In Italy, Education Viewed as Key Threat to the Mafia

Rosy Bindi, Father Luigi Ciotti
Interesting Q&A from Italy's Democrats Really (Democratici Davvero), a faction within the Democratic Party (PD). Maria Rosaria Bindi, better known as Rosy Bindi, is an Italian politician and the current President of the Antimafia CommissionLuigi Ciotti is an Italian priest belonging to the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Turin, deeply involved in the fight against illegality and organized crime such as Mafia.

Ciotti sets the stage for the discussion, noting the ages of the three Mafia groups in Italy; notes the North has been overrun as well, as early as 1983. The Mafia, aware of the renewed focus Italy places on it, has "changed its skin" (love that Italian way of phrasing) and now kills less and maintains a low profile. The New York Mafia has done the some: supposedly murder is no longer sanctioned to avoid the long sentences that compel the creation of turncoats and informants, which may mean gangland hits are now done only off the record, much like the drug business.

A revised entirely edited version of this will be posted later based on interest in the story.

Ciotti: The Camorra has existed for 400 years, the Cosa Nostra 150 years, and the 'Ndrangheta is slightly younger. ... We must recognize that the gangs are still strong and deep-rooted in all of Italy. It makes me wonder who is surprised by their presence in the North. Already in 1983, the mafia killed, in Turin, magistrate Bruno Caccia ... The gangs have roots in the South, but the fruits, for some time, have allowed them to expand into the North. Today, however, the mafia has changed its skin: it kills less... and have been able to invisibly slip into the mechanisms of the economy, increasing their profits while decreasing the social alarm. All this happened without adequate awareness of law enforcement and others. How do you explain this?

Bindi: On the many faces of the Mafia must reflect and investigate it yet. In the South, where the fundamental rights of the people are still compromises, where there are no jobs, the health care system does not work, school quality is not guaranteed at all, and - as in Calabria in a particular way - you live in an isolation rest of the country, we became convinced that the power of the mafia that ensures that the power of the state denies. The arrest of a mobster does not give the results that we would expect because the reasons for which it was powerful and had no social consensus are not. In the North, the removal of the phenomenon has accompanied infiltration deep and pervasive. There was stubborn to say that the problem was with the southern regions without understanding the real earning the gangs they realize the North. They were able to take advantage of the economy sick of these years, while we have not data tools to tackle them. We persist in not understanding that the lace or extortion are the silences of the banks, the lack of adequate legislation on transparency and the fight against tax havens, money laundering and dell'autoriciclaggio. The truth, as you say Don Ciotti, is that they know more than we anticipate change. Both know how to stay connected with such archaic traditions also know how to stay in modernity. We have lost the sense of family, land, roots-and we do not have the tools or do not want them - to be inside of this modernity.


Ciotti : There is an underlying serious cultural problem. Nino Caponnetto said: "The Mafia fears the school rather than justice, education cuts the ground from under the feet of the mafia culture." In recent years projects have been of value, but the fact is that we have an impressively large number of illiterate and thus a high rate of early school leavers to deserve the lure of Europe. He was right to sell, Caponnetto: the problem of gangs developed primarily by a lack of culture and responsibility. Their expansion takes advantage of sleeping consciences and indifferent. Criminal organizations have found their unreleased sides in the "society of the ego" and its widespread illiteracy ethical ... They have become strong in a culturally depressed and politically weak, unable to promote commitment to the common good.

Bindi : I fully agree with your analysis. I see, going around the country, that the fight against the Mafia is seen as "their thing." Together there is an underestimation of basic goods such as work, education, social policy and the insufficient development of the responses - which are many - the company responsible. We should become the heritage of all the extraordinary cultural and civic work of these people, that help us to understand how every time you lessen the value of legality opens a fertile field of roots of powers mobsters. In a country where we tax evasion and corruption at the highest levels pretends not to know that these are antechamber for the mob. The first task should be to remove the conviction that lawlessness is convenient. In contrast produces poverty, fear and violence. The report should be investigated mafia politics, without hesitation. We can not afford it, how it happened, that a minister of the Republic says that we have to live with the Mafia. It is an unacceptable yield to the logic of the Mafia. Our Commission will address this node, having a clear distinction between the duties of the judge and those of the political. Definitely a different legislation must be approved and most effective on the exchange vote. But I think that the policy should be able to make a judgment on itself even before the emergence crimes. If I know the mayor in Locri is different than the mayor in Tuscany, I also know that there is a policy that in some areas of the country with the vote of the exchange holding company under blackmail and get used to the community to be blackmailed. If instead of strengthen you in your dimension of the citizen recognizing your rights you hold my favor I am related to permeable powers mobsters. From this point of view the mafia code of ethics is to shoot. Our Commission should also urge the political parties because it provide a great investment in the training of politicians and administrators who are in the more exposed.


Ciotti : We have effective instruments to combat, such as the law on the confiscation of the goods and their social use. The 106/95 size firm repressive with the ethical, cultural, economic. Property confiscated and given the opportunity to work is not only a blow to the Mafia, but it is proof that the good and the profit can and should be the same! But we need a quantum leap. The prefect Caruso, who heads the National Agency, which has long stressed the limits and makes suggestions. There is a serious problem in staffing and resources. There are mechanisms that slow down the process of confiscation and allocation. There is the problem of companies, of which only a fraction has been able to survive. Problems asking for answers to the height, because of the confiscated property is a lot that we can not afford to lose.

