Bernardo Mattarella


Bernardo Mattarella

Bernardo Mattarella (September 15, 1905 - March 1, 1971) was an Italian politician for the Christian Democrat party (DC - Democrazia Cristiana). He has been Minister of Italy several times. He was the father of Piersanti Mattarella and Sergio Mattarella, who both became politicians as well.

Biography

Bernardo Mattarella was born in Castellammare del Golfo, in the province of Trapani in western Sicily in a family of humble origins. He graduated in jurisprudence in Palermo, where he lived until the Allied invasion of Sicily. He moved to Rome, where he took part in the founding of the Christian Democrat party (DC - Democrazia Cristiana).

He held the position of Deputy Minister for Public Education in the governments led by Ivanoe Bonomi (1944-1945). In the June 1946 he was elected to the Italian Constituent Assembly and two years later to the new Republican Parliament. In 1953, after having been Minister of the Merchant Navy under Alcide De Gasperi's short-lived government, he became Minister of Transportations, a position he maintained until 1955. Later he was Minister of Foreign Trades and Minister of Post and Communnications.

In 1962 he was again Minister of Transportations and, in the following year, of Agriculture and Forests. In 1963-66 he was again Minister of Foreign Trades. He died in Rome in 1971.

Links with the Mafia

At the trial for the Portella della Ginestra massacre, Gaspare Pisciotta accused Mattarella to be one of the men who were behind the bloodbath. Pisciotta said: "Those who have made promises to us are called Bernardo Mattarella, Prince Alliata, the monarchist MP Marchesano and also Signor Scelba, Minister for Home Affairs … it was Marchesano, Prince Alliata and Bernardo Mattarella who ordered the massacre of Portella di Ginestra. Before the massacre they met Giuliano…" However the MPs Mattarella, Alliata and Marchesano were declared innocent by the Court of Appeal of Palermo, at a trial which dealt with their alleged role in the event. [Servadio, "Mafioso", p. 128-29]

Mattarella approached Calogero Vizzini, the most influential Mafia boss at the time to abandon the Sicilian separatists and join the Christian Democrats. He welcomed Vizzini's joining the DC in an article in the Catholic newspaper "Il Popolo" in 1945.it Caruso, " [http://www.alfiocaruso.com/da_cosa_cap.htm Da cosa nasce cosa.] "] Vizzini’s support for the DC was not a secret. During the crucial 1948 elections that would decide on Italy’s post-war future, Vizzini and fellow Mafia boss Giuseppe Genco Russo sat at the same table with leading DC politicians, attending an electoral lunch.

Mattarella was among the welcoming party that met US gangster Joe Bonanno when he landed at Fiumicino airport in Rome in October 1957 for a vacation. Mattarella had grown up with Bonanno in Castellammare del Golfo.According to Bonanno's autobiography "A Man of Honour" (1983), written with Sergio Lalli, New York: Simon & Schuster] In 1967, the Antimafia activist Danilo Dolci accused Mattarella of collusion with the Mafia. Mattarella reacted violently to the denuncations and succeeded in having Dolci jailed for libel.

His son Piersanti Mattarella was killed by mafia in 1980. His assassination was probably spurred by its strong commitment against the relationships of numerous Sicilian politicians (mostly members of DC itself) with the Mafia. The Mafia felt betrayed by Mattarella who used to be responsive to Mafia interests.Dickie, "Cosa Nostra", p. 423-24]

ee also

*Political connection of Stefano Bontade

References

*it icon Caruso, Alfio (2000). " [http://www.alfiocaruso.com/da_cosa_cap.htm Da cosa nasce cosa. Storia della mafia del 1943 a oggi] ", Milan: Longanesi ISBN 88-304-1620-7
*Dickie, John (2004). "Cosa Nostra. A history of the Sicilian Mafia", London: Coronet, ISBN 0-340-82435-2
*Servadio, Gaia (1976), "Mafioso. A history of the Mafia from its origins to the present day", London: Secker & Warburg ISBN 0-436-44700-2


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