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Struggles in Italy’s blog is a dictionary of Italian struggles, a place that hosts news and deeper reflections. We cover political activism, education, culture, the environment, workers’ and community struggles, the mafia, the media and mainstream politics. Struggles is also a collective of volunteer writers, a transnational community of workers, students and researchers living in different parts of the world. We all share the aim to show Italian reality, made of struggling people. We’ve made local struggles much more visible so they can be studied and sense can be made of them. Our perspective is indipendent from mainstream media. We have the blog, a Twitter account and a Pinterest board. Our main language is English, but we wrote also in French, German, Portuguese and Spanish. We’re keen to expand our output beyond English. We’re looking for new people to work on writing or editing articles, translating them into other languages, reporting from the field and much more. Enthusiasm and expertise are both appreciated – in any language. Join us, share our message and spread the voice about the project. Our email is

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[en] Turin’s ExMoi occupation: the story so far

The story of ExMoi begins with two open wounds: the countless empty buildings in Turin, and the countless refugees living on Italian streets and in Italian train stations.

Back in 2006, the Turin municipality and the national government spent over 140 million euros in building a new neighbourhood to host athletes for the Winter Olympic Games. This was in an area that once held the city’s biggest wholesale market (MOI – Mercato Ortofrutticolo all’Ingrosso). Designed by international architects and built according to the latest ecological and sustainable design criteria, the Olympic Village was finished in 20 months. It was used for around 16 days and left mostly empty after the Games ended.

Little by little, the regional government has sold off some of the buildings; some have been converted into student housing and a youth hostel. At the same time, serious structural problems have emerged, revealing the poor quality of the buildings: as a consequence, no-one wants to invest in them. The potential for regenerating the deprived Lingotto area has been squandered. Four buildings were sold off to a private holding (35% owned by the city, the rest by Pirelli and the Intesa San Paolo bank) and left empty for seven years.

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Posted in Activism, Anti-racism, Commons, [en] | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

[en] Political activist in coma after fascist violence in Cremona

On Sunday 28 January, around 6pm, a group of about 50 fascists (mostly from CasaPound) attacked activists from Cremona’s Dordoni social centre. The attack on seven or eight activists was launched by around ten people, and very soon bolstered by 40 more. Emilio, one of the activists and someone very well known in Cremona, was beaten with a bar and then kicked in the face and head as he was lying on the ground.

The attack appears to have been prepared in advance, taking advantage of a football match to bring together fascists from Parma, Brescia and other towns with those from Cremona. Emilio is now in a very serious condition and his life is in danger. Dordoni’s activists have made a complaint that the fascists were merely identified by the police and then released but that the activists who were defending Dordoni were charged.

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Posted in Activism, Anti-fascism, [en] | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

[en] Four #NoTAV activists acquitted of terrorism charge

The four NoTAV activists arrested on 9th December 2013 have been acquitted of the charge of terrorism. They were, however, convicted for attacking theTAV construction site, for damaging a compressor and for carrying “weapons of war” (in fact, Molotov cocktails and fireworks). The court sentenced them to prison terms of three years six months each. The court threw out the approach of the Turin public prosecutor who was trying to link a small act of sabotage (the destruction of a compressor) to terrorism.

The four activists have been held in high security detention (involving isolation, two hours out-of-cell time, four visits a month) for the past year. They will probably be released in the next few weeks.

Several solidarity demonstrations took place all over Italy following the verdict.

