Franco Rocchetta

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Franco Rocchetta in 2013.

Franco Rocchetta (born Venice, 12 April 1947) is a Venetian liberal[1][2] politician, entrepreneur, philologist and history populariser, who is usually described as the "father" of present-day Venetian nationalism.[3][4][5][6]

Early life and political career[edit]

Since his university years, Rocchetta has been a Venetist, a Europeanist and a passionate of historical, archeological and linguistic studies, and, as such, he was active in Radical and green movements.[7] Before coming of age, he was investigated for separatist writings on walls and for his solidarity with South Tyrolean activists.[8][9]

During the 1960s he was a member of the Italian Republican Party and the Italian Communist Party, which he left in order to join Lotta Continua in 1969.[8][9]

In 1978 Rocchetta founded the "Venetian Philological Society" (of which he was elected president).[10]

Liga Veneta and Lega Nord[edit]

In 1980 Rocchetta, who had been a candidate in the list led by Valdostan Union in the 1979 European Parliament election,[11] was instrumental in the foundation of Liga Veneta,[12][13][14] whose goal was to reorganise an independent Venetian Republic within a federal Europe.[15] Rocchetta was thus Liga Veneta's long-time national president and practical leader, having seized party's control over Achille Tramarin in 1984 and having been elected to the Regional Council of Veneto in 1985.

Having been a founding member of Lega Nord, along with Umberto Bossi, Franco Castellazzi, Giorgio Conca, Gipo Farassino, Riccardo Fragassi, Marilena Marin, Bruno Ravera, Francesco Speroni and Carla Uccelli,[16] in 1989, Rocchetta led Liga Veneta into Lega Nord, which became a federation from a confederation, in 1991. During the party's founding federal congress, he was elected federal president, a role he would keep until 1994. In the 1992 general election he was first elected to the Chamber of Deputies and, after the 1994 general election, he joined Berlusconi I Cabinet as undersecretary of Foreign Affairs.[17]

In July 1994, after years of juxtaposition with federal secretary Bossi[18] on several institutional, organisational, ethnic, ethic and economic issues,[19][20] Rocchetta left the party before the end of a congress in which his wife and protégé Marilena Marin was replaced by Fabrizio Comencini as national secretary.[21][22] After his exit from Lega Nord, he unsuccessfully launched Liga Nathion Veneta.[23][24] He later joined the Federalists and Liberal Democrats and National Alliance, prior to leaving politics.[25]

Post-Lega Nord activity[edit]

Having left the Italian Parliament following the 1996 general election, Rocchetta, while continuing to be an active spokesman for Venetian nationalism, focused on pacifism and antimilitarism. In particular, in 1999 he went to Belgrade for what he described as a "mission of peace", along with some left-wing pacifists, notably including Luca Casarini, Gianfranco Bettin and Vitaliano Della Sala.[8] With his "Center for International Studies" dedicated to Paolo Sarpi, Rocchetta organised several initiatives with representatives of minorities, notably including those with Ibrahim Rugova in favour of a peaceful resolution of the conflict in Kosovo.[26] In 1999 Rocchetta was instrumental in the awarding to Rugova of the honorary citizenship of Venice by then-mayor Massimo Cacciari.[27]

Between the 1990s and the 2000s Rocchetta was honorary consul of the Republic of Macedonia in Venice.[28]

In 2013 Rocchetta returned to active politics after virtually 20 years of absence from the political scene as a member of Plebiscite 2013, a cross-party committee which organised the 2014 referendum on Veneto's independence,[29][30] which saw the participation of 63.2% of eligible voters and the support of 89.1% among them.[31][32] Later on Rocchetta, along with Andrea Arman and Giovanni Dalla-Valle, distanced from the Venetist organisation over disagreements with the "Delegation of Ten".[33][34]

In the 2014 centre-left primary election for selecting the candidate for President of Veneto, Rocchetta voted for Simonetta Rubinato, who lost to Alessandra Moretti.[35]

2014 arrest for alleged terrorism[edit]

