When Silvio Berlusconi returns to L'Aquila tomorrow for the removal of the last of the tents put up to house the victims of the earthquake that struck the city on 6 April, he can expect a hero's welcome.
The Italian prime minister may be under pressure over his private life and his attacks on the judges trying him for corruption. But, though his administration is strapped for cash, he has fulfilled a promise to provide decent housing for the highest-priority cases before the winter.
In a society where cynicism about the state is ingrained, and where the victims of natural disasters have often been ignored, if not exploited, that is a novelty. It helps explain why, despite scandal and controversy, almost 50% of voters continue to back him.
Oops, I forgot to put the link in, but then again.. perhaps it was better so. Well, er, you won’t believe me if I tell you that it was they who wrote this…