posted on Feb, 3 2009 @ 01:02 AM
[/url] Gladio (Italian: sword) is a code name denoting the clandestine NATO "stay-behind" operation in
Italy after World War II, intended to counter an eventual Warsaw Pact invasion of Western Europe. Although Gladio specifically refers to the Italian
branch of the NATO stay-behind organisations, "Operation Gladio" is used as an informal name for all stay-behind organisations, sometimes called
Operating in many NATO and even some neutral countries, Gladio was first coordinated by the Clandestine Committee of the Western Union (CCWU),
founded in 1948. After the creation of NATO in 1949, the CCWU was integrated into the Clandestine Planning Committee (CPC), founded in 1951 and
overseen by the SHAPE (Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe), transferred to Belgium after France’s official withdrawal from NATO's Military
Committee in 1966 — which was not followed by the dissolution of the French stay-behind paramilitary movements.
The role of the CIA in sponsoring Gladio and the extent of its activities during the Cold War era, and its relationship to terrorist attacks
perpetrated in Italy during the Years of Lead and other similar clandestine operations is the subject of ongoing debate and investigation. Italy,
Switzerland and Belgium have had parliamentary inquiries into the matter.
[edit on 012828p://0326 by mike dangerously]