2023 was the first year of Meloni’s government, with the most far-right-oriented political majority ever in the Italian Republic.

Despite government attempts to present itself as reliable and open to political dialogue, other cases of authoritarian approach shine through institutional arrogance and repressive decrees on security. Favourite targets of nationalist parties, such as Brothers of Italy (FdI) or Lega, are always migrants and NGOs engaged in rescue in the Mediterranean basin. 

Current Situation 



2023 was the first year of Meloni’s government, with the most far-right-oriented political majority ever in the Italian Republic.

Despite government attempts to present itself as reliable and open to political dialogue, other cases of authoritarian approach shine through institutional arrogance and repressive decrees on security. Favourite targets of nationalist parties, such as Brothers of Italy (FdI) or Lega, are always migrants and NGOs engaged in rescue in the Mediterranean basin. Against them, Interior Minister Piantedosi launched a new act, assigning a port of disembarkation to humanitarian missions far from the rescue. Even more scandalous was the fact that the measure was adopted in the aftermath of the shipwreck in front of the coast of Cutro (Crotone, southern Italy) with about 90 migrants dead, in such a failure of help with so many omissions made by authorities, that oppositions asked for his resignation.

In this political atmosphere, the first regional elections since the settlement of the Meloni’s government took place in Sardinia, whereby a few hundred votes, the right-wing candidate, chosen directly by the prime minister from her Fratelli d’Italia party members, was defeated by candidate Alessandra Todde, expressed by the liberal democratic and progressive opposition in a coalition of PD-M5S.

Status of the far-right in the country

Status of the far-right in the country

Just within its first year, Meloni’s government has shown a drift towards pervasive familism, retrenchments in rights and welfare, rampant corruption, rising investigations on both ministers and members of the majority, last but not least betrayal of electoral promises ( All in all such messes unveil the inconsistency of the far-right with republican institutions. However, these blunders seem part of a strategy to dismantle democratic and constitutional pillars.


The anniversary of three young neo-fascist militants’ deaths in Acca Larentia in 1978 was the pretext for a squad rally of a few hundred far-right exponents at the beginning of January. Despite the nostalgic and dictatorial parade, a few weeks later, the Court of Cassation declared that the typical Roman salute of Mussolini’s regime does not represent a crime in the sole case of commemoration.


A similar case occurred at the end of July when the Antiterrorism Investigation Department (DIA) blocked and put the lawyer Stefano Menicacci and Romeo Domenico under house arrest. Both of them are accused of giving false information to the public prosecutor, aggravated by having lied in a massacre case. Searches were also carried out in Adriano Tilgher’s house, a leading exponent of the dissolved organisation ‘National Vanguard’, convicted in 1981 for the reorganisation of the fascist party. 

Making the ongoing repressive drift even more evident always in Tuscany, at the end of February, police carried out violent charges in Pisa and Florence against peaceful student demonstrations for the cease-fire in Gaza. The toll of the attack on defenceless students by the police forces resulted in the hospitalisation of 15 minors for the injuries they suffered ( ).

Status of antifascists in the country

Status of antifascists in the country

Beyond the initiatives of anti-fascist organisations and militant collectives, an important social and trade-unionist reference in the clash with the predatory system at an economic level is represented by the workers’ collective of the GKN factory in Florence. For over two years, it has been pursuing a dispute to redeem jobs and defend them from the company’s closure, which has decided to relocate. Their project of ecological reconversion of a socially integrated factory has led to a cultural convergence, which brings together environmental demands with those of students, workers, transfeminists, and, therefore, anti-fascists, so much to organise the only literary festival on the working class in Europe.


Referring particularly to international antifascist issues, several months after her arrest, the case of Ilaria Salis, the 39-years-old teacher from Monza detained in substandard conditions in Budapest, has become highly symbolic, also in the perspective of the next European elections, calling into question the very idea of European values. Together with other antifascist militants, Ilaria is accused of participating in an assault against two neo-Nazis during the so-called “day of honour” on the 11th of February each year, representing a gathering of nostalgic Hitlerites, who converge in Budapest from all over Europe to commemorate the comrades in SS uniform defeated by the Red Army almost eighty years ago. It therefore appears that crimes related to the glorification of fascism are in no way prohibited by Hungarian criminal legislation, that instead mistreated antifascists like her. On the contrary, the struggle against such far-right drift has been seen as a threat to the Hungarian state, which has very little of the rule of law. Therefore, she was immediately seen as a hostage, even more so when, at the end of January, she was brought to trial with her hands and feet shackled by chains, hence in a degrading treatment ( ).

Historic Developments

Historic developments

On the centenary of Matteotti’s murder, with the prominent socialist spokesman at the Italian Parliament killed by fascist ‘black shirts’, during the second year of Giorgia Meloni’s government, the Roman salute is essentially cleared for nostalgic commemorations, which also took part in the recent past.


One of the purposes of the neofascist international network and its supporters became evident with the declassification of secret files on the British role in the OTAN-backed anti-Communist operation ‘Gladio’. According to the British ambassador in Rome, John Ashton, the presidential crisis committee responsible for trying to rescue Moro was part of the notorious P2 – the “subversive Masonic lodge” of political elites loyal to Gladio. Only in 1993 did public opinion learn through ongoing trials how the United States and the British supplied ammunition to Gladio agents to foment bloody acts of terror throughout Italy. Not by chance, FN leader Roberto Fiore’s file on his extradition to the UK is instead still classified as secret.

