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Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Why Does the Pope Hate the Deputy Prime Minister of Italy? (Mainly because he’s winning)

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Matteo Salvini Matteo Salvini

Europe waking up; Socialists and ‘68ers[1] losing their grip

Very much like the “conservative” Catholics getting unpleasantly shocked out of their 50 years of enchanted Novusordoist sleep by the incredible spectacle of this pope, throughout the secular world people of Europe are also waking up. “There’s a proper reawakening across Europe going on,” a young Dutch politician said after late March elections swept much of the old leftist guard out of his country’s Parliament.

36 year-old Thierry Baudet was especially jubilant at the thought of the anguish of the Eurocrats in Brussels over the political sea change in the Netherlands and across Europe.

“We represent a political philosophy that is fundamentally opposed to the principles of the French Revolution,” said Baudet, adding, “I think there’s a movement going on across European countries, across individual party-lines. It’s the belief in a European renaissance.” Baudet is among those aiming to wrest the leadership of Europe away from the old guard.

As the results of this weekend’s European elections show us, the reality that they have been manipulated by an anti-natalist, anti-European agenda and led, with a warm friendly smile, to the brink of auto-genocide is finally starting to sink in to the European awareness. Keeping in mind that MEPs have absolutely no executive power and European parliamentary elections are mostly a very expensive and elaborate public opinion poll, as of this morning we see the that line in European politics has shifted again to the right, in some places, including Italy, significantly so.

The old bloc of socialist-globalists is losing public support. Not that this will deter them, of course – there’s a good reason the EU system has been set up to give MEPs no power and to ensure that the executive branch is free from disturbance by inconveniences like elections – and every national referendum that goes against them is re-played until the right answer emerges. If nothing else, however, our friends across the Atlantic can be more confident that Europeans in general are not such estrogen-laden, welfare-addicted rubes as they are often portrayed.

Summing up today’s results, Eric Kaufmann at the online “free speech” magazine Quillette, writes, “While not quite the populist surge some feared, right-populist momentum continues.” Kaufmann squarely blames the rise of extreme “progressivism” in Europe for the “populist” backlash from a European people weary of constant manipulation by apparently untouchable elites.   

And this is the case especially in Italy:

“Right-wing populists have won an unprecedented 57 seats in elections to the European Union’s Parliament, up from 30 in 2014. In Hungary, Viktor Orban’s Fidesz won a majority of 52 percent. In Italy, Matteo Salvini’s Lega topped the poll at 30 percent…Meanwhile, the mainstream Social Democrats and Christian Democrats saw their combined total drop below a majority for the first time, from 56 percent in 2014 to 44 percent as Green and Liberal alternatives gained.” (Emphasis added.)

Understanding that the distinction is at best a matter of oversimplified journalistic shorthand, at worst a form of manipulative argument-framing, Italy’s towns and regions are roughly divided politically into two political categories: “fascist” and “communist”. We can look at my own neighbourhood in Umbria as an example: Perugia has long been understood to be “communist” or leftist stronghold. That is, until the 2018 elections that gave Italy the “Salvini earthquake”.

The “populist” Lega party – in a coalition with the difficult-to-define 5 Star movement – took the government in a landslide, much to the general panic of European leftist power blocs, including and perhaps especially in the Italian episcopate. And the change is penetrating even leftist strongholds like Perugia.[2] The numbers from this weekend must have been a shock: at the end of the weekend, 38.1% of Perugians had voted for the Lega, compared to 24.2% for the hard-left Partito Democratico (PD)[3].

anti immigration

With all of the above to provide some context and perspective, we can guess this morning that the Bergoglians are likely in a teeth-gnashing fury as an actual public voting process has proved the papal rhetoric of being on the side of “the people” to be a complete fabrication. The fury of the Italian public with the left’s immigrant campaign showed in the shock result of the 2018 national election. This weekend it was clear there has been no change of heart.

Who is Matteo Salvini, and why does Papa Bergoglio hate him so[4]?

