Italy

  • Religious Leaders Gather in Italy for Prayers Sparked by Sept. 11

    Rabbis will join dozens of religious leaders from around the world this week in central Italy to pray for peace and condemn violence committed in the name of religion. “Never again violence! Never again war! Never again terrorism!” is the title of the Vatican-organized interfaith encounter in the town of Assisi. Participants in Thursday’s “Day… More ▸

  • Protests Heard As Italian Mayor Plans to Name Street After Mussolini

    A plan by the mayor of a town in Sicily to name a street in honor of Italy’s wartime fascist dictator Benito Mussolini is drawing protests. The Simon Wiesenthal Center condemned the proposal, launched by Mayor Guido Costa of the town of Tremestieri Etneo. In a letter to Interior Minister Claudio Scajola, the Wiesenthal Center’s… More ▸

  • Italian Leader Promises Money to Aid Future Palestinian State

    Italy’s prime minister has promised Yasser Arafat he would back a major economic assistance package for a future Palestinian state. Silvio Berlusconi made the promise during a meeting with the Palestinian Authority president on Tuesday during Arafat’s one-day visit to Italy. A statement from Berlusconi’s office said Berlusconi reaffirmed Italy’s commitment to a peace process… More ▸

  • Anti-semitic Tract Appears on Site Hosted by Leading Italian Newspaper

    An Italian newspaper is being pressed to remove a notorious anti-Semitic tract from a Web site it hosts. The Simon Wiesenthal Center demanded in a letter this week that the Italian daily La Repubblica remove the text of “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion,” which was posted on one of the newspaper’s online discussion… More ▸

  • Italian Jews Irate over Editorial, Blast It As Anti-semitic, Ill-informed

    An Italian commentator has outraged Jews with a prominent and provocative editorial they claim is anti-Semitic. In the editorial, Barbara Spinelli claimed that the Jewish world should make a public apology for “the peoples or individuals” who paid in “blood or exile” so that Israel could exist. Italian Jewish leaders sharply attacked Spinelli’s article in… More ▸

  • Controversial Italian Politician May Finally Be Welcomed in Israel

    The door is opening for the leader of an Italian party with fascist roots to visit Israel. In an interview published Monday, Israel’s new ambassador to Italy, Ehud Gol, implied that Israeli officials believe Gianfranco Fini, deputy prime minister in Italy’s center-right government, has shaken off his neo-fascist roots and become a mainstream politician. “We… More ▸

  • Sharon Bonds with Berlusconi, Making Italian Jews Feel Uneasy

    For Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, his visit here with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi appears to have been a love fest. “My feeling is that I came to pay a visit to an ally,” Sharon said last Friday after his overnight stay in Rome. “I found a government that is friendly, and a prime… More ▸

  • Italian Jews Divided As Government of Media Tycoon Includes Far Rightists

    Italian Jews are sharply divided over the new center-right government headed by media tycoon Silvio Berlusconi that includes two controversial politicians with far-right links. Berlusconi, whose Freedom House coalition swept the center-left from power in general elections last month, was sworn in Monday as prime minister of Italy’s 59th government since 1945. “Like Italians at… More ▸

  • Italy Wants ‘butcher of Genoa’ Jailed: Germany Promises It Will Investigate

    Italy wants Germany to arrest and jail a 92-year-old former Nazi convicted of war crimes in Italy. Friedrich Engel, the “butcher of Genoa,” was convicted in absentia in Italy two years ago for having rounded up and killed nearly 250 civilians in northern Italy during World War II. Last week, a German television station traced… More ▸

  • Italian Insurance Agreement Could Speed Other Holocaust Policy Deals

    The light at the end of the tunnel has become a little brighter for some Holocaust victims and their heirs. Prospects for payments on insurance policies issued in the years preceding the Holocaust improved after Italy’s largest insurance company, Assicurazioni Generali, finalized an agreement to pay $100 million to settle Holocaust-era insurance claims and provide… More ▸