“He’s not an imam, but he has a lot of influence among Italian Muslims. His name is Davide Picardo, and he says Hamas is a resistance movement.”
This is how Italian journalists Claudio Antonelli and Salvatore Drago described him shortly after he announced his full support for the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas), in the position of all Italian “Friends of Palestine” Both deny Palestinians the right to armed resistance.
He is the son of Roberto Hamza Picardo, the Italian translator of the Quran and former president of the Coordination of Islamic Societies in Milan.
Davide Picardo, who now runs La Loche magazine, recently conducted a solo interview with Hamas leader Barsem Naim at the height of Israel’s war on Gaza and at the height of the Italian media’s incitement to Palestinian resistance. He gave an interview to Al Jazeera about the Palestinian issue and the relationship between the Arab and European worlds:
You are the only journalist in Italy who has interviewed the leader of Hamas since the invasion of Gaza, despite widespread bans on faces of the movement in Western media. You even consider Hamas a liberation resistance movement. Aren’t you worried about being accused of promoting “terrorism”? Hamas has been widely condemned in Italy, from left-wing and right-wing circles, especially after the October 7 operation, even after the movement had been officially declared a “terrorist”. Listed as a terrorist organization by the EU?
Indeed, contrary to all claims, political and media debate in Italy is not free, creating a rift between the elites and the Italian people, who side with the Palestinians despite a media that is entirely biased in favor of Israel.
Contrary to all claims, political and media debate in Italy is not free, which has created a rift between the elite and the Italian people who support the Palestinians, even though the media is entirely biased towards Israel.
We at La Loche magazine have chosen the side of the people and the free press. If there is a conflict somewhere, there is no point in discrediting one side of the conflict. The demonization of Hamas, and attempts to dehumanize it through blackout policies, means there are concerns about conveying the voice of a party whose sound proposals could undermine the logic of the Gaza genocide and thereby influence public opinion. According to the “mainstream” media, it is home to monsters that threaten the very existence of the West. When we are dealing with a people who are defending themselves against a brutal occupation.
The interview we accepted was an exclusive media report that no major Italian media dared to reprint. As for the accusation of promoting terrorism, the EU’s decision is political and has no legal basis.
If we consider armed resistance to occupation as terrorism, then we must trace all national liberation movements throughout history.
If we consider armed resistance to occupation as terrorism, then we must trace all national liberation movements throughout history. The fact is that the real terrorism the world is seeing today is what Israel is doing against the Palestinians, not what Hamas is doing.
We note that, despite this, Italy has not adopted the special measures taken by France, Germany or the UK in its treatment of demonstrators or Hamas sympathizers. What makes Italy’s political stance on the Palestinian issue so moderate? It is necessary to point out the positions of the ruling party “Brothers of Italy” led by Italian Prime Minister Meloni and the “Forza Italia” founded by the late Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and currently led by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Minister Antonio Teiani – and the refusal of both parties to participate in the “great” demonstrations. “Right-wing minister Matteo Salvini on November 4 called for support for Israel, their partner in the government coalition (from the Northern League party).” Does this position have cultural roots?
Italy has a strong tradition of relations with the Arab and Islamic world. This was the country of the late politician Enrico Matei, who supported the Algerian liberation revolution and the National Liberation Front against French colonialism and later died for it.
This is the country of Arafat’s personal friend, the politician and parliamentarian Bettino Krasi, who defends the Palestinians’ right to resort to armed resistance. This is the country of former President Sandro Petrini, who severely condemned the massacres of Sabra and Shatila, and of veteran politicians Aldo Moro and Giulio André, who are able to maintain balanced relations with the Arab world. Leoti’s country.
In the Second Republic, Italy also had two main political leaders, one of the right and the other of the left, Silvio Berlusconi and Massimo D’Alema, both of whom knew how to engage with the Arab world Maintain a good relationship. This history has left a genetic imprint in its relations with Arab countries similar to that of Italy, which, in addition to the factor of geographical proximity, aspires to be a Mediterranean bridge between the Arab world and Europe.
Although Meloni adopts a deferential stance towards the United States in determining its foreign policy (as has been stated more than once), it cannot ignore history, geography or even demography when formulating its stance towards the Arab and Islamic world.
Although Meloni adopts a deferential stance towards the United States in determining its foreign policy (as has been demonstrated more than once), it cannot ignore history, geography or even demography when formulating its stance towards the Arab and Islamic world. In the November 4th demonstration I mentioned, only 500 people, mostly elderly, responded to the call of right-wing minister Salvini, while at the same time 30,000 people demonstrated in support of Palestine in Milan, mostly Italians Muslim youth. These are data that authorities cannot ignore when determining the country’s geopolitical status.
The editorial I wrote in La Loche on October 27 last year was titled: “Palestine’s enemies and its false friends: two Italian propaganda fronts.” Who are the enemies of Palestine and its false friends? Why do you think false friends are as dangerous as enemies?
The clear enemies of Palestine are representatives of the “institutional right”, who believe that Israel is waging war on behalf of itself and the West as a whole within the framework of the “clash of civilizations” theory. Therefore, we find them giving their full support to this “religious crusade” of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The clear enemies of Palestine are representatives of the “institutional right” who believe that Israel is waging war on behalf of Palestine and the West as a whole within the framework of the “clash of civilizations” theory.