International relationships

International relationships

Ukrainian war scenario continues to play a role of far-right attraction for military training and transnational contacts. Indeed, national media tend to focus less and less on the Italian participation in the war, regarding weapons delivery and foreign fighters. Nonetheless, there is evidence of a connection between some members of northern-Italy groups and the neo-Nazi Denis “White Rex” Nikitin. The Russian right-wing extremist, who is now fighting for Ukraine, profits from circuits such as ‘White Rex’ for the organisation of MMA fight meetings, covering Azov formations in a closer connection between places, such as the ‘Reconquista Club’ in Kyiv, as well as the Italian neo-fascist organisation CPI, that hosted rallies at the local Area 19 north of Rome. 

Always CPI, at the very beginning of summer, reached Syria for an institutional meeting with Bashar-Al-Assad’s government, “collecting words of appreciation and thanks for our activities”, as the CPI spokesman, Gianluca Iannone said, praising the removal of international sanctions against the Assad regime, together with a long-lasting connection since 2013, with the foundation of European Front for Syria.


Within the EU goes on the standing connection between CPI and their Greek comrades, with a group of Rome-based neofascist organisations getting arrested at Athens airport on its way to take part in an extreme right-wing rally to commemorate the death of two militants of the now-disbanded neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party.

Another channel of european neofascist network is located in Spain, with CPI joining another neofascist organisation called ‘Alfonse I’ in Spain to demonstrate against the dismantling of the fascist monument called ‘Pyramid of the Italians’ in Santander ( ). Victimism, as well as revisionism, are not new rhetoric tools within neofascist propaganda at all, trying in this way to redeem the Italian invasion’s reputation.

Always in Spain, in April, the Italian National Movement – Network of Patriots supported the ‘Falange Española ’ against judicial trials for commemorating Antonio Primo de Rivera, the Spanish dictator’s son.

Equally crucial for the Italian far-right government are the commitments on the international and European levels, on the one hand, with the presidency of the G7 open amid internal controversies over the block on military supplies to Kyiv, proposed by the leader of the League Matteo Salvini, and on the other hand, the disputes on political alliances given the next European Parliament elections.

To get credit for rehabilitating her government from accusations of nationalist and anti-European extremism and profiting from RRF’s new resources, Giorgia Meloni attempted to seem constructive with EU institutions, following economic Draghi’s agenda and aligning her coalition to a pro-OTAN position on the war in Ukraine.

Political Landscape

Political landscape

Last July, Giorgia Meloni, despite her institutional role, attended a rally of far-right party VOX in Valencia, once again explicitly supporting her Spanish partners within the European Conservatives and Reformists Group at EP.

The alliance with Orban within the ECR is undoubtedly not a good business card for Meloni and her masked Euro-skeptics. Despite this, relationships with the EU Commission seem more relaxed than expected, giving sufficient arguments to the League’s accuse of the moderate approach and the alleged betrayal of the Prime Minister to far-right issues.

Turning into the European area, at the beginning of February, the main liberal democratic party, EPP, warned Meloni to avoid alliances with Viktor Orban in order not to hinder a coalition for the next European elections. The possible entry of the Hungarian leader into Meloni’s European Conservatives and Reformists Group would be considered a “serious obstacle to dialogue, undermining the ECR’s influence on the direction of EU politics”, in EPP general secretary Manfred Weber’s opinion. The EPP’s openness to ECR is set on firm conditions, such as being pro-EU, pro-Ukraine, and in support of the rule of law. Moreover, a very similar reaction from the Popular Party could be triggered by the recent far-right and xenophobic French leader Eric Zemmour’s participation in ECR, with the incorporation of the only MEP of “Reconquete!” into Meloni’s group. It confirms a trend of FdI, that of enlargement to the right-wing parties considered more extreme in Brussels, a trend that the EPP does not like, perceiving it with greater detachment in the ranks of the EPP ( ).

Media Landscape

Media landscape

In the Reporters Without Borders ranking, Italy is in 41st place for press freedom. The concentration of editorial properties in a few groups and the connivance of various newspapers with political parties weigh above all. Berlusconi’s legacy of numerous conflicts of interest between political power and editorial ownership now returns with the far-right Meloni government.

Indeed, given the next round of elections for the European and administrative elections in June, a new law has been approved on a “level playing field”, i.e. on the methods of managing electoral propaganda, excluding institutional positions from the calculation of political spaces, with the possibility therefore for the government to exceed the deadlines, to the detriment of the opposition parties. The union of public TV journalists, UsiGrai, has protested against this disparity in treatment. The guarantor authority AGCOM supports the complaint, preventing executive members from speaking in the talk shows without time limits and cross-examination.

Like many previous governments, Meloni has “parcelled out” the public broadcasters, selecting trusted people at the top decision-making levels and on the boards of directors. Compounding the situation are online intimidation campaigns, often orchestrated against those who investigate organised crime and corruption. Finally, around twenty journalists were under the protection of the police after being subjected to intimidation and attacks, while complaints from ministers and members of the far-right majority against investigative journalists are also growing.

Finally, the bill approved on 13 February in the first reading in the Senate also contains a dense package of rules on the Code of Procedure. It starts with the intervention in wiretaps, introducing new constraints on disseminating the contents of the wiretaps and the strengthened ban on their publication.

Financial Landscape

Financial landscape

Italian economic growth slows down in the second half of 2023 to -0.3%, slightly lower than the 0.9% of the first quarter, representing worrying economic data due to rising inflation and people’s loss of purchasing power, also compared to the trend in the rest of the European Union.

The rising inflation and new taxes set by Meloni’s first budget law already at the beginning of its term put the population under economic pressure. They enlarged the poverty rate in the country. At the end of October, the far-right Giorgia Meloni’s government finally managed to bring her second national budget law (NADEF), with a value of approximately 24 billion, to the Parliament for its approval – financing the public expenditure mainly in deficit (15.7 billion) and then through so-called ‘reviews’ of social spending. 

In 2024, the reduction in financial allocations for ministries exceeds 821 million euros, and it will rise to around 900 million in 2026, for a total of around 2.5 billion in cuts over the three-year period.

