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The Brown-shirts come to Italy


1:35 pm - September 3rd 2009

by Claude Carpentieri    


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More news about Italy’s rapid journey to a 21st century version of European fascism. In the past we’ve already documented the alarming rise in anti-immigrant attacks, the legalisation of vigilante groups (including the adoption of dubious symbolism) and the implementation at local and national level of punitive measures against ethnic minorities (i.e. the so-called ‘kebab ban‘).

Italy’s rampant homophobia is another reason for concern.

Since some seriously ugly rhetoric was the soundtrack to the right’s electoral triumph in 2008, anti-LGB attacks have been piling up.

August 2009 was the worst month on record across the whole country, with a worrying daily escalation of street aggressions (including stabbings and attempted murder). Last week, a popular gay nightclub in Rome was the target of an arson attack, while last night two bombs were thrown in the midst of what is known as the capital’s ‘Gay Village’.

As passers-by chased after the culprits, they soon had to relent as one of the bombers produced a gun and managed to run off. Opposition MP Pier Luigi Bersani spoke of a “civil emergency” and called for the government to pass urgent measures to tackle homophobic crime.

****

On to more developments, in the past few days billionaire Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi announced that he’s sueing a number of newspapers, Italian and foreign for writing about his sexual scandals and asking questions he slammed as libellous. As he’s seeking damages of up to 1m, to many this looks like an attempt to gag the press.

Two days ago, a newspaper editor mildly critical of the PM’s recent sexual scandals was publicly smeared with a front-page story (later exposed as unfounded) in one of Berlusconi’s own national dailies as a closeted homosexual and convicted stalker. Some observers called it a latter day (and more effective) version of force-feeding castor oil to political opponents – a strategy the old brown shirts were notoriously very fond of.

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Claude is a regular contributor, and blogs more regularly at: Hagley Road to Ladywood
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Reader comments


Absolutely horrible news. This after Berlusconi publically said to Allesandra Mussolini that he respected her grandfather. There’s no stigma attached to Fascism in Berlusconi’s party, and that’s worrying.

Three articles i’d recommend on Italy’s present mess:

1) Slavoj Zizek’s ‘Berlusconi in Tehran’: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v31/n04/ande01_.html

2) 1st part of Perry Anderson’s study of the Italian Left: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v31/n04/ande01_.html

3) The 2nd part of that extended essay: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v31/n05/ande01_.html

NEWS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED:

Just two days ago the Italian Navy intercepted a boatload of Africans determined to enrich Europe with multicultural vibrancy and towed it back to African waters.

Binky you’re a racist cunt.

Blackshirts surely? After all, they’re nationalists…

we just want african oil and other resources, can’t have black men or women.
We should not be blamed for having our choices.

we are racists.

3 & 4

A waste really! They could have contributed hearts, livers, kidneys, corneas and all sorts of useful odds and ends before being hollowed out to make snug-fitting motorcycle suits.

7

Black organs are not good for white population, they get rejected. So no harm Binky. But maybe some lonely white women may have benefited. What a shame?

Alright, is there anyone moderating this?

I’m with you Claude, I don’t think there is and binky has been linking and spreading hate quite exstensively but hopefully they’ll be onto it asap!

I’m pretty sure that Binky is the Edna Welthorpe that was posting on Pickled Politics last month.

12. Edna Welthorpe-Binky

Oi Damon –

Please explain your reasoning!

Style? Opinions?

Here – if it works – is something of interest:

http://www.jihadwatch.org/archives/027435.php

Try it and see!

13. Edna Welthorpe-Binky

Allah Kareem!

Go to – 12 – and click on the link …

A senior Imam in Iran [the opening line of a Limerick* suggest itself]
says that raping and torturing prisoners is a just
fun of the fair

Nothing about impromptu FGM with nail-scissors, though.

================================

* From where I am now, we can step outside the back door and see Limerick in the distance

So a daft ignorant racist twat than Damon?

Lovely, another troll to crush.

‘* From where I am now, we can step outside the back door and see Limerick in the distance’

Do people in white overalls make sure you don’t wander too far?

OK Claude – as we say in Italy “il bue chiama cornuto l’asino”. As I keep banging on, the problem isn’t only about what Berlusconi and Bossi are up to. Bersani is a hypocritical waste of space! And the same goes for the rest of the so-called Democratic Party – for the first time at this year’s Democratic Party festival or call it what you will – gay groups were not invited because it might offend the “centrist Catholic vote”. Berlusconi and his allies are free to do what they want because they face a feeble and totally spineless opposition. And in case Claude your Italian isn’t up to it the Italian phrase above is roughly the equivalent of the politer Emglish “the pot calling the kettle black”.

carrion, your link in #2 for the Zizek article is wrong, I think you meant this one:
http://www.lrb.co.uk/v31/n14/zize01_.html

And yes – looks like we need some trolls culled in this thread.

@16 That’s what you get when the entire political ethos of a Party is based around fighting the communists instead of building bridges with the Left to fight the Right.

No you’re not.

Why is the left so useless in Italy ? How can the left not provide effective opposition to Berlusconi? Italian politics is taking on the story line of a particularly absurd opera.

To be honest it’s also quite an uphill task to carry out effective opposition when the Prime Minister controls the six national television channels, advertising and publishing companies, newspapers and magazines.

I mean, just to give you an idea, my Italian friends and relatives told me that not a lot of people in Italy are aware of the extent of Berlusconi’s sex scandals. Italian news channels have only marginally mentioned it.

Also
@16 Nino

Please dont take it the wrong way, but thats the very Italian vice of equating the perpetrators with the witness. I refuse to say that the right wing government (with the above mentioned massive media power, with no equals in the Western world) that has actively being promoting racist and discriminatory legislation, whose politicians routinely speak homophobic language that makes the BNP pale by comparison, that are gradually stifling public debate, is as guilty (and as noxious) as a timid and stunted opposition.

22. Racist sock puppet

Anyone see the Al Jazeera broadcast in which Muammar Gadhaffi* jeered at the very idea of Africans seeking asylum?

“They live in deserts and jungles and know nothing of parties or political opposition …”

Actually, it wasn’t all that long ago that mobs of Libyans were literally butchering black Africans in Tripoli and Beghazi after a rumour raced around that one or more Africans had raped a Libyan girl.

You MAY have missed that particular news item in the MSM, of course!

23. Racist sock puppet

SAINT MUAMMAR OF TRIPOLI, PRAY FOR US NOW AND AT THE HOUR OF OUR DEATH

* The spelling of St Muammar’s name varies according to the idea of the person typing it

Italy became a unified country in about 1880. amidst quite a lot of upheaval, you’ll
have to read the history books for details. Many commmentators have blamed this for the political instability within Italy, ie it is what it is now because it was what it was then.
And one thing that the states which became Italy was – Catholic
I personally don’t believe that Italy has a leaning towards fascism but even if that was the case, fascism saved the lives of thousands of Jews in Mussolini’s Italy
IMO, the racism emerging in Italy is caused by the same reason it has emerged in other industrial societies and that’s because economic decline attracts scapegoats. and they are the ones that are somehow ‘different’ from the majority/

There was a bit on Radio 4’s Sunday about the Vatican being very silent about Berlusconi’s open adultery with very young women. It seems that the Vatican is willing to be silent because of Berlusconi’s social policy i.e. coming down against the morning after pill and abortion. Mussolini took pains to not ruffle the Vatican’s feathers as well. There is a whiff of history repeating itself.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006qnbd


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