Brethren, in this paper you will read references to Freemasons, Masonic
Lodges, and particularly a Lodge called P2. These lodges t are in no way like
the Lodges that we attend each month. They were Power Brokers and do not have
the V. S. L. on their alter as we do, and no requirement to believe in a
Supreme Being as we are required.
A Masonic conspiracy of gigantic
proportions rocked Italy to it's foundations in the spring and summer of 1981.
Known as the 'P2' case, this conflagration of corruption, blackmail and murder
brought down the coalition government of Premier Arnaldo Forlani and decimated
the upper echelons of Italian power.
P2 is the popular abbreviation of
Masonic Lodge Propaganda Due, which had become, in the words of the leader of
Italy's Republican Party, 'the centre of pollution of national life - secret,
perverse and corrupting.
The moment this scandal hit the
headlines, individual members of the United Grand Lodge of England hastened to
point out that English Freemasonry was fundamentally different from that
practised in Italy.
Freemasonry was introduced to Italy in
or about 1733 by an Englishman, Lord Sackville, but because of its open
involvement in politics and religion Italian Freemasonry was not recognized by
the United Grand Lodge of England until 1973.
A 'Propaganda' Lodge was constituted
in Turin a century ago under the Grand Orient of Italy. This elite Lodge,
which in some ways is similar to the English Quatuor Coronati Lodge No. 2076
in that its purpose was to further research into Masonry. Despite several
reports to the contrary, there was no connection save the name between this
Lodge and the sinister Masonic group of the present day. In fact, Lodge
Propaganda Due was not even a Lodge in the true sense. It was a secret
grouping of Masons but it was never officially constituted and never held
regular meetings of all members.
P2 was formed in 1966 at the behest of
the then Grand Master of the Grand Orient of Italy, Giordano Gamberini. The
Grand Master's plan was to establish a group of eminent men who would be
sympathetic and useful to Freemasonry.
The man chosen to create this elite
band was a rich textile manufacturer from the town of Arezzo in Tuscany. He
had entered Masonry two years before and had risen to the Italian equivalent
of a Master Mason. His name was Licio Gelli.
Licio Gelli was born in Pistoia in
central Italy on April 21, 1919. His formal education ceased when he was
expelled from school in his midteens. A story from Gelli's school days
indicates that a peculiar kind of cunning came to him early. There was a youth
in one of Gelli's classes, who was the school bully, admired by many but
feared by all. One day Gelli stole the bully's lunch and during the ensuing
uproar said to him "I know who stole your food, but I have no wish to get the
boy in trouble. You'll find it hidden under the third bench." The youth became
Gelli's friend and protector from that day, and Gelli had learned the art of
During the early stages of World War
II Gelli fought in Albania, he received a commission in the SS of Italy and
worked for the Nazi's as a "Liaison Officer". His work involved spying on the
partisans and betraying them to his German masters. The foundation of Gelli's
wealth is from his plundering of Yugoslavia's treasures that were hidden in
the town of Cattaro where Gelli then made his headquarters. At the end of the
War Gelli saved his life by agreeing to spy for the Communists. Once cleared
he organized a "RAT LINE" for Nazis wishing to flee to South America, he
charged 40 percent of their money.
Gelli, the first Italian to have been
accredited with dual Italian -Argentinean nationality, had fought for the
Fascists in the Spanish Civil War and later had been a passionate supporter of
Mussolini. Later, having been involved in the torture of Italian partisans, he
was forced to flee the country, winding up in Argentina. There he met
President Juan Peron and a long and close friendship began. Licio Gelli's
contacts and associates eventually spread far and wide in South America. He
was closely associated with ex-Gestapo chief Klaus Barbie. Barbie had a
private army operating out of Bolivia and called themselves the "Fiances of
Death". Political assassinations were performed to order, and this private
army was responsible for General Garcia Meza coming to power in Bolivia in
1980. Barbies activities also included selling Arms and it was through the
Arms sales that Barbie and Gelli became business partners. Barbie, the man who
between May 1940 and April 1942 was responsible for the liquidation of all
known Freemasons in Amsterdam, was now a business partner with Licio Gelli
Grand Master of Masonic Lodge P2. Peron eventually appointed Gelli to the
position of Argentina's economic adviser to Italy. Years passed, and Gelli
returned to his native country, settled at Arezzo and became a Freemason.
