I often ask Berlusconi's supporters about the opinion foreign countries and journalists have about us. If, as Mr.B says, in Italy everything is controlled by the communists, from television (that's incredibly silly as he controls 90% of the television) to newspapers, tribunals etc., that shouldn't be true about foreign sources.
I post two links to articles by foreign online newspapers here:
- Newsweek (USA):
The Rise and Fall of Berlusconi
- The Economist (UK):
A “martyr” with some method in his madness
Here, in our beautiful Republic, we have at least three big newspapers: La Repubblica, Il Corriere della Sera and Il Sole 24 Ore. The first one doesn't hide it's central-left wing position and anti-berlusconi policy, but Il Corriere was a big supporter of Mr.B. during the last elections. It was pretty shocking to read two weeks ago the editorial by the newspaper's Director Paolo Mieli where he officially suggests the election of Romano Prodi and of the central-left wing coalition.
Il Sole 24 Ore is Confindustria's newspaper. "Founded in 1910 Confindustria is the lead organization representing the manufacturing, construction, energy, transportation, ITC, tourism and services industries in Italy." It's director is also suggesting the left wings coalition election, which is a representative opinion considering it comes from a "business" newspaper which is supposed, by common-sense, to support Berlusconi.
Three big events happened since my first post that I'd like to report and comment:
- Berlusconi's visit to USA's Congress: 1 month ago (the 1st of March) Berlusconi was invited for a speech where he talked about USA as the example of freedom and democracy. He told a small story about his father bringing him to the military graveyard explaining him about the sacrifice of Americans during WW2 to set us free. He later recieved the Intrepid Freedom award for his efforts to promote and defend the values of freedom and democracy. Useless to say that in Italy this was considered nearly like a "joke", one of those Mr.B. likes to tell during his TV shows. One of his Tv channels broadcasted the whole speech LIVE and this was criticised in Italy considering we are under elections (do you remember about the Par Condicio law?). My personal opinion is that it's not a bad thing to broadcast our Prime Minister's visit to USA's Congress, but it's a pretty weird coincidence this happened 1 month before the elections… and on his own TV channel. But we are just wrong-minded communists.
- Official Face-to-Face between Romano Prodi and Silvio Berlusconi: we had the first of two face-to-face discussions using USA's rules (each of them had 2:30minutes for their answers plus 1 more minute to add something). It was hard to see a winner out of this fight, but the polls reported 1 more point for the left-wing coalition. Berlusconi's reaction was a big attack to this face-to-face format, stating it's illiberal. Pretty funny considering it was him who pushed Prodi to accept this fight and considering that the rules were accepted by both the politicians.
- Berlusconi goes to Annunziata: Berlusconi was invited to Mrs. Annunziata's (former state TV's fairness authority guarantor) "30 minuti" (30 minutes) TV programme. But only after 15 minutes Mr.B. left the show after repeatedly requesting Mrs. Annunziata to ask him to explain his government plan for the next 5 years. As a reaction Mrs. Annunziata kept on asking him to answer to HER questions, as that is the aim of a journalist. The result was Berlusconi's escape from the programme.
It's a common opinion that Annunziata looked for the clash, but for sure she was the first journalist, after many years, who disallowed the Premier from performing his own TV show.
I strongly advice reading the two quoted articles.
As usual Wikipedia does a great work.