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Museo storico della Liberazione - Roma

Italian Military Internees

 A similar fate befell Italian military internees (IMI). They were the privates, officers and NCOs who were captured after 8 September in Italy and on all war fronts, where until that moment they had been fighting alongside Germans as allies. Confronted with the choice of switching from the German side and fighting in the Wehrmacht or with the SS, they refused en masse and, after the establishment of the Italian Social Republic, they also refused to join the latter, while remaining loyal to their oath to the King, who represented the legitimate Italian State, and were deported to Germany. Considered as “badogliani” traitors, they were stripped of the “status” of war prisoners, and were called “internees”. As such, they did not enjoy the protection of international agreements, first and foremost the Geneva Convention, nor the protection of the International Red Cross and other humanitarian organisations. In the concentration camps they were subjected to “forced” labour, but despite suffering hunger, abuse and humiliation of all kinds, they continued to oppose any form of collaboration with the Nazi-fascists. By saying NO they paid a heavy price for their loyalty to the oath given to Italy. In all there were around 700,000 such internees, a large part of the Royal Army. Over 50,000 of them died in the camps, and as many died on their return to Italian due to diseases contracted in captivity.
Two to two and a half thousand Carabinieri of the capital were interned in German camps (the number varies depending on the source), after being deported on 7 October 1943, including those captured here and there in the days immediately following the armistice.

After 8 September international conventions required them, as police force agents, to remain in their place and pass to the orders issued by the German authorities. Due to their actions in defence of the local population, Kappler had deemed them unreliable, and on the very evening of 8 September they actually fought against the Germans. For these reasons they had to be "neutralised". This was done with the cooperation of the RSI. On 6 October general Casimiro Delfini, Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Carabinieri, carried out an order received from marshal Rodolfo Graziani, national Minister of Defence of the Italian Social Republic, ordering carabinieri to appear at their barracks and hand over their weapons, pending new orders. If they disobeyed, their respective families would be arrested. Of the approximately six thousand carabinieri present in Rome, about two thousand showed up, and the next day they were deported to Germany, and remained in prison camps until the end of the war, refusing to pass to the German side and join the RSI, despite the guarantee of being able to reunite with their families. Most of those who did not show up joined the Resistance and formed the Clandestine Carabinieri Resistance Front (FCRC).

The term “badogliano" had a negative connotation, since Badoglio represented the government that had betrayed the alliance with the Germans, by signing the armistice. All those who were loyal to the King and the government headed by Badoglio were called "badogliani". It should be noted that in the German Command note published by Agenzia Stefani, with which the population was informed of the German retaliation at the Fosse Ardeatine, the perpetrators of the Via Rasella attack were called “badogliani communist criminals”.