Max Bonelli: Italian regions’ revolt against sanctions is solidarity with Crimea

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June 30, 2016 – 

By Eduard Popov for Fort Russ – 

Translated by J. Arnoldski

Just before the vote on June 29th in the regional council of Liguria, Eduard Popov acquired this comment from Max Bonelli, the famous Italian writer, columnist, and public figure. Bonelli is the author of the book Anti-Maidan: A History of the Genocide of the People of South-East Ukraine. The author’s political and civic courage was demonstrated by the fact that he presented his book on August 25th, 2015 in Donetsk (DPR). Below we present the opinion of Max Bonelli on recent events acquired by Dr. Eduard Popov exclusively for Fort Russ: 

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The motion to lift sanctions approved by the regional council of Veneto is an expression of the position of Italian industry, especially that of Northwestern Italy, which has lost billions of euros since the imposition of sanctions. The Italian economy has been weakened by the sanctions against Russia, especially since Russia was a very important economic partner of Italy until 2014.

Moreover, the resolution demonstrates solidarity with the people of Crimea and their choice to reunify with Russia through the right of peoples to self-determination, one of the most important values of modern civilization.

Italy is a quite centralized state, which means that one region is unable to pursue any kind of independent line or influence the policies of the Italian state. however, there is great likelihood that in the near future one more region, Lombardy, will follow the example of Veneto and support the lifting of sanctions. Both of these regions are the most industrialized regions of Italy and are governed by the Northern League party which maintains clearly pro-Russian positions. 

Besides the centralization of the Italian state and the inability of regions to influence the policies of the Italian government, there is yet another far from unimportant nuance: Italy is not an entirely sovereign state. 133 American bases are located on the territory of Italy, 18 of which are deployed directly in Veneto. One of the largest military bases in the region is in the city of Vicenza, where a number of episodes of violence by US soldiers against local residents have been recorded (including brawls on the street, in cafes, and in other public places, rape, and so on). The American servicemen who commit such crimes, however, are simply transferred abroad and are therefore not held accountable. 

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