The group of men Gelli was getting
together on behalf of Grand Master Gamberini was called Raggruppamento Gelli
Propaganda Due - P2 for short. The members came to be know as Piduisti -
"P2-ists". Gelli had ambitions for P2 which the Grand Master had never so much
as imagined. Gelli's P2 is not a world conspiracy with the aim of preventing
the spread of Marxism or its many variations. It is an international group
with a number of diverse aims. It combines an attitude of mind with a
community of self-interest, its main goals being not the destruction of a
particular ideology but the acquisition of unlimited power and wealth and the
furtherance of self. These goals hide behind the acceptable face of "defenders
of the free world". In the world of P2, however, nothing is free. Everything
has a price.
By 1969 P2 was being spoken of as a
Lodge, and Gelli as its Venerable Master. He had a genius for convincing
people he had immense influence in public affairs, and many men joined P2
because they believed the Venerable Master's patronage was indispensable to
the furtherance of their careers. By this self-perpetuating process, Gelli's
purported power became real. Others joined the Lodge because Gelli used
ruthless blackmail. The "Masonic Dues" Gelli extracted from the brethren of
Lodge P2 were not primarily financial. What the Venerable Master demanded -
and got - were secrets: official secrets which he could use to consolidate and
extend his power, and personal secrets he could use to blackmail others into
joining his Lodge. This most sensitive information from all areas of
government was passed to him by his members, who seem to have obeyed him with
unquestioning devotion. In 1976 a legitimate Freemason, Francesco Siniscalchi,
made a statement at the office of the Rome Public Prosecutor, alleging that
Gelli was involved in criminal activities. He was ignored, partly because of
Gelli's already formidable reputation, which intimidated two officers
responsible for processing the complaint.
Soon after this, Gelli came to the
notice of the police after his friend and P2 member Michele Sindona, Italy's
most influential private banker, had fled to the United States leaving
financial Chaos behind him. (Sindona was reportedly stealing from the Vatican
Bank). Wanted on charges of fraud in Italy, Sindona was arrested in New York.
Gelli flew to America and testified that Sindona was an innocent victim of
Communist intrigue. It was Sindona, widely believed to have links with the
Mafia, who introduced Gelli in Washington, D. C. to Philip Guarino, Ronald
Regan's campaign manager in the 1980 Presidential Election, and Gelli attend
the inauguration of President Regan in January 1981, two months before the P2
One of Sindona's partners and a member
of P2, Roberto Calvi quickly left Italy for London were he met author David A.
Yallop, hoping to expunge himself from the Banking Fraud charges he made an
appointment with Mr. Yallop to tell his story, but 24 hours before the meeting
was to take place he was found hanging under the Blackfriars Bridge in the
City of London. Within a day of Roberto Calvi's "suicide" a hole was
discovered in Banco Ambrosiano Milan, a $1.3 Billion hole.
In 1980, facing fraud charges in New
York following the collapse of his Franklin National Bank - reputedly
America's worst banking disaster - Sindona appealed to his Venerable Master
for help. Meanwhile in Italy magistrates were still investigating Sindona's
fraudulent activities and also the events behind the murder of the liquidator
of his financial empire. After the appeal to Gelli, a fake kidnapping was
staged in New York and Sindona disappeared. Sindona was re-captured a few days
later and on March 27, 1980 he was found guilty on 65 counts, including fraud,
conspiracy, perjury, false bank statements and misappropriation of bank funds.
On May 13, two days before he was due to be sentenced, Sindona attempted to
commit suicide. He slashed his wrists and took a dose of digitalis, acting on
Grand Master Gelli's advice Sindona always carried a lethal dose of Digitalis,
also many members of P2 Lodge carried a Lethal dose of Digitalis.
