1.4 C
New York
Monday, December 5, 2022

Don't miss

10 years ago the death of card. Martini: to him weapons of the terrorists

- Advertisement -

Ten years after the death of Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini (Turin 1927 – Gallarate 2012), which falls on August 31st, the memory of an undisputed protagonist of the history of the Italian Church of the last forty years remains of him, the legacy of his very intense activity as a refined theologian and distinguished biblical scholar, the memory of his charismatic figure as a bishop who had chosen dialogue as an instrument for pastoral action. But the name of Cardinal Martini – Jesuit, Archbishop of Milan from 1980 to 2002 – also remains linked to one of the most significant pages in the history of Italy: it dates back to 38 years ago and was the striking gesture decided by the red terrorists to indicate the end definitive of the armed struggle in the country.

- Advertisement -

It was June 13, 1984: in the Archbishopric of Milan a stranger presented himself to the then secretary of Cardinal Martini, Don Paolo Cortesi, and, while the latter was on the phone, he left three bags on a table, containing two Kalashnikov rifles with magazines, a beretta rifle, an automatic musket, three pistols, a bazooka rocket, four hand grenades, two magazines and one hundred and forty bullets. It was the arsenal of the “Revolutionary Communist Committees”, a left-wing terrorist group, believed to be contiguous to the Red Brigades, which in the second half of the seventies had signed some sensational bloody actions. The arsenal was handed over to Cardinal Martini, a charismatic figure in Milan, to signify the surrender of the terrorists, but also to solicit a mediation by the Church for “human, social and political reconciliation”. The man said nothing and left. Cardinal Martini, informed by the secretary, called the authorities, and the weapons were taken over by the police. The cardinal chose silence on that emblematic gesture of the now former terrorists, and the fact emerged only a few days later during a trial of about 200 defendants, many of them accused of an armed gang. Among these Ernesto Balducchi, who on May 27, 1984, from the prison of San Vittore, sent a letter to Cardinal Martini asking for the intervention of the Church in a sort of mediation for the resumption of dialogue with the State. Among other things, the document said: “We entrust our weapons to you”. It was thought of a figurative delivery.

The episode of that June 13, however, gave substance to what was written in the letter, to which the Archbishop had replied. Two days before the stranger presented himself, described by Don Cortesi as a young man between 25 and 30 years old, about one meter and eighty tall, the cardinal’s secretary himself had received a phone call from an anonymous man who claimed to have some material to deliver to the Archbishop of Milan. It was thought on that occasion that these were homages that were usually given to the Cardinal. When the news of the handing over of the weapons by the terrorists to Cardinal Martini became public, a spokesman for the archbishopric gave an official version: “On the morning of June 13, a man presented himself to the Archbishop’s secretariat who handed over three bags for Cardinal Martini, leaving immediately. When, at a later time, the three bags were opened, revealing weapons in them, the competent authorities were immediately notified and arranged for them to be withdrawn by the police “. “No, I was not afraid”, Cardinal Martini told the journalist Aldo Maria Valli a few years later, who reported that conversation in his book “The Story of a Man”. “When they brought the bags with the weapons – said the cardinal – I called the prefect. He arrived and I said: well, let’s open the bags. He was horrified and exclaimed: for heaven’s sake, let’s not touch anything! A curious situation. I’m afraid that a little bit ” my secretary at the time was afraid “.

- Advertisement -

Source: Ansa

- Advertisement -
spot_img

Latest Posts

spot_img

Latest