The victory of the elections is most notably that of Matteo Salvini, Italy’s recently elected “populist” Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister – and the man the Bergoglian and Italian bishops most love to hate. Italian journalist Antonio Socci tweeted this morning that the “elections have a certain winner: Matteo Salvini.” The leader of the Lega has been bitterly and vociferously opposed by the Italian Bishops’ Conference (CEI) led by the Bergoglian parachute archbishop of Perugia, the smiling socialist Gualtieri Bassetti.

Socci wrote, it’s a victory for Salvini, “Ma anche uno sconfitto clamoroso. Il popolo cattolico ha ‘sfiduciato’ Bergoglio e la Cei.” Some of the political journalistic language can be tricky to translate, but roughly it’s, “But also a resounding defeat for another.” The Catholic public, Socci said, “have ‘rejected’ Bergoglio and the CEI.”

But “Sfiduciato[5]” means more than just “rejected”. It means a resounding vote of utter lack of confidence or belief, total distrust, a violent and complete rejection. In brief, Italian Catholics didn’t so much vote for Salvini as they voted against Bergoglio and his aggressive migrantist political policy.

Formerly the “Lega Nord,” or Northern League, based in Veneto, Lombardy and Liguria, Salvini’s Lega party was for many years the only voice in the country, under the globalist, pro-European Union PD that dared to risk opposition to illegal mass-migration. Italy has undergone an unprecedented influx, that many are straight-up calling an invasion, of migrants – not refugees or immigrants according to all legal definitions – mainly from sub-Saharan Africa and the Near East. This has been the leading political issue in this country since 2013 and in 2018 it boiled over for a massive national win for the formerly strictly regional Lega.

Catch Michael Matt's commentary on this subject in his next Editor's Desk from Remnant TV!

With this weekend’s results, given the poor showing by the 5 Star Movement, Salvini’s government coalition partner, it seems more possible than ever that his party will soon hold a ruling majority in Italy. They were voted in by an Italian public completely fed up with the no-win, Hobson’s choice between the immovable grip of globalist leftism or the right’s gross financial and moral corruption that has held Italy in a political stalemate through the whole post-war period.

A little perspective

The standard accusation of racism[6] is still casually flung at anyone who objects to the flood since 2013 of 1.5+ million illegal migrants[7]. Official statistics, dating from 2015, say that 1,036,653 are “officially residing in Italy”. The actual number, however, is unknowable, since previous governments not only took no steps to stem the tide, but paid NGOs to bring more in, many of whom since melted into the cities, and many have come since under “family reunification” provisions.

But, as Quillette’s Kaufmann pointed out, you can only shame and silence people so long when they’re afraid to let their daughters go to the beach.

Indeed, the outcome this weekend was long expected, and the globalist-socialist voices were loud and increasingly hysterical in their efforts to derail the Salvini train. On March 1st, the online outlet Euronews – that mainly produces nakedly propagandistic video “news” spots on Youtube – screeched that “Hate crimes in Italy rise ahead of European elections.” An Italian talking head pointed to the tribulations of a 20 year-old Senegalese man who was enduring being “attacked” by “racist insults” in his neighbourhood in Milan. “This racism issue,” said Salvatore Falco, “can influence the European vote more than terrorism.

Perhaps it will help to clarify the way the left uses the term “attack” and the way the word is used by Salvini, if we compare a young man being “attacked” with “racist insults” and the case of Pamela Mastropietro, an 18 year-old girl from Rome who was murdered by a drug dealing Nigerian migrant in Macerata, Marche. A cause célèbre for the incredible brutality of the attack; her body was cut into pieces which were stuffed into a pair of suitcases and left in a ditch. Some of her body parts have not been recovered. Panorama reported that according to a medical examiner, “the torture inflicted on the body was carried out by an expert hand in order to hinder the investigation.” Mr. Falco, we do not think that word means what you think it means.

