Tuesday, May 02, 2006


Slippery Silvio has resigned at last! Now, I can't comment on Italian politics as I could on the British situation, as, despite having studied Italy and Italians for nearly 40 years, I still don't understand the politics of the country sufficiently.

But I do know that many Italians have been very worried for the past three weeks, fearing that the electoral shambles has made the country a laughing stock abroad and being very concerned about Berlusconi's refusal to accept the decision of the electorate and the signal that that sends to the world.

Personally, I was fascinated by his hands during one of the TV debates with Prodi; he looked as if he was drawing squares and circles all the time - to what avail? And you have to hand it to the man for sheer outrageousness: during the campaign he compared himself to Christ and Churchill, among others, and, famously, announced his intention to refrain from having sex until after the election! [If I had been his wife, I'm not sure I'd have wanted this announced to the world!] And I did find his answer to the question, "Why did you send Italian troops into Iraq?" - "Because Bush wanted me to!" refreshingly honest, if hardly statesman-like.

So now I have two questions: who will we laugh at now and where will Tone and Cherie go for their freebie hols?

But I'm not sure we've seen the last of "Il Cavalliere"....

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