Postcard from... Milan
The spectre of Benito Mussolini, the Fascist dictator, still haunts Italian society. Seventy years after his death, Il Duce continues to divide those who shudder at his name and a minority who note the trains were more punctual back then.
This week it was the three-time premiere Silvio Berlusconi who reminded Italians – and the rest of Europe – of this ambiguous attitude with his comments that the dictator had done some "good things", after the tycoon had dozed through a Holocaust Memorial ceremony in Milan.
One Italian journalist, Michele Novaga, fumed: "I'm lost for words. He wasn't invited. He sat himself in the front row and then he slept through the event dedicated to the memory of those who were herded away in cattle carts and never seen again. And then even said, that apart from the race laws, Mussolini governed well."
The next day Alessandra Mussolini, the right-wing MP and granddaughter of Il Duce, was on national television, defending her grandfather against the backlash provoked by Berlusconi's comments.
The hectoring Ms Mussolini is used to getting her own way on TV debates. This time, however, she came up against a journalist, Andrea Scanzi, who was unflinching in his condemnation of the dictator.
An outraged Ms Mussolini called the journalist a "dickhead" and stormed out of the studio – unwisely leaving Mr Scanzi with the floor and the last word: "Thank you for the 'dickhead' remark. I have respect for all the people devastated by your grandfather. But definitely not for you or your grandfather." A moment of rare moral clarity.
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Boris Johnson claims porn-obsessed Islamic jihadists are 'literally w*****s'
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Putin opponent reveals Russian President's daughter's secret identity
Ball pool for adults opens in London
Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
King Abdullah dead: We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: My client is a two form entry primary schoo...
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: My client is an excellent, large partially ...
£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: I am currently working in partnersh...
£100 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Year 3 Teacher Birmingham Jan 2015...