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Now THAT’s Comedy! Beppe Grillo’s Counter-Culture Fascism

Beppe Grillo: Is THIS the new fascist salute?

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COMMENT: Italy’s recent elections saw the Five Stars Movement of comedian Beppe Grillo winning a share of the vote that will enable it to play a key role in forming the next coalition government.

Garnering increased scrutiny, that party is looking anything but funny.

Amid indications of sympathy for fascism and neo-fascism, the party is also under fire for Grillo’s [not surprising] inclination toward “the socialism of fools”–anti-Semitism.

Some of Grillo’s budding parliamentarians have also been influenced by a quasi-fascist film called “Zeitgeist.” 

Combining a John Birch Society re-working of the old Jewish banking conspiracy theme with the untenable “Truther” theories about the 9/11 attacks, Zeitgeist has achieved considerable popularity on the internet.

Along with the counter-culture fascist tract Thrive, that film may well be grooming a new generation of wandervogel, relatively young, “alternatively”-oriented and largely well-intentioned  people who have embraced a fascist ideology without fully realizing it.

The success of Beppe Grillo’s political foray should alert people to the dangers inherent in counter-culture fascism.

 “Beppe Grillo’s M5S, Human Microchips, Fascism and Limits of ‘Revolutionary’ Movement” by Umberto Bacchi; International Business Times; 3/6/2013.

EXCERPT: In the last few days, Italians have had a chance to take a closer look at the parliamentary newcomers elected from the ranks of former comedian Beppe Grillo’s Five Stars Movement (M5S). . . .

. . . . Further suprise followed a rare interview with an M5S MP on Rai Tre television program Ballaro. . . .

. . .Paolo Bernini, 25, said his life changed after watching Peter Joseph’s conspiracy theory documentary Zeitgeist.

“I don’t know if you are aware of it but in America they’ve already started to implant microchips inside human bodies. To record, to control the population,” he said referring to a claim in the movie that became an internet sensation in 2007.

“With the internet many minds are awakening and truth is emerging,” he added.

Bernini’s words echoed a video published by M5S guru Casaleggio which predicted the birth – on 14 August, 2054 – of a new world order named Gaia at the end of a 20-year third world war.

Change driven by the internet would make all men subject to the same laws and erase all conflicts, the video claims.

In the shorter term, what has eventually emerged from the internet is that the freshly elected M5S spokeswoman Roberta Lombardi had praised Italian fascism on her blog, claiming Benito Mussolini’s movement had a promising start. . . .

“Italy Kingmaker’s Anti-Jewish Views under Scrutiny” by Frances D’Emilio [AP]; Times of Israel; 3/7/2013.

EXCERPT: Comic Beppe Grillo’s populist tirades were seen as a benign outlet for popular anger in the days his protest movement was a sideshow in Italian politics. Now that he’s one of Italy’s most powerful figures, his views are coming under greater scrutiny — and a history of anti-Semitic statements has started to raise concern outside the country.

Grillo’s 5-Star Movement captured a quarter of the ballots in last month’s national elections, making him the kingmaker after a vote that left none of the mainstream parties in control of Parliament. Given that political clout, foreign observers have expressed alarm over comments Grillo has made about a Jewish lobby controlling information, Jewish Hollywood producers out to get actor Mel Gibson and about how he finds Israel “frightening.”

The statements have yet to create much of a stir in Italy itself, where anti-Jewish and other racial slurs can find a surprisingly high level of tolerance. But anti-defamation advocates say Grillo must now be held to account due to his new position of power. . . .

. . . . Last year, in an interview with Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth, Grillo claimed that a Jewish lobby controls all the information Europeans learn about Israel and the Palestinian territories. The anti-Semitic thread winds back years, with an entry Grillo made in his much-followed blog shortly after Gibson made derogatory comments about Jews during his arrest for drunken driving in 2006.

“The Hollywood producers of Jewish origin and even the others if there are any,” Grillo railed, were threatening Gibson’s career. If the actor “had said . . . ‘Israel could cause the outbreak of the Third World War’ perhaps they would have reopened Alcatraz just for him and then thrown away the keys,” Grillo wrote. . . .






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