Tuesday, December 15, 2009


I knew it! The Media got their facts wrong - again. The replica of the Duomo which Massimo Tartaglia, Prime Minister Berlusconi's assailant hurled at his face was neither metallic nor matrble; it was made of plastic. Even so, an object replicating a Gothic cathedral with its spires) pointed and sharp if thrown with great force can do considerable damage.

Tartaglia has apologized to Berlusconi. His apology was accepted. Why ever not? Berlusconi has never been nor will he ever be a vengeful man. He is not one to nurse grudges. Indeed, he is very generous towards his friends, wives, girlfriends and occasional mates for the night.

I have had more than my share of professional contacts with Berlusconi. I conducted a radio show "CIAO BABY" which was under the aegis of his Fouth Channel. Only jazz and ethnic music was played. Sponsors begged to participate commercially.

Berlusconi was a dream boss. He never interfered with my opinions which rarely wavered from the controversial, the hard hitting and the some times inflammatory.

Here are two examples off the top of my head of the many instances of non-interference with editorial content.

In a program on Brazil; songs  from Vinicius de Morais, Antonio "Tony" Carlos Jobim, Toquinho, Ellis Regina, Gaetano Veloso,to name but a few formed an integral part of the show. And then I uttered the statement which created a row.

"Brazil is a stunningly beautiful almost never ending land mass with a population of 100 million people, 99.9% are desperately poor and the remaining 1% are disgustingly rich. They also don't care about the plight of the 99.9%. Why they don't even see it! So why don't the poor rise up in revolt against this constant abuse and injustice? One word is the answer: CARNAVAL. Take away carnaval and the Brazilian people will initiate a revolution the likes of which the Reign of Terror in the French Revolution would seem like Trick or Treat."

The Brazilian Ambassador to the Quirinale, was a frequent guest at my Villa of the Saracen in Bellosguardo, Florence. He made a formal protest to the Chairman of the Board of Mediaset - Silvio Berlusconi. He also told me he was very hurt at my" betrayal."

"Brava Cara!. Keep up the controversy. Bene Bene. Every paper and television newscaster is yakking about your declarations.  I have visited Brazil. The misery is too awful. Certainly, you are not retracting any part of your statement, Ciao, again, Brava."

On the Anniversay of the bombing of Pearl Harbor I played swing music which was popular at the time both i Hawaii as well as in Manila. 'The Japanese bombed both cities on the same day. The American papers only singled out the naval air station of Pearl Harbor, because Manila was the capital of the American Empire, the Philippines their only colony

"As a Republic, America felt uncomfortable exposing the fact that it had a Pacific Empire in order to thwart Japan's hegemony there.  News can only be swept under the palm and coconut trees for so long and then the ugly truth comes out. On December 10th 1941, the Japanese invaded the Philippines, entering through its Northern island mass of Luzon. The Chief of the Armed Forces was a charismatic, handsome, tall, individualistic General "who took no crap from nobody" Douglas MacArthur. Back in the States, he was the country's most loved and popular hero so thousands of cats flew out of their bags."

The American Ambassador and the Japanese Ambassador not only sent letters of protest hand delivered by couriers to Silvio Berlusconi in Milan, it was CC. to me as well. Several hundred Americans,most of whom I knew as either friends and acquaintances, protested peacefully in front of the Piazza which housed Channel Four's radio and television studios.

"Stay away from the windows." my sound engineer warned me.

Berlusconi rang as I knew he would.

"Ciao Cara. Ho ricevuto le lettere.I have received their letters. You know what? I am going to ignore it. I shall reply a couple of weeks from today. Who knows, maybe I won't. I suppose few journalists would dare say anything. Indeed, they wouldn't even mention Pearl Harbor.  But there you are, you are you, and CIAO BABY has very high ratings! Even the prison population listens to you faithfully and regularly."

"Really Silvio, they're locked up for the love of God. What else can they do?"

" Don't you know that those in prison and in jails are sought after as highly prized audiences? I mean Radio Dimensione Suono, Rai Radio and Radio Montecarlo are in there trying to crack your ratings to no avail. They have no one even remotely similar to you. Keep it up."

How did this electronics engineer Massimo Tartaglia penetrate the wall of body guards? For one thing, Berlusconi likes being in the fray, he is a gregarious and social individual. When the attack took place, he was signing autographs.

I think he should rid himself of all those macho men and follow Muammar Ghadaffi's example.

" You should only trust women," said the Muslim Leader of Libya.

His bodyguards are all AMAZONS. What's more, most are Serbians.

Get well soon, Silvio. I like you, you have always been troppo simpatico to me.  It will  take more than a plastic replica of the Duomo used as a "shuriken" ( ninjas still use them because they are effective) to keep you down. He did manage to cut your unlined botoxed face, but it's a small matter. Cosmetic surgeons can patch you up like new. What are you rich for?

Will you ever be the same jolly, good-natured political seducer and womanizer that amuses me so?

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