Sicilian Culture

The People, The History, The Culture

Indro Montanelli


Indro Montanelli dies today. We shall keep the flame of free speech burning high and never walk alone, pledges Paola Di Maio

22 July 2001, 9 pm GMT  Content Wire

I am not sure that I always liked Indro Montanelli.

There was something horribly arrogant about him, common to many self taught and self assured individuals.

One thing I really appreciated though, is that he questioned everything.

He disagreed about most things with anyone, and he could not be bought, nor corrupted.

I guess he was arguing for the sacrosanct right to speak out his mind, at all costs, and he damn did it, at all costs.

Indro Montanelli died today, aged 92, in Milan after being ill for several days.

I never really liked him much because he was a bit of a difficult person, definitely too full of himself, and oh so conservative.

But as I grew older, and watched corruption take over the national media, and serve the purposes of a corrupted state, I started to appreciate his unique integrity.

"With him a big chapter of global history finishes" claims an obituary today in the newspaper La Repubblica. Don’t think so.

With him, a big chapter of the Italian journalism has started.

And we shall continue it.

Oh yes. At all costs.

He was struck off the Italian Journalists Guild in 1937 during the fascist regime, for opposing it.

He was sentenced to death by the German regime in 1944, and saved just by the intervention of an Archbishop.

Holy providence, as one would call it in those days.

Since then, he has been a relentless critic of every single government.

He would just not shut up.

He did not have a good relationship with publishers and he started his own newspaper, il "Giornale Nuovo", and later "la Voce"

Both papers were strangled by the information racket in the country, of which he was well aware.

Had only he been born in our ages, he would have been an online editor.

He was a conservative, but profoundly convinced antifascist, and he opposed, til his last breath, the current government lead by Mr Berlusconi.

We shall keep the flame of journalism for democracy burning high Indro.

We shall write and report and criticize everything and everyone til our last breath, like you did, to defend democracy and the right of free speech.

And we shall never walk alone, nor will you.

Paola Di Maio

has been a London based reporter for the Italian press before founding content-wire.

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Los Angeles Times, July 24, 2001

Indro Montanelli, 92, a onetime fascist who became an icon of the right as a noted Italian journalist, died Sunday in Milan, Italy.

Montanelli was recognized as a World Press Freedom Hero last year by the International Press Institute. He displayed unusual independence over his six decades as a journalist, often clashing with his bosses at the Milan daily newspapers Il Giornale and Corriere della Sera.

A staunch anticommunist, he was a firm supporter of Italian fascism and volunteered to fight in Mussolini's war of conquest in Ethiopia in the 1930s. Later, he worked as a war correspondent, covering conflicts in Spain, Finland, Norway, Albania and Greece.

His objectivity in covering the Spanish Civil War made him unpopular with the ruling fascists.

In 1943, during World War II, Montanelli was imprisoned by the Nazis in Milan and sentenced to death for antifascism. He managed to escape and flee to Switzerland.

He wrote about the period in his 1945 novel "Qui Non Riposano" (Here They Do Not Rest), which explored the disillusionment of early fascist sympathizers.

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