With media on the left and old European institutions like the London School of Economics insisting there is no correlation between the migrant influx and rising crime rates, it might be helpful to examine pre-2013 statistics of violent crime, prostitution, drug trafficking and rape. The crime statistics do show that, overall, crime in Italy has been on a significant downward trend from 1996 to 2018. Italy is still safer than many 1st world countries, including the United States, Canada, Britain and Australia, particularly for tourists.  

The trouble starts to show, however, when you look more closely at specific kinds of crime and specific areas, cities and areas within cities and even services like Trenitalia, the national rail system. Train stations across the country have become dangerous, even in small towns linked to the national system, becoming the living rooms for groups of young African men who often use the public space for drug transactions, and authorities seem unwilling to do anything about it, perhaps being chary of opening cans of political worms.

The US State Department issued a warning to tourists about the dangers – mainly of petty crime, pick pocketing and purse-snatching – of the area around Termini train station in Rome. However, the reality is a bit darker. The streets around Termini, along with most urban train stations, has become a kind of dormitory where migrants sleep rough and the danger of violent attack is extreme. In one case that shocked Italians, a female reporter was assaulted on live national television – watched by millions of horrified viewers – as she was trying to interview migrants about their living conditions. She was rescued by a taxi driver.

The State Department does add that the risk of terrorist attacks in Rome is increasing, and the travel advisory note frankly states the reason:

“There is considerable risk from terrorism in Rome. ISIS, al-Qa’ida, their affiliated organizations, and other terrorist groups aspire to commit terrorist attacks against U.S. and Western interests in Europe. Local security authorities believe threats and attacks are likely to be a security concern as European members of ISIS return from Syria and Iraq.

“Italy’s concerns for terrorism are exacerbated by its proximity to North Africa and the Middle East. Additionally, Italy has figured prominently in the rhetoric of groups such as ISIS, al-Qa’ida, and al-Shabaab.” (Emphasis added.)

Part of the difficulty in finding out what is happening is the fact that Italian authorities do not usually report crimes committed by immigrants, migrants and refugee-applicants as a separate category, meaning that often the only available data is anecdotal and journalistic, making it easy for ideologues to dismiss. Police and local authorities know, however, that migrant criminals favour specific kinds of crime and those are up since 2015, particularly drug trafficking and rape. The especially revolting crime of gang-rape was almost unknown in Italy before 2015, and often seems to be committed spontaneously, as a kind of afterthought during break-ins or other crimes.

Additionally, the Sexual Revolution has made inroads in attitudes in this country too, and the new libertine spirit has had its effect on the convicting and sentencing of sexual criminals, blurring legal lines between consenting activity and rape. At the same time attitudes of some in police and judiciary towards rape, even violent “stranger-rape” seem to come from another century, causing a clash of “values” between authorities and “sexually liberated” younger people. One of the issues that has angered the Italian public has been light sentencing of such crimes. In 2013, the Constitutional Court struck down a law requiring pre-trial detention of those accused of rape, aiding or exploiting child prostitution and child-rape, a decision that caused anger even before the migrant crisis really started. One mayor of a town in Campagna caused outrage by calling the gang rape of a 16 year old girl “childishness,” implying it was nothing more than a boyish prank[8].

Social behaviour has changed significantly since the middle of the 20th century, with girls and young women now attending parties and nightclubs as a normal part of life, behaviour unknown to older generations. Rape victims are often assaulted at parties or while involved in buying drugs, as was the case of Pamela Mastropietro. Violent rapes, including gang rapes, are often committed by and on people attending nightclubs and other late-night entertainments[9]. And so far there has been little research or public education on the relationship between violent online pornography and sexual crimes.

