“Trump and his defence of national identity should be a model for Italy”. These were the words of the Italian politician Giorgia Meloni, who was in Washington to participate as a guest in the traditional National Prayer Breakfast, a series of meetings to convene and pray together held every year, organised on behalf of members of the American Congress by The Fellowship Foundation, a Christian organisation.
This couldn’t have been a better day for Donald Trump, who at the Prayer Breakfast was waving a newspaper carrying the “Acquitted” frontpage headline, his liberation – for the moment, at least, until they can think of something else – from the not-very-credible accusations he had been subjected to. Following Russiagate, this is the second time that he’s been cleared, after his triumph at the 2016 Presidential Election.
Sometimes, political groups who don’t like the results of a popular vote try to “trump up” (pardon the pun, it was difficult to resist) reasons to remove the winner from the scene. Funnily enough, something remarkably similar has also happened in Italy, where another Russiagate was conjured up by our own Democratic Party (I know it sounds like a jest but I’m not joking, this is the former Italian Communist Party that has changed its name) for the benefit of centre-right politician Matteo Salvini and his League party, who were the clear winners of both our latest two national-wide elections, National in 2018 and European in 2019.
Salvini was Italy’s Interior (or Home) Secretary and Deputy Prime Minister for a few months, but he was governing against everybody, including his allies in government, the Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella, the European Union, the people smugglers who make money out of illegal immigration, the Non-Governmental Organisations who help them, the Left-dominated judiciary, and even Pope Francis and the rest of the modernist, politicised clergy (but not all the clergy and Catholic people).
Matteo’s real guilt was to be successful in stopping clandestine immigration to Italy from the Mediterranean by closing the Italian ports to it. The mathematical calculation proves beyond doubt that Salvini’s actions hugely reduced the number of deaths in the Mediterranean, which is in exact and constant proportion to the number of those who leave the African shores, but that did not stop the opposition to the Italian Home Minister’s policies.
In the end he had to resign from government, and they are still persecuting him with absurd legal prosecutions. Rings a bell?
The only ones on Salvini’s side were the Italian people and the woman who’s just gone to Washington, Giorgia Meloni, leader of another “sovranist” party, Fratelli d’Italia (Brothers of Italy), and who in the USA must have found a reminder and a mirror of what happened back home to another political figure unliked by the Establishment.
Except that Trump is now having a ball.
Meloni was, more than impressed, struck by the words spoken by the American President. She said:
In the speech of President Donald Trump at the National Prayer Breakfast there was the defence of American identity, borders, companies, products, families. The pride of identity, in the other nations of the world, is producing excellent results.
This is the right path to follow, she added.
The 43-year-old leader of Fratelli d’Italia, who gave a speech at the last Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in 2019 and is expected to participate at the next later this month, was among the 20 most influential people for the new year as rising stars chosen by London’s Times, while the French Le Monde titles a long profile article dedicated to her “Giorgia Meloni, the face of Italian post-fascism”.