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  • After Years of Effort, Italian Rightist Granted Legitimacy of an Israel Visit

    An official visit to Israel later this month caps nearly a decade of effort by Italy’s deputy prime minister to shed the jackboot image of his party’s neo-fascist roots and fully emerge as a mainstream rightist leader. Gianfrano Fini, head of the right-wing National Alliance party, is to visit Israel Nov. 23-26, less than a… More ▸

  • Poll Shows Italian Teens Harbor Racist and Anti-semitic Attitudes

    Racist attitudes are increasingly prevalent in Italy, where more than one-third of teenagers may harbor racist views toward Jews, Muslims and immigrants. So says a new poll sponsored by the umbrella organization of Italian Jewry under the auspices of Italy’s president, Carlo Azeglio Ciampi. “What we are seeing are new forms of creeping racism that… More ▸

  • Italian Royal Visits Site of Massacre, but World War Ii Behavior Still Haunts

    Attempting to smooth relations with Italy’s Jewish community, the long-exiled heirs to Italy’s abolished monarchy paid homage at the country’s foremost monument to Nazi barbarity. But the gesture over the weekend did little to assuage Jewish uneasiness over the failure by Victor Emmanuel of Savoy, the son of Italy’s last king, to apologize for the… More ▸

  • Anti-semitic Blast at Italian Editor May Show Deeper Racism, Jews Say

    Italian Jewish leaders have warned that anti-Semitic attacks this week against a distinguished journalist of Jewish origin could be symptoms of a more dangerous strain of racism. “I don’t want to overdramatize things, but we need to be more vigilant, to pay more attention,” Amos Luzzatto, president of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities, told… More ▸

  • Holocaust Memorial Plan in Italy Prompts an Anti-semitic Diatribe

    Officials in northern Italy have condemned a far-right political party for protesting a drive to erect a Holocaust memorial in the city of Bolzano. In cooperation with the local Jewish community, local newspapers in the province of Alto Adige launched an effort last Friday to build a monument in Bolzano’s Jewish cemetery to honor Jews… More ▸

  • Fiery Italian Journalist Causes Stir by Condemning Arafat, European Left

    Celebrated Italian journalist Orianna Fallaci has never been one to mince words. Her no-holds-barred style when interviewing global VIPs made her a celebrity icon in the 1970s and 1980s. A vehement defense of the United States published after the Sept. 11 attacks became a best-seller in Italy and provoked a storm of controversy because of… More ▸

  • Religious Leaders of All Stripes Pray for Peace in an Italian Town

    Rabbis, imams, priests and patriarchs from a dozen world religions have joined Pope John Paul II in praying for peace and condemning violence in the name of God. The aim of what the Vatican called a Day of Prayer for Peace in the World was to hammer home the message that religion must never be… More ▸

  • 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 ▸