they used as foot soldiers blurred. Leftist groups went from being spied on and set up through planting stolen weapons on them to being infiltrated and then directing those groups to commit terrorist acts.
Many Gladio groups were given training in weapons, surveillance and explosives and used by intelligence groups for surveillance but also for carrying out false flag operations.
Just a few actions attributed to Gladio groups:
1980 Bologna Train Station –Italy – bombing and massacre
1984 Vielsalm Army Barracks attack in Belgium
1971-1990’s The Baader-Meinhof Gang- allegedly an infiltrated group by “Gladio” operatives in Germany
1982-1985 Brabant Massacres- Belgium
there are tones more but you can find out more on your own.
So far the best documentary out there on Gladio is still the old BBC2 documentary done in 1994.
There is a newer one but has nowhere near the details ( just shows how far our journalistic standards have fallen): NATO’s Secret Armies (2009)
Some other good resources in finding out more about Gladio
Here’s a little something interesting I found from the “Club de Berne” which is a meeting for all of the Gladio participants and was founded by one of the high ranking Italian Gladio chiefs:
Federal Office of Police
“Club de Berne” meeting in Switzerland
Press Release, fedpol, 28.04.2004
The Heads of EU Member States’ security and intelligence services, plus Norway and Switzerland, meet on a regular basis to discuss intelligence and security matters. This group is known as the Club of Berne. It held its most recent meeting on 21 April in Switzerland to discuss implementation of the objectives of the European Council Declaration on Combatting Terrorism following the attacks in Madrid in March.
The meeting concluded that the Counter Terrorist Group (CTG), created by the Club of Berne, should act as the interface between the EU and the Heads of Member States’ security and intelligence services on terrorist matters. The CTG will therefore play a full role in implementing the relevant sections of the European Council Declaration on Combatting Terrorism.
The CTG was formed in September 2001. Since then it has provided threat assessments to key EU policymakers. Those assessments are based on information provided by member services having access to all relevant intelligence. CTG also provides a forum for experts to develop practical collaboration and an understanding of the terrorist threat.
From 1 may 2004, the security and intelligence services of the 10 Accession States will join the CTG as full members.
Contact / questions
Press service fedpol, T +41 31 323 13 10, Contact
Last modification: 28.04.2004
Truth is really stranger than fiction. On another note on of Obama’s cabinet people, Cass Sunstein- Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Obama administration, has called for what he likes to call “cognitive infiltration” of “conspiracy and extremest groups” sounds like Gladio for domestic operations the the good Ole U.S. of A. Don’t believe me? Go ahead and download it here.
Here is a quote( – well paraphrased as it is translated from Italian) from Vincenzo Vinciguerra who was a member of Ordine Nuovo ( New Order) an Italian ne0-fascist group and Gladio group.
“The massacre at Bologna responds, as do all the other massacres, to the logic of the State who no longer knowing how to confront a political enemy resorts to extreme measures of violence attributed to extremists on the Left or Right in order to justify their own actions.” – Vincenzo Vinciguerra