Jun 12, 2019
Admiral (ret.) Paolo Bembo
Editor, Italian Navy League Magazine and President, Italian Association of Naval Painters

Rear Admiral (retired) Paolo Bembo served for over 40 years in the Italian Navy. He served for 14 years on various naval vessels and commanded a class of cadets at the Italian Naval College Morosini in Venice.

From 1992 to 1995, Bembo was assigned as National Naval Representative and Navigation Teacher at the U.S. Naval Academy, in Annapolis, Maryland. While serving in that position he received many letters of commendation and was nominated “Master Instructor”, the highest qualification for teachers without an american PhD. He obtained the Officer in Charge qualification for the Yard Patrol Boats and was in command of two of those craft during the summer cruises with the midshipmen, one of the few Italian officers having been in charge of a US vessel. While serving at the USNA, during the summer of 1994 he has acted as representative for the Academy in San Diego, California, to organize the work of the midshipmen (about a thousand) on board the Third Fleet’s units. While in Annapolis he also cooperated with the local Naval Museum to organize an exhibit about the Naval Painter Rudolf Claudus.

On his return to Italy, Bembo was assigned to the Navy External Relations Committee and then served as Chief of Protocol at the Department of the Navy. He was then in put in charge of the Internal Communication Office and served as executive editor of “Notiziario della Marina”, the Navy magazine, Commander Bembo afterwards became executive editor of the magazine “Rivista Marittima,” the leading cultural magazine of the Italian Navy. In June 2002 he was assigned in New Zealand as Liaison Officer to the Royal New Zealand Navy on the occasion of the tour around the world of the sailing training ship “Amerigo Vespucci”. After leaving New Zealand he was assigned to the Cabinet of the Minister of Defense as assistant to the diplomatic counselor to the Minister and Chief of the International Relations Section. 

Admiral Bembo retired in 2013 and became Editor of the Italian Navy League magazine. 

Throughout both his professional and non-professional activity Adm. Bembo has offered conferences and lectures on many subjects which form the vast field of his interest: Naval History, Maritime and Naval Painting, Middle Ages Cartography, and Strategy. A lover of ancient and modern art, he has written hundreds of articles about this subject for Italian and foreign magazines and he has also written five books on the same subject. A member of the Italian Military History Society and of the Italian Geographical Society, he is now a professional journalist, enrolled in the journalist guild since the year 2000. As “freelancer”, he writes occasionally for different magazines, including Arte Navale, Rivista Marittima, Notiziario della Marina, Yacht Digest, Naval History, Proceedings, Nautica, Vela e Motore, Mondo Sommerso, Lega Navale, Bollettino d’Archivio dell’Ufficio Storico della Marina, and Gazzetta di Istanbul.

Admiral Bembo holds undergraduate degrees from the Italian Naval Academy and New York State University, and graduate degrees from the University of Trieste, the Istituto di Guerra Marittima, and the US Naval War College.

He is a voracious reader enjoys fly fishing. In the past he has been a civilian aviator and has practiced target shooting, becoming pistol champion of the Italian Navy for two years. He has also been a parachutist. He is married to Adriana Mandraffino. They have one daughter, Cristiana, a full time teacher of circus acrobatics.