Saturday, 23 June 2007

Genoa 2001. The Mexican Butchery

(Photo: Prison, by danielel). During the 27th G8 summit in Genoa, which was held on July 2001, the Italian police made a raid on the school Diaz housing the Genoa Social Forum and arrested 93 people. Many persons were beaten and kicked, while after arrest they couldn’t talk with their lawyers (news.bbc.co.uk). Some weeks later, the head of Italian police Mr Gianni De Gennaro admitted police abuse, but Silvio Berlusconi’s government didn’t remove him (news.bbc.co.uk).
Mr Michelangelo Fournier, Vice Police Superintendent of Primo Reparto Mobile di Roma, took part in that action on Diaz school. A fortnight ago, six years later, he counted what he thought reaching Diaz school that night, during the raid: “Sembrava una macelleria messicana” [It looked like a Mexican butchery]. Mr Fournier told that he soon moved his men out of the school and called for ambulances. Mr Fournier said that he kept the silence for six years to protect the police and its institutional role (
repubblica.it). The Police Superintendent Mr Vincenzo Canterini then admitted that a police 'fruit-salad' took part in the raid on Diaz school that night and that his men didn’t hit anyone so hard (repubblica.it).
After Mr Fournier’s remarks the Left, who wanted Mr De Gennaro to be removed in 2001, renewed his request six years later (
repubblica.it), while the newspapers wrote that Mr De Gennaro is now under investigation (repubblica.it). Mr Romano Prodi’s government then explained that Mr De Gennaro would have been replaced soon; the Center-Right rose up against this decision (iht.com).
Mr De Gennaro made a wonderful carrier inside the Italian Police: he worked with
Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino against mafia; he prosecuted inquiries against many members of Cosa Nostra and arrested Bernardo Provenzano; he fought against new Brigate Rosse and against islamic terrorism in Italy (corriere.it and repubblica.it). Despite this, whether he knew about Diaz school abuses or not, Mr De Gennaro should have been removed in July 2001. Indeed, when police attacks defenceless people a basic civil right is broken: in those cases, the head of police must be replaced, because nobody should think that police is a menace for democracy. No reason indeed to believe that someone is irreplaceable in a democratic country.
What more? [..] tutte le polizie, anche le meglio organizzate sul terreno tecnico, [sono] sempre colte di sorpresa dalle rivoluzioni e ne [sono] facilmente sopraffatte. A che serve un perfetto servizio di informazione, se di queste informazioni non si capisce il valore? In ogni insurrezione, in ogni limitato movimento di piazza ha una sua parte essenziale il fattore improvvisazione. Ora, la polizia non sa improvvisare, appunto perché le manca la capacità di capire – e quindi di prevedere e di valutare – le reazioni popolari.” [Revolutions always take by surprise every police, even those that are more organized on grounds of technique, and they easily overcome them. Is a perfect intelligence service useful, if it doesn't understand the value of the informations found? In every uprising, in any limited riot, improvisation is essential. The police is unable to improvise, and the reason is that it lacks the ability to understand - and then to foresee and to estimate - popular reactions.] (
Giorgio Agosti, Dopo il tempo del furore. Diario 1946-1988, 2005, 21 ottobre 1947).

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