Related articles:
[en] Police operation against No TAV: charges of terrorism and subversion
[en][Translation] Appeal from the families of the four No-TAV demonstrators arrested for terrorism


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Posted in Activism, Commons, Environment, [en] | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

[fr] La mafia capitale : la mafia romaine entre fascistes, politiciens et cooperatives

Il y a plusieurs points de départ pour commencer à raconter ce qui émerge des 37 arrestations et séquestrations menées par la police à Rome le 2 décembre dernier : on peut partir de la droite, de la gauche, de l’extrême pauvreté des réfugiés venant des crises et des guerres africaines ou du Moyen Orient, ou encore de l’incroyable richesse de la classe entrepreneuriale romaine. Mais on pourrait partir aussi des attaques menées par l’extrême droite contre les centres pour les réfugiés et des manifestations contre la dégradation des banlieues où toute la droite romaine était présente. Tout se tient. On pourrait même partir d’un livre, Romanzo criminale écrit par Giancarlo de Cataldo, où l’un des protagonistes est appelé – et à raison – « il Nero », le Noir.

massimo-carminati-206213Ou, plus simplement, on pourrait partir des personnages : Massimo Carminati, « le Noir » du roman de De Cataldo, déjà militant d’Avanguardia Nazionale dans les années 70 et 80, maillon du lien entre le groupe terroriste du NAR et la Banda della Magliana. Son nom a été lié à plusieurs meurtres – parmi lesquels ceux des militants de gauche Fausto et Iaio, tués en 1978, et celui du journaliste Mino Pecorelli – et apparaît dans les enquêtes sur le massacre fasciste à la gare de Bologne en 1980. Son nom apparaît aussi dans les enquêtes sur les matchs truqués qui ont bouleversé le monde du foot italien dans les dernières années. Fuyant vers le Japon après avoir été condamné à 10 ans de prison pour les crimes de la Banda della Magliana, Carminati est rentré à Rome peu après et a repris sa place parmi les entrepreneurs, les mafieux, les politiciens et les membres des services secrets. Sa position à l’intérieur de ce milieu peut expliquer le fait que plusieurs procès et enquêtes n’ont pas eu de conséquences pour lui.

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[en] Capital Mafia: fascists, politicians, cooperatives and the Roman mob

There are many ways to begin the story of the 37 people arrested and the related police seizures which took place in Rome on 2 December. You can begin from the right, from the left, from the extreme poverty of the refugees seeking shelter from the wars and other humanitarian crises in Africa and the Middle East, or from the incredible wealth of the entrepreneurial class in Rome. You can start from the recent attacks instigated by the far-right against the centres for asylum seekers, or from the demonstrations by a larger grouping of the Roman right-wing which have descended on the city’s squares to protest the degradation of the suburbs, or you can even begin from a novel, Romanzo Criminale by Giancarlo De Cataldo, in which one of the protagonists of these events is appropriately called the “Black”. Perhaps more simply, you can begin with the main characters.

massimo-carminati-206213Massimo Carminati, the “Black” of De Cataldo’s novel, former militant of Avanguardia Nazionale, and in the 1970s and 80s the connecting link between the NAR terrorist group and the Banda della Magliana, implicated in several murders, including those of left-wing activists Fausto and Iaio, killed in 1978, and the journalist Mino Pecorelli, and also in the investigation into the massacre of Bologna in 1980. His name appears, too, in the investigations into match-fixing that have rocked Italian football in recent years. Having fled to Japan after being given a 10-year sentence for the crimes of the Banda della Magliana, Carminati returned to Rome soon afterwards to resume his place among the entrepreneurs, mafiosi, politicians and members of the secret service. His position in the Roman underworld may help to explain why the numerous investigations and trials have never had any serious consequences for him.

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Posted in Mafias, New Fascism, Political parties, Politics, [en] | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

[en] 280 people occupy building in Bologna

A large building in Bologna, immediately in front of the Municipality’s offices, has just been occupied by 280 people. Many have been living on the streets or in the train station after losing their jobs and homes during the crisis. Among them are 76 families and more than 100 children. Some children are disabled and one is a baby, just over a month old.

The occupied building was once the headquarters of the telephone company and has been abandoned for 12 years. The occupation is supported by the Social Log collective which is linked to Crash, the Autonomous social centre.

Gallery from Infoaut

Related articles: 
[en] Wave of housing occupations in Bologna

Posted in Claimants and unpaid, Grassroots movements, [en] | Tagged , , | Leave a comment