The Great Arrival
Most of this generation of Italian immigrants took their first steps on U.S. soil in a place that has now become a legend—Ellis Island. In the 1880s, they numbered 300,000 in the 1890s, 600,000 in the decade after that, more than two million. By 1920, when immigration began to taper off, more than 4 million Italians had come to the United States, and represented more than 10 percent of the nation's foreign-born population.
What brought about this dramatic surge in immigration? The causes are complex, and each hopeful individual or family no doubt had a unique story. By the late 19th century, the peninsula of Italy had finally been brought under one flag, but the land and the people were by no means unified. Decades of internal strife had left a legacy of violence, social chaos, and widespread poverty. The peasants in the primarily poor, mostly rural south of Italy and on the island of Sicily had little hope of improving their lot. Diseases and natural disasters swept through the new nation, but its fledgling government was in no condition to bring aid to the people. As transatlantic transportation became more affordable, and as word of American prosperity came via returning immigrants and U.S. recruiters, Italians found it increasingly difficult to resist the call of "L'America".
This new generation of Italian immigrants was distinctly different in makeup from those that had come before. No longer did the immigrant population consist mostly of Northern Italian artisans and shopkeepers seeking a new market in which to ply their trades. Instead, the vast majority were farmers and laborers looking for a steady source of work—any work. There were a significant number of single men among these immigrants, and many came only to stay a short time. Within five years, between 30 and 50 percent of this generation of immigrants would return home to Italy, where they were known as ritornati.
Those who stayed usually remained in close contact with their family in the old country, and worked hard in order to have money to send back home. In 1896, a government commission on Italian immigration estimated that Italian immigrants sent or took home between $4 million and $30 million each year, and that "the marked increase in the wealth of certain sections of Italy can be traced directly to the money earned in the United States."
Arab Thoughts on the Italian Colonial Wars in Libya
The United States military must begin to gain an appreciation for the nuances, perspectives and history of various guerilla wars of the Middle East. This history defines the region and inspires both friends and adversaries in the region. American military leaders of the 21 st century need to be comfortable with their knowledge of Palestinian fedayeen tactics to the ongoing Iraqi insurgency. Undiscovered Arabic volumes exist that highlights the strategy, guerilla organization, tribal wars, tactics, and operational plans written by Islamist militants, the Arab security chiefs who combat them, as well as historians who analyze a host of terrorist wars, colonial wars, and personalities of the Middle East and North Africa. These Arabic tomes are gems in today’s 21 st century American military environment. This commentary is an exposé of two Libyan historians Dr. Rifaat Abdul-Aziz Said of the Jebel Gharbi University and Mohammed Ahmed al-Tuweer of the April 7 th University. These two acedmics published in 2000, an Arabic book entitled, “Tarikh al-Jihad fee Libya did al-Ghazu al-Italee, 1911-1931” (The history of the Libyan Jihad against the Italian Invasion from 1911-1931). It was published by Markaz al-Hadarah al-Arabiyah (The Center for Arab Civilization) in Cairo, Egypt. Although not every aspect of the book will be covered in this exposé, readers will gain a sense of the Arab view of military history when a handful of Ottoman officers, coupled with charismatic Libyan tribal leaders undertook a two decade long resistance against Italian forces attempting to annex Libya from 1911 to 1931.
The Years before the Italian Annexation of Libya
Italy was a late-comer among European powers for the race for colonies. However by the standards of other European nations, arrive to the realization that the Ottoman Empire was crumbling early and saw a chance to create what the dictator Benito Mussolini would later call Italy’s “Fourth shore,” the annexation of the Ottoman provinces of Tripoli, Cyrenaica, and Fezzan. Italy expected an easy victory against the over indigenous forces and their was the added political pressure ever since Giuseppe Garibaldi unified Italy in 1870, many in power saw it as a necessity to join France and England in establishing colonies. This was part of the concept of Risorgimento that can be translated as "resurgence", "renewal" or "revival." It is similar to the American concept of Manifest Destiny. This sense of Roman resurgence, led Italy to colonial adventures in Ethiopia, Somalia, Eritrea, and Libya during World War I and II.
Before Italian colonization, the Italian government in 1907 pursued a subtle policy of settling ever increasing numbers of Italians in Libya. The book highlights the increase in branches of Banco di Roma, which encouraged and catered to the financial needs of Italian land-holders in Libya. By 1911, when Italy decided to go to war with the Ottoman Empire to annex Libya, Italian investments totaled $35 million which included ports, pier facilities, wheat processing plants, soap factories, ice factories, and agricultural industries centered in Benghazi, Derna, and Tripoli (the same Derna and Tripoli made famous by the U.S. Marines led by 1 st Lieutenant Presley O’Bannon in 1805). In 1901, over 1,700 students were in Italian sponsored schools. It was easy for any great power to fill the void of social and educational services neglected by the Ottoman Empire. Italy provided health services with clinics in the Libya’s main coastal cities.
The pretext used by the Italians to declare war on the Ottomans was the charge that Istanbul was not doing enough to protect Italian interests in Libya. Despite Ottoman moves to rectify any perceived attacks on Italian interests it was of no use, as Rome had made up its mind regarding war. There was little the Ottomans could do except mine harbors, send out torpedo boats and dispatch an Ottoman ship carrying 10,000 rifles, ammo, clothing and military stores under German colors, which arrived Tripoli in late September 1911. The Ottomans followed news of Italian reserve call ups when they decided to arm the Libyan population. So detailed was Ottoman intelligence tracking the call up of Italian soldiers that it decided to respond when Italy announced that males born in 1888 or earlier would be drafted. Libya was the backwater of the Ottoman Empire, it was cut off from Ottoman civilian and military modernization, called the tanzimaat (reforms) that began in 1839 and ended in 1876. At one point, the Ottomans maintained 20,000 regular troops in Libya, but incredibly months before the Italian invasion, Ottoman Prime Minister Haqqi Pasha (the title Pasha is an honorific Ottoman title similar to Lord, i.e. Lord Haqqi), ordered the redeployment of 16,000 troops from Libya to suppress a rebellion in Yemen, and with those forces went arsenals of weapons that ended up not where it was needed to repel the Italians, but eventually in Constantinople. Prime Minister Haqqi Pasha’s options were to redeploy forces to Yemen, either in whole or part, from Beirut or Baghdad, Egypt although nominally an Ottoman province was under a British protectorate since 1882, so the Ottomans could not rely on Cairo. Prime Minister Haqqi would be blamed for leaving the Ottoman provinces of Tripoli, and other Libyan cities undefended. In Libyan history today, Haqqi’s decisions were treasonous. Another blunder of Prime Minister Haqqi was the recall of the popular vali (governor) of Tripoli (Tripoli was the seat of Ottoman rule in Libya and the largest city) Ibrahim Pasha, whose reports to Istanbul about Italian build-ups and intentions since 1907 fell on deaf ears. Mahmoud Nagy Bey (the title Bey is an Ottoman honorific title similar to sir, i.e. Sir Mahmoud Nagy) and Sadek Bey Representatives of Tripoli to the Ottoman court and national assembly warned Ottoman officials and court of the Sultan of Italian intentions towards Tripoli and Fezzan.
Italy’s Military Plans and the Ottoman Lack of Response
The initial plans laid by the Italian General Staff called for an invasion force composed of:
- 34,000 troops
- 6,300 horses and cavalry
- 1,050 troop carriers
- 48 artillery pieces
- 34 mountain artillery pieces
These initial plans were amended to increase Italian troop strength to 100,000 and include biplanes in the invasion force. Facing this force were 4,800 Ottoman regulars with a mixture of antiquated guns, rifles and artillery. The defense of Libya would be hastily prepared and fall on the shoulders of the indigenous population with a few hundred Ottoman officers providing leadership and guidance from 1911 to 1913.
1911-1912: Opening Stages of the Conflict
A month before the war in late September 1911, a cabinet meeting was convened in Constantinople in which War Minister Shawkat (Pasha), who no doubt was influenced by the Prime Minister, declared Tripoli to be lost. The cabinet discussed proposals seeking compensation for an Ottoman withdrawal from Tripoli. This is significant, because only three years later the Ottomans would make the momentous decision to join Germany in a declaration of war against the Triple Entente in World War I. This begs the question how can the Ottoman government be so reckless in 1914, when exactly three years before it was prepared to abandon Libya to the Italians for financial gain? As the Italian Navy approached, the Ottoman War Minister sent a cable to Benghazi, informing forces to withdraw to Libya’s interior and muster tribes for guerilla action. This could be a subject for a future thesis for a War College student.
- 1 October 1911, the Italian fleet left Naples for Tripoli, Libya. The naval task force included heavy cruisers, destroyers, battleships, two liners carrying what would be the first of the 100,000 troops committed in Libya.
- 3 October 1911, Italians shell Tripoli from the sea.
- 4 October 1911, Italians shell Tobruk from the sea, and land troops, it is the first Libyan city to be occupied by the Italians.
- 5 October 1911, after two days of shelling from the sea, the landing of Italian forces in Tripoli begins. Initially they meet little resistance.
- 11 October 1911, based on the Ottoman War Minister’s cable Ottoman Colonel Ahmed Essawi and Sheikh Omar al-Mokhtar, with 1,000 tribal fighters stood 20 kilometers from Benghazi.
- 23 October 1911, street fighting between Libyan guerillas begins and lasts for three days in Tripoli, these battles would be called by the Arabs by the street names and locations within Tripoli in which they occurred. Such as the battles of al-Hani, al-Shatt Street, Abu Malyanah, and Sidi Misri.
- Late October 1911, fighting erupts between Italian forces in the coastal town of Khoms and the indigenous population. Khalil Pasha sends forces into Khoms and looses 1,200 fighters. He alleges the brutality of the fighting and the calls for tribal revenge caused him to come out of Khoms with 4,000 volunteers.
