Italy's Global Role
New York Times, October 20, 2001
used by permission

    To the Editor;

    Re "A Bush Admirer Longs to Join America's A-List" (Rome Journal, Oct, 20):

    That President Bush needed prodding to welcome Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to the White House is not as distressing as his reluctance to include Italy among America's most loyal friends in the fight against global terrorism.

    Mr. Berlusconi is seen as the second-tier leader of a second-class power. Mr. Bush appears to have little appreciation for Italy's pivotal role in Western Europe, the Balkans, Africa and the Middle East. In addition to providing both NATO and the United States with a military presence in Aviano, Sigonella, Crotone, Gaeta and Naples, Italy remains a key diplomatic player in capitals as far-flung as Pyongyang and Beijing.

    Perhaps Mr. Berlusconi should reconsider his unrequited love for a fickle ally.

Rosario A. Iaconis
Director, Italic Institute of America



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