With everyone focused on the US government, and whether or not it would remain open past Monday, the real stunner has once again emerged out of left field, in this case Italy, where as Italian news agency Ansa reported moments ago, the ministers in Berlusconi's PDL party have followed through on their threats announced earlier this week, and have resigned.
- BERLUSCONI'S PDL MINISTERS RESIGN, ANSA SAYS CITING ALFANO
- BERLUSCONI ALLIES OFFER RESIGNATIONS FROM LETTA CABINET: ALFANO
- Berlusconi Says PDL Ministers Should Offer Resignation: Ansa
- BERLUSCONI SAYS LETTA'S ULTIMATUM UNACCEPTABLE: ANSA
On the other hand, in a world built on trial balloons and false rumors and disinformation, perhaps this is merely the latest example:
- LETTA SPOKESWOMAN: 'NOT AWARE' OF PDL MINISTERS' RESIGNATIONS
Although subsequently it seems that Letta admits the PDL ministers did in fact resign:
- LETTA SAYS PDL RESIGNATIONS AT FAULT FOR VAT INCREASE: SKYTG24
And some more flash headhlines out of Bloomberg:
- The govt’s situation is tough and confidence is needed, Ansa reports, citing President Giorgio Napolitano speaking in Naples.
- Italy doesn’t need a “permanent election campaign”
- Italy Halts Budget Decisions as Letta Seeks to Gauge Support
All ministers from former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi's centre-right party resigned from the coalition government on Saturday, said a spokesman for Deputy Prime Minister Angelino Alfano.
Berlusconi had earlier told ministers from his People of Freedom (PDL) party to consider stepping down in protest at Prime Minister Enrico Letta's order to freeze all decisions ahead of a confidence vote in parliament.
"The ultimatum sent by the prime minister and his Democratic Party at their government allies ... seems inadmissable and unacceptable," Berlusconi said in a statement on Saturday.
The latest from ANSA, google translated:
'The ministers of the PDL resign his resignation'. He does know Angelino Alfano - through its spokesman - and said to speak on behalf of the entire delegation of the People of Freedom. Shortly before Silvio Berlusconi declared inadmissible the ultimatum of Letta and the decision VAT increase 'a serious breach' of the shareholders of government. 'I invited the delegation of the People of Freedom to the government to evaluate the opportunity to immediately submit his resignation not to be complicit, and not to make aided by the People of Freedom, a further hateful harassment imposed by the Italians left'. 'The decision taken yesterday by the President of the Council of Ministers Enrico Letta, to freeze the activities of government, thereby determining the VAT increase is a serious violation of the terms on which this government, contradicts the plan submitted to the Rooms by the Premier and would force us to violate its commitments to our voters during the election campaign and at the time when we voted confidence in this executive since we really wanted. "This was stated in a note Silvio Berlusconi, leader of the PDL." For these reasons, the ultimatum launched by the Premier and the Democratic Party allies to government on the skin of the Italians, it is inadmissible and unacceptable, "he adds." Therefore - he concludes - I invited the delegation of the People of Freedom to the government to assess the ' opportunity to immediately submit his resignation not to be complicit, and not to make aided by the People of Freedom, a further hateful harassment imposed by the Italians left "
So one week after the German election and already Greece has unleashed a historic crackdown against its third most popular party, and the Italian government may well have fallen.
Looks like the European summer vacation is officially over.