The Corner

When in Rome… Oh, Never Mind

Reuters:

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi came under fire on Tuesday after ancient nude statues in Rome’s Capitoline museum were covered up to avoid any possible offense to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani who is visiting the country. Italy and Iran will sign up to 17 billion euros of business deals during the two day visit of the Iranian delegation which began on Monday, but Italian opposition leaders and commentators said Renzi had gone too far to please his guest.

Politicians on the left and right said not only had Renzi made almost no reference to Iran’s human rights record during a joint news conference, but had also “surrendered” Italy’s cultural identity by hiding the nude statues of women.

“Respect for other cultures cannot and must not mean negating our own,” said Luca Squeri, a lawmaker in former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s center-right Forza Italia party. “This isn’t respect, it’s cancelling out differences and it’s a kind of surrender.”

At Iran’s request Italy also kept wine off the menu at a ceremonial dinner on Monday evening. Northern League deputy Barbara Saltamartini said covering the statues with white panels was an “act of submission,” while the party’s leader Matteo Salvini wrote on his facebook page that it was “crazy”. Gianluca Peciola, of the Left, Ecology and Freedom party, called on Renzi to explain “a disgraceful decision which is a mortification of art and culture as universal values”.

The 41-year-old Renzi met with similar criticism last year when he covered up nude pictures in the renaissance town hall of Florence, the city where he used to be mayor, on the occasion of a visit by the crown prince of the United Arab Emirates.

“European values”, I suppose. 

Most Popular

PC Culture

‘White Women’ Becomes a Disparaging Term

Using “white men” as a putdown is no longer extreme enough for the Left. Now it is moving on to doing the same for “white women.” How rapidly this transpired. It was less than two years ago that the approximately 98.7 percent of white women working in media who were openly rooting for Hillary Clinton ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Beatification of Beto

The media’s treatment of Texas Democratic candidate Beto O’Rourke wasn’t the most egregiously unfair coverage of the past year -- that would be the treatment of Brett Kavanaugh -- but it ranks among 2018’s most annoying. The endless glowing profiles of O’Rourke in every publication from Vanity Fair to ... Read More
Culture

A Free People Must Be Virtuous

Dear Reader (Even those of you who didn’t seem to notice or care that I failed to file this “news”letter on Friday), So I’m sitting here at Gate C6 at O’Hare waiting for my flight home. I am weary, pressed for time, in desperate need of a shower, and filled with a great sense of dread for the work ... Read More