Furthermore, to try to conceal the seriousness of the economic situation with this reform, at the same time, Meloni’s government published the constitutional bill for the establishment of a premiership regime for the direct election of the prime minister with a very high majority bonus ( ).


Quarterly Reports

Quarterly reports give in-depth insights into the most pressing recent social and political developments in each country as they pertain to the local far-right networks and their international allies.

Italy - January 2023
Italy - January 2023

Introduction & Updates in National Landscape

The rising inflation and new taxes on oil, cigarettes, and other goods, set by Giorgia Meloni’s government, put the Italian population under economic pressure and enlarge the poverty rate in the country, though not many reactions or dissent have been organized so far. A peculiar aspect is referred to the deletion of the housing emergency fund, with thousands of evictions about to start against those pauper people accused of innocent arrears. No doubt that the main highlight of the month has been represented by the arrest of mafia boss Matteo Messina Denaro for 30 years on the run and despite that available around Palermo, where since last year he has been treated for cancer. He was tried and sentenced to life in jail in absentia in 2002 over numerous murders, but his sudden arrest in his home city raised many speculations, with the public opinion thinking that he had been covered by someone in the institutions so far. Nevertheless, a decisive aspect of the investigations was carried out by wiretaps, that right-wing government would like to decrease some specific crimes in order to “protect people’s privacy” in the opinion of the political majority. Facing a fragmented and harmless opposition, the right-wing majority adopts one of the traditional political tools to not focus on real, public needs, that is to say, creating ‘scapegoats’ and the spread of toxic narratives. The typical, favorite targets of nationalist parties, such as Brothers of Italy (FdI) or Lega, are always migrants and NGOs engaged in rescue in the Mediterranean basin. After the first contrast with other European states and EU Commission, Interior Minister Piantedosi decided to follow up the international agreements, letting the civil fleet save castaways, but assigning them a port of disembarkation located very far away from the rescue point of SAR, so to make each mission more expansive and longer, in other words, a new approach to hinder the humanitarian help.
Besides the migrants and before them, the “ravers,” the last scapegoat taken into account by Meloni’s government for its media smokescreen, are the anarchists. The reason derives from the case of Alfredo Cospito, one of the representatives of the Informal Anarchist Front, who in 2012 kneed a manager of the nuclear branch of Ansaldo Company, being later accused also of a bombing attack to the carabineer station in Cuneo in 2006. Though that nobody got injured and the bombs were little more than bigger firecrackers, last December, the Court of Cassation instead held that it was “a matter of massacre against the security of the State,” a crime that provides for the penalty of life imprisonment under the 41bis mandates, with almost total isolation from the outside world, only walking breaks once a week and no books or communication allowed, i.e. which does not allow one to enjoy any benefit. A request for revocation of the 41bis presented by the anarchist’s defender has been pending since 12 January, but the Court dismissed the claim against the harsh prison regime, and since that time, Cospito has carried on hunger strike with his health conditions getting day-by-day worse. As a consequence of that, there’s been an “International call to action in solidarity with Alfredo Cospito from 22 to 28 January,” with many demonstrations in Italy, clashes with police, and some specific actions even against Italian symbols or delegates abroad. Many intellectuals addressed a public call to the Minister of Justice, underlining that Cospito is the first and only anarchist or even a non-mafia prisoner treated under the 41bis mandate, which is not legally defined for similar types of crimes.

Transnational Activities & Group Interactions

Regarding transnational activities and interactions among far-right groups, not much happened during the month of January. A statement released by Interpol and recently published by the Italian press agency revealed the connection between Roberto Fiore, leader of the neofascist party New Force (FN), and the black terrorist Giuliano Cavallini, with the two living together in disguise in London after the massacre at Bologna station in 1980. The phonogram of Interpol has only recently entered the ongoing trial and also brings with it a strange anomaly: the two fundamental lines in which the English police informed their Italian colleagues of the cohabitation of Cavallini and Fiore at the time are not reported in the Italian translation. The sentences to date have convicted five far-right extremists linked to the Revolutionary Armed Nuclei (Nar) and the National Vanguard. Fiore was definitively convicted of an armed gang and subversive association as head of Third Position: he should have served at least five and a half years in prison in Italy. Instead, he remained in London, as a fugitive, until 1999, before returning home as a free man thanks to the prescription. The Interpol document, therefore, contradicts Fiore’s version, who claimed before the Bologna judges that he had never seen or known Cavallini, revealing both his international connections with the British National Party and British secret services (following a report of the European Parliament’s first Committee of Inquiry into racism and xenophobia in 1991 ); and a sort of institutional cover by the Italian security apparatus.

