Amedeo Guillet, the Devil Commander


Before starting, I'd like to apologize for my possibly bad english as a non native speaker, and to warn you that the post is pretty long

Amedeo Guillet was born in 1909 from an important family related to the Savoia, the Italian royal family. He joined the army at the age of 22, in 1931, and he was very talented, in fact, was chosen to take part at the 1936 Olympic games in the italian riding team of four members. But the war between Italy and Abyssinia, that broke out in 1935, prevented him to take part in them, and thus, he was sent at the front. He was severely injured at his left hand, but he survived and was awarded a medal at the end of the war. Do you think he had enough? Not at all! He went to Spain, fighting on Nationalists' side during the spanish civil war, where he led some cavalry and light tanks regiments. When the war ended in 1937, he was sure he deserved a promotion to Captain, but he was not promoted, and was instead transferred in Libia. Shortly before Italy's entrance in ww2, he was sent to Eritrea, at the command of a 1700 men force, with full independence on his actions, with the task of fighting the rebels, helped by the frenchs and british. Here, he gained another medal and the surname of "Devil Commander" ,and his legendary deeds were famous in all the italian army (during a fighting, his horse was killed, he asked for another and it was killed too,so he just took a machine gun and started killing every living being that was so stupid to enter his range). He was also an example of integration between colonizer and colonized, he was loved by the local troops!

In ww2, after some successful operations, the italian forces lost terrain, mostly due to the lack of reinforcements from the motherland. So, after the defeat of Adua, he decided to lead the Italian guerrilla againist the British enemies that conquered Ethiopia. The british troops soon started to fear and respect him and his troops, and started a man hunt to catch him, dead or alive. He was never betrayed from the native troops, nor from the italian prisoners, that loved him so much that would never, never give out his position. But in the october 1941, the supplies were so few that he had to abandon his task, so he disbanded his little army, and escaped to Eritrea, where he became muslim and started gathering money to escape to Yemen. On his way to Yemen by ship, he was robbed and thrown in the sea, then he was abandoned in the Eritrean desert, and finally he was rescued by a camel driver. But Italy needed him, so he successfully eluded british surveillance once again and managed to arrive in Yemen. There, he was finally identified by the british troops, that asked for his extradition. But the Imam took a liking to him, and not only refused, but appointed him as a member of his personal guard. In 1943 he eluded british surveillance AGAIN and went back to Italy on an Italian hospital-ship, pretending to be a soldier that had been driven mad by the horrors of the war. In Italy he was promoted to Major rank, and asked money and troops to restart his operations in Eastern Africa, but he was appointed to the Military Information Service. After the armistice, he escaped once again in the territory controlled by the King (and thus by the allies), and was tasked with recovering the Imperial Crown of the Ethiopian Negus, that was stolen by a Partisan brigade. He did it, and gave it back to Ethiopian government as a sign of peace between the two nations. At the end of the war, he left the army and took a degree in political science, and he came back to Yemen in a diplomatical mission, where he met his old friend, the Imam that protected him, and, listen carefully, he met the british officer that unsuccessfully trued to catch him during the war. He retired in 1975 due to age limits, but he was planning to live a lot more. In 2000 he went back to Eritrea, and looked for the camel driver that saved him. He found him, but wasn't recognized, and the driver told him a story about a foreigner that he helped half a century ago. Guillet then secretly paid the building of a well that he needed to survive.

Finally, he decided that Death could have him, and he died in Rome, the 16th July 2010, at the age of 101 years.

An absolute legend, and in Italy he is considered one of the most important diplomats of all times!

Source: reddit post


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here