Senate of the Republic XIII Legislature – 246 – President del Senato Nicola Mancino 318a Assembly Seat – Stenographical Account – 17 February 1998

We already reported that German war crimes have been recently discussed at a Conference held at the Italian Senate in Rome. What follows is the English translation of an old intervention by Marco Preioni (Lega Nord) which he brought forward in the Italian Senate on Tuesday 17. February 1998. It is beyond our knowledge which specific follow-up there was from this intervetion.

Excerpt of the original document cited at the Italian Senate

PREIONI (Note: Marco Preioni – Domodossola 1950 – ). – To the Ministers for Defense and the Interior and for the Coordination of Civil Protection.

The original article published by La Stampa, Turin Italy 18.3.1997
and cited in the Italian Senate session

Can the Commission say what the following are military history of the “Nobel Prize” Dario Fo, as resulting from the acts of the in the Army’s archives, and whether the information is true. contained in the following article published in the newspaper “La Stampa” of 18 March 1997, the text of which is set out below.
“Young Swiss researcher “rewrites” the Resistance in Verbano-Cusio-Ossola – In Val Grande four thousand Nazis – Raphael Rues, 29 years old, from Ascona, has conducted a detailed researcch in Italy, Germany and USA. With the “errors” he discovered unpublished photographs and documents – LOCARNO.

More than fifty years after the events, a young Swiss scholar decided to make history by also investigating the other slope. Until now, the Resistance in Verbano-Cusio-Ossola had been reconstructed essentially on partisan documents. Raphael Rues, 29, of Ascona, five languages, studies at the University of Oregon, decided to carry out a search by consulting the German archives and the last protagonists, still alive, of the Republic of Salò. Also extended the field of action in the United States to clarify the role of allied parachute missions in our mountains. The operation saw him engaged for some years in an analytical and scientific reconstruction with the result of correcting a series of errors also tacky, but above all to provide a “chronicle” of events in keeping with reality.

“The German archives had never been off-limits,” says Rues. “Everyone could have consulted them. This is a very rich documentation because the SS-Polizei, or the bulk of the German troops engaged in the occupation and raiding of the Ossola, had a almost maniacal cult of relationships and service relationships. There are also many decorations and commendations received in battle by officers and German soldiers: they are many pieces that allow to faithfully reconstruct the dynamics of their actions”. Someone took it for a nostalgic. “Not at all. My family is a family of socialist traditions and my maternal grandfather has been secretary and the trade union. But as a historian, I feel first and foremost committed to make a correct reconstruction of the facts. Otherwise, what kind of story is it?”

Under his lens, dramatic episodes emerge with precision, such as the battle of Megolo, the raking of the Val Grande, the shooting of the 42 partisans in Fondotoce, the Republic of Ossola and the battle of Finero in which Captain Alfredo Di Dio and the colonel Attilio Moneta fell.

The first result is to see the consistency resized of the Nazi troops who operated in the Ossola and Verbano: “In Val Grande were certainly not 17 thousand as it has always been written, but little more than 4,000. So for the reconquest of the Ossola were engaged 3,500 men. And the famous “Colonna Stamm”, in retreat on April 25th towards Milan, counted at most 700 Italians and Germans”.

Raphael Rues has identified all the commanders: “Characters sometimes of great importance in the SS, coming from the Russian front, involved in
massacres of Jews. For example, the figure of Lieutenant-Colonel Ernst Weiss, which had directed the tragic raking of the Val Grande, has recently been deepened by the American historian Goldhagen which has
published a book on the Holocaust, claiming that many Germans “knew”. A reconstruction that has caused a real shock in Germany. Weiss had already eliminated thousands of Jews in 1942.

The Swiss historian has also reconstructed the number of German and Fascist soldiers killed in the Ossola and Verbano: over 500. Even among
“republics” emerge unsuspected characters: as Dario Fo and Enrico Maria Salerno who was one of the best officers of the Guard Republican national team. Both participated in the reoccupation of the of Cannobio in October 1944. In Masera, instead, Valerio Borghese’s family had lived until November 1943.

Numerous unpublished photographic documents have been recovered. They concern above all the fascist formations and the SS. But, also “double-crossed”. and spies: an undergrowth that found easy ground in chaos and disorder of those years. The most dramatic photo documents the shooting of 15 partisans in Finero, in June 1944: the dead are there on the ground. Around, the German officers and the border soldiers who had constituted the execution platoon.
Article written by Teresio Valsesia”. (4-09654)


Original article published in Italian by La Stampa Turin