What the Libyans and Ottomans learned from these skirmishes was that the Italians when pressured, retreated into their fortifications, and that machine guns (a foretaste of World War I when machine guns were used in trench warfare) would take a heavy toll on Libyan tribesmen. The Libyan tribes would remain 25 kilometers from Tripoli monitoring the rhythm of the city and Italians and engaged in harassment tactics through 1912. Initially the Italians, between 1911 and 1912, were attacked for their weapons, until deliveries of Mauser rifles arrived from Germany and Constantinople to the port of Berka located in east Libya near Benghazi.
Ottoman and German Officers Organize Libyan Tribal Resistance
In Italy’s Parliament, deputies were divided on the Libyan campaign and parliament was split. Ironically, Benito Mussolini, who less than two decades later would advocate a reconquista (re-conquest) of Libya as fascist dictator, in 1911 was an outspoken critic of the Libyan war as a firebrand journalist. What settled was outlined by Ottoman General Anwar Bey, who outlined an operational objective of containing the Italians in coastal towns and cities and wearing them down with psychological and guerilla operations. Anwar Bey had with him an extraordinary staff that included Mutafa Kemal Bey (later Ataturk, founder of modern Turkey), and Aziz al-Masry (who would be Iraqi Commander-in-Chief under King Feisal I and an ardent Arab nationalist).
Many of these betrayed Ottoman officers would form into the Young Fedayeen Officers, known in the west as the Young Turks, they included not only Mustafa Kemal in Libya, but leaders of this movement like Djemal Pasha and Talaat Pasha. Before the arrival of the Italian forces in 1911, cells led by the Ottoman officers had Libyans infiltrate Italian industry, reconnoiter roads, and take a census of all males able to bear arms in Tripoli and Derna. Some of these reports were sent to Istanbul but ignored.
After 1912: Italians Widen the Conflict with the Ottomans
Frustrated, Rome would widen its strategy, taking the Ottoman possessions of the Dodecanese Islands, and encouraging Albanian and Macedonian independence movements to underline the Ottoman Empire. Italy also attempted temporary blockades of Beirut, Hodeida in Yemen, and the Dardanelles, in an effort to get the Ottomans to sue for peace. The Italians saw the center of gravity in Constantinople instead of within the Libyan tribes themselves. In October 1912, the Ottomans signed a truce with Italy, but the tribal insurgency took on a momentum of its own. Ottoman officers fighting in Libya felt betrayed by the Sultan and some elected to stay and fight on. The tribal insurgency split into two factions by late 1912. One group led by Sheikh Mohammed Farahat al-Zawi argued it was pointless to resist the Italian technological superiority and sought an accommodation with Rome. The other faction led by Suleiman al-Bahrooni, who was an Ottoman delegate representing Tripoli took the jihad to the mountains and deserts. Al-Bahrooni escaped to French Tunisia in 1913, and then to Constantinople. He would return to Libya clandestinely with Turkish officers to stir up the Sanussi Rebellion that would threaten Egypt, and draw in England. By 1914, the Ottomans joined the Germans in declaring war against Britain, Italy and France and saw in stirring up the Libyan Sanussi tribal confederacy a means to divert British forces away from an Ottoman invading army attempting to capture the Suez Canal. Anwar Pasha who has since been recalled from Libya to Constantinople, convinced Ottoman War Minister Shawkat Pasha to undertake clandestine operations in Libya. Upon his arrival into Libya from Egypt, he sent his deputies to Ottoman strongholds in Tobruk, Derna, Benghazi, Misturah, Khoms, and Tripoli. Anwar Pasha organized a command structure around the Ottoman General Nash’at Pasha who became Commander in Chief at the town of Aziziyah. Arab volunteers were trained by Moheiddine Bey and German advisers. Not to different from that way Baron von Steuben trained the American Revolutionary Army in the regular drill of the eighteenth century. The way Anwar Pasha organized the Libyan resistance was:
- Colonel Khalil Muzafar Bey, Commanding with LT Hassan Fahmy as his deputy, organizing hundreds of tribesmen in Jebel Maqrab, in the mountainous regions of Libya.
- At Benghazi, Colonel Aziz al-Masry, commanded with Suleiman al-Askary as his deputy.
- At Tobruk Colonel Shalaby Adham, commanded with Major Nazeem Islam as his deputy.
They would provide the flexibility of using tribal tactics, with regular combat tactics and support one another against Italian forces that venture into valleys, mountains, or the desert. Anwar Pasha would take command of guerilla operations in Derna, his deputy was Nuri Bey and his advisors included Mustafa Kemal as well as select Germans. Colonel Sarkis Rasheed organized a General Staff for Anwar and Nash’at Pashas. They also established armories, weapons repair facilities, a bullet manufacturing facility Ayn Bu Mansur, a village deep in Libya’s interior. The group established guerilla schools that trained 1,000 young boys and 500 young women in various subjects to include guerilla tactics. Their newspaper al-Jihad, provided information on the course of the war and regular pay was established for vounteers of one Gold Sovereign about the size of a five dollar gold piece per volunteer per month.
Anwar Pasha Organizes Libyan Irregulars and Ottoman Trained Regulars
Anwar Pasha knew the bulk of his forces were tribal irregulars and what this volume reveals is that he and his staff devised an organization that was semi-structured along regular military lines. Each camp was composed of a cluster of tents, what is interesting is that each tent had 15 mujaheeds (fighters) from the same tribe, each tent had a regular corporal or sergeant appointed by the tribal sheikh and then trained by the Ottomans in NCO duties. This way the tribal and Ottoman authority was mixed, and the tribes benefited from a trained NCO from their own tribe selected by the tribal elders. In addition tribal elders could be seen providing education as a benefit to the sons of other clan leaders within the tribe. Each tent was tended to by one woman who not only drew provisions and cooked them, but cleaned, mended clothes, and brought water and food on the battlefield while clearing the wounded from the field of conflict. The book notes that about 500 women served in this capacity. In addition, to the monthly gold sovereign, provisions per person per day were assessed at two silver piasters, the equivalent of 50 cents in 1912 dollars. Every 50 fighters has a tribal elder as leader, 150 fighters with their three tribal elders as leaders had over them an Ottoman officer assisted by NCOs. Every tribe was expected to levy a battalion or about 500-1000 fighters that was co-commanded between an Ottoman Colonel or higher and the head of each tribe.
Every family of a tribal member killed in combat was afforded a weekly stipend and free provisions. Tribes fought for each other first, then for loyalty to the Muslim cause, they were also attracted to the Ottoman benefits like regular food, pay, access to horses and donkeys and amazingly regular meals of meat were quite an attraction. As this force was being organized and leading battles to contain Italian forces to the coast, Ahmed Sherief a leader of the Sannussi order (a religious fundamentalist order) bypassed the Egyptian government then controlled by Britain, to appeal to the Sheikhs of Cairo’s al-Azhar Rectory, support the Libyan cleric was able to acquire. The Italians would dominate the coastal cities due to maritime dominance, but their permanent power could not extend beyond the range of naval gunfire.
1913-1915: Italian Forces Expand into Libya’s Interior, the Fezzan
In December 1913 the Italians garrisoned regular forces in the interior of Libya, a region called the Fezzan. However it took Italians until August 1913 before their foothold was established and only in garrison and oasis towns. The Italians by 1915 has several weaknesses to their strategy of subjugating Libya, such as a lack of:
- good intelligence on the Ottomans in Libya, the tribes and German advisors
- understanding of the nuances of the different tribes in Libya
- comprehending how tribal levies worked, how they were supplied and commanded
- protected logistics routes for Italian forces garrisoned on the edge of the Sahara and in Libya’s interior and
- an appreciation for the cumulative effects of Libyan guerilla operations.
Battles fought were at the choosing of the Libyans and urban rebellions were capitalized on by the guerillas. Battles and urban riots included the Busifi Rebellion, the Battle of Wadi Marseet and the Battle of Qurdabiyah. The last battle saw massive Italian losses, and kept Italian forces in towns and villages where they could benefit from massive firepower.
1915-1916: The Sanussi Rebellion, a Religious Movement Re-awakens
Another development of December 1915 began to occur, when a religious rebellion was stirred up by Ottoman and German agents called the Sanussi Rebellion. For several months the Sanussis tied down a combined Anglo-Egyptian force in the Western Desert lasting until March 1916. In that period of time the Egyptian oasis of Siwa was taken and the Egyptian coastal city of Mersa Matruh threatened. Among those captured inciting the rebellion was the Ottoman officer and Arab nationalist Jafar al-Askary. The Anglo-Egyptian force pushed the Sannussis back into Libya, and captured the town of Salum. The British were able to negotiate with the Sanussi leader Ahmed Sherief, and secured an agreement to evacuate Egyptian territory and return the occupied Siwa Oasis abck to Egyptian control. Of note, 145 Egyptians in the Anglo-Egyptian force defected to the Sanussis, the highest ranking member being General Saleh Harb. It was only through sheer luck Ahmed Sherief and his forces escaped an ambush, in the Battle of Bir Tunis, from a British flying armored columns as rain caused sand to turn to mud, and British tanks and trucks could not catch up with the Sanussis. Sherief withdrew to Sidi Barrani and British armor caught up with him there and the British conducted a combined land and sea bombardment, it is in this battle that Colonel Jafar al-Askary surrendered. This defeat changed Ahmed Sherief’s perspective he felt used by Ottoman and German advisors and began hardening his movement into a nationalist one. Ahmed Sherief would spend weeks in the Western Desert town oasis of Jaghbub recovering. The success of Ahmed Sherief in harassing the British in Egypt, caught the notice of the Ottoman Sultan Mohammed V, who had Sherief smuggled by submarine from Libya to Istanbul. He would lay aside his feelings of nationalism temporarily and cooperate with the Ottomans to whip up support for a jihad against the Triple Entente. After World War I he settled in Medina, (located in present day Saudi Arabia) and in 1933 he died in the Prophet’s city of Medina. In March 1918, a German submarine disgorged Prince Uthman Fouad, a relative of the Ottoman Sultan, who replaced Nuri Pasha as Commander of Ottoman Forces in North Africa. With the Prince Fouad were German and Ottoman military advisers. Prince Fuad continued the operational objective of a stalemate between Italian forces in garrison and guerilla forces roaming free and striking at their choosing.
