Roberto Saviano’s remarkable talk on Vieni Via con Me (which is really making the news this week) got over 5 million viewers last night. There’s a reason: it’s provocative and damned good, featuring the reenactment of an ‘ndragheta initiation rite and accusations of Lega Nord involvement with organized crime that’s sent Interior Minister and Lega Nord old hand Roberto Maroni into a tizzy. He also takes on the massive building enterprises in Milan, especially around my old ‘hood of P.ta Garibaldi. Of course, all-Italian, but I’ll look for or provide a translation in coming days.

Like certain other Italians, Saviano is both fearless and a survivor. He lived with a police escort after he named names at Casal di Principe in 2006, and there’s strong evidence that the Casalesi clan planned to kill him in 2008, after which he left the country. So here’s to hoping that one of the few brave voices in Italian public life is in an undisclosed location.

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