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Article by Minister Gentiloni – An End to Ambiguity (l’Unità)

Emotions ran, and are running, high both because of the sheer extent of the massacre and for the bonds that we have with Paris and with the French people. Beyond emotions, however, and the pledge to raise all national security levels, we are obliged to look at the future implications of this terrible attack in Paris. Many things must change, but not our way of life. Changing means being aware of the fact that the threat of terrorism has become widespread, striking even in the midst of a crowd without any specific target in its sights. Renewed diplomatic and military resolve is needed to counter this threat. The Paris disaster coincides with some serious defeats on the ground for Daesh, both in Iraq, with the retaking of the city of Sinjar by 7,000 Kurdish Peshmerga (mostly Italian-trained), and in Syria, where the offensive against Raqqa, Daesh’s Syrian capital, is making progress. I am certain that the G20 leaders meeting today in Antalya will discuss this too: how to better coordinate a renewed common pledge to fight terrorism. The second change needed, however, concerns our ability to eliminate the base of consensus and ambiguous support these terrorist assassins enjoy, not only in Islamic fundamentalist spheres, but even within our own societies. I am not talking about an act of war, much less about withdrawal to some illusory fortress built to keep the rest of the world at bay. I am talking about inter-faith dialogue, social inclusion and support for those within Islamic communities fighting against terrorist fundamentalism. Much has to change if we are to avoid being forced to change the way we live by terrorists who want to prevent us from studying, from having our own religious beliefs, from travelling and from living as free women and men.