Gelli's is a name that often comes up. Leader of the P2 Masonic Lodge, friend to Argentina's Peron, a deep state figure with ties to Fascism, political terrorism, Mussolini, the CIA and many important figures in European business and finance, You cannot mention Gelli without speaking of connections to the Vatican Banking Scandal and the Mafia. He's an almost incredible figure more at home in a novel than an academic historical survey.
Most of his generation and the people he associated with have died or been killed. One thinks of men like Sindona and Calvi. Their generation is rapidly passing. Giulio Andreotti who also lived into his nineties died in 2013.
Even younger figures like Berlusconi are reaching their twilight. But the story is both amazing and very dark. Gelli's story is one of power and reaching for the stars only to fall in the end.
Gelli is a figure that beyond dispute demonstrates the reality of conspiracy. This does not mean we have to embrace the world of Alex Jones and others like him. And yet, Gelli's tale points to the shortcomings of many establishment histories and conventional narratives and explanations.
For many Americans they can believe such tales when it comes to a place like Italy or an institution like the Vatican. And yet they refuse to believe such people and their schemes find a home in places like Washington and New York. Gelli's story belies such assumptions, for the connections are patent and in fact expose but the tip of the proverbial iceberg.
Gelli is not entirely exceptional but affords a unique opportunity to peer behind the curtain and catch a glimpse of a world the corporate media will not probe, a world of power and lies, secrets, theft and murder.
Perhaps the most fascinating thing about modern democracy is that even though it's largely a scam it strives to keep a legitimate face. The Italians know better. Most Americans do not.
God willing I will (at some point) return to some of these topics. There are many books both good and bad but even the most restrained are still pretty fascinating.
I caught the European bug a long time ago. I have always been absolutely captivated by the world of Ratlines, escaped Nazis, the Vatican and Cold War Europe. Living in Italy and walking the streets of Rome was for many reasons a source of joy and wonder, but even while I pondered Romans, Vandals, Lombards, the Renaissance and Waldensians, I was always keeping an eye open for signs and markers pointing to the underside of the Cold War.
And people say history is boring.