Italy is Germany’s favourite enemy. Is it just envy, prejudice, or stupidity that prevents a sensible debate on Italy’s policies and the problems of its European integration? There is no other question where the German media and German politics are so collectively wrong as with Italy. Whenever the discussion about our southern neighbour flares up, there is a hydra of prejudices that threatens to devour anyone who uses his intellect. Yes, it is no exaggeration to say, as I explained a few months ago in a three-part series (here the first part), that in the case of Italy the Germans obviously have no inhibition in their criticism, while towards France, the “arch-enemy”, the Germans are afraid to show such open national or nationalistic resentments.

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