Sunday, 19 December 2010

Committee of National Liberation Wanted

(modenaroid, Videocracy 2)

[Edoardo Montenegro, Turin] - On Tuesday, December 14th, Silvio Berlusconi survived a dramatic 314 to 311 no confidence vote at the Lower House of Italian Parliament (1).

Tensions rose between opponent fields, the opposition accusing Silvio Berlusconi of having allegedly bought the support of several lawmakers by paying their debts or granting them consistent future incomes (2).

While lawmakers broiled at the Parliament, violence spread in the streets of Rome, where the peaceful protest of Italian students was upset by small groups of masked protesters: 40 people were hurt and 41 were pulled in by the police, which reported 57 officers injured (3).

Gianfranco Fini lost his parliamentary battle: the Lower House speaker, one of Silvio Berlusconi's closest ally for sixteen years, had recently left the ruling coalition along with 30 lawmakers, accusing the Italian Prime Minister to hold power for the sole purpose to defend himself from Justice (4).

His defeat, however, has not made Silvio Berlusconi stronger.

While the Prime Minister is now looking for more invidual lawmakers willing to strengthen his thin majority (5), his main Center-Right opponents - Gianfranco Fini, Pier Ferdinando Casini and Francesco Rutelli - presented a new alliance aimed at replacing his leadership (6).

The battle is over, but war begins.

First: you cannot rule over a € 1,800 bn public debt with a majority of three lawmakers in the Parliament (7).

Second: Silvio Berlusconi walks on the crutches of the Northern League, the xenophobic party led by Umberto Bossi which might benefit most from early elections (8).

Third: even if it is far from finding a common ground to challenge Silvio Berlusconi (9), the Italian Left might soon be forced to close ranks by the prospect of early elections.

How to turn a despotic oligarchy, where lawmakers represent nothing but themselves (10), in a modern democracy?


(1) Gian Antonio Stella, "Nell'arena di Montecitorio",, December 15th 2010.

(2) Massimo Giannini, "Scandalo in Parlamento",, December 11th 2010.

(3) Rachel Donadio, "Berlusconi Survives Confidence Vote",, December 15th 2010.

(4) Guy Dinmore, "Berlusconi under attack before confidence vote",, December 13th 2010.

(5) Maurizio Belpietro, "'Gli sfilerò un deputato alla volta'", interview with Silvio Berlusconi, Libero, December 16th 2010.

(6) Massimo Giannini, "La Bastiglia del Cavaliere",, December 16th 2010.

(7) Guy Dinmore, "Roman showdown",, December 13th 2010.

(8) Alessandra Galloni, "An Italian Fringe Firebrand Gains Votes, Power in Crisis",, December 14th 2010.

(9) Federico Geremicca, "A Sinistra la resa dei conti",, December 15th 2010.

(10) Ilvo Diamanti, "La democrazia dell'irresponsabilità",, December 13th 2010.


Related articles in English:
  • Guy Dinmore, "Italy faces prolonged political uncertainty",, December 14th 2010
  • Guy Dinmore, "Berlusconi appeals to moderates to save him",, December 14th 2010
  • Stacy Meichtry, "Italy's Berlusconi faces major test",, December 14th 2010
  • Francesca Angelini, "Italy's students fight change",, December 14th 2010
  • Michael Stothard, "Italy rallies after Berlusconi survives vote",, December 14th 2010
  • Guy Dinmore, "Berlusconi clings on to power after vote",, December 15th 2010
  • Guy Dinmore, "Italy's bruised politicians set for new battle",, December 14th 2010
  • Guy Dinmore, "'Third pole' to challange Berlusconi",, December 16th 2010

Related articles in Italian:
  • Curzio Maltese, "Il presepe del Cavaliere",, December 14th 2010
  • Barbara Spinelli, "Il profeta delle illusioni",, December 15th 2010
  • Ezio Mauro, "La partita comincia ora",, December 15th 2010
  • Francesco Verderami, "Sulle elezioni anticipate si rovesciano i ruoli",, December 15th 2010
  • Marcello Sorgi, "A destra vento di elezioni",, December 15th 2010
  • Mario Calabresi, "Il muro tra politica e Paese",, December 15th 2010
  • Marzio Breda, "Il pressing di Napolitano per l'impegno del governo",, December 16th 2010
  • Gian Guido Vecchi, "Cei soddisfatta per la fiducia: 'C'è voglia di governabilità'",, December 16th 2010


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