Nevertheless, it is inarguable that rape is overwhelmingly a crime committed by non-Italians, particularly African migrants as a percentage of respective populations. One left-leaning journalist tried to claim in 2017 that Italians far outweighed foreigners in sexual assaults, with 1,638 offenses between January and June 2017 (65 percent of the total). This was followed by Romanians, 173, Moroccans, 140, and Nigerians, 62. But the assertion failed to include the percentage of these groups in the overall population, meaning that 1,638 offenses was out of a population of 55 million against 500 thousand Romanians, 420 thousand Moroccans and 88 thousand Nigerians, a result Il Giornale called, “Eloquent numbers on the ‘predisposition’ of the various nationalities to rape: for every Italian rape, there are 11 Moroccans.” The paper found that 37% of all rapes were committed by “foreigners” who represent less than 12% of the population, a finding implying that non-Italians were four times more likely to commit sexual crimes than Italians.

Moreover, violent crime is probably most often committed by non-Italians on other non-Italians, especially in the lawless environments of refugee centres and areas of cities where large groups of non-Italians are settled, and as such can easily slip past official statistics. Examples abound, including the case in 2015 in Palermo, in which a Romanian man, a migrant farm labourer, was killed when he tried to stop a gang of Tunisians raping his wife.

Reports on the ground in refugee and settlement centres say that in many cases open gang and tribal warfare is common and women, either Italian or non-Italian, are not safe in them. Police were able to indentify and arrest the Tunisian assailants with the wife’s testimony, but crimes of this kind can be difficult to resolve – or to record for statistics – with the high mobility of people involved in this kind of temporary work. Trains throughout the country have a constant population of migrants moving from place to place for temporary work or accommodation placements and it is impossible to know who is moving on to avoid the authorities.

What’s a little rape, murder, terrorism and sex trafficking between friends?

How did “immigration” become Europe’s number 1 political issue? Despite what the media has emphasised, the migrant wave from Africa started not with the war in Syria[10] but with the 2011 overthrow by NATO (the US) of Libyan strongman, Muammar Gaddafi. This was a part of the “Arab Spring” strongly supported by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama that also toppled the government of Egypt and, mercifully briefly, installed an Islamist regime there.

Gaddafi’s Libya and Berlusconi’s Italy had a longstanding relationship, including an agreement – that infuriated the European Union – that migrants rescued by the Italian coast guard could be returned to Libyan soil, an agreement that collapsed with Gaddafi’s death and the takeover of the region by violent Islamist militias. And it is certainly no coincidence that the European Central Bank triggered the “Italian debt crisis” that ousted Berlusconi and installed the EU-controlled, puppet “technocrat” government of the unelected, and unelectable Mario Monti, the same year. It is usually forgotten that it was because of direct intervention in the national politics of a sovereign nation by the EU that Italy had no democratically elected government for two years.

In 2011, on the eve of the NATO invasion of Libya, Gaddafi said, “You’re bombing a wall which stood in the way of African migration to Europe and in the way of al-Qaeda terrorists. This wall was Libya. You’re breaking it.” We have seen that Gaddafi’s death and Berlusconi’s political downfall did indeed uncork the migrant bottle.

No one is denying that the political swing away from the “traditional” mainstream parties has come in response to the invasion, but given that it also follows decades of outrageous interference in national politics by various outside forces, especially the European Union, a nationalist backlash should surprise no one. The motive for Italians rejecting the migrantist parties has more to do with their anger at the globalist left’s manipulation than “racism” against migrants themselves.

The immediate result of NATO interference in Libya has been the flooding of hundreds of thousands of foreign migrants – most unemployable – into a country already struggling to cope with serious social problems, including high rates of unemployment, chronically under-maintained infrastructure and precarious social welfare systems. The secondary result has been to significantly destabilise Italian politics.

The old Italian cultural tradition – dating from the Risorgimento – of distrust and ill-feeling toward politicians boiled over when Italians, objecting that their children were no longer safe, were lectured and accused of racism – with the old spectre of Mussolini fascism forever being thrown at them. And with the election of the immigrant-frenzied Jorge Bergoglio as pope, his never-ending stream of insults, and his programme of gerrymandering of Italian dioceses to pursue his agenda, much of this ill-feeling has been squarely directed at the Church.

