If you did not know
it before, it is crystal clear now, Italian Prime
Minister Berlusconi has had it. The Guardian reports Berlusconi vows to leave 'shitty'
Italy in conversation recorded by police
a sign of his frustration at the investigations into his alleged crimes and misdemeanours, Silvio Berlusconi vowed in July to leave
Italy, which he described as a "shitty country" that
The Italian prime minister's astonishing remarks are contained in the
transcript of a telephone conversation secretly recorded by police
investigating claims he was being blackmailed about his sex life.
At dawn on Thursday, police swooped on a flat near Via Veneto – one of
Rome's most expensive streets – to arrest Giampaolo
Tarantini, a central figure in a scandal that
threatened to bring down Berlusconi two years ago.
Tarantini's wife, Angela Devenuto,
was also taken into custody and a search launched for a third person. The
arrest warrant shows that the three are accused of extorting at least
€500,000 (£440,000) "as well as other benefits of economic
significance". Berlusconi has admitted paying the couple, but said he
did so voluntarily.
The sex scandal at the origin of the latest allegations was one of several
involving Berlusconi in the past three years. He is on trial in Milan charged
with paying an underage prostitute and then using his position to cover up
the alleged offence, but that case is not related to the one that has now
come back to haunt him.
Details of the latest investigation were leaked last month in a news magazine
belonging to Berlusconi. The magazine, Panorama, claimed the prosecutors
believed Tarantini was being paid to stop him contradicting
the prime minister's claim that he was unaware that some of the women who
visited his home were prostitutes.
But Panorama said Tarantini had repeatedly
confirmed in wiretapped conversations that Berlusconi was indeed oblivious of
the payments the women were receiving. Italy's prime minister, who turns 75
later this month, has made much over the years of his talents as a playboy
and has insisted he would never pay for sex.
These stories of
internal bickering show the fragile nature of the Eurozone bailout proposals.
Finland's insistence on collateral is another piece of the fragile puzzle.
This whole mess seems like it is attached together with rubber-bands, paper
clips, and Elmer's glue. I fail to see how it can possibly