Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani, speaking in Ankara with his Turkish counterparts, has demanded that Libya hold elections soon. Speaking to reporters after returning from Turkey, Tajani said that his country is eager for Libyan elections to be held in order to address Italy’s migration crisis. “We have to get to the elections quickly because we have the immigration problem that needs to be solved. We must hurry,” he said.
Although quite how these Libyan elections would solve Italy’s migration crisis is unclear, Tajani, true to imperial Italy’s form, said that Italy “will provide patrol boats and we are doing everything we can to address stability and immigration.” More weapons into Libya, it seems, is the Italian answer.
Although we’ve previously written how farcical these elections are, Tajani’s unwarranted intervention shows how absurd this entire farce is. Italy played a key role in destroying Libya by betraying the secular Gaddafi government and then bombing their forces and the civilians they were protecting into the stone age. The only role Italy should play with regards to Libya is as defendants in a war crimes’ tribunal.
But then, Italy has been down this road before.Italy has never atoned for its war crimes in Spain, in the Balkans and in Africa where it gassed Ethiopian villagers in a flagrant breach of the Geneva Convention. Italy, which helped foment the War, has actually been brazen enough to put aged Nazis in the dock – whilst simultaneously engaging in fresh bouts of adventurism in the Balkans,where Tajani now wants to be the harbinger of peace, Libya and Iraq under the NATO umbrella. Of more than 1,200 Italians sought for war crimes in Africa and the Balkans, not even one has ever faced justice. Webs of denial spun by the Italian state, the Vatican, academe and the media have re-invented Italy as a victim, gulling the rest of us into acclaiming the Good Italian long before Captain Corelli strummed his mandolin, while running his hand up the legs of peasant Greek girls. Benito Mussolini’s invading soldiers slaughtered all before them, they starved infants in concentration camps and they engaged in genocide. There was no Nuremberg for Italy’s legions of war criminals.
When General Pietro Badoglio, whose planes strafed Red Cross camps and dropped 280kg bombs of mustard gas into Ethiopian villages, died of old age in his bed, the Italians buried the bastard with full military honours; they even renamed his home town after him! General Rudolfo Graziani, aka the butcher of Libya, massacred entire communities; his crimes included an infamous assault against the sick and elderly of Addis Ababa. His men posed for photographs holding the severed heads of the victims of Mussolini’s Pax Romana. General Mario Roatta, known to his men as the black beast, killed tens of thousands of Yugoslav civilians in indiscriminate reprisal attacks and murdered thousands by deliberately depriving them of water, food and basic medicines in the concentration camps he herded them into. Successive Italian governments have steadfastly refused to reveal the location of stockpiles of mustard gas in Ethiopia and innocent African children still continue to die as a result. And Italy couldn’t care less.
And nor, it seems could Tajani, Italy’s latest would-be St Francis of Assisi, whose famous poem begins as follows:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.
All very nice, sweet and sultry when sung by Sarah McLachlan but sickening when it comes out of the mouths of the regime responsible for 100 years of war crimes in Libya.