Soldiers and Spies

Gino Nebiolo

€ 14,00
Publisher: Cairo Editore
Pages: 224
ISBN/EAN: 978-88-6052-358-7

July 16th, 1965. Giuseppe Saragat and Charles de Gaulle preside at the grand ceremony for the inauguration of the Monte Bianco tunnel: a tunnel that connects the two sides of the Alps, linking Italy to France. But despite the solemnity of the moment, the atmosphere between the two chiefs of state is not cordial. To understand the reasons for this tension we must go back twenty years to the heart of Europe battling against Nazism.

1940: de Gaulle in exile in London has become Commander-in-Chief of the France that combats the German occupation, but the relationship with his “host”, Winston Churchill, is, to say the least, complicated. The Général cannot believe that the Allies – Roosevelt first of all – hesitate to recognize the legitimacy of his government, he who should have the right to participate in strategic decisions, who would like to seat at the winner’s table when it’s time to decide the fate of a new Europe.

And when that moment arrives at the end of the war, de Gaulle has a plan for a substantial correction of the eastern French border with an elaborate military operation that has as its objective the invasion of vast areas of the Aosta Valley, Piedmont and Liguria. At the same time, spies working for him are in fervent activity to prepare the terrain for annexation. For some months it’s pure chaos: Italy is on its knees, the Allies order an immediate retreat for France, the Général threatens Turin and finances committees that produce pro-annexation propaganda...

Rigorously documented (the author had access to documents in the Paris National Archives) and fervidly polemical, Soldati e spie is the story of a scarcely known episode, one of the most suffered moments of the 20th century. Nebiolo gives the two protagonists voices that have the immediacy of a novel. Military, political and human events flow past the reader’s eyes in a fluid narration that confirms Gino Nebiolo’s vocation as a very special correspondent.

The author
Gino Nebiolo, a Piedmont journalist and writer, has worked for some important dailies and for the RAI, above all, as foreign correspondent. He was the first of Western journalists to be in Peking during the era of Mao, after the break-off of relations between China and the USSR, and then in Madrid, Buenos Aires, Cairo, Beirut, Paris. He has authored numerous reportages for TV networks and TV newscasts, from the season of independence for colonies to the wars in Africa and the Middle East. In 2007, Cairo published his historical novel, Ucciderò Cristoforo Colombo. He lives in Rome and Paris.

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