What is striking here is Israel’s success in presenting itself as part of the Western world, despite the fact that it is a nation-state based on a religious vision, the same factors that the West accuses the Islamic world of.
On the other hand, we find that the Italian left, which once stood on the side of oppressed peoples and supported liberation movements from colonialism, now only supports the Palestinian people in an “abstract” way that does not lead to any real results. For example, he used the record-breaking record of the “two-state solution” to appease his own conscience and silence the Palestinians who asked him to register his position.
The Italian left, which once stood on the side of oppressed peoples and supported liberation movements from colonialism, now only supports the Palestinian people in an “abstract” way without any tangible results.
Personally I think the right’s position is more honorable. Because he sincerely supports one party, while the left still uses the term “two-state solution” knowing full well that Israel will not give the Palestinians a state.
Abandoned by the world, what can the Palestinians do in the face of all the injustice they suffer? Don’t they have the right to resist? “No, they have no rights.” That was the left’s answer, and that’s how its mask fell during this invasion. This is because, if there is a right, there must be a practical mechanism to enforce it.
The danger of the Italian left today towards the Palestinian question lies not only in the rhetoric it chooses to betray itself to Palestine, but also in its refusal to mount a real resistance to Palestinians, especially if they are Muslims. This is another dangerous characteristic of the behavior of the left, which only wants Palestinians to be like itself. It wants “secularists, feminists and why not trans people too”.
But the danger of the Italian left today towards the Palestinian question lies not only in the rhetoric it chooses to betray itself to Palestine, but also in its refusal to mount a real resistance to Palestinians, especially if they are Muslims. This is another dangerous aspect of the behavior of the left, which only wants Palestinians to be like themselves. It wants “secularists, feminists, why not include trans people” and that’s why Hamas doesn’t like them.
In this case, it does not matter whether democracy and the ballot box that brought Hamas to hell disappear. These “friends” lied about supporting the struggle of the Palestinian people, but in fact they were undermining the struggle of the Palestinian people and causing great harm to the Palestinian cause.
Since you raised the question of “gender” we have seen in Italy Islamic figures of Arab immigrant origin siding with the left to promote gender theory. Can’t Muslims in Italy and the West engage in political activity without giving up the true elements of their identity?
Which brings us back to the current predicament of the left, which has abandoned the real concerns of the people and its primary incubator in favor of siding with the agenda of the globalizing elite. This is a phenomenon predicted by the great Italian leftist poet Pier Paolo Pasolini 40 years ago. Coupled with false, grandiose claims of a welcoming culture to create the illusion of diversity and acceptance of others, this does not deviate from the culinary recipes of accepting immigrants, but it does not deviate from their view of the world.
The left’s folklorist approach to immigration wants Muslims to participate in politics in order to exploit them in the media with only their Arabic names and veils on their heads, but only if they are stripped of their conservative traditions and everything that conflicts with them. Gender ideology.
Here I am reminded of a quote from Max Frisch: “We asked the weapons to work and they brought us humanity.” So the way left-wing folklore approaches the issue of immigration wants Muslims to participate in politics in order to exploit them politically . The media only uses their Arabic names and veils on their heads, but not before they are stripped of their conservative traditions and everything that conflicts with gender ideology. Muslims in Italy will no longer accept these deviations and I confirm that things are about to change.
So we are having conversations with those who defend the right-wing values that we believe in. Indeed, this issue has become difficult in the context of recent political alliances following the Gaza war, but we will identify organizations worthy of an effective dialogue with them.
Speaking of the left using the “Arab” designation, as you say, to create the illusion of a state of cultural diversity and acceptance of the other in its institutions, on the other hand, behind the scenes at Italian universities there is talk of a certain humanitarianism Discrimination against Muslim professors (of Italian origin) in professional circles has prompted some to hide their religion in order to avoid this happening. hindered his career. Since you are one of the most famous Muslim activists in Italy – and as the newspaper “La Verita” describes you, the most influential among them – have you not considered setting up an Observatory on Islamophobia in Italy to identify this cases, especially since they often affect new Muslims who are Italian, were born with Italian names, and are not immigrants?
In fact, this is a very dangerous phenomenon, especially as it concerns universities, a strategic sector that produces knowledge and therefore legitimizes power.
After the events of September 11, we witnessed the adoption of an anti-Islamic narrative that in a way made the university another ideological mouthpiece alongside the media, even though it is a space that must be a free space in which thoughts and ideas are generated . Objectivity and scientific rigor must be adhered to.
This bias will certainly affect the reputation of Italian scientific research, especially the Department of Arab and Islamic Studies. Of course, this doesn’t mean that Italian universities don’t have free names for criticism, but recently two great scholars who were forced to hide their Islam all their lives actually died because of… fear of what would happen if they announced their conversion to Islam , they will suffer occupational persecution.
Unfortunately, we currently do not have the necessary tools to address this phenomenon, especially since the fundamental right to freedom of belief does not yet exist, so we still have a lot to do.