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March 5, 2010

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Page 14 POST-GAZETTE, MARCH 5, 2010 Bil Co LO SAPEVATE CHE ... L'embargo italiano alla Corea del Nord e' operative. Nel mirino sono finiti due panfili di lusso 'all'italiana', pronti a salpare per Pyongyang a beneficio del leader nordcoreano, il dittatore Kim Jong Li. L'operazione e' giunta all'atte4nzione della stampa solo recentemente. Ma in effetti avvenne il primo di luglio 2009. Anzi, a maggio quando la polizia e la Guardia di Finanza apparvero ai cantieri navali di Azimut Benetti di Viareggio in Toscana, dove erano in costruzione i due panfili, il modello '95', quasi 30 metri di lunghezza, ed il '105' ,oltre 31 metri di lunghezza, e li hanno sequestrate. I due panfili erano quasi pronti per essere consegnati ad un acquirente, che almeno sulla carta, sembrava tutto normale: una societa' austriaca, che aveva comprato i diritti d'acquisto per poi rivenderli ad un'altra compagnia, cinese. Ma proprio dietro quest'ultima si nascondeva quella che la societa' costruttrice italiana ha definito "una frode conttrattuale" che rischiava di farla incorrere nell'accusa di violazione dell'embargo alla Corea del Nord. Qualcosa simile ad una storia di spionaggio. I due panfili sarebbero finiti, come si intuisce da una sommaria ricostruzione i cui dettagli restano segretissimi, ma gli intrecci fanno pensaqre alle gesta dei '007, dei nord coreani, da tempo all'attenzione internazionale per le attivita' nucleari, in barba a diverse risoluzioni dell'ONU. Intanto I panfili sono stati riconsegnati al cantiere Azimut, che li puo' vendere ad altri clienti se ce la fanno a pagare 12.5 milioni di euro per il saldo dei due super panfili. L'Italia che mantiene relazioni diplomatiche con la Corea del Nord, si sente fiera di aver sventato la truffa internazionale. Nel frattempo, il Governo Nord Coreano non ha nemmeno protestato. Sfido iol DID YOU KNOW THAT ... The Italian embargo against North Korea is in full swing. Two yachts reflecting Italian luxury, were targeted, just before taking off toward North Korea's dictator Kim Jong Li. The operation began in July 2009. More exactly when the National Police and the Treasury Police (Guardia di Finanza) showed up at the Azimut Benetti shipyards, at Viareggio, in the Tuscany Region, where two luxury yachts were built, the '95' model (almost 100 feet) and the '105' model (almost 105 feet), and confiscated them. The two boats were about to be delivered to a purchaser, who at least on paper, ap- peared to be legitimate: an Austrian company which had acquired the purchasing rights to subsequently sell to a Chinese company. Precisely, behind the latter company there was what the Italian builder thought was a contrac- tual fraud which threatened the ship builder open to a charge of violating the embargo terms against North Korea. It sounds like a spy story. The two boats would have ended up, as we gather from a summary review of the facts whose details remain top secret in North Korea. In any case, the complex, secret deal brings to mind the '007s plots right in the hands of the North Korean dictator, whose behavior has constantly been on the international periscope because of nuclear testing, in total violation of several UN resolu- tions. Meanwhile the two luxury boats have been returned to the ship builder (Azimut) which can sell them to other customers, provided they can afford the balance of $17.8 million. Italy, which has diplomatic relations with North Korea, feels proud to have uncovered an international fraud.. At the same time, the North Korean Government has not lodged any protest at all. I wonder why On Sale Now!. THE NORTH END Where It All Began The Way It Was by Fred Langone SALE PRICE $19.95 Plus Shipping & Handling On Site at The Post-Gazette 5 Prince Street, North End, Boston, MA The time has come, the walrus said, TO TALK OF MANY THINGS of shoes and ships and sealing wax of cabbages and kings by Sal Giarratani Where Does the Money You Donate Really Go? Donations: According to fundraising professionals charity's spending is di-, the (telemarketers) to solicit rected towards its programs charities listed below spend money from the public, and services. This site is ex- more than 50% of their states cellent for evaluating the budget paying for-profit that "very little of the credibility of a charity. Rank Charity 1 Disabled Veterans Associations 2. Children's Charitable Foundation 3. Disabled Police Officers of America 4. Children's Charity Fund, Inc. 5. Firefighters Charitable Foundation 6. Coalition Against Breast Cancer 7. Wishing Well Foundation USA 8. Disabled Police Officers Counseling Center 9. Foundation for Children with Cancer 10. America Association of the Deaf-Blind Professional Program Fundraising Expenses Fees 4.6% 94.3% 10.3% 87.8% 11.4% 85.9% 5.4% 82.9% 11.0% 82.8% 12.7% 80'.6% 10.3% 78.3% 18.2% 78.0% 23.5% 68.0% 23.8% 62.2% Sal coming volunteers, organize all volunteer activities and manage the Cambridge Campaign Headquarters. "We have hired an impres- sive team that brings a wide array of experiences to this campaign. I am proud of the staff we have assembled and the campaign infrastructure they have built in a very short period of time. I am confident that we have put DiDomenico (Continued from Page 2) together the best team in this race and on April 13 th. "I