Thursday, March 17, 2005

Italian gulibility

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi wants his party to be re-elected next month so bad, he’s starting to sound like John Kerry. Last week he pledged his continued support for the war in Iraq. Tuesday, it’s “We’ve got to construct a precise exit strategy,” (quote from Wednesday’s Globe and Mail.) Today, opposition politicians are accusing him of changing his mind again. Geez. At least he was honest enough to admit it was the opinion polls that made him speak out. The Italian Communist press has sold the public on the idea that the U.S. is lying. Tuesday, Berlusconi demanded George Bush come clean, saying “Those responsible must be identified.”

I wasn’t going to write about Italian public opinion, and how it has been affected by the lies told by that communist reporter, Giuliana Sgrena, but I can’t resist.

Public opinion in Italy turned sharply against America after an Italian secret agent died at a U.S. Army checkpoint in Baghdad earlier this month. U.S. officials say their soldiers fired at the engine compartment of Calipari’s car when it tried to run the checkpoint at high speed.

AP Photographs of the car from news services show intact windows and very few bullet holes. Yet the so-called journalist in the car, Comrade Sgrena, has been claiming that she was the target of a deliberate ambush, and that the car had been riddled with bullets after it slowed to stop at the checkpoint. She’s contradicted herself, changed the story a number of times, and later admitted the car was going so fast that the driver almost lost control.

Why is Sgrena still getting a free pass from our media? Wednesday’s Toronto Globe and Mail managed to retell the story without once mentioning her name, or the glaring inconsistencies of her fabrications.

Sgrena’s mission to Iraq to write anti-American propaganda has succeeded beyond her wildest dreams. Thanks to the driver of her sedan who tried to run an army road block in a war zone, and the gullibility of a populace ready to swallow Sgrena’s tall tales.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Are you saying the Italians supported the war prior to this incident? That doesn't seem to be the case.

Andrew. said...

From what i've read, it seems that like Spain, Italians were deeply divided over the issue. And like in Spain, a violent event has swung a majority of public opinion against the war on terror.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure what you've read but an EOS Gallup Poll conducted in January 2003 and published by the BBC had Italians at 88% against going to war without UN support. And 32% were against going to war even with UN support.

In Spain a poll conducted at the request of then Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar had the anti-war sentiment as high as 91% in 2003. Note this was long before the subway bombings which supposedly were what turned Spanish public opinion against the war. They were never in favor of it in the first place. 70% actually wanted to remain neutral.

Hamm172 said...

One third vs two thirds in Italy is pretty significant, but I'll agree with you about the figures from Spain.

Regardless, you're nit picking and missing the point of the post.

Anonymous said...

Well, actually you put in the post that public opinion in Italy turned sharply against America after this incident. I was pointing out that it was never really pro-American in the first place.

What happened to the car at that checkpoint is probably a combination of both stories. I can sympathize with the Italians not wanting to be shot at, and with the Americans whose survival often depends on them acting first, never knowing who is friend or foe.

J Rollison said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
J. Rollison said...

As we have seen over the years the press often distorts the truth to serve hidden political agenda's. The real crime in the Iraqi situation is that peace keepers are required. After years of brutality and oppression the people of Iraq hopefully will soon have the freedoms which we often take for granted.

The USA for all its faults is sacrificing its nations youth to help make Iraq and this world a safer and better place to live.

J. Rollison said...

As we have seen over the years the press often distorts the truth to serve hidden political agenda's. The real crime in the Iraqi situation is that peace keepers are required. After years of brutality and oppression the people of Iraq hopefully will soon have the freedoms which we often take for granted.

The USA for all its faults is sacrificing its nations youth to help make Iraq and this world a safer and better place to live.