1919-1923: Italian and Libyan Agreement Reached and Broken
By mid-1919, Italy and the Sanussis began what would be a series of agreements were concluded and broken between the Italians and indigenous Libyan mujahideen united by the religious Sanussi order until the arrival of the fascists in 1922. These agreements included:
- Bani Suwani Discussions, April 1919: Began a serious dialogue between the Libyan insurgents and Italians. This set the stage for the promulgation of a Basic Law (Provisional Constitution) in June 1919, and the creation of Tripolitania Republic. The Libyan tribes saw this republic as a step towards creating national independence, while Italy could maintain the façade of maintaining a protectorate in Tripoli.
- Rajma Truce, October 1920.
- Bu-Maryam Agreement, November 1921: This was a significant agreement as it combined Italians and Libyan military camps, at the ratio of 10 Italian to 8 Libyan fighters posted in every military installation.
- Mistarah Conference, created and ratified the autonomous Tripolitania Republic.
Between 1919 and 1923, the Tripolitania Republic formed ministries, a shura (consultative) council, divans and began taking the shape of a government. The book does not discuss who led this republic from the Libyan side, it intimates that the leader of the Sanussi movement represented all Libyan factions. However what evolved was the Tripolitania Republic being a vassal state of Italy, with the then Colonel Rodolfo Graziani (he would rise to Field Marshal in World War II) the real power in this arrangement. Despite the Italian arrangement being so one-sided, the creation of this republic seemed to have calmed violence significantly. However with the rise of the fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, the gradual headway towards establishing a civil society was lost in favor of direct action to once again re-annex Libya.
1923-1931: Mussolini’s Reconquista, Italy Initiates the Second Conquest of Libya
In April 1923, the agreements reached between the Sanussi leadership and Italy were cancelled by the fascist government in Rome. The second phase of Italy’s colonial war began from 1922 to 1931, known as the reconquista (re-conquest). Factors that drove the re-conquest were:
- An Italy that was among the victors of World War I, and the redirection of Italian arms that were bogged down in the war, in places like the Austrian-Italian front, and battles like Caporetto.
- The re-organization, restructuring and re-arming of Italy under the fascist dictator Mussolini.
- Having shared co-command with Libyan forces from 1919 to 1923, there was confidence among the Italian General Staff that they understood the capabilities of the Libyan resistance and could now divert their entire energies at defeating the Libyan insurgents.
- The mujhaideen forces lapsed into internecine tribal fighting and disagreements.
- Italy felt left behind in the talks of imposing a mandatory system on the old Ottoman domains with France and Britain enjoying the lion’s share of the colonial spoils.
Before the formal break between Rome and the Tripolitania Republic, their occurred a series of skirmishes that reinforced Italian confidence they could re-take Libya. The Battle of Qasr Ahmed at Misturah in late January 1922, saw new tactics such as the use of combined air, sea, ground artillery and mechanized cavalry to defeat a mujahideen force.
Rodolfo Graziani (1882-1955), as a General fighting in the North African Deserts in World War II. During the Italian Conquest of Libya he was a key figure in suppressing the Libyan insurgency and was credited with the capture of Shiekh Omar al-Mukhtar.
The Italians led by Rodolfo Graziani, divided their force into between four units, a fixing force of two infantry forces of approximately 1,500 troops supported by about 100 cavalry and 4 artillery batteries. The other two, would consist of a mobile force of two mobile cavalry forces of a mix of 300 horses and mechanized transport each. It also included a light artillery battery and 250 camel corps. The camels although slow was the only way to pursue insurgents into the Sahara. Supporting this force was the battleship Roma (for coastal engagements) and biplanes that enveloped the mobile Libyan mujahideen force. The Italians were able to concentrate forces such as February 1923, when 8,000 Italian forces supported by air bombers, reconnaissance and aerial machine guns, were concentrated against 800 guerillas, and the Libyan force was decimated. From 1923 to 1924, the Italians used envelopment to clear coastal towns, and from 1924 to 1928 they subjugated Libya’s interior, leading to the capitulation of Mohammed Rida al-Sanussi. From 1929 to 1931, the interior Fezzan province that borders modern day Chad was pacified. No longer were the Italians restricted to garrison but were now on the offensive.
Sheikh Omar al-Mukhtar: Rebel Leader, Martyr and Arab Military Hero
The isolation of Omar al-Mukhtar, among the most charismatic of the Libyan mujhaideen leaders, represents not only the final phase of the Libyan resistance to Italy, but also a phase that isolated the Libyan populace from their Italian occupiers. The Italian strategy, in late 1930, was to cut off Mukhtar from his people, and his tribe. They accomplished this partly by placing a good portion of the Jebel al-Akhdar (Green Mountain) region (Libya’s north eastern region bordering Egypt), and its villages in concentration camps. So effective were the concentration camps that livestock depleted, from 1.3 million heads in 1910, to under 140,000 heads in 1933. The concentration camps, though tactically effective, caused the death of thousands of Libyan families, who were nomadic and not used to confinement. It served to cause long-term alienation, and was seared not only in Libya’s collective memory, but the Arab world as a whole. The Italians placed logistical centers in the open desert to attract guerillas and entice them to attack bringing them out in the open for a rapid reaction force that included air support. The Italians also built a 300 kilometer wire along the Egyptian-Libyan border from the coast in Bordiyah to the oasis town of Jaghbub. The Graziani Line was reinforced with three central defense forts, six smaller outposts, and the line had three airstrips dedicated to it with four planes each. It took over 8,000 troops to man the line, with 200 trucks and 2,500 laborers to build and maintain the fence. Ferries shipped supplies and troops from Italy and the major Libyan cities of Benghazi to and Tripoli to Bordiah.
Photo taken of Libyan Resistance Leader Omar Mukhtar, a Quranic teacher who understood tribal balances and went on to frustrate Italian forces from 1911 to 1931. This photo was taken before his execution by the Italians in late 1931.
Omar al-Mukhtar was able to sustain a resistance force in the Jebel al-Akhdar (Green Mountain) region and project it in other areas of Libya from 1911 to 1931 because of:
- Unity of Command: Mukhtar’s charisma and his ability to combine a deep religious understanding leading him to settle differences among tribes gave him much credibility. It helped that he was also a Quranic teacher in which the children of many tribesmen learn from. He was reputed to be an kind and warm teacher.
- Mukhtar trained tribal forces in guerilla tactics, he paid attention to logitics, medical and acquired ammo and guns for the tribes.
- The tribes came almost exclusively from Libya’s central region, a more homogenous group than in Libya’s northern coastal tribes.
- Mukhtar maximized Libya’s numerous smuggling routes into Egypt and back to supplement war income, import supplies, and as a venue of escape from pursuing Italian forces.
- Mukhtar took Islamic donations seriously, personally signing each receipt for the Zakat (obligatory Muslim alms tax) that was now levied on each village and directed to the war effort against the Italians. There was no double taxing of villages with those possessing a receipt from Mukhtar for that year.
- Mukhtar levied a tariff on traffic between Egypt and Libya to supplement the war income.
The Italians building the Graziani Line seriously impaired the reliance Mukhtar had on capitalizing on the Egyptian-Libyan border both tactically and economically. The Italians captured Mukhtar in an ambush in which he was cornered, injured and had his horse shot from under him. After a sham trial by the Italians, he was executed by public hanging at the concentration camp at Solloquon, where his followers were held. With the death of Mukhtar the Libyan resistance collapsed and Libya became a colony until
Future American military leaders must begin an immersion in the Arab accounts of key aspects of military history. As the United States increases its engagement in the Middle East understanding the region’s history will help in the constructive interchange between the United States and its friends in the Arab world. The Arab perspective of the Italian colonial wars in Libya, are relevant as they demonstrate how for instance Ottoman officers were able to improvise a tribal force with regular troops and tactics. Understanding the details of this history undermines an al-Qaida ally the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), because the Libyan resistance to Italy drew down when they were able to declare their own autonomous republic (the Tripolitania Republic), it was only after the fascists broke their agreements in 1922 that the guerilla war started again in force. They understood the Quranic injunction of ceasing jihad against an oppressor and not transgress the bounds set forth by God, something al-Qaida does not acknowledge in their ideological diatribe and selective reading of the Quran. Omar al-Mukhtar, the Sanussi Rebellion, and Libyan resistance to Italy never included the tactic of suicide and were directed at Italian forces, unlike the LIFG and al-Qaida that praise, encourage and employ suicide as a tactic today. The LIFG and their al-Qaida and even the Taliban were amateurs when it came to cultivating tribal alliances. Finally, Ahmed Sherief unlike al-Qaida was willing to accept German help to combat the Italians. Usama Bin Laden did not show the same level of realism in strategy in his so-called jihad. Omar al-Mukhtar used his skill as an arbiter and schoolteacher to influence many Libyan tribes in his sector to accept his leadership. Today the LIFG is split between those who wish to transform it into a political Islamist party, one of among many, and those who wish to continue violent direct action. The struggle will be determined in part by a better understanding of Islamic history generally, and Libyan history specifically.
Another lesson to be learned is Italy’s insistence on negotiating with the Ottomans, and not capitalizing on talks with the Ottomans and the local Libyan tribes. It took the Italians over a decade to find the right tactical response to the Libyan insurgency, developing a war of maneuver with fixed and flying columns, the use of airpower and naval gunfire support that offered Colonel Graziani maneuver and the ability to concentrate firepower on a mobile force. In addition, it gave Italian forces the ability to take the battle into insurgent territory.