The current president of the CEI is Gualtiero Bassetti, whom Bergoglio appointed to Perugia in 2009 and made a cardinal, though this was never traditionally a “red hat” see[11]. Bassetti has eagerly embraced his mandate to promote the pope’s immigration policy, one that corresponds point-for-point with the “no borders” ideology of George Soros and the Partito Democratico (PD). Bassetti has been a hardliner[12], pushing migrants-without-limits and authorising his subordinates to suggest, in surprisingly candid agreement with critics, that it really is about population replacement.

Perugia’s auxiliary bishop, Paolo Giulietti,[13] said at a Mass for migrants in 2017 that Italy needs unlimited numbers of migrants because it is a “dying nation.” He said, “In this Italy that does not have children, it is our duty to integrate them.” The papers declined to publish the full text, but it is doubtful the bishop mentioned contraception. Giulietti added, without trace of irony, “In an Italy plagued by a devastating demographic winter, the presence of young migrants represents a timid hope for the future.”[14]

All of which can given an idea why the “populist” Matteo Salvini – and particularly in the light of his extraordinary electoral successes – is being cast as the villain by the Italian, Bergoglian clique.

The papal song remains the same: welcome migrants, or you’re racist!

On May 17th, a few days before the EU elections, Il Fatto Quotidiano reported that the pope had said he would refuse to meet Salvini; “Until his language and politics changes, I can’t and I don’t want to shake his hand.”

Salvini responded tersely that he has never requested an audience with the pope.

And as luck, irony or Providence would have it, the pope today issued his official statement ahead of this year’s World Day of Migrants and Refugees, saying – again – that it’s entirely the fault of us callous, utilitarian and indifferent rich 1st world people that migrants suffer.

“The most economically advanced societies are witnessing a growing trend towards extreme individualism which, combined with a utilitarian mentality and reinforced by the media, is producing a ‘globalization of indifference’. In this scenario, migrants, refugees, displaced persons and victims of trafficking have become emblems of exclusion[15].” 

The pope continues:

“The signs of meanness we see around us heighten our fear of ‘the other’, the unknown, the marginalized, the foreigner... [T]he problem is not that we have doubts and fears. The problem is when they condition our way of thinking and acting to the point of making us intolerant, closed and perhaps even – without realizing it – racist.”

no popeSo, it’s official; the pope has joined the Twitterverse chorus of SJWs slagging as “racist” anyone who thinks migration should be legal and limited. It’s not difficult to guess that this tirade was prepared well in advance, since pollsters had for some time been predicting the Salvini progress in this weekend’s vote.

With the pope continually lobbing accusations of callous indifference, greed, and even crass racism at anyone who wants national borders and the legal limitations on immigration to be respected, it can hardly surprise anyone that Italians worried about simple safety have rejected him. We can imagine how well his demand in 2017 went over that governments simply ignore threats to public safety, and prioritise “welcoming” all migrants over concerns for “national security.”

We have seen that Bergoglio’s main methodology for all contingencies is to create division and promote factionalism, to invent and then insult straw men, and now it is coming back to bite him. In October last year, on a visit to a Bologna refugee centre, the pope gave a speech that is typical:

“The culture of comfort, which makes us think only of ourselves, makes us insensitive to the cries of other people, makes us live in soap bubbles which, however lovely, are insubstantial. … We have become used to the suffering of others: It doesn’t affect me; it doesn’t concern me; it's none of my business!”

In that speech he called the Mediterranean a “vast cemetery” where thousands have drowned trying to make it to Europe. The irony, as usual, went unnoticed. One of the loudest voices encouraging people to attempt the often-deadly crossing, said, “Has any one of us wept because of this situation and others like it? … Today has anyone wept in our world?” You go first, Holiness.

If comment threads are the new voice of the people, the messages under some of the articles in which these prelates are quoted constitute an online pitchforks and torches brigade.

