Long before the occupation of Iraq, the US and UK learned the hard way that military occupation could unwittingly promote the criminalization of politics. In 1943, the Allies invaded southern Italy and installed an occupation government. Unpublished government documents and mafia memoirs reveal that the Allies were well aware of the threat posed by the mafia. But within 2 years, the mafia had found its way back into the centre of political power, not only in Sicily, but in Rome. What went wrong? And what lessons can we learn for contemporary peace operations?
These are the questions I will be discussing at a book launch kindly hosted by Prof Bruce 'Ossie' Oswald CSC at the Asia-Pacific Centre for Military Law, at Melbourne Law School, on 3 August. For more details and to register, click here.