Let’s begin with two facts: Giorgia Meloni is the first woman to get premiership in Italy, and also the first belonging to the Right. We must underline these two aspects if we want to understand how Giorgia Meloni became what she is today.
She was born in 1977 and raised in a poor neighborhood of Rome, the Garbatella. Her home was not a happy one—her father left her mother when she was 11, and she had to study and work hard in her early years. She graduated from high school, with an interest in tourism, and where she studied two foreign languages—English and Spanish. She speaks both.
In 1992, at the age of 15, she joined the Youth Front, an organization for Right-minded young people, as she wanted to find a way to react to what was happening in Italy because of the Mafia, and she thought that only the Right was somehow holding out against it. In 1996, she became the national leader of the student movement “Student Action,” the youth organization of the National Alliance party, formerly the Italian Social Movement, which had been organized soon after World War II by some former Fascists (whilst many other former Fascists joined the Communist party).
In 1998, she was elected as a councilor for the Province of Rome, and served till 2002. In 2000, she was elected national director of Youth Action, the youth wing of the National Alliance. In 2004, she became the first woman chairing that organization.
Two years later, after the 2006 Italian general elections, she was elected to the Chamber of Deputies as a member of the National Alliance, and she became the youngest vice-president of the Chamber ever. In that same year, she also started working as a journalist.
After the Center-Right coalition’s victory in the 2008 general elections, she was appointed Minister of Youth in the government chaired by Mr. Berlusconi. She remained minister—the youngest minister ever in the history of Italy since 1861—until November 2011, when the cabinet was forced to resign.
All the while, she showed independence of mind. For example, she asked Italian athletes not to take part in the opening ceremony of the 2008 Olympics held in Peking, as a protest against Chinese policies towards Tibet—a personal initiative not shared by Premier Berlusconi and Foreign Minister Frattini. Then, in 2009, she voted against the law that proposed to introduce euthanasia in Italy. In the same year, she pushed through a 300-million-euro state initiative to support new enterprises, workers and students through special loans.
As far as readers of The Postil may be concerned, we must underline that in January 2016, she participated in Family Day, an anti LGBT-rights demonstration, and declared herself to be against LGBT adoptions—and to be pregnant and was she thus speaking also as a mother-to-be.
She opposes abortion, euthanasia and laws recognizing same-sex unions. Although she accepts what are still Italian laws which allow for both abortion and civil pacts regulating same-sex unions, yet she has, at the same time, declared herself to be in favour of a full application of the laws on abortion, which, as they now stand, render abortion far less easy than it has been in previous years.
She officially spoke against same-sex parenting in a rally in Rome in 2019, and harshly and successfully opposed the so-called Zan Law Decree, a proposal for an anti-homophobia law, which, upon approved, would have been a full victory of the harshest politically correct wing—and a mortal wound to the existence of the Church’s doctrine.
She publicly and officially supports the Anti-Gender Movement, which arose in the 1990s. She has said that she favours a change of the Italian Constitution in order to have a clear and explicit prevention of same-sex couples adopting children.
The Europe-wide Leftist, pro-Muslim approach is something she strongly opposes as well. Thus, she has been accused of xenophobia and Islamophobia, simply because she opposes the uncontrolled arrival of immigrants from Africa and Asia. Rather, she favours a planned migration policy. Furthermore, she criticized Italy’s relations with Saudi Arabia and Qatar, because both countries support fundamentalist theories which, she says, are the root of the growth of Islamic fundamentalism all over the world. As a result, she criticized what she called the “silence of the West” about the Asia Bibi case in Pakistan, and advocated a stronger stance by the international community against human rights violations in that country.
Before the Russian invasion of Ukraine, she supported a better relationship between the West and Russia, and closer ties between Italy and Taiwan, although she firmly condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine as soon as it happened in 2022.
A member of the Aspen Institute since 2021, in February 2022 she spoke at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Florida, and told the American conservative attendees that they must defend their opinions against progressives and the politically correct.
Whilst Eurosceptic and not too keen on how things are going in Brussels, she is also the president of the European Conservatives and Reformists Party, the centre-right political group in the European Parliament, established in 2009, under the founding principles of the Prague Declaration. She is quite supportive of NATO and in favour of the American-European partnership as it currently stands.
The main charge against her is that she is a former Fascist, having chaired a crypto-Fascist, and hence antidemocratic, party, and having started her political life in the Italian Social Movement, which, as mentioned earlier, was partially established by some members of the Fascist Party, soon after the end of World War II.
In fact, this charge against her is completely false. The Italian Social Movement renounced its Fascist roots in early 1994, when its General Secretary, Giancarlo Fini deeply and fundamentally changed the Party, re-named it National Alliance, and led it to victory in the 1994 general elections, within the conservative and moderate coalition. That Party disappeared in 2009, when it merged into the People of the Liberties, a new, moderate, liberal-conservative, Right party.
Three years later, in 2012, Giorgia Meloni criticized the government headed by Mr. Monti and thus left the People of the Liberties, and joined two other politicians to establish a new conservative party, named Brothers of Italy (by the way, this name comes from the opening three words of the Italian national anthem). She has chaired this party since 2014.
As for Fascism and Brothers of Italy, an honest observer should also note that there was and is no room for extreme-right activism and neo-Fascists in it; and in fact, the former and the latter have grouped into two different parties, named Forza Nuova—New Force—and CasaPound – House of Pound, referring to the late American poet, Ezra Pound.
Mrs. Meloni was always very attentive to whatever might have linked Fascism to her Party. She has underlined Fascism to be “history,” in the sense of it being finished with long since, and thus without influence in current affairs. As early as 2008, her declarations were so clearly against the Fascist past, and in favour of the full respect of the Constitution, that the Union of Young Jews declared itself to be happy with them.
In conclusion, we can say that Mrs. Giorgia Meloni severed whatever link with Fascist history that some members of the party might still have had, and she is sincerely democratic and pro-NATO, and sincerely pro-family and all that that implies. She understood that her Party had to fill a niche within the Euro-conservative group, whose chair, as mentioned already, she got in 2020, immediately after Ryszard Legutko. This allowed her to gain international relevance, which no Right Italian politician has ever had before.
Giorgia Meloni is a self-made woman—she comes from a lower middle-class family that lived in a poor district, and with no family connections or support. She worked hard and forged her own political destiny, one step at a time. And now, she can readily show the world that the Italian Right can win elections and can rule in a wise and firm way, making Italy no longer a toy of some European and progressive interests, aimed at keeping the country as a mere tool on the international stage.
Giuseppe Bisso holds an MA in Political Science, and is an entrepreneur, and a former political activist. Until a few years ago, Mr. Bisso worked with Georgia Meloni in various endeavors.