On 2 April 2014 Rocchetta was arrested, along with a group of Venetian separatists (including leading members of the Venetian Most Serene Government and the European Federalist Free Entrepreneurs), for suspected crimes including criminal association for terrorism and subversion of the democratic order.[36][37] On 18 April Rocchetta, who had declared his innoncence and pacifism since the beginning,[38][39] was released from prison as a tribunal in Brescia did not uphold the accusations.[40][41]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://books.google.it/books?id=jgg5AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA177&lpg=PA177&dq=%22franco+rocchetta%22+liberalismo&source=bl&ots=DcwpVQ_peZ&sig=eb_TJeUQOypHpMvxE5i_DnCXj7A&hl=en&sa=X&ei=DR0wU_HyGauy7AbFiIGoBg&ved=0CGYQ6AEwBg#v=onepage&q=%22franco%20rocchetta%22%20liberalismo&f=false
  2. ^ http://www.radioradicale.it/scheda/70491/70561-presentazione-dellintergruppo-parlamentare-per-la-riforma-liberale-composto-da-parlamentari-del-polo-
  3. ^ http://corrieredelveneto.corriere.it/veneto/notizie/politica/2014/19-marzo-2014/saldatura-lega-indipendentisti-ma-pd-le-elezioni-unico-test-2224232965890.shtml
  4. ^ http://www.stpauls.it/fc98/4098fc/4098fc30.htm
  5. ^ http://www.adnkronos.com/Archivio/AdnAgenzia/1998/09/16/Politica/LEGA-ROCCHETTA-BOSSI-FEUDATARIO-DI-NUOVO-CONTRO-IL-VENETO_185700.php
  6. ^ http://www.repubblica.it/online/tre_uomini_in_bici/tappa14/tappa14/tappa14.html
  7. ^ Alessandro Casellato, "«Identità Veneta». Appunti per una genealogia" ("... Franco Rocchetta, veneziano, classe 1947, era un cultore di studi archeologici e linguistici. In gioventù, nel 1969, mentre era studente universitario (medicina all'Università di Padova) aveva fatto parte di un gruppo ecologista radicale che aveva cercato di impedire il passaggio delle petroliere in laguna e che si era firmato «Fronte di Liberazione Veneto»..."), in Alessandro Casellato and Livio Vanzetto, "United Colors of Noaltri. Localismi e globalizzazione nel Veneto contemporaneo", Sommacampagna 2006
  8. ^ a b c http://espresso.repubblica.it/attualita/2014/04/02/news/l-indipendentista-veneto-rocchetta-non-sono-un-terrorista-ecco-la-mia-storia-1.159448
  9. ^ a b http://www.gazzettino.it/NORDEST/PRIMOPIANO/chiavegato_leader_forconi_ex_serenissimi_faccia_flavio_contin/notizie/607327.shtml
  10. ^ http://www.linkiesta.it/liga-veneta
  11. ^ http://corrieredelveneto.corriere.it/veneto/notizie/cronaca/2014/3-aprile-2014/fondatore-liga-folgorato-referendum-mi-ha-ridato-l-energia-22313296735.shtml
  12. ^ Giovanni Fracasso, Alle origini della Liga Veneta. Dall'embrione alla diaspora (1977-1987), Tesi di Laurea, Università di Cà Foscari, Venezia, Anno Accademico 1999-2000
  13. ^ Giannandrea Mencini, "Il Fronte per la difesa di Venezia e della Laguna e le denunce di Indro Montanelli, con un Saggio Introduttivo di Gherardo Ortalli ed un'Appendice di Paolo Rosa Salva", Venice 2005 : "...vi era poi un forte senso dell'appartenenza e della collettività fra i soci, a tal punto che non vi erano portavoci o responsabili. «Vorremmo, per abitudine di cronisti» continua Radius [Pietro Radius, "I crociati della Laguna", in Corriere d'Informazione, November the 19th and the 20th of 1970] «fare nomi e descrivere persone : il padre, il figlio, il nipote, l'amico, la ragazza in abito rosso, la giovane straniera. Ma essi ci hanno pregato di non farlo. Preferiamo che la gente parli solo del Fronte. I nomi non contano»..."
