Ugo Cavallero

Italian general (1880-1943)

Ugo Cavallero (September 20, 1880September 13, 1943) was an Italian military commander before and during World War II. Cavallero became Benito Mussolini's Undersecretary of War in 1925. A committed Fascist, Cavallero was made a senator in 1926 and in 1927 became a major general. After Italy entered World War II in 1940, Cavallero was made Chief of the Italian Supreme Command and worked closely with German Field Marshal Albert Kesselring. He was promoted to Marshal of Italy (field marshal) in 1942. After Mussolini's government was toppled in 1943, Cavallero was arrested by Prime Minister Pietro Badoglio for his Fascist and pro-German views. On September 13, 1943, Cavallero committed suicide, by a gunshot wound to the head.


  • We would have to make clear to our German ally our disagreement on three points: treatment of the occupied countries, excesses towards the Jews, and relations with the Papacy. One ought to try to create a true European federation respectful of each nationality.
    • To Alberto Pirelli. Quoted in "All Or Nothing: The Axis and the Holocaust, 1941-1943" - Page 67 - by Jonathan Steinberg - History - 2002
  • I've been in contact with Marshal Badoglio. We agree that Italy must be saved from the abyss toward which Fascism is driving her. If we depose Mussolini, however, the new government should do nothing drastic to upset Hitler until we can secretly negotiate an armistice with the Allies.
    • Quoted in "Improbable Heroes" - by Carl L. Steinhouse - History - 2005 - Page 104
  • I am very much afraid that the loss of Cyrenaica will have serious political consequences for the Duce.
    • Quoted in "Der Afrikafeldzug: Rommels Wüstenkrieg 1941-1943" - Page 112 - by Franz Kurowski - World War, 1939-1945 - 1986
  • The Duce told me that he foresaw the possibility of a conflict between Germany and Russia. He said that we could not stay out of this because it involved the struggle against communism. It was, therefore, necessary to make arrangements for the bringing together between Ljubljana and Zagreb of a motorized division, of an armored division, and of the grenadier division.
    • May 30. Quoted in "Diplomacy of Aggression" - Page 110 - by Leonid Nikolaevich Kutakov - World War, 1939-1945 – 1970
  • The assault on Malta will cost us many casualties… But I am the one who wants it because I consider it absolutely essential for the future development of the war. If we take Malta, Libya will be safe. If not, the situation of the colony will always be precarious.
    • Quoted in "From the Ashes of Disgrace" - Page 79 - by Franco Maugeri, Victor Rosen - 1948

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