American military planners and our Arab allies must reclaim and discuss the details of Arab colonial wars, to prevent any Islamist militant group from expropriating this history and twisting it. It is vital that the United States realizes that we are in a war between the constructive and destructive interpretation of Middle Eastern history and theology. Learning from Arabic books can give us the strategic and tactical edge. The authors of this commentary dream of American war colleges, military academy, and NCO academy classes that have concentrations in Islam, Islamist Militant Theory, and Arab Ways of Warfare that highlight the Libyan-Italian War among other wars of significance to the region. This is what the 21 st century American military professional must now master as we engage in the Global War on Terrorism. For further study of the Italian colonial wars in Libya read the out-of-print, “Fourth Shore: The Italian Colonization of Libya,” by Claudio G. Segre (University of Chicago Press, 1974) and watch the late Moustapha Akkad’s “Lion of the Desert,” a movie made in 1981 about Omar al-Mukhtar. After you have read and watched this film, read “Italo-Turkish Diplomacy and the War Over Libya” by Timothy Childs (Brill Academic Publishers, 1997). One final thought, to demonstrate the example of Islamist militants murdering Arab and Muslim creativity, among the dozens of Arabs killed in the 2005 Amman Hotel Bombings, among them was Moustapha Akkad and his daughter, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi took credit for these bombings.
Italy and Libyan oil in WWII
During WWII, the European Axis powers primarily relied on the Romanian oil fields to fuel their armies. They suffered massive losses when the Allies bombed the hell out of said oil fields.
However, the Axis had one huge oil reserve that was right under their noses and never even knew about: the Italian colony of Libya. In modern times, much of Libya's economy revolves around the fact that it is a large oil exporter.
So let's say in 1936 or sometime around that (but before the invasion of Poland), significant reserves are found by the Italians. How does this change the North African front, as well as the European war in general, with the main Axis supply of oil coming from Libya?
the British would keep operation compass and through the Italians out of all of Libya in feb 1941.
the Italians had a relatively huge army, the British a very small force. the decision to call of compass in feb 1941 was a poor one. given the oil this would not have happened.
remember almost all the axis decision making was on the basis it would be a short war,
the Italians had much much larger force than the British in north africa, they were quire prickly and did not want German help, only the complete disaster could have made them ask for help. At the start of operation compass there was no reason for the Italians to suspect just how badly them would be whipped by a much smaller force. they did start urgently requesting German help once the defats started rolling in, but if the British had not called off the offensive nothing would have arrived in time to save the Italians.
the germans were totally dependant on the Italians to operate in North Africa, they would only operate in here after the Italians had been shown to be hopeless outclassed and massively defeated.
Italians requested help on ?? not sure around the fall bardia 5 jan
hitler issues directive on jan 11 1941
german high command issues orders (after planning) feb 6 1941
rommel arrived 12th of feb 1941
in 2 months despite being outnumbered 5:1 the British western dearest force under O'Connor destroyed the Italian 10th Army.
for a quick german intervention there would have to be a very quick response to Italian request for help, in real life it was a panicked desperate plea, the oil would not make it much more urgent, Germany was committed to Russia and that was consuming all their attention.
THE LEGACY OF FASCIST COLONIAL RACIAL POLICY
The greatest legacy of Italian racial policy in its colonies was the rise of anti-Semitism in Italy. Prior to the imposition of Fascist racial policy, there was little anti-Semitism in Italy, and certainly nothing like the hatred of Jews present in Germany. There were indeed many Jewish Fascists, and many anti-Zionist Italian Jews. In 1911 the mayor of Rome was Jewish, and many Italian prime ministers were of Jewish ancestry, as were many senators, professors, and war heroes. Italy gave sanctuary to Jews expelled from Russia and Germany. Alfred Rosenberg, the Nazi racial theorist, even denounced what he called the “Judeo-Fascist regime” located in “world-polluting Rome.”
Yet Italy’s colonization in Africa began to draw distinctions between people of different races. Italians began to think of themselves as somehow different from colonized Africans and Arabs, and Fascist doctrine urged them to think themselves superior to the people they had colonized. Allying racism with nationalism and national identity, the Fascist Party motivated Italians to also think of ethnicity, rather than religion or culture, as what separated them from others, thus leading to increasing anti-Semitism in Italy. Though never urgently proactive in attacking Jews as Germans had been, Italians began to see Jews as foreign and alien.
Italy has not yet confronted its colonial past, and issues of racism and anti-Semitism are not commonly discussed and analyzed in the country. Italian colonialism in Africa, motivated largely by the desire to enhance the historic glory of Italy and to help Italy find its “place in the sun” along with other colonial powers, forced Italians to think about racial difference, and many Italians came to accept racial difference to some degree, even though they may have treated their colonial subjects well.
'It Was As if We Weren’t Human.' Inside the Modern Slave Trade Trapping African Migrants
B y the time his Libyan captors branded his face, Sunday Iabarot had already run away twice and had been sold three times.The gnarled scar that covers most of the left side of his face appears to show a crude number 3. His jailer carved it into his cheek with a fire-heated knife, cutting and cauterizing at the same time.
Iabarot left Nigeria in February 2016 with a plan to head northward and buy passage on a smuggler&rsquos boat destined for Europe, where he had heard from friends on Facebook that jobs were plentiful. The journey of more than 2,500 miles would take him across the trackless desert plains of Niger and through the lawless tribal lands of southern Libya before depositing him at the southern shore of the Mediterranean Sea. He never made it. Instead, he was captured the moment he arrived in Libya, then sold to armed men who kept a stable of African migrants they exploited for labor and ransom.
The brand on his face, he says, was both punishment and a mark of identification. Fourteen other men who attempted to escape the fetid warehouse where they had been held as captive labor in Bani Walid, Libya, for several months in 2017 were similarly scarred, though the symbols differed. Iabarot, who is illiterate, wasn&rsquot sure if they were numbers or letters or merely the twisted doodles of deranged men who saw their black captives as little more than livestock to be bought and sold. &ldquoIt was as if we weren&rsquot human,&rdquo the 32-year-old from Benin City, Nigeria, tells TIME.
Iabarot is among an estimated 650,000 men and women who have crossed the Sahara over the past five years dreaming of a better life in Europe. Some are fleeing war and persecution. Others, like Iabarot, are leaving villages where economic dysfunction and erratic rainfall make it impossible to find work or even enough to eat. To make the harrowing journey, they enlist the services of trans-Saharan smugglers who profit by augmenting their truckloads of weapons, drugs and other contraband goods with human cargo.
But along the way, tens of thousands like Iabarot are finding themselves treated not just as cargo but as chattel and trapped in a terrifying cycle of extortion, imprisonment, forced labor and prostitution, according to estimates by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime. &ldquoThey are not only facing inhuman treatment. They are being sold from one trafficker to another,&rdquo says Carlotta Sami, southern European regional spokesperson for UNHCR, the U.N. refugee agency. Essentially, they are slaves: human beings who have been reduced to being possessions with a fixed value, based on assessments of the kind of income they can accrue to their owners as targets for extortion, as unpaid labor or&mdashas is often the case with women&mdashprostitutes.
Slavery may seem like a relic of history. But according to the U.N.&rsquos International Labor Organization (ILO), there are more than three times as many people in forced servitude today as were captured and sold during the 350-year span of the transatlantic slave trade. What the ILO calls &ldquothe new slavery&rdquo takes in 25 million people in debt bondage and 15 million in forced marriage. As an illicit industry, it is one of the world&rsquos most lucrative, earning criminal networks $150 billion a year, just behind drug smuggling and weapons trafficking. &ldquoModern slavery is far and away more profitable now than at any point in human history,&rdquo says Siddharth Kara, an economist at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy.
The corridor from Africa&rsquos most populous country to its northern Mediterranean shores has proved especially lucrative. As conflict, climate change and lack of opportunity push increasing numbers of people across borders, draconian E.U. policies designed to curb migration funnel them into the hands of modern-day slave drivers. The trade might be most visible in Libya, where aid organizations and journalists have documented actual slave auctions. But now it is seeping into southern Europe too&mdashin particular Italy, where vulnerable migrants are being forced to toil unpaid in the fields picking tomatoes, olives and citrus fruits and trafficked into prostitution rings.
&ldquoWe no longer need slavers going into Africa to capture their quarry,&rdquo says Aboubakar Soumahoro, a union representative who came to Italy from Ivory Coast 17 years ago with the hope of finding a better life. &ldquoThe rope of desperation has replaced their iron chains. Now Africans are sending themselves to Europe and becoming slaves in the process.&rdquo
When Iabarot reached Libya&rsquos southern border, he met a seemingly friendly taxi driver who offered to drive him to the capital city, Tripoli, for free. Instead, he was sold to a &ldquowhite Libyan,&rdquo or Arab, for $200. He was forced to work off his &ldquodebt&rdquo on a construction site, a pattern that repeated each time he was sold and resold. &ldquoIf you work hard, you get bread,&rdquo he tells TIME from the darkened room of an abandoned hotel in Benin City that the Nigerian government is using to house human trafficking victims rescued from Libya. &ldquoIf you refuse to work, you are beaten. If you run away and get caught …&rdquo His voice trails off. The scar on his face says the rest.
In 2016, the year Iabarot set out from Nigeria, the number of migrants arriving in Italy from Libya spiked to 163,000, prompting a political backlash and a determination to stanch the flow at all costs. In February 2017, the E.U. launched a plan to train and equip the Libyan coast guard to intercept smuggler boats and keep the migrants in detention camps.
Two years later, the arrivals in Italy are down 89%. But the policy has caused a bottleneck on the other side of the Mediterranean and a lingering humanitarian crisis. The IOM estimates that nearly half a million sub-Saharan African migrants are currently trapped in Libya, ripe for exploitation by armed groups and corrupt officials. Julie Okah-Donli, director general of Nigeria&rsquos National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons, went on a fact-finding mission to Libya last year after hearing reports of Nigerians living in &ldquoslavelike conditions.&rdquo She tells TIME she was sickened by what she saw. &ldquoIn some of the camps we visited, they had already taken truckloads of the guys to go work on the farms and in the factories for no pay at all. As long as they are in those camps, they are treated like slaves.&rdquo
When CNN aired footage of what appeared to be African migrants being sold at a slave auction at a Libyan detention camp in November 2017, the outrage was immediate and global. The U.N. Security Council condemned the &ldquoheinous abuses,&rdquo the E.U. demanded &ldquoswift action,&rdquo and French President Emmanuel Macron called for a military rescue operation.