  14. ^ Centro Studi Internazionali Paolo Sarpi, 1969-1999 - Onore ai volontari veneti, a large placard (70x100 cms.), printed in many languages, distributed and fixed in 1999 amongst the communities of the Venet Republic - from river Adda to Crete and Cyprus (both South- and North Cyprus) - and the venet communities scattered all over the world, quoted and partially transcribed in "Venetismi. Diario di un gruppo di studio sul Veneto contemporaneo, 1997-95", by Alessadro Casellato (editor), Sommacampagna 2000
  15. ^ Marc Lazar, L'Italie Existe-T-Elle? Entretien avec Franco Rocchetta, Politique Internationale, n° 58, Hiver 1992/1993
  16. ^ http://www.raixevenete.net/documenti/doc47.asp
  17. ^ http://governo.it/Governo/Governi/berlusconi1.html
  18. ^ Enrico Pucci, Il federalismo è un bluff. Lega serva di Roma, Bossi al guinzaglio di Silvio, La Tribuna di Treviso, the 7th of February 2011; vide : bossi/guinzaglio/tribunatreviso/cronaca/2011
  19. ^ Margarita Gómez-Reino Cachafeiro, Ethnicity and Nationalism in Italian Politics, Aldershot, Burlington, Singapore & Sydney 2002
  20. ^ Damian Tambini, Two interviews with Bossi and Rocchetta, Telos , Number 98-99, Winter 1993-Spring 1994
  21. ^ Osvaldo Migotto, Il Senatur è in acque torbide da molti anni. Intervista a Franco Rocchetta, Corriere del Ticino, the 7th of April 2012; vide : lega/acquetorbide/corriereticino
  22. ^ Marilena Marin and Franco Rocchetta, In reply to Gian Antonio Stella, in Corriere della Sera, October the 8th, 2011; vide : interventi e repliche-corriere-della-sera/marin/08 ottobre 2011
  23. ^ Francesco Jori, Dalla Łiga alla Lega. Storia, movimenti, protagonisti, Marsilio, Venice 2009, pp. 90-91
  24. ^ Regional Council of Veneto – Electoral Archive
  25. ^ Chamber of Deputies – Franco Rocchetta's page
  26. ^ http://www.ilgazzettino.it/articolo.php?id=607230&sez=NORDEST&ssez=PRIMOPIANO
  27. ^ http://www.adnkronos.com/Archivio/AdnAgenzia/1999/05/10/Politica/KOSOVO-RUGOVA-CITTADINO-ONORARIO-DI-VENEZIA_193100.php
  28. ^ http://books.google.it/books?id=8dVNMRLFLEYC&pg=PT25&lpg=PT25&dq=%22franco+rocchetta%22+%22repubblica+di+macedonia%22&source=bl&ots=syy7lZmNWl&sig=xYL6LVXg_gv_nl0T_-D9AGC5oHY&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Sy09U9-yOe3L0AX5o4HwDA&ved=0CDYQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=%22franco%20rocchetta%22%20%22repubblica%20di%20macedonia%22&f=false
  29. ^ http://plebiscito2013.eu/franco-rocchetta-testimonial-di-plebiscito2013-eu-la-repubblica-veneta-del-xxi-secolo/
  30. ^ http://www.lintraprendente.it/2014/03/il-veneto-urla-indipendenza-ce-il-quorum-ce-il-si/
  31. ^ http://blog.plebiscito.eu/news/referendum-di-indipendenza-del-veneto-i-risultati/
  32. ^ http://www.rischiocalcolato.it/2014/03/veneto-libero-indipendente-nato-in-europa-leuro-problema-italiano.html
  33. ^ http://www.miglioverde.eu/rocchetta-arman-e-della-valle-puntano-il-dito-contro-plebiscito-eu/
  34. ^ http://www.miglioverde.eu/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/LETTERA_DI_ROCCHETTA_ARMAN_DELLAVALLE.pdf
  35. ^ Corriere del Veneto, 2 December 2014, p. 4.
  36. ^ http://corrieredelveneto.corriere.it/veneto/notizie/politica/2014/2-aprile-2014/blitz-contro-indipendentisti-24-arresti-2236075968.shtml
  37. ^ http://corrieredelveneto.corriere.it/veneto/notizie/politica/2014/2-aprile-2014/blitz-contro-indipendentisti-24-arresti-2236075968.shtml
  38. ^ http://corrieredelveneto.corriere.it/veneto/notizie/cronaca/2014/5-aprile-2014/rocchetta-sono-innocente-pacifista-22326547675.shtml
  39. ^ http://tribunatreviso.gelocal.it/cronaca/2014/04/04/news/rocchetta-io-terrorista-ridicolo-1.8981586
  40. ^ http://corrieredelveneto.corriere.it/veneto/notizie/politica/2014/18-aprile-2014/riesame-scarcera-rocchetta-chiavegato-22392040249.shtml
  41. ^ http://nuovavenezia.gelocal.it/2014/04/24/news/l-accusa-non-regge-secessionisti-a-casa-liberi-o-ai-domiciliari-1.9102292