Italy - December 2022
Italy - December 2022

Introduction & Updates in National Landscape

The far-right Giorgia Meloni’s government, with the next financial reform, shows all its antipopular approach, sanctioning the deletion of the minimum citizenship income and further cuts both to public healthcare and education systems while decreasing taxes for ‘freelancers’ earning up to 85 thousand euros. From an institutional point of view, the lack of economic coverage for some proposals, together with the procedural mistakes reported by the parliamentary offices, standing disputes within the right-wing majority, and the need to rush before the end of the year define a substantial set-back on several electoral promises, a certain incapacity to handle the situation and all in all an anti-parliamentary attitude. In order to skip the debate within the two chambers of the Parliament, Meloni decided to proceed with a vote of confidence.
Besides this drift of the far-right government, with some low-profile reactions by the confederal trade unions calling for a tiny strike against the financial reform, other worrying aspects are taking shape regarding repression and a post-fascist nostalgic approach. A clear example is the anniversary of the Piazza Fontana massacre, which took place on 12th December 1969. For the first time ever no government officials have taken part in the commemorations in Milan, also because the undersecretary in the Ministry of Defence, Isabella Rauti, is actually the daughter of the former militiaman of the dictatorship and then founder of the neofascist terrorist group, called ‘New Order,’ also accused to have taken part to that attack. Moreover, in those same days, Meloni’s party Brothers of Italy (FdI) opened new seats in northern Italy, all entitled to Giuseppe Rauti, having also been a prominent figure of the Social Italian Movement (MSI), of which FdI is the political heir.
It’s indeed an institutional shame, but not a surprise then, if on the 75th anniversary of the promulgation of the Italian Republican Constitution, created by the antifascist political factions after the Resistance; the President of the Senate, Ignazio La Russa, also with a neofascist background, on the 27th of December forgot this recurrence, preferring to celebrate the MSI foundation in that same day. This sort of historical revisionism has been then repeated by the Première also in her end-of-year press conference, declaring that MSI was a constitutional party, also voting the support to many Presidents of the Republic; though it was actually founded later than the Constitution itself and represented an eversive and antisystem political force. From the palace down to the squares; at the beginning of the month, neofascist factions organized a rally in Milan, with Loyalty and Action group demonstrating “for peace in Ukraine,” where also the former right-wing mayor of Rome, Gianni Alemanno, and some supporters of Casapound took part. To counter this rally, an antifascist demonstration also took place that same afternoon, condemning all wars and bringing solidarity to those peoples like Kurds and Iranians under attack or repression.
Another facet of the black painting in Italy is police repression and brutality. After several months the police assistant chief of Primavalle district in Rome, Andrea Pellegrini, has been arrested with the accusation of torture in the case of the 36-year-old, deaf-mute Roma man, Hasib Omerovic, who flew from a window of his apartment last July, during a police inspection. Besides the raid of the four policemen without a legal term of office, so in violation of duties; the main culprit, Pellegrini, is not new to such accusations, considering several disciplinary measures, an arrest in 1998 for theft in Florida and moreover, his affiliation to the neofascist organization New Force (FN).

Transnational Activities & Group Interactions

From an international point of view, the investigation against the far-right german organization called ‘Reichsburger,’ planning a political coup with a terrorist attack on the Parliament, brought to tens of arrests, among which also one plotter in Perugia. It’s still unknown the identity and the reason why one of the german organizations, counting on around 21thousands militants, among who also an AfD member of the Parliament, was actually based in Italy and if he had any connections with Italian far-right groups. Although in Italy, there have been such massive operations for institutional threats, such as that encountered in Germany, right-wing extremism is also growing strongly, following dynamics common in other Western countries. A heterogeneous militant scene is, in fact, developing here, too, combining the classic characteristics of black subversion with absolutely new ideological and operational elements, which make it capable of attracting a vast range of followers and of being more difficult to be discovered. Three recent counterterrorism operations have clearly revealed many of these dynamics in Italy as well, with a ‘lone wolf’ arrested on last October in Bari for his connections with a suprematist American cell, then two other police operations in Campania and Genova for dismantling groups also plotting terrorist attacks on political targets.
What’s evident is the dangerous and antidemocratic nature of the far-right ideology, which always turned more into group actions and raids, such as the attacks perpetrated on the streets of Verona with sticks and chains. The mishandled winter football world cup in Qatar didn’t only show on all mainstream media how money can buy public opinion and corrupt European institutions but led to episodes of hate and violence in many European countries, such as France and Italy. In Verona as well, the celebrations of Morocco supporters, after their winning up to the semifinal, were targeted by neofascist supporters for racist raids on the streets. Twelve local people were arrested for these attacks, hitting Moroccan supporters’ cars, and causing several damages and injuries, including a woman who was hurt by the shards of broken windows.
Such drifts don’t seem to worry the Italian government, considering that no official condemnation came from Meloni’s establishment, though in the very last days of the year, it was very busy with a new security decree. The main worries of the far-right government seem to be more related to the humanitarian missions of NGOs in the SAR area of the Mediterranean Sea. A large part of the new reform, approved on the 27th of December, is in fact aimed at shaping a new code of conduct, allowing the civil float to carry out only a single rescue before the request of a ‘safe harbor’ and the enter in the Italian waters. Other restrictions regard the increasing fines, new embargoes and the prohibition of transshipments between vessels. Once again the right-wing rejects the reality, with the majority of migrants reaching the Italian coasts on their own boats; and more than 1,3thousands victims or dismissed people during their crossing, while the Memorandum on Migration between Italy and Lybia has been carried on also, despite tortures and inhuman treatments in the detention centers of the so-called Libyan coast guard.