Yet just over a year on, little has been done to prevent these abuses. E.U. member states are renewing calls to halt Europe-bound migrants at the Libyan coastline. &ldquoThe situation for refugees and migrants in Libya remains bleak,&rdquo says Heba Morayef, Middle East and North Africa director for Amnesty International. &ldquoCruel policies by E.U. states to stop people arriving on European shores, coupled with their woefully insufficient support to help refugees reach safety through regular routes, means that thousands of men, women and children are trapped in Libya facing horrific abuses with no way out.&rdquo
When Joy, a 23-year-old Cameroonian university student, arrived in the coastal Libyan city of Sabratha in August 2017, she thought she was well on her way to France to pursue her dream of becoming a fashion model. But a government-backed militia, emboldened by the E.U. deal to crack down on migrant smuggling hubs, raided the compound where she was staying. She was picked up by a rival group and locked in a room with scores of other women for several months. The women were expected to work as prostitutes, and some were sold to buyers looking to staff their own brothels. Joy, several months pregnant at that time, was largely left alone, she says, but the conditions were &ldquoinhumane.&rdquo
Joy, who speaks the polished French of an educated woman, says the E.U. directive to curb migrant arrivals not only emboldens corrupt Libyans but also amplifies their deep-seated prejudice against black Africans. &ldquoThe Libyans understood that if the E.U. doesn&rsquot want blacks to come, it means we are not valuable as humans,&rdquo she tells TIME, cradling her newborn, in a shelter for trafficked women in Lagos, Nigeria. &ldquoThe E.U. is essentially rewarding these militias for abusing us, for raping us, for killing us and for selling us.&rdquo
The migrants who do make it across the Mediterranean are not free from the cycle of exploitation. On an autostrada in Puglia, southern Italy, last August, a van packed with Africans slammed headlong into a tomato truck and flipped across the meridian. Twelve of the migrant laborers, who had spent a grueling day working the harvest, died in the crash. It was the second such accident in two days. In total, 16 men&mdashfrom Ghana, Guinea, Gambia, Nigeria, Mali, Morocco and Senegal&mdashdied that weekend.
They had been ensnared by an ancient Italian system of press-gang labor called caporalato that enables farmers to outsource their labor needs to middlemen for a set fee, avoiding payroll taxes, work-safety requirements and minimum-wage payments in the process. It is illegal, widespread and dominated by organized crime. A 2018 report commissioned by Italy&rsquos trade unions estimates that some 132,000 workers suffer from the most exploitative aspects of caporalato, including nonpayment of wages and physical abuse. Most are migrants from sub-Saharan Africa and Eastern Europe.
&ldquoCaporalato has been around forever, but the system really takes advantage of migrants because of their vulnerable status,&rdquo says Yvan Sagnet, a 33-year-old antislavery activist from Cameroon who has been living in Italy since 2010. &ldquoThey don&rsquot have papers, they don&rsquot know their rights, and they are desperate to earn money.&rdquo
Sagnet would know&mdashhe was sucked into the caporalato system as a foreign student when a failed exam resulted in the loss of his university scholarship. A friend told him he could make money on the summer tomato harvest in Puglia, but when he arrived, he says, he was inducted into a system designed to extract the maximum amount of work for minimal pay.
The capo, or boss, told Sagnet he could make up to $33 a day filling crates with tomatoes. What he didn&rsquot mention was that the cost of transportation to the fields would be deducted from his wages, along with his water and his food. &ldquoAt the end of the day, I was making $4.50. It wasn&rsquot work. It was slavery. But most people had no choice,&rdquo says Sagnet.
A day after the second transport accident in Puglia, Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, who is also head of the far-right, anti-migrant League party, decried the Mafia&rsquos role in the region&rsquos exploitative labor practices. Then he blamed the migrants: &ldquoThese episodes tell us that out-of-control immigration helps the Mafia. If there were no migrants desperate to be exploited, it would be more difficult for them to do business.&rdquo Stopping migration, he said, would put a stop to organized crime. It would also mean the end of inexpensive tomato sauce, wine and olive oil, says Sagnet, pointing out that Italians aren&rsquot willing to work 16-hour days, or harvest tomatoes for $4 a crate.
&ldquoThe problem isn&rsquot the Mafia or the migrants. It&rsquos the cost of cheap goods,&rdquo he says. When retailers tell farmers they will only buy tomatoes for 8¢ a kilo, says Sagnet, the farmers can&rsquot afford to pay normal wages. But if the stores charge more, customers will go somewhere else. Sagnet, who now runs an antislavery organization called No Cap, for &ldquono to caporalato,&rdquo says uber-competitive grocery stores are contributing to the abuse of migrant labor.
Sagnet estimates that the true retail cost of a kilo of tomatoes, including transport and processing, should be around $2.25. &ldquoIf you go to the market and see them for 30¢, it means they used caporalato. There is no other way to get tomatoes that cheap.&rdquo Sagnet estimates that 3 out of 5 items in every Italian&rsquos weekly food basket, including wine, cheese, fruit, vegetables and olive oil, are produced in part by unfair migrant labor.
It&rsquos not just Italians who benefit. The modern consumer&rsquos insatiable quest for $10 manicures, shiny new smartphones and cheap luxury foods comes at the cost of unfair labor. Everyday goods linked to the slave trade include cell phones, pet food, jewelry and canned tomatoes. The 2018 Global Slavery Index found that G-20 countries import some $354 billion worth of products at risk of being produced by modern slavery every year.
In Italy, Sagnet&rsquos organization is launching a certification process that will enable farmers to market their produce as slavery-free and local distributors to place certified products in grocery stores. Customers are already accustomed to paying slightly more for organic produce, he says. Now they will have the choice to buy bondage-free items as well. &ldquoOrganic is important, but isn&rsquot it also important to know that there was no slavery involved in the making of the food you eat?&rdquo
European customers are also responsible for a different kind of exploitative trade. Of the 16,000 women who arrived in Italy from Libya from 2016 to 2017, an incredible 80% fell victim to sex trafficking, according to the IOM&mdashdestined for a life of sexual slavery in the streets and the brothels of Europe.
One such woman is Gladys. At age 22, she left Nigeria after an aunt&rsquos friend offered her a job in a hair salon in the faraway city of Turin, Italy. Her trafficker kept her locked in a Libyan brothel, she says, denying her food and drink until she agreed to service clients. In the end, she sold her virginity for a plastic jug of water.
Finally arriving in southern Italy on a smuggler&rsquos boat, she called the aunt&rsquos friend, who said the job was still waiting. She even offered a place to stay. But when Gladys arrived in Turin, the woman&rsquos warm phone demeanor disappeared. Gladys owed $22,530 for the trip, she was told, and would have to work it off walking the streets as a prostitute. &ldquoI went to her house for help, thinking I would find comfort in a fellow Nigerian,&rdquo says Gladys bitterly. &ldquoInstead, she wanted to use me.&rdquo Gladys had no money, no papers and no place to stay. She says she had no choice but to do what the woman demanded.
Across Italy, Nigerian women are slowly displacing the Eastern Europeans who once dominated the illicit sex industry. Most, like Gladys, are from Nigeria&rsquos impoverished rural southwest, where a generation of young people are seeking their fortunes abroad. Recruiters, often in the guise of concerned family friends, lure young women&mdashand convince their parents&mdashwith promises of money to be made in Europe&rsquos hair salons, hotels and boutiques.
Once in Europe, the women are told that they owe anywhere from $20,000 to $60,000 to cover the cost of their journey. They are threatened with abuse, deportation or harm to their families back home if they don&rsquot pay. Once the debts are paid off, after three to five years of several $25 tricks a day, the trafficked women usually stay on in Europe to earn money on their own and perhaps return home with enough funds to buy a house, start a business or support their family. Often, says Okah-Donli of the Nigerian antitrafficking organization, the returnees become madams themselves, flaunting their wealth to lure new victims to Europe and perpetuating the cycle. That&rsquos what Gladys thinks happened to her aunt&rsquos friend in Turin.
Despite the threats from her madam, Gladys escaped as soon as she was able to skim a few hundred dollars from her daily earnings. But freedom was no better. Alone and terrified of being deported, Gladys reluctantly returned to what she knew best. Several months ago, she heard about a program in the northern Italian city of Asti that helps trafficking victims with job training, counseling and housing. But resources are few, and the organization, Progetto Integrazione Accoglienza Migranti (PIAM), has space for only 250 women. Gladys spent several months on a waiting list before the program could offer her shelter and counseling.
The need for more services is immense, says founder Princess Inyang Okokon, who was trafficked to Turin from Nigeria in 1999. Okokon estimates that there are 700 to 1,000 sex trafficking victims who need help in the Asti region alone. &ldquoEveryone talks about the problems of trafficking, but there is no discussion on what happens after a girl is trafficked,&rdquo says Okokon.
It&rsquos not surprising that many trafficked women return to prostitution, she says. Jobs are limited in Italy, even for the women who have learned Italian or who have the right to stay. And few want to return to Nigeria, laden with debt and the stigma of what they have done. &ldquoIt isn&rsquot a simple issue of them being economic migrants&mdashno, they were trafficked here, so they can&rsquot just be sent back,&rdquo Okokon says.
