The 2019 Franco-Italian war | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

The 2019 Franco-Italian war

France withdrew its ambassador to Rome last week and, pointedly, reminded the world that this was the first time this had happened since Benito Mussolini declared war on France in 1940. It was also the first time since the creation of the EEC/EU in 1958 that one member state had withdrawn its ambassador to another.

There have been a series of jibes, insults and accusations hurled across the Alps in recent months. Most have come from the populist coalition government in Italy and its Number Two – really its de facto number one – Matteo Salvini, leader of the hard-Right Liga party. He accused the French, inter alia, of exploiting their ex-colonies in Africa and stealing their gold or dollar reserves to finance France’s debt. This is the kind of lie-by-exaggeration that Donald Trump might be proud of.

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