Italy - November 2022
Italy - November 2022

Between threats of government terror and those of neo-fascist terrorism

A big rave organized in northern Italy, in a warehouse near Modena, has been the first opportunity for far-right Giorgia Meloni’s government to show the iron fist against abusive music rallies, proposing a new criminal law with up to six years of prison as a penalty for the organizers. Such a conviction is obviously disproportionate if one thinks that a lower amount is foreseen for corruption, bankruptcy, illegal burning of waste, or other crimes. The new crime will range from the “Collapse of buildings or other malicious disasters” (art. 434, one of the offenses contested in the trial on the collapse of the Morandi bridge in Genoa) and the “Manufacture or possession of explosive materials” (art. 435). Indeed the law decree, which has to be converted into law by the Parliament, itself doesn’t refer to music raves but rather to “rallies or abusive occupations,” thus concerning also workers’, student’s protests, or even anti-eviction movements. The first act of the new far-right government led by Meloni shows all the antisocial and reactionary character, also with respect to freedom of demonstration. Anyway, some exceptions seem to be contemplated. In the same weekend, a fascist rally took place in Predappio with salutes and hymns referring to the crime of apology to dictatorship, which was, on the contrary, ignored by the government, with the Minister of Interior, Piantedosi, declaring that Mussolini’s supporters had not disrupted public order and the rally had been happening for years. Compared to a music rave, far more worrying in terms of incitement to hate and violence seems indeed the homophobic and anti-feminist campaign organized by the National Movement – Patriots Network. The neo-fascist group night-time billboarded in various Italian cities posters with school buildings set on fire and the words ‘eternal flames to modern schools.’ After all, the security body itself doesn’t seem to share Minister Piantedosi’s same view since just a few weeks later, an antiterrorism operation targeted a neo-nazi movement called ‘Hagal’s Order,’ arresting four of its members. Such a far-right organization was made by white supremacists and Shoah deniers, ready to attack public places and cops with massive murders The investigation led to the discovery of much propaganda material, besides bullets, soft air weapons, and tactical clothing, in search of thirty people that could be entered in the police register of suspects. ‘Hagal’s Order’ is a group active since 2018 and already from the following year under the gaze of the police forces, which in May 2021 carried out the first searches looking for weapons. Among the various objects, two stand out in particular: the book Valhalla Express and the shirt of the European Front for Syria, both lead back to CasaPound Italia.
According to the association of ex-partisans (ANPI), these clues would be proof of a bond of “emerged” neo-fascism, which is clearly organized in acronyms of movements and associations and which dialogues with parties and institutions, intertwining with the “submerged” one with exchanges of various kinds, including the propaganda material of CPI.

International connections of ‘Hagel’s Order’ neo-fascist terrorism

One of the elements of connection between the terrorist organization ‘Order of Hagal’ and CPI is precisely the book “Valhalla Express”, which, as the subtitle states, reports “the story of a Ukrainian nationalist, revolutionary and volunteer in the Azov Battalion.” The author signs himself only with the nom de guerre and tells precisely of his militancy in the neo-Nazi far right in Ukraine, then of the arrival in arms, up to the actions on the battlefield of Donbas. One of the two editors of the Italian version is Domenico di Tullio, militant and CasaPound lawyer, a leading political figure of the neo-fascist group. The other is Andrea Lombardi, who, with CasaPound, ran for election. Lombardi is also the founder of the book publishing house called ‘Italia Storica,’ which “has as its object the study, dissemination, and deepening of military history, with particular regard to the Armed Forces of the Axis in the Second World War” and which, as is evident from the recurring interviews with the ‘Primato Nazionale’, is part of the CPI propaganda system.
Besides that, one of the ten suspects in the antiterrorism operation couldn’t be found, police said. The man, whose details have not been disclosed, is currently in Ukraine, and the investigative activity showed that he was in contact with the Azov battalion, currently engaged in facing the Russian invasion. The wanted person should be Anton Radomskyy, a Ukrainian, accused of being a member of the Hagal’s Order organization with executive tasks and connections to Pravi Sektor: from procuring weapons to contributing to the military training of militants. His relationships were constant with Giampiero Testa, a former militant of New Force (FN) and one of the most aggressive of the team. Combat-ready, armed, trained Nazi-fascists had, moreover a model to follow and to confront: Franco Freda, the former black terrorist, sentenced in 1982 to fifteen years in prison for the subversive association, then at the end of the 1990s convicted of re-establishing the fascist party for having founded the National Front at the center of the darkest Italian plots during the strategy of tension, protected in his hiding from the ‘Ndrangheta, accused (never convicted) of the massacre in the square Fountain in Milan on December 12, 1969. Besides that, there is a further international connection, this time American. In particular with Steve Bannon, the former adviser to Donald Trump, an ideologue for many European sovereignists, including Matteo Salvini’s League and, for a certain period Giorgia Meloni’s Brothers of Italy.
Testa and the Ukrainian comrade Radomskyy in one of their meetings, recalled the trip to Trisulti, in the province of Frosinone, where there was the famous abbey granted (later evicted) to the Dignitatis Humanae Institute association of Benjamin Harnwell, a friend of Bannon. In this place, the two wanted to set up the school of European sovereignists. The Nazis under investigation also passed through here. Testa claims, intercepted, that he met Trump’s former strategist in Trisulti and that he also met Harnwell on that occasion.
A Telegram channel called Protocol4 was used for the dissemination of Nazi theories. A neutral code name without apparent references to neo-Nazism or white suprematism, which in reality hid a secret virtual room transformed into a laboratory for a subversive political project, with flatterers of Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini, deniers of the Jewish holocaust and deniers of the Covid.
The same platform was the main tool of another neo-fascist terrorist group, dubbed by the investigators ‘Eastern European Bloc‘ at the end of November. The District Anti-Mafia and Anti-Terrorism Directorate of Genoa is carrying out three precautionary measures (two in prison and one under house arrest) against as many young people accused of being part of a Telegram group that has ended up being targeted. The three allegedly made an apology, through the web, for serious crimes (homicides and massacres), including those of a terrorist nature, instigated sexual violence against minors, and disseminated child pornography material via social channels. In the chats, the school shooters, the perpetrators of mass massacres in elementary and middle schools, were exalted. The young men had also inaugurated a “training campaign” in shooting with compressed air weapons using effigies of state offices as targets in abandoned areas of Genoa “with a view to a project to kill institutions of enormous dimensions,” with the intent to organize a coup in Montecitorio against Parliament.