Some escape this cycle of modern slavery, but it&rsquos a fraught and complex process. After his final escape from his Libyan captors, Iabarot managed to scrape together enough money to purchase a place on a smuggler&rsquos boat. Within hours of departing, he was rounded up by the Libyan coast guard and sent back to a detention camp. Terrified of facing another round of torture and forced labor, Iabarot volunteered to return to Nigeria through an IOM repatriation program. A week later, on March 22, 2018, he and 148 other Nigerians landed in Lagos on a chartered plane. It was no small irony that Iabarot and his fellow Nigerians, many of them rescued from cases of indentured servitude, forced labor and outright slave auctions, were processed through the cargo terminal.
So far, more than 10,000 Nigerians have returned home through the aid agency&rsquos repatriation program. Each returnee is given a phone, a meal and the equivalent of $112 to get home. Once they are settled, they can apply for work training and small-business grants, but for most, homecoming is a bittersweet experience. &ldquoA lot of them took loans to pay the smugglers, or their families sold everything they had. So when they come back empty-handed like this, it&rsquos a challenge,&rdquo says IOM&rsquos migration program manager in Lagos, Abrham Tamrat. Many end up trying to go back to Europe.
Yet putting a stop to this sector of modern slavery starts by stopping irregular migration, says Kara, the slavery economist. A 2016 IOM report found that 7 out of 10 migrants crossing from North Africa to Europe had experienced exploitation of some kind or another, including kidnapping for ransom, forced labor, illegal detention and sexual violence. As conditions in Libya deteriorate, the situation is likely to get even worse. In Europe, anti-migrant sentiment is driving those without papers deeper underground, where they are more vulnerable to exploitation.
By 2050, 40% of the world&rsquos poorest people will be living in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Nigeria, according to the 2018 Gates Foundation Goalkeepers report. If the right investments aren&rsquot made now, says Okokon, of the Italian anti-trafficking organization PIAM, even more people will risk the journey abroad. &ldquoIf you really want to stop sex trafficking, give young Nigerians a reason to stay home. Invest in our youth. Give them jobs. If Nigeria is good for them, they won&rsquot risk their lives coming to Europe.&rdquo At the same time, she adds, it&rsquos essential to open up more venues for legal migration. It is nearly impossible for young Africans with little means to come to Europe, yet there is clearly a demand for their labor. &ldquoEurope needs farmers, domestic workers, people to harvest. Africa has that.&rdquo Soumahoro, the union representative in Italy, puts it more bluntly: &ldquoHumans are being sold because the embassies of Europe won&rsquot give visas to Africans.&rdquo
As long as the opportunities for men and women like Iabarot are limited in their home countries, they will continue risking everything to find something else in Europe. Iabarot says he wouldn&rsquot go through Libya again, but he would consider leaving again by a different route. &ldquoI had to leave because there was nothing for me here. There still isn&rsquot,&rdquo he says. &ldquoSo what should I do?&rdquo
9 Things You May Not Know About Mussolini
1. Mussolini had a penchant for violence even as a youth.
Born on July 29, 1883, Mussolini gained a reputation for bullying and fighting during his childhood. At age 10 he was expelled from a religious boarding school for stabbing a classmate in the hand, and another stabbing incident took place at his next school. He also admitted to knifing a girlfriend in the arm. Meanwhile, he purportedly pinched people at church to make them cry, led gangs of boys on raids of local farmsteads and eventually became adept at dueling with swords. When the New York Times reported on Mussolini’s May 1922 duel against a rival newspaper editor, it mentioned that he bore over 100 wounds received in battle.
2. Mussolini was a socialist before becoming a fascist.
Born to a socialist father, Mussolini was named after leftist Mexican President Benito Juárez. His two middle names, Amilcare and Andrea, came from Italian socialists Amilcare Cipriani and Andrea Costa. Early in Mussolini’s life, for instance, those names seemed appropriate. While living in Switzerland from 1902 to 1904, he cultivated an intellectual image and wrote for socialist periodicals such as L𠆚vvenire del Lavoratore (The Worker’s Future). He then served in the Italian army for nearly two years before resuming his career as a teacher and journalist. In his articles and speeches, Mussolini preached violent revolution, praised famed communist thinker Karl Marx and criticized patriotism. In 1912 he became editor of Avanti! (Forward!), the official daily newspaper of Italy’s Socialist Party. But he was expelled from the party two years later over his support for World War I. By 1919 a radically changed Mussolini had founded the fascist movement, which would later become the Fascist Party.
3. Italy’s leaders never called on the military to stop Mussolini’s insurrection.
From 1920 to 1922, armed fascist squads faced minimal interference from the police or army as they roamed the country causing property damage and killing an estimated 2,000 political opponents. Many other citizens were beaten up or forced to drink castor oil. Then, on October 24, 1922, Mussolini threatened to seize power with a demonstration known as the March on Rome. Though Prime Minister Luigi Facta knew of these plans, he failed to act in any meaningful way. Finally, when fascists began occupying government offices and telephone exchanges on the night of October 27, Facta and his ministers advised King Victor Emmanuel III to declare a state of emergency and impose martial law. The wavering king refused to sign any such decree, however, and Facta was forced to resign.
4. Contrary to popular belief, Mussolini did not take power in a coup.
With Italy’s leading non-fascist politicians hopelessly divided and with the threat of violence in the air, on October 29 the king offered Mussolini the chance to form a coalition government. But although the premiership was now his, Il Duce𠅊 master of propaganda who claimed the backing of 300,000 fascist militiamen when the real number was probably far lower—wanted to make a show of force. As a result, he joined armed supporters who flooded the streets of Rome the following day. Mussolini would later mythologize the March on Rome’s importance.
5. Mussolini did not become a true dictator until 1925.
After becoming prime minister, Mussolini reduced the influence of the judiciary, muzzled a free press, arrested political opponents, continued condoning fascist squad violence and otherwise consolidated his hold on power. However, he continued working within the parliamentary system at least somewhat until January 1925, when he declared himself dictator of Italy. Following a series of assassination attempts in 1925 and 1926, Mussolini tightened his grip even further, banning opposition parties, kicking out over 100 members of parliament, reinstating the death penalty for political crimes, ramping up secret police activities and abolishing local elections.
6. Mussolini was anti-Church before becoming pro-Church.
As a socialist youth, Mussolini declared himself an atheist and railed against the Catholic Church, going so far as to say that only idiots believed Bible stories and that Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene were lovers. He even authored an anti-clerical pulp novel. But after taking power, Il Duce began working to patch up that relationship. He outlawed freemasonry, exempted the clergy from taxation, cracked down on artificial contraception, campaigned for an increased birth rate, raised penalties for abortion, restricted nightlife, regulated women’s clothing and banned homosexual acts among adult men. Despite having many mistresses himself, he also put in place harsh punishments for adultery. In 1929 Mussolini signed an agreement with the Vatican under which the Church received authority over marriage and was compensated for property that had been seized decades earlier. Pope Pius XI afterwards referred to Mussolini as the “man whom providence has sent us.” Nonetheless, tensions between the two eventually resurfaced over such things as Mussolini’s racial laws, where were similar to those in Nazi Germany.
7. Mussolini sought to establish an Italian empire.
Mussolini launched his first military action in 1923 when he bombarded and briefly occupied the Greek island of Corfu. Several years later, he authorized the use of concentration camps and poison gas to help put down a rebellion in Libya, which at that time was an Italian colony. Poison gas was again used illegally during the conquest of Ethiopia in 1935 and 1936, after which Il Duce declared that Italy finally had its empire. “It is a fascist empire, an empire of peace, an empire of civilization and humanity,” he purportedly said. Three years later, Italy invaded and annexed Albania. In addition to those wars of expansion, conflict-loving Mussolini also propped up right-wing dissidents. During the Spanish Civil War, for example, he supplied troops and arms to General Francisco Franco’s Nationalist movement.
8. Italy’s army performed disastrously during World War II.
For all his bluster, Mussolini did not enter World War II until June 1940, by which time his Nazi Germany allies had already swept through much of Europe. It soon became apparent that Italy lacked adequate military equipment and that its pace of production was pitiful. In fact, the United States could manufacture more planes in a week than Italy could in a year. Mussolini did not help matters by repeatedly changing his war plans and stretching his forces too thin. His poorly executed attack on France made little progress until the French asked the Germans for an armistice. Later that year, Italian troops invaded Greece, only to be pushed back into neighboring Albania. Italy’s North Africa campaign likewise stalled, although in both cases Germany temporarily came to the rescue.
9. Mussolini was deposed without a fight.
Having already snatched away Libya and Ethiopia, Allied forces invaded Italy proper in 1943 and began dropping bombs on Rome. On July 25 of that year, King Victor Emmanuel informed Mussolini that he would be replaced as prime minister. Il Duce was then arrested and imprisoned in various places, including a remote mountain ski resort from which German commandos rescued him a month and a half later. From September 1943 to April 1945, Mussolini headed a puppet government in German-occupied northern Italy. At the end of the war, he tried to sneak over the Swiss border wearing a German greatcoat and helmet. But an Italian partisan recognized him and shouted out, “We’ve got Big-Head!” Mussolini was executed the following day, and his corpse was strung upside down in a Milan square.
Marriage, Family, and Kinship
Marriage. Descent kinship and marriage are major organizing factors in social, economic, and political life. Patrilineal descent defines group membership, while kinship is largely the product of marriage arrangements. Where the collective interests of descent groups are clearly defined, the patterns of kinship and marriage will reflect these interests. Marriages are arranged by the parents in consultation with members of the extended family and lineage. Libyan society, like much of the Arab world, places a premium on father's brother's daughter's marriage. This rule of "first right" is so important that in strongly-focused descent groups the male first cousin must waive his right to the girl before she is allowed to take a more socially distant spouse. Girls may marry at age fourteen, while men must usually wait until they are in their mid-to-late twenties. The age qualification for marriage between cousins thus restricts this form of marriage.
Approximately 20 percent of all marriages are "first right." Such arrangements give many descent groups a second set of social relationships. Since the father's brother's daughter's marriage removes the rule against group endogamy found in other societies, people are free to arrange marriages within the group outside the range of siblings and within generation. Thus, multiple strands of kinship crosscut group structure and further reinforce the corporate descent group.
