Friday, August 7, 2020

"The Black Carlos": The Story Of Italian Right-Wing Terrorist Stefano Delle Chiaie

Italy crime corruption fascism terrorism assassination politics

Rome, 12 September 2019: Mourners are raising their arms in the Roman salute and singing the hymn of the former neo-fascist organization National Vanguard (Avanguardia Nazionale; AN) while a coffin is carried into the early medieval church San Lorenzo fuori le mura in Rome. Many have come to pay their last respects to their former leader, spiritual father, and the alleged mastermind of transnational right-wing terrorism during the Cold War: Stefano Delle Chiaie, who died just before his 83rd birthday.

Long before right-wing terrorists like Brenton Tarrant even imagined a transnational terrorist network, Stefano Delle Chiaie had successfully established long-lasting contacts and networks between right-wing terrorist groups, military dictatorships and segments of a reactionary conservative milieu. Maurizio Boccacci, a former member of AN, described him as a true “commander of an entire fascist world.” But who was Stefano Delle Chiaie, called the “Black” Carlos by admirers and enemies alike?

Delle Chiaie’s life is shrouded in mystery, turning him into a mythical figure for the radical right. Documents from law enforcement agencies and security services concerning his activities are still rare—not in the least because of his close contacts to the security apparatus of various states. In addition, Delle Chiaie himself helped to create his mystique by giving contradictory interviews to media outlets and parliamentary commissions.

In recent years, however, more information about Delle Chiaie has been declassified. This new evidence offers an opportunity to critically engage with the life of one of the historical leading figures of transnational right-wing terrorism. This is, however, not the only reason why his biography is of particular interest: through the prism of his life we can examine the dynamics of radicalization within the far-right milieu, the entanglement between segments of the state and terrorist groups, and the working mechanism of a global right-wing terrorist network. All these topics are hugely important in order to increase our knowledge of right-wing terrorism as a whole.  (more...)


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