Italy - September 2022
Italy - September 2022

Black Clouds on Italian Political Landscape
For the first time in the republican history of Italy, there have been general elections during the summer season, recording an increasing disaffection to the political situation, with only 64% of voters’ participation. As widely foreseen, the right-wing coalition of Giorgia Merloni’s Brothers of Italy, Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia, and Matteo Salvini’s League have gained the majority of seats in the Parliament with 44% of consensus, against the 26% of the liberal-democratic coalition and the 15% of Beppe Grillo’s M5S among others.
Though the well-known homophobic, xenophobic, and reactionary positions of the three main right-wing parties, the pivotal role of a moderate vote brought mostly Meloni to restrain extremist approaches in the electoral campaign. Only Salvini persisted with his racist mantra on anti-migrant statements that didn’t arouse much interest, looking at his tiny 8,4% electoral result. Indeed Italians’ concerns focused much more on energy inflation and higher cost of living due to financial market speculation and the war in Ukraine. From this point of view, Meloni’s FdI took advantage of its pretended opposition to Draghi’s government, slyly avoiding any eventual position that could have shown FdI connections with neofascist groups and such a political background.
The only reference to reactionary positions within the electoral campaign concerned anti-abortion declarations presented upside down as a “right to have children” in a country such as Italy, where the n.184 law on the voluntary interruption of pregnancy doesn’t seem to be respected at all, due to the lack of resources and the high percentage of objectors in gynecology departments.
Due to such a situation, even antifascist demonstrations didn’t take place but in some local episodes of protest during Meloni’s rallies, for example, in Cagliari, Trento singing ‘Bella Ciao,’ or then in Palermo, where the police brutally attacked the demonstrators.
What mostly advantaged Meloni’s rise to power was also the general approach of the Italian mainstream press, presenting her as the natural successor after the collapse of Draghi’s government, basically removing from the public debate all the scandals about corruption and arrests of local FdI politicians, as well as the investigation on the so-called ‘black lobby,’ also involving MEPs. The perception of the international press about a far-right threat in power in one of the core countries of the European Union wasn’t shared by the Italian press at all.
Sovereign Puzzle of the Europe of Nations
Among other controversial issues within the right-wing coalition, the European and international ones are for sure the most critical. Berlusconi’s party belongs to PPE group, while Salvini’s League belongs to Identity and Democracy (ID), and in conclusion, Meloni’s FdI belongs to European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR). It’s not obviously only a matter of label, but indeed a political positioning with deep reflection on alliance and international relations. While PPE supports the European Commission, the other groups outline nationalist and sovereignist positions, thus distinguishing from each other, with the League boosted by the relationship with Marine Le Pen (RN) and Orban’s Fidesz also in a pro-Russian perspective, while Meloni’s party seems closer to pro-Atlantic and ultra-catholic parties, such as ‘Right and Order’ of the Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, or even the far-right one ‘Vox’ in Spain. Shortly after the elections, Meloni’s first international date was not by chance the participation in the Spanish far-right party annual meeting. In her recorded video speech, she spoke about a ‘shared destiny among patriots’ parties’, wishing to relaunch a concept of Europe of nations without rejecting western and pro-NATO positions referring to the war in Ukraine.
Regarding this scenario, in September was acknowledged the second Italian foreign fighter was killed on the ground. His name was Benjamin Giorgio Galli, 27 years old, and he enrolled within the pro-Kyiv international brigades to fight the Russian troops in the southern part of Kharkiv, where he was killed during a bombing attack. He was grown up between Italy and the Netherlands, where his mother came from and decided to start fighting from the beginning of June, traveling through the polish border.