Although groups may strive toward endogamy, other interests of the family and corporate group may lead to marriages being contracted between distant relations. In Bedouin society it is normal for groups to contract marriage with groups in distant ecological zones. Failure of the rains in one territory may lead to an invitation by more fortunate kin to visit and graze and water one's animals on their territory for the season.
Occasionally, there are marriages between the Bedouin and families of trading partners in oases. Marriages between adversaries in a feud may occur at the conclusion of the peace agreement. Marriages also are a way of binding groups in alliance since the offspring of successful unions will have close kin in two different groups. Thus marriage reflects family and group interests, and the patterns weave a web of mutual interest between families, lineages, and tribes.
Marriage arrangements require that siblings are married sequentially according to age. For a man to marry, he must be able to pay a "bride price" to the bride's family. Weddings may tax family resources because the more distantly related the bride, the
Indications that in the urban areas some of the structures described above have been modified are manifest in several ways. Many women are now seen unveiled in public. A recent report now claims that there are more female than male university students. And the Qaddafi regime has prohibited the admission of foreign women into the country unaccompanied by senior male kinsmen, as the bride price for mail-order brides from surrounding Arab states is significantly less than for Libyan women. These suggestions of social transformation have not been adequately analyzed as yet.
Domestic Unit. The social makeup of Bedouin camps almost always consists of closely-related patrilineal relatives and their wives. A camp may consist of a large central tent housing a couple and their unmarried sons and daughters. Adjacent tents will house married sons and their wives and children. Occasionally a distant relative or friend and his family may join the camp for a season. In the line of tents, social solidarities are expressed by the proximity of tents in the line. Close kin, brothers, and fathers position their tents so that the tent pegs overlap and the guide ropes of the tents cross one another. The tent of a more remotely related member of the camp will be at the end of the line, a few yards from his neighbor, without guide ropes crossing.
Kin Groups. Descent groups with clearly-focused interests usually reside in contiguous residential structures, marry endogamously, cooperate in all social, economic, and political matters, and have a highly ramified social life within the group. For the most part, life is extremely comfortable.
The tribal land-owning corporations are themselves patrilineal descent groups or lineages whose members acquire rights by virtue of being the sons and daughters of a particular man. In theory all members of the group are patrilineal descendants of the founder. Members are said to be of one flesh and bone with equal rights to territorial resources. Equal rights also implies equal obligations. Members have the obligation to defend the territory against the encroachment of neighboring corporations. Liability is not an individual matter, but a matter between groups. Injury leads to a "state of feud" between groups in which all members of the offended group are required to take revenge against any male member of the offending group this can lead to anarchy with a continual cycle of killings. Feuds have rules of conduct in which groups may decide to end the matter by a payment of a "blood price" whereby the offending group must compensate the offended group for the loss of life with payment. The members of the offending corporation must all contribute to the blood price, while all members of the offended group share in the compensation.
The institution of the feud makes possible a fairly orderly set of relations between competing groups where there are no institutions of government. While feuds may lead to peace through settlement, the relationships between groups defined through the genealogy will lead to a stand-off of equal numbers through opposition. The tribal segmentary system thus fosters an ethic of egalitarianism with its expression found in the members of the corporate patrilineal descent groups.
Nicknaming within tribes is prevalent as an expression of individual personality. The descent group is an institution that gives pride of place to its members, demands extreme loyalty of them, and provides a warm, nurturing support system to men and women of all ages.
The oil wealth has radically transformed the Libyan economy and its demography with widespread urbanization and wage employment. This process has only partially undermined traditional social structures as they were first reinforced by the pre-Revolutionary patronage system and then by the post-revolution political system. In the urban areas the constraints of family, lineage, and tribe have no doubt loosened. While the upper level bureaucrats—a second major section of the new elite—may answer to Qaddafi and his ruling clique, this is not true for the rural areas. There, ties of family, lineage, tribe, and residence still remain the dominant forms of organization. This striking feature of Libyan life is partially the result of the implementation of the political structures described by Qaddafi in the Green Book. Local committee members and bureaucrats are themselves members of local kin-based groups whose loyalty they must retain and whose wishes they must consider. While this is a society where immense oil wealth might lead to radical social transformation, in the rural areas, at least, this has not happened. There, cultural traditions have been slow to change as the political and economic institutions of government are refracted through family, lineage, and tribal interests.
German General Erwin Rommel arrives in Africa
German General Erwin Rommel arrives in Tripoli, Libya, with the newly formed Afrika Korps, to reinforce the beleaguered Italians’ position.
In January 1941, Adolf Hitler established the Afrika Korps for the explicit purpose of helping his Italian Axis partner maintain territorial gains in North Africa. “[F]or strategic, political, and psychological reasons, Germany must assist Italy in Africa,” the Fuhrer declared. The British had been delivering devastating blows to the Italians in three months they pushed the Italians out of Egypt while wounding or killing 20,000 Italian soldiers and taking another 130,000 prisoner.
Having commanded a panzer division in Germany’s successful French and Low Countries’ campaigns, General Rommel was dispatched to Libya along with the new Afrika Korps to take control of the deteriorating situation. Until that time, Italian General Ettore Bastico was the overall commander of the Axis forces in North Africa—which included a German panzer division and the Italian armored division. Rommel was meant to command only his Afrika Korps and an Italian corps in Libya, but he wound up running the entire North African campaign.
The German soldiers of the Afrika Korps found adapting to the desert climate initially difficult Rommel found commanding his Italian troops, who had been used to an Italian commander, difficult as well. When Hitler, preoccupied with his plans for his Soviet invasion, finally gave the go-ahead for an offensive against British positions in Egypt, Rommel’s forces were stopped dead in their tracks and then forced to retreat. In the famous battle of El Alamein, the British Eighth Armyginning in October 23, 1942—surprised the German commander with its brute resolve, and pushed him and his Afrika Korps back across and out of North Africa. (Ironically, the Arabs celebrated Rommel, called “the Desert Fox,” as a liberator from British imperialism.)
Since the first years in Italian Tripoli were made many infrastructures by the Italians, even with the participation of the local arab "elite" (Journal of Libyan Studies 3, 1 (2002) p. 59-68: "Local Elites and Italian Town Planning Procedures in Early Colonial Tripoli (1911-1912)" by Denis Bocquet and Nora Lafi). The most important were the coastal road (called "Via Balbia" in honor of Italo Balbo after his death in 1940) between Tripoli and Benghazi and the railways Tripoli-Zuara, Tripoli-Garian and Tripoli-Tagiura.
Other important infrastructures were the enlargement of the port of Tripoli with the addition of a seaplane facility and the creation of the Tripoli airport (later in the 1930s was added another "international" airport in nearby Castel Benito).
The first modern hospital in Tripoli was created by the Italians: the "Tripoli Central Hospital" main buildings that are standing now were built during the Italian administration of Libya in the 1910s. It was known then as L'Ospedale Coloniale di Vittorio Emanuele III (or Vittorio Emanuele III Colonial Hospital). The service during those days used to be headed by Italian doctors: notable among them was Tomaso Casoni (1880) who practiced there from 1912 to 1932. He described there a test for diagnosing hydatid disease based on "dermal hypersensitivity", known internationally after him as the Casoni test. The original building is still standing and is occupied by the hospital's surgery department.
Since 1912 the Italian authorities started creating a "city plan", that was one of the first in the world to respect the ancient medieval city called "medina" (without demolitions of old buildings): it was decided to create a new modern city outside the Ottoman walls (http://www.fedoa.unina.it/1881/1/Santoianni_Progettazione_Architettonica.pdf. Section: Tripoli, un centro di sperimentazione urbanistica e architettonica, p. 104). Tripoli city plan and architectural development by Italy). The city of Tripoli underwent a huge transformation in those years, with the creation of new avenues, squares, sea promenades and modern buildings like -to name a few worldwide famous- the modern "Palazzo delle Poste" and the " Palazzo Previdenza Sociale".
Corso Sicilia in 1940
From the central square "Piazza Italia", located just south of the old castle and medina, were created huge boulevards, like Corso Sicilia (above is the photo of Corso Sicilia in 1940), Corso Vittorio Emanuele III, Via Roma, Via Lazio, Via Piemonte and Via Lombardia around which new Italian-style modern buildings were developed. The buildings of the " Cassa di risparmio della Tripolitania" and of the "Banca d'Italia" were created as masterpieces of rationalist style ( and are still used by the Central Bank of Libya).
In Tripoli was built in 1928 the biggest catholic cathedral of north Africa: the "Tripoli Cathedral". Italian government even restructured the ancient "Arch of Marcus Aurelius".
Indeed immediately after the Italian conquest, this Roman monument (related to M. Aurelius) received conservation and restoration work from the Italian administration, while the zone around the arch was reorganized by the Italian architect Florestano Di Fausto in the early 1930s. Governor Balbo gave Di Fausto in 1938 the task of designing the city plan of Italian Tripoli, and Di Fausto, nominated by Balbo chef of the "Commission for Urban Protection and Esthetics", with the main task of designing Tripoli's city plan, started to produce a stream of projects for Libya's capital: there the architect outlined the plan of Piazza Castello (the area around the Red Castle) and of the square around the Arch of Marcus Aurelius, in the Medina. Moreover, he erected public buildings, churches, markets, hotels, totaling fifteen works in few years(http://www.artefascista.it/tripoli__fascismo__architettu.htm Architecture in Tripoli created during Fascism).
In all these works, the architect Di Fausto resumed his Romano-Greek experience, mixing with great virtuosity arabisant and novecento elements.
Even the modern futuristic "Church of Saint Francis" in downtown Tripoli was another work of art of him. The same residence of Governor Balbo was to become after WWII the "Royal Palace" of the Libya's king. Balbo even promoted the creation of an international airport at "Castel Benito" (now called Tripoli International Airport), connected by the first international flights in Africa to Italy and to Ethiopia's Addis Abeba. The Red Castle Museum was established in 1919, when the colonial Italians in Libya converted a section of the Tripoli's ancient castle to a museum to house many of the archaeological artifacts scattered across the country since prehistoric times. The square around the castle was designed in the thirties by architect Di Fausto as "Piazza Castello" and was integrated with nearby "Piazza Italia" and the disappeared "Lungomare Conte Volpi".