Shortly after the 2018 election, Bassetti warned Salvini that the CEI intended to be the “critical conscience” of the government, especially on migrants. The responses were, to say the least, cutting: “But they don’t realize that nobody is obviously listening to them, but think about being priests, preaching the Gospel and saying Mass!” Another, referring to the multiple incidents of vandalism by migrants in Italian churches, said, “Ah, are you are also watching over those who enter Catholic churches and make massacres of crucifixes, statues, paintings and religious furnishings?”

Another: “Pope Francis wants a poor church ... poor of what? Apparently he is making her poor in faith, but rich in money from the migrant business, not to mention his heretical openings,” and “These priests are not at the service of God but of Bergoglio.”

Salvini’s real beef

In fact it is not the migrants themselves who receive Salvini’s strongest criticism but globalist ideologues. His main target is what he calls the “illegal occupation” of Italy and other European countries “organised by Brussels” – of which the immense increase in illegal migrants he says is nothing more than a symptom, and a deliberately wielded instrument of division.

Salvini doesn’t even want to abolish the EU, but dreams of a “new” European Parliament and Commission, in which democratic principles are respected and the socialist agenda is ousted. Today in a brief victory speech following the elections, Salvini pointed out that the Lega also came in first among voters in Lampedusa, the Mediterranean island where migrants first land in Italy. “It’s evidently a demand for immigration which is lawful, limited, controlled, qualified, positive,” he said.

“It’s not just Salvini’s caprice, but it is also the firm will of the Italians. And it is the first battle that we’ll placidly lead and win in the new European Parliament and European Commission.”

Are they just annoyed that Salvini is more Catholic than the pope?

salvini 2

Perhaps the pope and his friends are most irritated by Salvini’s appeal to faithful Catholics. This month, the month normally given over by the Church to Marian devotions, the pope was fulsome in his greetings to Italy’s Muslims – 2.3% of the population – with a Vatican message urging “universal fraternity” at the opening of the fasting month of Ramadan. The Italian bishops followed suit, setting up Islamic events at their cathedrals and churches, inviting Imams to speak at Mass and hosting Iftar[16] dinners[17]. The Caritas branch in Catania was apparently so worried that Muslims wouldn’t have enough to eat at the end of each day they organised food donations to be delivered to local mosques.

Meanwhile, Salvini[18] was “personally” entrusting himself and Italy to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and asking that she would lead his party to victory. At the May 18th rally at the Piazza del Duomo in Milan, featuring the presence of Dutch and French Euro-skeptic leaders, and holding a Rosary aloft he said, “We rely on women and men of good will. We entrust ourselves to the six patrons of this Europe: to St. Benedict of Norcia, to St. Brigid of Sweden, to St. Catherine of Siena, to Saints Cyril and Methodius, to St. Teresa Benedetta of the Cross. We rely on them. And we entrust to them the destiny, the future, the peace and prosperity of our peoples.” 

As much as we might dismiss it as merely clever political manipulation, a more intelligent reading of public opinion than the CEI or Bergoglio has managed, it does confirm that the real Catholic religion still sells in this country, that rarely sees or hears it from their prelates.

And there are a multitude of small signs that Papa Bergoglio is hard put to maintain message control and discipline in the ranks. Indeed, Salvini himself claims he receives constant messages and emails from “friars, nuns, missionaries, bishops [and] cardinals” supporting him. Take this claim with as much salt as you like, but we must ask is it possible that Bergoglio’s very intransigence will drive even dedicated Novusordoist Italian bishops past their sticking point? Is it possible that the Bergoglian reign is crumbling from within and, particularly in Italy, losing support among bishops who are traditionally protective of their rights and prerogatives?

Il Foglio reports a conversation with an unknown, smiling Italian bishop who said the Bergoglian cabal has shocked some bishops by being more deeply ideological than any ruling faction seen in anyone’s memory. A pope who refuses for ideological, political reasons to meet with an Italian politician is something unheard of: “It’s a novelty, if you think about it,” he said. “We had governments that had everything in them, forces light years away from the principles dear to the Church and that even made war on the Church.” 

