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International, Herald Tribune, France

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Lance Armstrong Gives Italians Sense of Legal Superiority (La Stampa, Italy)

 

"When Prime Minister Monti, saying he feared thievery, refused to endorse Romeís bid to host the Olympic Games, he wasn't wrong: it has been years since a major event hasn't ended up in the cross-hairs of the judiciary. ... it is no coincidence that the great betting and match-fixing scandals have emerged only when magistrates made their move. Yet even in this sordid scenario there is a consolation. ... In Italy, the fight against doping makes no concessions: if Armstrong had lived in Italy, he may have been caught faster that in the United States."

 

By Marco Ansaldo

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Translated By Alessandro Marsiglio

 

October 18, 2012

 

Italy - La Stampa - Original Article (Italian)

When you say that sport is in the hands of the prosecutors, one must clarify whether you mean managers taking care of the athletes or investigating magistrates in the 18 prosecutors offices of the Italian Republic. As our report demonstrates, there is no nation that gives the legal system as much work to do as Italy. Do a little digging, and you can find anything: from doping in sports, to fraudulent bankruptcy, to false citizenship claims by immigrants who scam passports that their children cannot obtain until age 18 - even if they are born in Italy. Ours is a desolate map that confirms how sport goes hand-in-hand with the current in the rest of the country, despite its self-deception about being a cut above.

 

 

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Why should it be any different? If the message that emerges from society is that money and success are what matters most - regardless of the shortcuts you take to get there, why wouldn't it have an impact on a world in which people fight to win more than any other? If anything, we should be surprised that more donít fall into temptation, and that there are as many decent managers and young people following the rules as there are, who accept the sacrifices that sport so often demands. Because whatever discipline you choose, you have to be a full-time professional in order to succeed, and run the risk that at the age of 30, you won't have amounted to much.

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One problem is that commercialism has heavily penetrated sport - and with the money comes speculators. People all-too-often close their eyes so as not to see. In football, for example, the number of managers with criminal convictions is alarming, yet some even hold institutional roles. Other federations are no better. When Prime Minister Monti, saying he feared thievery, refused to endorse Romeís bid to host the Olympic Games, he wasn't wrong: it has been years since a major event hasnít ended up in the cross-hairs of the judiciary.

 

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SEE ALSO ON THIS:  

de Volkskrant, Netherlands: Holier-Than Thou Critics have Nothing on Armstrong  

Challenges, France: The Astounding Cost of Lance Armstrong's Downfall

Liberation, France: The 'Good Fable' of Lance Armstrong

Le Monde, France: Lance Armstrong: Tour de France 'Messiah'

Yezhednevniy Zhurnal, Russia: Politically Correct Olympics Approached 'Fascism'

 

It is a system that gets polluted and struggles to clean itself up: it is no coincidence that the great betting and match-fixing scandals have emerged only when magistrates made their move. Yet even in this sordid scenario there is the consolation that on some fronts, one observes that the urge to clean things up is stronger than elsewhere. In Italy, sports fraud has been raised to the level of serious crime, thereby allowing for in-depth investigations. Here the fight against doping makes no concessions and is just as heated as it is in France: if Armstrong had lived in Italy, he may have been caught faster that in the United States. So then, let us indulge in the delusion that here, unlike people elsewhere, the centrality of judicial investigations is also a result of a desire not to sweep the dirt under the rug. Perhaps it isnít true, but it is nice to think it is.

 

CLICK HERE FOR ITALIAN VERSION

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[Posted by Worldmeets.US Oct. 18, 1:31am]