know that will reflect in the final results" said DiDomenico. Sal added, "Since our cam- paign began a few short weeks ago, we have made thousands of phone calls, knocked on doors in every part of the district, launched with the most in depth issues page of any campaign, been a part of a podcast, posted on blogs, and have been "friended" by over 1,000 Facebook fans (far surpass- ing any other campaign). There is no aspect or area of this campaign that we will not compete in, and that is a testament to this terrific staff and dedicated volun- teers that will propel us to a win on April 13." News Briefs (Continued from Page 1) with Brown over supporting any stimulus bill backed by Democrats. On his facebook page, he was accused of be- ing a RHINO (Republican in name only). Many tea bag folks were mulling "with- drawing" their support for him. Christen Varley, president of the Great Boston Tea Party, said she was upset with Brown and that "He's going to hear from us." Mean- while, Linda Repoza, presi- dent of the Fall River Tea Party was okay with Brown's vote on the jobs bill and that she believed he would make the right decision in the end. If anything, the uproar proves that the tea party movement is a grassroots effort owned by no political party or ideology except for fearing bigger and bigger government. Recently, I saw a bumper sticker that ex- pressed the Tea Party mem- bers across the land. The message on the car bumper was short and sweet, "I Love My Country But It's My Gov- ernment I Fear." Politicians of all stripes beware. Fort Hood Suspect Diversity Dilemma? The Boston Globe recently sought permission to review the US Army's more com- plete findings on Major Nidal Malik Hasan and discovered that Army supervisors were warned about Hasan's in- creased radicalization tears before he opened fire on sol- diers at Ft. Hood last Novem- ber. It would also appear no action was taken because the Army apparently valued the diversity of having a Muslim psychiatrist within its ranks. He was considered a "problem" sprouting ex- tremist views and made many comments that were not protected by the First Amendment and could have been grounds for discharge. Hasan defended suicide bombers and states that Is- lamic law and supersede his allegiance to the United States. Reports seem to con- firm that Army brass seemed afraid of losing its diversity and "thus were willing to overlook Hasan ..." Hasan allegedly opened fire on soldiers on November 5 th at Ft. Hood in Texas, kill- ing 13 and injuring 32. It seems the first signs of trouble were detected in 2005. His views and behav- ior at Walter Reed Hospital were known so well that be- fore he was transferred to Ft. Hood in July 2009, Walter Reed informed Ft. Hood. In fact, he was transferred to the medical center at Fort Hood because it was believed he "should not be sent to an assignment where he would be the sole provider." It would appear in this case, diversity and political correctness was a fatal lib- eral agenda. Is MSNBC's Chris Matthews A Liberal Redneck? Recently, James Washing- ton wrote a good commen- tary on something Chris Matthews said on the air during President Obama's recent State of the Union address. I reread the phrase by Chris Matthews several times over: As Washington stated, five little words -- "I forgot he was black" -- seemed to have caused a big stink in parts of the media. The more he tried to explain but since Matthews is an MSNBC talker, he can't help himself. His words, the deeper into the quicksand he sank. Is President Obama "post-racial"? And what in Matthews mind is the term post-racial. Is it to be above race? Is to be no race? Some- times, you just have to stop talking. I am not writing here about what African-Americans think of themselves. I am not here trying to climb in- side Barack Obama's head to figure out what he perceives himself as being. All I know is that I treat Barack Obama like the president that he is. I didn't vote for him because of his policies which he ex- pressed on the 2008 cam- paign trail. Do I consider him what? He is multi-ra- cial but identifies himself as African-American. However, when he speaks to Ameri- cans, he is simply the Presi- dent of the United States. Matthews' off the cuff re- mark about forgetting that Obama was black says more about Matthews' understand- ing of color. Did he mean to say that prior to the State of the Union, he saw Obama as an African-American presi- dent? Because if he did, it was a sad statement to make. My own family is a good example of American race. I have three nieces and one nephew who are maternally African-American and pa- ternally Italian and Irish American. To me they are just my nieces and nephew but to the wider world, they are seen as African-Ameri- can. However, even with just one-quarter Sicilian roots, they are proud of being Ital- ian-Americans too. People often mistakenly get confused when folks are bi-racial. The confusion is understandable but still sad. There is no such thing as post-racial. It is a phony lib- eral sound bite to inaccu- rately describe President Obama. Forget race for a moment, I have grandparents from both Sicily and Ireland. I am proud of all my roots. Most people think of me as an Ital- ian American based on both my looks and name and I can't control that dynamic. However, I am also proud of my maternal roots in West Cork too. WWW.BOSTONPOSTGAZETTE.COM