During the British mandate in Palestine, the Italian Catholics campaigned for greater Italian involvement in the region’s politics. To achieve this, the religious factors, linked with the necessity to guarantee Catholic rights to the Holy Places and the life of Catholic communities, were often used to reinforce Italian political ambitions. This policy was actively pursued before 1922, the year of the official establishment of the British mandate. Even after this, these issues continued to draw attention, gaining more importance during the periods of crisis such as the disturbances of 1929, the great Arab revolt (1936-1939) and at the beginning of the Second World War. In the same way, during the first Arab-Israeli war, in 1948, the Franciscan Delegation of the Holy Land in Rome pro-moted a campaign to form a so called «militia» to safeguard the Palestinian sanctuaries and protect Italian interests in the region.
The aim of this article is to investigate how these national-religious attitudes changed over the tumultuous period of the British mandate, trying to understand if these campaigns had any influence on Italian policy in that region.