Even though her Italian Brotherhood Party has neo-fascist roots and promotes messages of Christianity, patriotism, motherhood and traditional family values, Meloni believes voters are fed up with such debates. He is trying to dispel any concerns about its legacy by saying that
Still, there are nagging signs that such a legacy won’t be easily shaken off.
If the Italian brother wins the September 25 poll and Meloni, 45, becomes prime minister, it will be almost 100 years since the month in which Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini took power in October 1922. Become.
Meloni proudly introduced the dictator’s great-grandson, Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini, as one of the candidates for the 2019 European Parliament, but he ultimately lost.
For most Italian voters, questions about anti-fascism and neo-fascism are not “a key factor in deciding who to vote for,” said Lorenzo Preliasco, head of polling firm YouTrend. “They don’t see it as part of the present. They see it as part of the past.”
Still, Meloni is sensitive to international scrutiny about her chances of becoming prime minister, preferring the word conservative rather than far-right to describe her party.
She recently released a video Classified ads in English, French and Spanish in which she said the Italian right had “clearly condemned the oppression of democracy and dishonorable anti-Semitic laws, handing fascism over to history for decades.” I have recorded your message.
This was a reference to a 1938 law banning Italy’s small Jewish community from participating in business, education, and other aspects of daily life. This law paved the way for the deportation of many Italian Jews to Nazi concentration camps during the German occupation of Rome at the end of World War II.
Still, by leaving the party’s logo with three colors of flame, “she’s symbolically tapping into that legacy,” said David Art, a professor of political science at Tufts University who studies the far right in Europe. rice field. Not racist.
Who is Giorgia Meloni?
She apologized for her tone, but not for the furious speech she gave in June to rally support for the far-right party Vox in Spain.
“They will say we are dangerous, extremist, racist, fascist, naysayer, homophobic.” “No to the LGBT lobby! Yes to gender identity! No to gender ideology!”
Meloni lashed out at “Brussels bureaucracy” and “climate fundamentalism”. Meloni, who has a young daughter, claimed that the “most reviled” words were “women and motherhood.”
Abortion has not emerged as a campaigning issue in Italy, where abortion is legal. But Meloni blames Italy’s declining fertility rate, and if immigrant women don’t give birth, it will drop even further.
At a rally of right-wing advocates in Rome in 2019, Meloni said at a staccato pace: “I’m Giorgia! I’m a woman. I’m a mother. I’m Italian. I’m a Christian. And you.” You can’t take it away from me!
Within days, her declaration was the subject of rap song lyrics. Some saw it as a parody, but Meloni loved it and she sang a few bars on a national radio show.
According to her 2021 memoir, “I am Giorgia,” much of her identity was shaped by growing up in Rome’s working-class Garbatella neighborhood.
At the age of 15, she joined the youth wing of the Italian Social Movement, a neo-fascist party with a flame symbol, and put up political posters in the capital.
When she was 31, Berlusconi appointed her the third and final youth minister of the government. However, she soon forged her own path and in 2012 she co-founded Brothers of Italy.
Both Salvini and Meloni say they defend what they call Europe’s Christian identity. Salvini kisses a hanging rosary and often wears a large crucifix on her bare chest, while Meloni’s smaller crucifix occasionally peeks through her loose-fitting blouse.
Despite the lukewarm support of Salvini and Berlusconi, who openly admire Russian President Vladimir Putin, her party steadfastly supported Draghi’s move to send weapons to Ukraine. Meloni also defends the NATO alliance, which is backed by her fellow G7 nation, the United States. However, she often sees European Union rules as a violation of Italian sovereignty.
Italy backs right-wing governments in Hungary and Poland for ‘very conservative policies’ amid fears of ‘reversal of democracy’ in EU if Meloni’s far-right forces take control of Italy’s next government Art said he was concerned about doing so. .
Meloni has stated that he is “resolutely opposed to anti-democratic trends”.
What is behind the rise of the Brothers of Italy party?
Just five years ago, the Brothers of Italy, named after the opening words of the national anthem, were considered marginalists with 4.4% of the vote. Now, polls show it could top the list in September with up to 24% support, slightly ahead of former Prime Minister Enrico Letta’s center-left Democrats.
Under Italy’s complex and partially proportional electoral system, a coalition of electoral campaigns pushes political party leaders to prime minister rather than just votes. Right-wing politicians have done a much better job this year than Democrats of forging broad electoral partnerships.
Meloni is allied with the right-wing League party led by Matteo Salvini, who likewise supports crackdowns on illegal immigration. Her other supporter is former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s centre-right Forza Italia.
Last year, her party was the only major party to refuse to join Italy’s national pandemic unity coalition led by former European Central Bank President Mario Draghi. , and was suddenly abandoned by the five-star leader Giuseppe Conte.
Polls show Meloni as “a consistent and coherent approach to politics. She didn’t compromise,” said UTrend’s Lorenzo Pregliasco, who said she was “a leader with clear ideas.” – Of course, not everyone will agree with the idea of the free ads,” he added.