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Out of Palermo

Libera is hiding mothers who turn their backs on mafia

The leader of the anti-mafia group "Libera" (which means "Free") today let it be known that for some time his group has been hiding mothers who want to leave the environment of their mafia families so that their children can grow up free to be anyone they want. It is a grass roots protection program for those who are not collaborating with the state and have the witness protection program to save them. For te women, it means leaving their homeland husbands and extended families. It means creating a new law that allows these children to receive new legal names so that wherever they go, they will be safe in school.
Father Luigi Ciotti, president of the non-profit anti-mafia association Libera, said that "so many women, for the love of their children, have decided to rebel against the mafia reasoning, and the reasoning of their own families, saying 'enough' and asking for help. Many are not collaborating with the law, nor are they trial witnesses but they are asking for a hand. We asked politicians to set up a new legal mechanism to open a third way out, because many women are not capable of collaborating. We have reached an agreement but we need to speed up the process." Read More 
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Tree biographies

After city authorities felled an historic tree in Piazza Castelnuovo on Via Liberta` to make way for a new subway line, these guerilla gardeners went into action. They researched and wrote up the life story of every tree on Via Liberta`, including its present state of health, and with a knotted string attached each  Read More 
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fisherman confesses to fishing up WW2 bombs for explosives that killed Falcone

A fisherman already condemned to 30 years in jail for his part in the murder of Giovanni Falcone, wife and body guards, has confessed in court to being the one who procured the explosives for the job from unexploded World War Two bombs he fished up from the bottom of the sea.
Cosimo D'Amato helped  Read More 
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Luigi sings "Personality" as done by Katerina Valente


Luigi, a homeless man who sleeps at a shelter and spends much of his days at the walk- in clinic, Danza delle Ombre (Shadowdance) run by Doctor Marina Scardavi, near Piazza Politeama. He asked me not to film his face. A woman who also comes daily to the clinic sings along with him until she forgets the words.  Read More 
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1986: Piero Corrao and Toto Podesta set the nets off Mondello

Piero and Toto` set the net one evening
When Piero's father was a young fishermen the sea was full of fish and he could never get a good price for his haul. Now seafood is rich man's dinner and Piero hardly takes in a half bucket of fish. The sea is wiped out, depleted. But they looked good trying to make aliving, didn't they?  Read More 
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To NPR: WHY DIDN'T YOU REPORT THIS?

I listened to Soraya Sahadi Nelson report on the refugee crisis from Berlin on the NPR national news last night. She talked about the people walking from Syria. When asked by the show host about refugees in the Mediterranean, she talked about the WHITE people moving through Greece. She didn't mention the 5,000-plus black  Read More 
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A river of refugees

4,451 people saved off the coast of Libya in the Strait of Sicily. 948 to arrive in Palermo tomorrow, Monday.
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Nudism is back at Pantelleria

Pantelleria's mayor revoked a law created 33 years ago by a more prudish mayor to keep nudity and topless women off their beaches. "The island belongs to the world and accepts everybody," said current Mayor Gino Gabriele, according to a report in today's La Repubblica. (The law was never respected anyway.) But it was interesting to read what the former Mayor Giovanni Petrillo wrote into the law on 17 July 1982. He railed against women who expose breasts that "are instead stomach-turning flaccid, oblong protuberances."
In the order he wrote that "someone had to step in to avoid a situation where certain persons, deprived of any sense of shame, but undoubtedly gifted with a worm-eaten mind, continue to walk all over the feeling of discretion which still enlivens most clean-minded people."
That same prudish mayor was arrested in 1982 for abuse of office (graft) and was later absolved, only to be arrested again in 1991, again as mayor, for extortion. Read More 
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284 migrants saved, including a 5-day-old baby

A 5-day-old baby was amog the migrants rescued by the Italian military ship Mimbelli in the Strait of Sicily. They were on an old fishing boat, overcrowded to say the least. There were 54 women and 45 children. Two of the women were 9 months pregnant. They were all transferred to another ship and brought to the  Read More 
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Migrants who saw death at sea now sail


Two African refugees learn to crew a racing sailboat with an Italian team at the world championships in Barcelona. The two African men had seen 150 of their fellow immigrants drown like flies before their  Read More 
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