Remembering SISMI General Nicola Calipari (June 23, 1953 – March 4, 2005)

“Out of the 30 cars that came to the blocking position, why was this the only car fired upon that night?”

Mel Sembler — US Embassy in Rome (May 5 2005)

Nicola Calipari (June 23, 1953 – March 4, 2005) was an Italian major-general and SISMI military intelligence officer. Calipari was killed by American soldiers while escorting a recently released Italian hostage, journalist Giuliana Sgrena, to Baghdad International Airport. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY

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During the 1990s, Nicola Calipari was involved in several rescues of people kidnapped by ‘Ndrangheta and other criminal organizations.

He had spent most of his career in the Italian police, rising to a senior position, before joining the Italian military Security and Intelligence Service (SISMI) two years before his death.

Calipari is one of only five US or European general officers to be injured or killed during combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Calipari’s death sparked one of the most serious diplomatic incidents between U.S. and Italy since the end of World War II.

Other such incidents include the Sigonella crisis, the Cavalese cable car disaster in 1998, the Gladio scandal and the abduction of Islamic cleric Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr in 2003.

Release of classified information in US report

The Multinational Force In Iraq released an official report that was posted on its website.

Classified information (such as the name of the other SISMI agent, the names of the soldiers involved, and coalition troop movements) in the report was redacted but the report was accidentally published in a form that allowed the redacted information to be easily retrieved.

The report was published in the PDF file format, and the classified sentences were covered by a black bar.

However, the text below it had not been erased, and was present in the file. A cut-and-paste between Acrobat Reader and Microsoft Word was sufficient to make the lines reappear.

The US report cleared the soldiers of the 69th Infantry of any wrongdoing, claiming the unit followed proper procedures and defending the decision by one soldier, Spc. Mario Lozano, to open fire after flashing a light and firing warning shots.

REFERENCES

Nicola Calipari — Wikipedia

Rescue of Giuliana Sgrena — Wikipedia

Wikileaks Cable by Mel Sembler — US Embassy in Rome (May 5 2005)

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Remembering SISMI General Nicola Calipari (June 23, 1953 – March 4, 2005)

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