His attempted suicide failed and on
June 13, 1980 he was sentenced to 25 years in prison and fined over
$200,000.00 he also received an additional 2 1/2 years for faking a
Evidence came to light that implicated
Gelli in the fake kidnapping of Sindona and two Milan magistrates ordered a
police raid on his villa outside Arezzo. Gelli as always had been one step
ahead, and, by the time the police reached the Villa he had disappeared. A
warrant was later issued for Gelli's arrest on charges of political, military
and industrial espionage, and endangering the security of the state.
Among the documents left behind at the
abandoned Villa were the membership files of P2. A list of members drawn up by
Gelli contained the names of nearly a thousand of Italy's most powerful men.
One prosecutor's report later stated: "Lodge Propaganda Due is a secret sect
that has combined business and politics with the intention of destroying the
country's constitutional order."
The tentacles of the P2 Lodge touched
every part of the Italian government and military, from the Minister of
Education through to the Minister of State, and the heads of the Army, Navy
and Air Force were all members of P2 Lodge. The P2 Lodge was so secret and so
expertly run by Gelli that even its own members did not know who belonged to
Those who knew most were the cell
leaders and they knew only their own grouping. Not even the Grand Secretary of
the Grand Orient of Italy knew the entire membership of the Lodge, only Licio
Gelli knew that.
Because of the names on these lists
the magistrates finally presented the Gelli papers to the Italian Parliament
in May 1981, and they were sorted into ten heavy piles. These documents and
what they contained caused the fall of Aldo Forlani and his government. The
Generals and Admirals that were implicated in the lists met to work out a
common strategy, they decided to declare themselves victims of a plot and to
sit tight, defying investigators to find concrete evidence against them.
NATO was forced to support the
attitude of the corrupt P2 members in Italy's Armed Forces. Officials in
Brussels and Washington suggested discreetly that it was not the right moment
to create a vacuum of power in the Italian Armed Forces.
Gelli was in hiding in Argentina, and
every time he tried to transfer money from his Swiss Banks accounts, he was
stalled, and he was told by his bank in Geneva that he would have to come in
person to set the problem right. Using a fake Argentinean passport, Gelli flew
to Madrid and then to Geneva on Sept 13, 1982.
At the Bank he presented his false
documentation and was told there would be a short delay. Minutes later, he was
arrested. He had walked into a carefully prepared trap. The account had been
frozen at the request of the Italian government.
Gelli was imprisoned in Camp Dollon
outside Geneva; but he escaped on August 10, 1983. By the time the Swiss
authorities approved the extradition to Italy, Gelli was gone. He was taken to
France by his son, from there to Monte Carlo by helicopter, the excuse given
to the pilot was that Gelli was in need of dental surgery. From Monte Carlo he
made his way to Uruguay on a private yacht belonging to Francesco Pazienza, a
If (and it is indeed a very large IF)
Licio Gelli ever is handed over alive to the Italian government, he faces a
variety of criminal charges. They include the following: extortion, blackmail,
drug smuggling, arms smuggling, conspiracy to overthrow the legal government,
political espionage, military espionage, illegal possession of state secrets,
and involvement in a series of bombings, including the Bologna station attack
in which 84 people died. There is also circumstantial evidence that he was
indirectly involved in the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II.
Tina Anselmi, who chaired the
commission made up of Italian Government officials said of P2 after Gelli
disappeared. "P2 is by no means dead. It still has power. It is working in the
institutions. It is moving in society. It has money, means, and instruments
still at its disposal. It still has fully operative power centres in South
America. It is also still able to condition, at least in part, Italian
The escape of Licio Gelli confirms
that the Grand Master of P2 Lodge has a network of powerful friends. Gelli
still lives in Uruguay, pulling his strings from a ranch a few miles north of
Montevideo. He is wanted in many countries for many crimes, but the mass of
information that he has so diligently acquired over the years ensures that he
continues to be protected.
IN GODS NAME written by David Yallop
published by BANTAM
THE BROTHERHOOD written by Stephen
Knight published by GRAFTON
London Daily Times.