Famous People Executed by Firing Squads Part 2

About famous people who were executed by firing squads, biography and history of men like Mussolini and Eddie Slovik.

9 RENOWNED PERSONS EXECUTED BY FIRING SQUADS

5. EDDIE SLOVIK

Pvt. Eddie Slovik, who served in W.W. II, was the first American to be executed for desertion since the Civil War. Slovik freely and unabashedly admitted fleeing the battle line, hoping that if he did so, the army brass would reassign him to less dangerous duty. Instead, he was court-martialed and sentenced to die. The army apparently had no intention of actually carrying out the sentence; its main purpose was to make an example of him. However, through a series of misunderstandings, foul-ups, and bureaucratic bunglings, it found itself in the position of having to go ahead with the execution. Eddie Slovik was shot by a firing squad in France on the morning of Jan. 31, 1945.

6. BENITO MUSSOLINI

Dictator of Italy for 21 years, Mussolini was finally overthrown and imprisoned by fellow Fascists in July, 1943. Two months later he was freed by German paratroopers and set up as head of a puppet government in northern Italy. When the German forces collapsed in April, 1945, Mussolini fled north toward the border with his mistress, Clara Petacci. They were captured by members of the Italian underground near Lake Como, given a summary court-martial, and executed by firing squad outside the village of Dongo on Apr. 28, 1945. Their bodies were taken to Milan, where they were hung by the heels, mutilated, and spat upon. Mussolini's body was buried in a secret grave for 12 years, until 1957, when he was disinterred and reburied in the family vault near Predappio.

7. PIERRE LAVAL

Nazi collaborator and premier of the French Vichy government during W. W. II, Laval was condemned to death for treason on Oct. 9, 1945. He was shot by a firing squad at the prison in Fresnes, outside Paris, on the morning of Oct. 15, 1945.

8. VIDKUN QUISLING

This Norwegian Nazi leader--whose name has come to mean anyone who betrays his country--was convicted of treason and shot by a firing squad in Oslo on Oct. 24, 1945.

9. DRAZA MIHAJLOVIC

A famous W.W. II Yugoslav resistance leader, Mihajlovic believed that communism was worse than fascism and actively opposed Marshal Tito's forces. He was accused of treason and atrocities against humanity and executed by a firing squad. His death was announced on July 17, 1946.

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