The Italian episcopate is not a monolithic political bloc; “There are bishops for Salvini,” the anonymous prelate said. “The [CEI] president gives a line of input, but then we have our head eh,” he added. “And there are many who, although obviously not sharing whistles with the Holy Father - and we would miss something else - do not understand this preconceived hostility towards a particular political party.” 

“Obviously,” he said, there is among the Italian bishops an equivalent of the “Lega” – a party or faction who do not support unlimited migration or the globalist, socialist aims. What good they imagine they can do for the nation by smiling phlegmatically and keeping quiet, however, is anyone’s guess.

What no one on the left is saying: migration is a bad deal for the migrants

As more information becomes public about the real situation of migrants trying to get into Europe – and the cozily lucrative relationship between the “rescue” NGOs and the traffickers – it becomes more clear that the ideological stance of the pope and his fellow travelers is aimed not at mercy for them, but ideological browbeating for us.

Much of the humanitarian argument against allowing this huge influx of African migrants into Europe is that it is doing nothing more than enriching human traffickers at the expense of immense loss of life and freedom. International law enforcement have said it is reviving sexual slavery, forced prostitution, of women and young girls, and causing the needless deaths of thousands of people by drowning.

The one thing that never gets mentioned in the papal tirades berating “rich” Europeans for their “racism” is the billions of Euros that continue to pour into the hands of the human traffickers. And the world will never know, until the Last Day, how many have died in the desert or the water, or disappeared forever into slavery, making the attempt to get to Europe, all while EU politicians and the Catholic hierarchy continue to encourage them to keep trying.

Nearly all the migrants “rescued” off the Libyan coast and taken to Sicily by NGOs have got there by paying thousands of Euros to traffickers to take them across the Mediterranean. These NGOs are currently the object of police scrutiny for suspected kick-backs, financial partnerships with the traffickers, with some being accused of laundering hundreds of millions of Euros.

The bishop of Trieste – a town sitting on the border between Italy and Slovenia – recently publicly challenged the concept of a “right to emigrate,” a foundational philosophical plank of Bergoglio’s immigration platform. Giampaolo Crepaldi, known for his outspoken “conservatism” on sexual issues as well as promoting Pope Benedict XVI’s idea of the “right not to emigrate,” told the paper La Verità earlier this year that those who are thinking of emigrating should be encouraged to find ways to stay in and “achieve a better condition” for their countries.

Crepaldi said that people should be able to leave intolerable situations like war, endemic poverty “or conditions of disproportionate suffering”. In such cases, “everyone has the duty to love their country, but no one has the obligation to become a slave to it. Expatriation is therefore a right that must be recognized.”

However, “emigration must not be forced, coerced or even planned.” He recalled there is a “duty of the international community to intervene on the causes rather than on the consequences, to face the problems that push or force people and families to leave in emigration countries.”

This is the line recently echoed by some bishops in Africa who called on young Africans to stay and “make your own country better.” In a pastoral statement following a meeting last week, the Cardinals, Archbishops and Bishops of the Regional Episcopal Conference of West Africa, warned young people of the danger of “migration that especially affects young Africans attracted by the thirst for a better life but who suddenly stop in the waves of the Mediterranean or in the Libyan desert.”


[1] A European expression, sometimes given as “soixante huitards,” meaning those of the age to have participated in the student and social rebellions of 1968.

[2] Where violent crime, drug dealing in public parks and rooting out jihadist cells have increasingly occupied local and national police.

[3] Formed out of the officially and for-realsies Communist Party of Italy… I’m not kidding.

[4] Probably mainly because he’s winning, which tends to be rather a sticking point for Jorge Bergoglio, described by people who have had the misfortune to know him well as “a man sick with power.”

[5] One of those rather tricky pronunciations for us Anglos, it comes out as "sfee-doo-chah-toh"

[6] “racist,” “fascist,” and “populist” are used more or less interchangeably by the migrantists. 

