Oct 30, 2012

Hold the champagne corks, Berlusconi ain’t leaving yet

Italy's former PM Silvio Berlusconi had been sentenced to jail -- yet he's already discussing his political comeback. And he's got some supporters, writes Josephine McKenna from Rome.

There it was in black and white. Headlines around the world screamed “Berlusconi jailed for four years” on Friday as long-time opponents shamelessly popped champagne corks outside the Milan court where the sentence was pronounced.

Italy’s former prime minister had been found guilty of tax fraud and banned from holding public office for five years. After more than 2500 appearances at over 30 court cases since Silvio was first elected in 1994, here was a sentence that might stick.

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4 thoughts on “Hold the champagne corks, Berlusconi ain’t leaving yet

  1. Joseph Lo Bianco

    Most Australian reporting about Italy is quite poor, and invariably sourced through London, but this is a good article, balanced and accurate. It is ironic that PM Gillard said the other day that we have too much eurocentric reporting in Australia and cited Chancellor Merkel as a case in point, ironic because it is precisely the euro crisis that has exposed the London-centric interpretations of the EU that dominate print, digital and broadcast media in this country, as if our interests are identical with Britain’s. Britain, love it though I do, does not equal Europe. Ironic because even in “progressive” media like the Guardian/Independent and BBC euro-skepticism is evident, not to mention the out and out EU haters in some other parts of the media. Australian needs its own, independent, and direct interpretations of Europe. As far as Berlo is concerend there is further positive news, his party is fragmenting around him, and the results of the Sicily election mentioned in McKenna’s article have confirmed the (openly gay mafia fighter) Rosario Crocetta has won the governship, and the grassroots online fuelled 5-Star movement led by comedian Beppe Grillo is the biggest party. This is a dramatic loss of Berlusconi, in 2001 his party took all 61 seats there. Crocetta’s sexuality was discussed, by himself and others, during the campaign and before in his role as mayor of Gela. He cites a similar position, Nichi Vendola in Puglia, like Crocetta a leftist, Catholic gay man, as presaging some deeper cultural changes of several fronts.

  2. klewso

    It would be nice to see the government repeal those reported laws passed under Berlusconi’s patronage – that prevent septuagenarians being sent to gaol.

  3. Daly

    Joseph, I agree with you about the London filter on our European news. Thanks for your comments on this clarifying article.

  4. andrea morgan

    sono addolorata per tutte el malle fato dal Italiani a Berlusconi , e innoocente da tutte le accuse, CHE DIO ABIA PIETA .

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