– Silvio Berlusconi compares himself to Benito Mussolini (Telegraph, , Nov. 9, 2011):
Silvio Berlusconi has compared himself to Benito Mussolini, saying that he lacked power and has been reduced to making “suggestions” rather than ruling.
The outgoing prime minister, in an interview with Italy’s La Stampa newspaper, said: “I am tired of not being able to dictate the line or be able to do the politics I want to do. I feel more powerful as a free citizen than as prime minister.”
The 75-year-old premier, who has announced he will resign by the end of the month under intense pressure from the markets, said he was reading a book of letters written by Fascist dictator Mussolini and his mistress Clara Petacci.
“At a certain point he says: ‘But don’t you understand that I don’t count for anything anymore, I can only make suggestions’,” Mr Berlusconi said, adding: “I have felt in the same situation.”
When pushed by La Stampa on the similarities between his rule and the Fascist dictatorship, Mr Berlusconi said: “Of course, I’m not a dictator, even if you have written as much over the years.”
“But the fathers of our constitution, for fear of history repeating itself, have excessively weakened the executive.”
Mr Berlusconi announced his intention to resign following a shock parliamentary revolt on Tuesday and fears in the eurozone that Italy could be the next victim of the debt crisis.
The colourful tycoon said he will not run for office in the next election and said he felt “liberated” by the decision.
In September 2004, Mr Berlusconi, in one of his trademark gaffes, told Britain’s Spectator magazine: “Mussolini never killed anyone. Mussolini sent people on holiday in (internal) exile”, adding that he agreed with the thought that the Second World War dictator was “benign”.
– Berlusconi betrayed by his own hand (New Zealand Herald, Nov 10, 2011)
Opponents within his own party would have been relieved at his decision to quit after another photograph showed him with a list of “traitors” who had told him they would not back him in the budget vote.
Silvio Berlusconi with a note in Parliament. It reads: ‘308, -8 traitors; Government upturn; Vote; Take note; Resignation; Italian President; One solution; Let’s move.’ Photo / AP
– Scheidender Premier Berlusconi vergleicht sich mit Diktator Mussolini (Spiegel, Nov. 9, 2011):
Silvio Berlusconis politische Karriere mag zu Ende gehen, doch er tritt weiter in jedes Fettnäpfchen. In einem Zeitungsinterview verglich sich Italiens Noch-Regierungschef nun mit dem Diktator Mussolini. Seltsam mutete auch eine “Verräter”-Liste an, die er im Parlament anlegte.
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Tags: Benito Mussolini, EU, Europe, Global News, Government, Italy, Politics, Silvio Berlusconi, Society