There is no shortage of stories on Italian institutional crises originated in the context of a parliamentary system with multi-party inclinations and a misfit electoral law. And Italy is not even an isolated case of hard processes of formation of government after troubled elections: the cases of the Netherlands and Belgium may be easily recalled. But this crisis was a particularly dark and stormy night. The role played by President Sergio Mattarella in vetoing the appointment of an Eurosceptic finance minister has left many commentators bewildered, including both those more inclined to recognise the presidential power to influence political decisions and those less willing to support a government of parties with a clear populist rhetoric.
The bewilderment is justified by the absence of precedents, but the President’s conduct corresponds to his constitutional powers. In terms of political convenience and in light of recent developments, Mr. Mattarella’s choice was wise, even…
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“There is one great thing that you men will all be able to say after this war is over and you are home once again. You may be thankful that twenty years from now when you are sitting by the fireplace with your grandson on your knee and he asks you what you did in the great World War II, you WON’T have to cough, shift him to the other knee and say, “Well, your Granddaddy shoveled sh-t in Louisiana.” No, Sir, you can look him straight in the eye and say, “Son, your Granddaddy rode with the Great Third Army and a Son-of-a-G-dd—ed-B—h named Georgie Patton!”
General George S. Patton, Jr., June 5, 1944
General George S. Patton, Jr., not only had high military skills, he was also a skilled actor, using that skill to inspire his troops and sometimes to terrify his immediate subordinates. After Patton was placed in the dog…
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The Great War is a 26-episode documentary series from 1964 on the First World War. The documentary was a co-production of the Imperial War Museum, the British Broadcasting Corporation, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and the Australian Broadcasting Commission. The narrator was Michael Redgrave, with readings by Marius Goring, Ralph Richardson, Cyril Luckham, Sebastian Shaw and Emlyn Williams. Each episode is c.40 minutes long.
In August 1963, at the suggestion of Alasdair Milne, producer of the BBC’s current affairs programme Tonight, the BBC resolved to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War with a big television project. The series was the first to feature veterans, many of them still relatively fit men in their late sixties or early seventies, speaking of their experiences after a public appeal for veterans was published in…
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