Italy - August 2022
Italy - August 2022

Updates in the National Landscape.
Beyond the semblance of a technical government, Mario Draghi’s establishment lurks indeed a persistent aggression on workers’ rights, evident mostly through the arrest of eight grassroots unions leaders on 19th July. According to the local prosecutor’s office, the militants have been accused of having waged strikes in the logistic sector dominated by multinational companies, charging them with sabotage and consiprancy. Among the accuses also the one of ‘mafia-like organization’ with the misleading comparison of unionising activities to extorsive ones. Nevertheless such an inadmissible repression on workers’ rights has been faced by massive demonstrations of solidarity all over Italy and even in other countries. In a context of growing political instability, just few days later Mario Draghi resigned as Prime Minister, after weeks of turmoil. The umpteenth crisis within his political majority erupted with Five Star Movement (M5S) rejection to another vote of confidence, immediately backed by the institutional right-wing, already being tipped to win next elections, due to Giorgia Meloni’s popularity. The dissolvement of a majority in the Parliament brought the President of the Republic to call for political elections on the forthcoming 25th September.
The foreseen success of Brothers of Italy (FdI) party, topping the opinion polls, is barely a surprise in a country, where neofascist drives are still clearly perceived. Despite the removal of New Force with the arrest of its leaders and the decrease of Casapound in the political landscape; several far-right organization show a lively activism. Summer initiatives portrait such a trend with for camps for children, like the one organized close to Rimini by the ‘Evita Peron’ association; or even the national rally of the youth branch of Brothers of Italy, called Students Action, toghther with neofascist of ‘Casaggì’ group in Tuscany. Another well known example is represented by the international meeting of “Fortress Europe” in Verona, where also FdI ‘National Youth’ took part, with its stand. On of the main events of the neofascist galaxy bring toghether songs for Priebke and anti “weak male” lessons, adressing gender and migrants as enemies, all represented with a clear symbol, which has four arrows, each of one referred to “identity”, “family”, “autarchy”, “aristocracy”. Back to the judicial situation of Roberto Fiore’s neofascist party, at the beginning of july the trial has sentenced the first six condamnations against FN militants for a total amount of 33 years of prison, for having assaulted the CGIL unions headquarter. At the same time the two main leaders, Fiore and Castellino have been released for the moment, waiting for their trial. Also street raids continue, with two episodes happened in august in a fraction of Verona city, where is also located the local seat of Casapound, called ‘Il Mastino’ (‘the bulldog’, ndr.). The first clash occured among football hooligans of Hellas Verona with the police; while some days before a man was brutally attacked by three people on the street. Antifa local activist points also the fact of cover-up or even derubricate of such aggressions as ‘baby gang’ crimes. In such a context, although the far-right FdI party pretends to be an institutional conservative organization, its connection with the post-fascist old guard is evident also through several scandals. The last took place at the local headquarter of the Brothers of Italy in Civitavecchia, the town on the northern coast of Rome, where during an initiative the speakers background is sorrounded by a poster reproducing the banner of the X Mas Flotilla and a photo of its commander, the coup leader Junio ​​Valerio Borghese, one of the myths of Italian neo-fascism, whose men were known for their ideological indoctrination, ferocity and for being at the service of the Nazi occupier.
*Transnational Activities & Group Interactions *
Referring to transnational activities always related to summer festival, in another country, such as Belgium, the the risk of a nazi rally in Ypres convinced the authorities to ban the ‘Frontnacht’ demonstration, to which was also invited the music band ‘Bronson’, a Roman punk rock band that reveals its close links with the Italian neo-fascist organization CasaPound Italy (CPI). The band indeed usually exhibits the neofascist movement flag on stage during his performances and its video-clips are produced by ‘Alta’ productions, which is headed by Davide Di Stefano, historical figure of CPI and brother of Simone, ex-leader of Casa Pound and today at the head of the Exit movement, against the obligation to vaccinate. After several publications and media reports on italian foreign-fighters in Ukraine, at the beginning of July the political police department (‘digos’) has investigated on a young Casapound member of 19 years old from Genoa. His declarations to the ‘Panorama’ magazine about his decision to support the ukrainian government against Putin’s ‘denazification’ campaign. Genoese District Anti-Mafia and Counter-Terrorism Directorate accuses him of being a mercenary enlisted in the Ukrainian International Brigade and imposing a sentence of two up to seven years of prison. It’s the first judgment for such cases in Italy and from the first step of the investigation, it seems that the guy be arrived in Donbass after a period of training, passing through the polish border. The accusation of being engaged within the UIB ranks as a mercenary focuses on a peculiar aspect, concerning the remuneration of the so-called international volunteers, who would gain around 600$ monthly, thus requiring an afterthought of the difference between foreign fighters and international contractors, though with a political background.
CPI position on the Ukrainian conflict is not the result of a political strategy of this neo-fascist movement, but rather the acceptance of the international platform “Reconquista”, which brings together various far-right groups, aiming at the realization of Hitler’s dream of a reunited Greater Europe under the swastika banner. The Second Pan-European Conference of the Reconquista movement was held in Kiev in October 2018, highlighting the imperative of pursuing the Third Geopolitical Way against the “protectorate” of the Russian Federation and against the “false alternative” proposed by American globalism and NATO .
The Congress was then attended by Alberto Palladino leader of CPI, in addition to the Germans Maik Schmidt and Remo Matz of the Young Nationalists of the JN-NDP and a delegation of the German neo-Nazi party Der III Weg (The Third Way) and the Russian nationalist Denis Vikhorev coordinator of the Center Russian.
Transnational Developments on Discourse in Mainstream Media
Some trends in mainstream media and discourse on far-right is becoming always more evident: on the one hand the political violence with recurring clashes are instead shown as ‘street gang’ aggressions; on the other hand, this same sort of removal approach occurs also the ‘institutional’ far-right. In general, a big issue in Italy concerns the short memory, so that Giorgia Meloni, a former minister of Berlusconi’s governments already in 2008, seems to be instead the new entry in the political landscape. In her political career the nationalist, conservative and confessional topics have always been put forward. Therefore a journalistic investigation has started concerning “the case of M.”, with the letter standing for her surname ‘Meloni’, meaning with it her connection with the historical italian neofascism.