In 1939 was created the '7 October Stadium', a grass football stadium called initially "Stadio Comunale di Tripoli" and based in the center of the city. The stadium was initially made for 5,000 people and was used even for athletism and cyclism sports. It was the only football stadium in Tripoli before the June 11 Stadium was built in the 1970s.
The Piazza Italia (now called Martyr's Square) featured on one side a wide avenue leading towards the seafront with two tall pillars. On top of the pillars still there are an iron-cast, miniature wooden ship on the norther corner, while the other one features a horseback rider. On the Piazza's other side there was the Teatro Miramare, called later Royal Miramare Theatre: it used to be located across from the Red Castle Museum, but it was demolished by Gaddafi's government after the 1960s to create space for large demonstrations. Another important building demolished by dictator Gheddafi was the Tripoli railway station, built in 1937. It was the only railway station in Africa served by the state-of-the-art "Littorina" (an Italian passenger train that obtained the world record of speed in 1939 with the model FS Class ETR 200).
Additionally, a group of villages for Italians and Libyans were created on the coastal tripolitania around Italian Tripoli during the 1930s. They were like satellite towns and interacted with Tripoli (http://www.qattara.it/balbia_files/Opere%20italiane%20in%20Africa.pdf Photos of Italian works in Libya and of the new villages created for Italians and Libyans). In 1939 the most important created and populated only by native arabs and berbers (who received by governor Italo Balbo the Italian citizenship in the newly created "Quarta Sponda" or "Fourth Shore of Italy") were: "El Fager" (al-Fajr, Alba in Italian language), "Nahima" (Deliziosa), "Azizia" (‘Aziziyya, Meravigliosa), "Nahiba" (Risorta), "Mansura" (Vittoriosa), "Chadra" (khadra, Verde), "Zahara" (Zahra, Fiorita), "Gedida" (Jadida, Nuova), "Mamhura" (Fiorente).
All the villages in the outskirts of Tripoli since 1939 were connected daily by bus service to the "Stazione centrale autobus" (one of the first central bus stations in north Africa), located in the square of the Tripoli Railway Station.
Italians of Tripoli strolling in the city in the late 1930s
Schools and Institutions
Schools for Italians
Giardino d’infanzia Principessa Mafalda • Giardino d’infanzia Principessa Jolanda • Giardino d’infanzia Principessa Giovanna • Scuola elementare maschile Roma • Scuola elementare maschile Pietro Verri • Scuola elementare femminile Regina Elena • Scuola elementare femminile Margherita di Savoia • Scuola elementare mista Trieste • Scuola elementare mista B. Mussolini • Scuola elementare mista Trento • Scuola elementare mista Principessa di Piemonte • Liceo-ginnasio Dante Alighieri • Istituto tecnico commerciale e per geometri Guglielmo Marconi • Istituto magistrale Giovanni Pascoli • Scuola di avviamento professionale Duca degli Abruzzi • Istituto di addestramento e di perfezionamento dei lavoratori Italo Balbo • Fratelli delle scuole cristiane Istituto Umberto di Savoia con collegio e convitto e scuola elementare maschile parificata • Suore Giuseppine dell’Apparizione (asilo d’infanzia e scuola elementare femminile parificata) • Suore francescane missionarie d’Egitto Istituto E. Schiaparelli con collegio e convitto, orfanotrofio femminile, asilo d’infanzia e scuola elementare mista • Suore francescane missionarie di Maria. Istituto Casa della divina provvidenza (orfanotrofio) • Scuola elementare maschile del vicariato apostolico diretta dai Fratelli delle scuole cristiane (a Sciara Espagnol) • Scuola elementare con collegio e convitto Niccolò Tommaseo
• Istituto sperimentale agrario e zootecnico della Libia (in Sidi El-Mésri)
Schools for Arabs
Scuola musulmana di mestieri e arti indigene. • Scuola femminile professionale M. Brighenti. • Scuola convitto per allieve infermiere Principessa Maria Pia. • Scuola superiore di cultura islamica
• Sopraintendenza scolastica. • Archivio storico. • Sopraintendenza alle antichità della Libia • Biblioteca del governo • Biblioteca del Consiglio e ufficio dell’economia corporativa • Biblioteca della Sopraintendenza monumenti e scavi • Biblioteca della Casa littoria • Biblioteca municipale • Biblioteca del Centro sperimentale agrario e zootecnico • Biblioteca araba degli Auqaf-as-sur • B iblioteche israelitiche (Addi • Mimun • Rabbi Josef Ruben • Rabbi Efraim Tayar • Angelo Arbib • Dar Sued ) • Museo archeologico • Museo libico di storia naturale. • Casa littoria • Sindacati fascisti. • Opera nazionale dopolavoro(Ond). • Gioventù italiana del littorio(Gil). • Ente fascista della cooperazione della Libia. • Ente colonizzazione della Libia. • Casa del mutilato. • Istituto fascista per l’artigianato della Libia • Società Dante Alighieri. • Ente turistico alberghiero della Libia (Etal) • Regio automobile club d’Italia. • Consociazione turistica italiana (Touring club) • Compagnia italiana del turismo. • Fiera campionaria. • Casa dell’artigianato. • Scuola allievi zaptiè. • Associazione musulmana del littorio. • Gioventù araba del littorio.
The "Palazzo delle Poste" (built in the late 1930s)
Societies and Associations
Istituto del nastro azzurro tra combattenti decorati al valore militare • Associazione nazionale tra mutilati e invalidi di guerra • Associazione libica tra mutilati e invalidi di guerra musulmani • Associazione nazionale famiglie dei caduti in guerra • Opera nazionale combattenti • Battaglione volontari d’Italia • Unione nazionale ufficiali in congedo d’Italia • Reggimento bersaglieri d’Italia • Reparti arditi d’Italia • Associazione arma d’artiglieria • Associazione nazionale carabinieri reali in congedo • Circolo coorte finanzieri d’Italia • Associazione nazionale marinai in congedo • Unione fascista famiglie numerose • Circolo militare • Circolo Italia • Società cacce a cavallo • Società libica incremento razze equine • Associazione cacciatori della Libia • Commissione venatoria della Libia • Federazione tennis della Libia (presidente Rodolfo Graziani) • Tennis Tripoli (presidente onorario e fondatore Amedeo d’Aosta, viceré d’Etiopia) • Moto club Tripoli • Lega navale italiana • Reale unione navale aeronautica • Associazione ciclistica italiana • Croce rossa italiana • Ente generale per l’assistenza e beneficenza • Società tripolina di mutuo soccorso • Terz’ordine francescano • Associazione uomini di azione cattolica • Unione donne di azione cattolica • Gioventù maschile di azione cattolica • Associazione San Giovanni Battista De La Salle • Associazione Santa Lucia • Jews associations (Circolo Maccabei • Associazione donne ebree d’italia (Adei) • Società ebraica femminile • Laboratorio ebraico femminile • Circolo Ben Jeudà • Associazione Aghuddat Torà )
Newspapers and magazines
• «Bollettino ufficiale del governo della Libia». • «Notiziario economico della Libia». • Newspaper «L’avvenire di Tripoli» • «Quarta sponda. Quindicinale dei lavoratori della Libia». • «Il tascapane del soldato libico». • «Annuario generale della Libia. Guida amministrativa-commerciale della Libia». • «Notiziario corporativo della Libia». • «Bollettino sindacale corporativo delle associazioni fasciste degliindustriali e degli artigiani della Libia». • «Agricoltura Libia». • «Annali del centro sperimentale agrario e zootecnico della Libia». • «Bollettino meteorologico delle colonie italiane». • «Bollettino del Consiglio e ufficio dell’economia corporativa di Tripoli. Atti Ufficiali. Notiziario dei provvedimenti inerenti il commercio, l’industria e l’agricoltura elenco dei protesti cambiari». • «Bollettino delle cooperative di consumo di Tripoli-Misurata-Bengasi-Derna». • «Notiziario dell’Associazione fascista agricoltori della Libia». • «Listino dei prezzi all’ingrosso dell’Ufficio dell’economia di Tripoli». • «Agenzia di Libia». • «Famiglia Cristiana» (periodico del vicariato apostolico). • «El - Adel» (settimanale in lingua araba). • «Orario generale delle comunicazioni della Libia. Aeree, marittime, automobilistiche del turismo». • Corrispondenti delle testate nazionali (Agenzia Stefani «Popolo d’Italia» «Corriere Padano» - «Popolo di Roma» «Corriere della Sera» -«Giornale d’Italia» - «Gazzetta del Popolo» - «Resto del Carlino» «Lavoro fascista» «L’Osservatore romano» «La Gazzetta dello Sport» «La Tribuna) • «L’artigianato» - "L’organizzazione industriale" • Editorials (Stabilimento poligrafico editoriale del Cav. Plinio Maggi • Unione coloniale italiana pubblicità e informazione(Ucipi) • Cartiere della Tripolitania ) • Libraries (Cagiuti • Ferrero • Libreria Minerva (Librerie italiane riunite) • Tommaseo(agente Mondadori) • Utet • Miscergli • Mohammed Mohtar Scerfeddin • Haggiag Scialom • Reginaldo Abram • Ruben Rahmir)
Regio Teatro Miramare, the royal theater of Tripoli was built in the early 1930s
Cinemas and Theaters
• Royal Theater Miramare • Terrazza del Miramare • Teatro casinò Uaddan • Teatro di Sugh el Turch del Dopolavoro provinciale • Teatro Politeama • Cinema teatro Ond • Super cinema Alhambra • Cinema delle Palme • Cinema estivo CorsoList of site sources >>>