[7] Many of these migrants have moved on, finding Italy a less generous welfare state than they had been hoping for. The common method is to use the Italian refugee processing system to gain European residence cards and then use this to head north to states like Germany, Belgium, Sweden, France and Britain.

[8] The mayor, 73 year-old Michele Palummo, later convincingly apologised for the remark when the news went national, and after the parish priest of the town raked him publicly over the coals, saying “We are not a nation of brutes.”

[9] The story linked above in which a 25 year-old Senegalese migrant raped a 15 year-old girl after they met at a nightclub at a beach resort on the Adriatic coast was typical. Nearly every such news item involves a sentence like this: “A casual meeting in a nightclub on an August night had turned into a terrible nightmare of sexual violence by a 25-year-old man…” It might be politically incorrect, but maybe worth asking what a 15 year-old girl was doing at a beach nightclub in a notoriously dangerous town in the first place. Where were her parents? We also have to remember that these men come from a world where women are never unattended by a family member. The man in this case was caught easily and showed no indication he was aware of having committeed a crime. This is a common story across Europe, prompting some countries to initiate “values training lessons” for immigrants to teach them that in European countries rape is not only morally wrong but a criminal offense. The fact that these lessons, however morally incoherent and contradictory, are needed at all seems to have taught the ideologues nothing.

[10] The propaganda that the hundreds of thousands of Africans crossing the Mediterranean in rubber boats are “refugees from war” is in fact a brazen journalistic and political lie. These men – and they are nearly all men – are legally classified as “economic migrants”. An argument could be made that legal provisions should made to allow – and regulate – economic migration, but lying to the public to sell unlimited immigration for ideological purposes helps no one but the traffickers and the politicians banking on them.

[11] The notable exception being Vincenzo Cardinal Gioacchino Raffaele Luigi Pecci, who went to Rome for the 1878 Conclave and stayed to rule as Pope Leo XIII

[12] To give him his due, Bassetti was among the rare members of the Italian episcopate to celebrate the traditional Mass after Summorum Pontificum, and Perugia is the home of a weekly diocesan TLM, an increasingly rare and endangered animal.

[13] This year, Giulietti – who had been made a bishop only in 2014 – was appointed archbishop of Lucca.

[14] Incidentally, this is the first time I have heard of an Italian bishop mentioning the looming auto-extinction of the Italian nation. It isn’t surprising he declined to mention it has largely been facilitated by the complete and early capitulation of the episcopate to the contraceptive juggernaut. In a conversation shortly after the first Synod on the Family, a well-known curial cardinal confirmed that in the entire proceedings the problem of Europe’s demographic crisis – especially marked in formerly Catholic countries like Italy – had never been mentioned. The conversation took place during a visit to Norcia where the cardinal was taking a brief break. He asked why I’d chosen to live in Norcia. I said it was in part because the rents were so cheap. He asked why that was. I responded, “No more people. Population’s been death-spiraling for 70 years.”

[15] “Exclusion” btw is one of the buzzwords popular among South American Marxists in their class-war rhetoric.

[16] The meal at sundown at which the daily fast is broken.

[17] The latest trendy Bergoglian episcopal fad is to host meals with the poor and migrants, eaten on folding tables set up inside the cathedrals. Pope Francis started it in 2017, having lunch with 1400 migrants in the nave of Bologna’s San Petronio Cathedral. La Stampa gushed, “The majestic Gothic vaults of the Basilica of San Petronio, a secular and religious symbol of the city of Bologna, frame the lunch that Pope Francis shares with 1400 ‘guests…’”

[18] Take it for what it’s worth: Salvini is divorced and co habiting with another “partner” but it is widely reported in Rome that though he goes to Mass he does not receive Holy Communion.

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Last modified on Wednesday, May 29, 2019
Hilary White

Our Italy correspondent is known throughout the English-speaking world as a champion of family and cultural issues. First introduced by our allies and friends at the incomparable, Miss White lives in Norcia, Italy.