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Kaúlza de Oliveira de Arriaga, OA, GCC, OC, OIH (18 January 1915 – 2 February 2004) was a Portuguese General, writer, professor and politician. He was Secretary of State (junior minister) of the Air Force between 1953 and 1955 and commander of the Terrestrial Forces in Mozambique from 1969 until 1974 during the Mozambican War of Independence.

Kaúlza de Oliveira de Arriaga
Born(1915-01-18)18 January 1915
Porto, Portugal
Died2 February 2004(2004-02-02) (aged 89)
Lisbon, Portugal
Allegiance Portugal
Service/branchPortuguese Army
Years of service1935–1974
Battles/warsPortuguese Colonial War
AwardsOfficer of the Order of Aviz
Grand Officer of the Order of Military Merit of Brazil
Legion of Merit of the United States of America
Grand Cross and Grand Officer of the Order of Christ
Grand Officer of the Légion d'honneur of France
Grand Officer of the Order of Prince Henry and the Medal of Aeronautical Merit of the Portuguese Air Force
Commander of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre


He was a son of Manuel dos Santos Lima de Arriaga Nunes (Lisbon, Santa Isabel, 11 October 1885 - Vila Nova de Gaia, Arcozelo, 19 September 1940), a sculptor and son of a medical doctor from Pico Island, Azores, and his Portuguese Brazilian wife, Felicidade Eugénia Martins de Oliveira (Porto, , 11 August 1895 - Lisbon, São Julião, 16 July 1987), daughter and granddaughter of goldsmiths. The couple married in Porto on 20 June 1914.[1]


Arriaga completed a degree in mathematics and engineering at the University of Porto and then volunteered for the Portuguese Army on 1 November 1935. Taking a military and civil engineering course in the Military Academy which he graduated from in 1939, he was later assigned to the general staff of the Portuguese Institute of Military Studies. Here he petitioned for reforms to the conscription system, as well as training and the integration of paratroopers into the Portuguese Air Force.

Arriaga commanded, as the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, the Portuguese forces in Mozambique from 1969 until 1974, taking over from General António Augusto dos Santos and organizing the Operation Nó Górdio ("Gordian Knot Operation") in 1970. This operation was the largest and most expensive military operation performed by the Portuguese Armed Forces during the entire Portuguese Colonial War (1961-1974).

Arriaga was a major political figure in the régime before the Carnation Revolution of 25 April 1974 in Lisbon, holding a number of public positions such as Head of the Ministry of Defense Cabinet, Secretary of State for Aeronautics, Professor of the Institute of High Military Studies, President of the Nuclear Energy Joint Commission and Executive President of the oil company Angol SA. After the revolution he was imprisoned from September 1974 to January 1976. In 1977 he created MIRN, a far-right political party, and was its chairman until its extinction after the parliamentary elections of 1980.

He died from Alzheimer's disease in 2004, in Lisbon.


Arriaga received a number of awards and citations during his career, including:


He married in Reguengos de Monsaraz, at the Chapel of o Monte de São Mamede, on 19 May 1955 Maria do Carmo Fernandes Formigal (b. Lisbon, Lapa, 27 August 1932), Dame Commander of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre, daughter of Mário Formigal (Lisbon, Lapa, 15 December 1899 - Lisbon, Santa Isabel, 11 January 1954), a Landowner and son of another, and wife (m. Lisbon, August 1922) Maria Adelaide Rosado Fernandes (Cascais, 13 September 1903 - Lisbon, 30 September 1981), of a family of farmers and Landowners in Évora, Alto Alentejo, by whom he had five children, including the second wife of Pedro Santana Lopes.[2]

Published worksEdit

  • Atomic Energy - 1949
  • the Portuguese National Defense in Last the 40 years and the Future - 1966
  • Some Nuclear Questions in Portugal - 1969
  • Lições de estratégia de curso de altos comandos—1966/67 (Lessons Of Strategy in the Course of High Command, 1966/67), Vol. 12 (1971)
  • The Portuguese Answer - 1973
  • Courage, Tenacity and Faith - 1973
  • the National Conjuncture and My Position before the Moment Portuguese Politician - 1976
  • In the way of the Solutions of the Future - 1977
  • Africa - the Betrayed Victory (co-author) - 1977
  • War and Politics - On behalf of the Decisive Truth, Years (two editions) - 1987
  • Global Strategy - 1988
  • Syntheses (two editions) - 1992
  • Maastricht - 1992

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Costados Alentejanos, II, António Luís de Torres Cordovil Pestana de Vasconcelos, Edição do Autor, Évora 2006, N.º 33
  2. ^

External linksEdit