The mayor of Latina, a city south of Rome, has stirred controversy with his plan to rename the city park in honor of the brother of wartime Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.
Mayor Aimone Finestra is a member of the right-wing National Alliance Party, which grew out of the now defunct, neo-Fascist Italian Social Movement party.
He wants to rename the city park, currently undergoing a major clean-up operation, in honor of Arnaldo Mussolini, a journalist who died in 1931. “It is proper to name the park for a man of culture and considered counselor of his illustrious brother,” Finestra was quoted as saying by the Milan daily Corriere della Sera.
Corriere della Sera published a sharp editorial on the affair, saying that moves such as that of Finestra hampered the attempt by National Alliance leader Gianfranco Fini to rid the party of its old neo-fascist associations and place it within the mainstream right.
“For heavens sake, let’s not cry that there’ a black [ultra right-wing] danger, let’s not raise alarms out of time and out of place,” Corriere wrote. “Let’s limit ourselves to recall that every Aimone in bloom, however little, is a blow to the difficult process of transforming the National Alliance into a force of the democratic, modern, European right.”