Eleonora has had to be particularly patient with me in the past two days. It must not be easy having a brooding, melancholic zombie walking around the house. I still find myself unable to string coherent words together about what has just happened. Unable on a personal plane, unable on a political plane. Until this period of shock and grief is over I am thankful to have someone like Eleonora beside me. Someone who understands and clearly expresses what we are going through. We, as in her newly adopted second home that is fast turning from a fairy tale paradise into a pirate island of darkness and misery. Here is Eleonora’s post on facebook today.
I would like this opportunity to thank all my colleagues at work from all nations who have sent me private messages of solidarity. I wish to be able to convey this kind of understanding to many of my fellow citizens – the same citizens in whom I had lost faith already a few months ago and who I will hopefully strive to win over to the new battle for change starting from the coming days.
This week I’ve received A LOT of messages of friends expressing their sorrow and shock for what has happened to Mrs Caruana Galizia last Monday.
As an Italian citizen whose partner is a Maltese citizen (sorry, Gozitan), obviously I felt the emotional blow that followed the announcement of her tragic murder. On the one hand, being Italian my mind immediately recalled the death machine that took the life of Judge Giovanni Falcone in Capaci back in 1992. A car exploding, a major quantity of explosive probably detonated by someone/something operating a remote control, a road that will be left for long with a crater and a country mourning one of its most important and controversial public figures. We Italians have unfortunately developed a special awareness when it comes to this kind of events. On the other hand, I am also getting acquainted with “my country-in-law” and therefore I knew who Daphne was, what her work consisted of and how it was perceived among the Maltese population.
But it struck me when I realized that I wasn’t the only non-Maltese-citizen genuinely feeling for the “desperate situation” in which Malta finds itself right now. Colleagues and friends, they all sent a text over the past days to express their sorrow for what happened to Daphne. Why is that?
At first I considered it very strange, because usually everybody tends to undermine the role played by the smallest EU country or its potential. People actually make fun of the fact that such a small country manages to sit at a table together with Frau Merkel and Mr Juncker. Then I thought that perhaps all this empathy was due to the fact that the brutal way in which the murder has been carried out had caught the attention of the usual crime-news-audience.
But I was mistaken.
Friends who are writing me simply need to share their emotions, to express their shock, and want me to convey their sympathy to my partner. I realized that they are doing this because they too have been affected by this tremendous assassination. Because I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together.
We, people living in the long-awaited Area of Freedom, Security and Justice simply cannot conceive that an investigative journalist is murdered, let alone in this brutal manner, because of her ideas. Also our rights as human beings, our fundamental freedoms have been violated by this savage act. Because we’re no longer Maltese citizens, Italian citizens, German citizens. We’re Europeans, we’re citizens of this world, and we all feel for each other, especially when these events occur.
Now it’s the time to ask ourselves: what of this stream of emotions? Will we just burst out our sorrow, feel for the family of Mrs Caruana Galizia and watch from far what will be done to bring to justice those who are responsible for this?
I think that it’s important that Maltese citizens feel that we all will not immediately forget what’s happened and, in a broader perspective, what’s happening in and to this country. It may sound too obvious, but keeping in the public eye the events that will follow what happened to Daphne will allow all those who are now protesting in the streets and calling for a more democratic society to feel that they are not alone, that they still have our support and that they are claiming something that we all deem essential. A Maltese citizent told me today that you can assess what’s the status of the rule of law in Malta by seeing what will be the follow up of this tragic murder. Let’s make sure we all follow closely what will happen now.
Because as Judge Rocco Chinnici (also murdered by a car bomb parked in front of his domicile) said when he first envisaged the establishment of the antimafia pool, “they can kill one, two of us, but they cannot kill us all”.