Pietro Nenni

Pietro Nenni

Nenni, Pietro, 1891-1980, Italian journalist and political leader. He was imprisoned in 1911 for his participation in the protest movement against the Italo-Turkish war in Libya. He joined the Socialist party in 1921 and subsequently became Paris correspondent and later editor of the Socialist party newspaper Avanti. As an opponent of Fascism, he was forced to emigrate to France in 1926. He fought against the fascists in Spain during the Spanish civil war. In 1943 he was arrested by the Germans in Vichy France and then imprisoned in Italy. Released in Aug., 1943, he began to reorganize the Italian Socialist party, becoming its secretary-general in 1944. He precipitated a split in the party by entering into a political alliance with the Communists in 1947. This alliance was renounced in 1962, in the "opening to the left" of the Christian Democrats. Nenni served in several postwar cabinets, as deputy prime minister or as minister of foreign affairs. In 1971 he ran unsuccessfully for president of Italy.

Pietro Sandro Nenni (February 9, 1891January 1, 1980) was an Italian socialist politician, the national secretary of the Italian Socialist Party (PSI) and lifetime Senator since 1970. He was a recipient of the Stalin Peace Prize in 1951.

Early life and career

Born in Faenza, Nenni was a pacifist journalist affiliated with the Italian Republican Party before World War I, but joined the Socialist Party in 1921, at the moment of its split with the wing that would form the Communist Party (PCI). In 1923 (after the Fascist March on Rome, he became the editor of PSI's official voice, Avanti!, and engaged in anti-Fascist activism before taking refuge to France. Nenni went on to fight with the International Brigades in the Spanish Civil War, returning to Italy during World War II in order to fight in the resistance movement.

A daughter, Viva, died in Auschwitz. She is memorialized in the writings of Charlotte Delbo.

Post-war politics

In 1944, he became the national secretary of the PSI, favoring close ties between his party and the PCI. This policy caused the Giuseppe Saragat-led anti-Communist wing of the PSI to leave and form the Italian Socialist Workers' Party in 1947 (later merged into the Italian Democratic Socialist Party, PSDI). Nenni himself split with the PCI after Soviet Union's invasion of Hungary (in 1956). He formed a center-left coalition together with Saragat, Aldo Moro and Ugo La Malfa, and favored a reunion with the PSDI.

He died in Rome in 1980.

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