Bindi : On the assets seized were achieved significant results, but it must be done to update the norms because even if we can not make them productive we increase the consent of the mafia. The company seized that fails and fires becomes a negative example, causes the events in the Prefectures and attacks on judges who deal with prevention measures. Is it any better to intervene in the first stage because they do not spend a lot of time from seizure and confiscation because it uses a business logic. If we have seized a ruin better knock it down and making a children's park, but if you seize a supermarket, as has been done in Palermo, saw that in this country there is a law for the benefit of cooperation could ask a few co-operatives to take over of the property and bring it back into the legal economy, to be a service to the citizens and a place of good jobs. We must demand that there is a reaction of more players and more subjects. Then you have to establish the register of directors of assets, in order to avoid, as unfortunately happens, that you manage your business seized there are nominees of the mafia. It is an important chapter on which we hope to get quick results. Next door is the great theme of local authorities. Here too, the legislation is not adequate. We should strengthen the tools to prevent moisture and conditioning criminals in government. When instead there is the dissolution, should appoint a full-time commissioners who are not mere bureaucrats and have more power. And most importantly, you must ensure that the politicians who caused the dissolution of mafia infiltration rivincano elections. Still, I think we should consider the role of professionals, without demonizing each category, but in collaboration with the orders because it is now evident a large gray area in which they operate notaries, doctors, lawyers, accountants, financial advisors serving organizations criminals.


Ciotti : Speaking engagement cross against the Mafia, you can not help but emphasize the role of the Church. As a priest, I want to emphasize the gradual but palpable awareness about the seriousness of the problem mafia. Every day I meet people and actually living the Gospel without discounts, welding the spiritual dimension with social commitment. And thanks also to the impulse of renewal and the lesson of humility that comes from above. The final document for the peace of the Pope speaks of corruption, an issue on which he had written, even as a bishop, a text of great depth. But the same Benedict XVI and John Paul II had stressed the incompatibility between the mafia and the Gospel, all the more so if it is the gospel instrumental, all exterior, boss. All this should not make us forget, however, the shadows, the complicity, the excesses of caution yesterday, but also, in part, today.

Bindi : One of the strengths of using the Mafia is the relationship with the religious dimension. You have to free the church and the gospel instrumental use that makes the mafia and find the liberating force of the radical Christian. Who says that a Christian should be resigned to the status quo? The face of evil mafia, inequality, corruption, violence, exploitation, the Church, if he is silent, it ends up becoming more conniving than others. We must ask ourselves one point in every community there is a police station, but there is also a church, and if the Mafia is the same as local roots, who is more rooted in the Christian community? So the question: "Why can not we defeat the Mafia" is also the answer: "Why do we as Christians and as a Christian community we have not done enough." Even believers prefer not to see us, do not call evil by name. After all, the reasoning goes for the policy applies to the Christian community. It is true that not all of us politicians are Pio La Torre and not all of us Christians are Don Puglisi.

Ciotti : In January, the Government is committed to presenting a "package of anti-mafia rules." I hope serve as an impetus to resolve urgent matters such as the approval of the amendment of the crime of vote trading and the strengthening of the law on corruption. Or contrast to environmental crimes: it is possible that such heinous crimes so vast and the repercussions are not yet included in the penal code! But the problem I would like to draw the attention of witnesses to justice and the victims' families. Family members ask that you reconsider the limit of 1 January 1961 because there is recognition of the victim of the mafia. It is a standard senseless, because the mafia killed, and a lot sooner. Then you have 150 hours paid and recognized for its commitment to testimony in schools and juvenile prisons. Many if he assumed responsibility free, burning holidays and leaves. For their part, the witnesses of Justice asking to be supported and accompanied in their courageous choices in life. But more and more are the people who, while not technically nor witnesses or collaborators of justice, they want to get out of circuits mobsters and criminals in which they lived and which they feel hostages. Help them to build a hope for themselves and their children is not only a moral duty and social, but also a signal to induce others to follow them in this difficult step toward dignity and freedom.

Bindi : The people who want to break with the environment Mafia must have someone to accompany you and have guarantees of security and privacy, no less than those provided by the witnesses. The Commission and I will work on the points indicated by you, Don Ciotti. But there are also other issues. I think in a particular way to the ability of gangs to enter into the legal economy, creating convenience for traders and from this point of view, the instrument of the "white list" is not adequate. The Expo 2015 is a great opportunity for Italy but also for criminal organizations. The risks of infiltration in procurement are real. The Commission's mission in Milan was reassuring but vigilance must continue to be high. Finally I point out two commitments from the Commission: Calabria and Europe. We need a special law to Calabria. A region that is in a tragic situation and that can not be left to itself, and to which, on the contrary, you must return the attention and resources that have been denied or removed. Finally, we must invest in the European Semester. I wish that you would put the fight against the mafia in the first place, because the growth on which we intend to focus even in Europe or in the name of legality or not.


  1. Too much blame is put on the Mafia and not enough blame put on the evil state, the politicians, the bankers, and the corporations which is probably why we have the Mafia in the first place. Yeah the Mafia is bad, no doubt, but the Mafia doesn't work alone.

    1. Countrys like Italy are perfect for the mafia the political structure is set up to fail because the country it self depends on out side help to survive and those sources take from that country for there own gain seting the government up for failure. The criminal element or mafia flourishes in this type of govermtment burroughs it self in the politics and u get what u see today a country on the brink of bankrupcy Just like Greece and Spain


Post a Comment