Italy - June 2022
Italy - June 2022

Hands over the City*
Local elections have outlined some peculiar aspects of the Italian far-right. The first one is the political connection with the mafia, discovered by the police with the arrest of two candidates at the City council of Palermo, belonging the one to Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia party and the other to Giorgia Meloni’s Brothers of Italy, with the accusation of vote exchange for favours with members of the organized crime. All over Italy, even in the northern cities of Verona, Gorizia and Piacenza, the parliamentary Anti-mafia Commission has detected around 18 “unpresentable” candidates, mostly of right-wing and civic lists, with one of them coming from the Democratic Party. Money laundering, corruption, and extortion are some of the crimes charged against these unpresentable candidates, according to the code of parties and Severino law. The number of such cases is exactly double compared to the previous elections last fall. Another worrying trend of the far-right is the adaptive attitude of both extremist groups, such as Casapound Italy, and institutional parties, such as Brothers of Italy, in order to set up alliances and join together, such as for administrative elections in Lucca (Tuscany), where the new major, Mario Pardini of FDI, has won with the support of the neofascist organization CPI and ‘No-Vax’ local leader. *title inspired by Francesco Rosi’s movie about corruption, actually set in Naples ( )
New moderate political entity and far-right stigma
The electoral results at the last administrative round have anyway questioned the stability of the right-wing coalition with tough competition for its leadership, mostly between Matteo Salvini and Giorgia Meloni, together with rising divergences of orientation also in political relations. Indeed the alliance with the far-right organization of CPI has caused a bad mood among the most liberal members of Forza Italia, even bringing to the resignation of one of his MP, Elio Vito, who firmly criticizes such a drift in the far-right.
However such political distancing by institutional representatives seems to be a rare case. A good example by the way is related to CPI headquarters in Rome, perfectly representing the level of connivance between the neofascist organization and some high-profile members of the state apparatus. Indeed after 19 years of the illegal occupation of that building in the middle of the capital centre, eight officials of national Ministers are now on trial for not having removed the abusive situation, implying economic damage to the public sector of around 2,7mln.€. In addition, the occupants are not people in a housing emergency, many of them have a job, even in some cases in national ministries, so much remunerated that they can afford a normal rent. In general, the political trend follows the resurgence of a new Christian-liberal pole with many right-wing exponents attracted by this new moderate convergence; while neofascist organizations are losing momentum and tend to leave the autonomous course, preferring to join bigger far-right parties, at least for elections.
Far-right borderlines in search of a mythological European civilization
Even at the European level are coming out problems with the justice for right-wing parties, above all regarding the investigation by the Milan prosecutor’s office on the so-called “Black Lobby”, which involves an MEP of the League party, Angelo Ciocca, accused of illicit financing and money laundering, together with his colleague of Brothers of Italy, Carlo Fidanza, among others. Despite such troubles, the month of June has been quite more intensive in terms of international meetings, mostly in form of conferences and concerts, both for the institutional and the militant far-right. Referring to the first group, it’s worth mentioning Giorgia Meloni’s participation in VOX’s final event in Marabella of the electoral campaign for the Andalusia government. The two parties join the same political group of European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR), currently chaired by the Italian leader of Brothers of Italy (FDI), whose support for the Spanish ultra-nationalist candidate remarks shared views on several issues. Meloni’s speech was welcome by participants’ ovations and focused on the unity of “patriotic parties” in Europe, referring to such topics, as national sovereignty, support for the traditional family, pro-life purposes and anti-migrants policies. In a fervent way, she also accused LGBTQ+ lobby and financial plots to undermine the traditional identity of European culture, thus retrieving far-right conservative rhetoric on conspiracy theories. From another stage, the European neighbours and sometimes even competitors of the Identity and Democracy (ID) group, among those were two delegates of Salvini’s League party, met on the 23rd of June for a meeting, that ended with the so-called “Antwerp declaration”. Despite the high-sounding name, the statement mainly represents another approach to national sovereignty as an “added value and superiority concept”, thus attacking the annual ‘Conference on the Future of Europe’ as a process of power centralization, in their opinion at the expense of member states independence.
At the same time, the statement reports a curious idea of the “rule of law”, defined as a tool of blackmail, due to the ‘conditionality mechanism’ within European cooperation and its funds. Here again, the core proposal is then represented by the “strict control of the external borders”, thus opposing “mass immigration”. Certain international activism is to be noticed also by the side of neofascist organizations, mainly with concerts related to the naziskin scene or exchanges with twinned associations. The latter is the case of the event hosted on the 11th of June by Casaggì in Florence for a meeting with the french ‘Institute Iliade’, based on the presentation of Thibault Mercier’s book about greek mythology and European millennial tradition. Thanks to a far-right-oriented publishing house called ‘Passaggio al Bosco Edizioni’, the two organizations carry on political training, promoting “traditional values” based on “greek-roman roots”.
*Transnational Developments on Discourse in Mainstream Media *
The standing recall to ancient, glorious ages is a mainstream, identitarian narrative of the far-right, in opposition to modern dissolution, usually referred to as civil rights, women’s free choice and migrants’ protection. Not by chance the proposal of a further acknowledgement of “second-generation people”, through a citizenship law grounded on the so-called “ius scholae” for those having joined at least eight years of school in Italy – has been immediately countered by the far-right. The matter is controversial because, on the one side such a proposal is more a compromise within the government coalition of popular, progressive and right-wing parties together, than a modern and adequate measure; while on the other side it sounds like a political flag towards the next elections in 2023. In fact, Prime minister Mario Draghi has dismissed the proposal stating that it is a parliamentary matter. Another relevant aspect of the transnational discourse is also related to the unspoken, that is to say, the umpteenth mass-murder in Buffalo in the USA, due to the excessive possession of weapons. Such crimes are never openly condemned by the Italian far-right, since it’s political awkwardness, because of a permissive approach towards armed “self-defence” and easier circulation of guns.
*Transnational Social Media Activity & Propaganda/Narratives *
The conflict in Ukraine still attracts the sympathy of neofascist groups towards related organizations on both sides of the war. As well known, Casapound Italy has for several years developed a special relationship with the Azov battalion. Therefore is not a surprise if in one of its local seats, precisely the ‘Berta’ section in Naples, during a concert the participants showed the flag of that Ukrainian squad, making fascist greetings, as shown on their telegram profile and then broadcasted also on other youtube channels.
Transnational Political and Financial Cooperation
Far-right political parties have within the respective European groups a strong connection point, boosting each other with similar conservative proposals, thus enhancing both their political cooperation and their transnational visibility. In addition, participation at the institutional level, such as the European Parliament, is itself an important source of financing. The competitive trend among nationalist parties grouped within European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) on the one side; and within Identity and Democracy (ID) on the other, seems not to go far beyond the contest for the leadership of the far-right. However other interests are also at stake if we take into account wider relationships with international actors, like American neo-cons, or Russian Putin’s oligarchs. At least in Italy these two aspects are maybe the main drivers of the ongoing competition for the leadership between Matteo Salvini (League) and Giorgia Meloni (FDI). From a bottom-up perspective instead, local neofascist organizations keep on setting up clubs and shops, which turn out to be both meeting points and financing channels, in a long-term strategy of social rooting. The above-mentioned example of the neofascist publishing house is not the only one and it represents often the first step towards the realization of new foundations.

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The Far-right Wants to Make the Rest of Europe Like Italy

Interview by Antifascist Europe In September of last year, Italy’s Fratelli d’Italia party, considered the successor to Benito Mussolini’s Fascist party, gained political power. British historian and Jacobin editor David Broder recently published a new book on contemporary Italian fascists.

Giorgia Meloni Is a Global Phenomenon

Italy’s new prime minister belongs to a transnational network of far-right groups, of which she is now the most powerful representative. This article was first published in the Croatian weekly Novosti, 24 October 2022. Written by Hrvoje Šimičević. In the