from Guy Debord

To Gianfranco Sanguinetti
Tuesday, 23 March [19]71 (2 pm)
Dear Gianfranco:

I received your telegram on Friday evening, but only yesterday did I receive your express letter dated Saturday. I still haven't received anything from Mario.[1]

History certainly is worrisome:[2] you are right to say that the "fascist" conspiracy equals "anarchist" bombs. Moreover, since December [19]69, the situation has evolved such that the government must desire very much to amalgamate fascist violence with certain "irresponsible" Leftist extremists. This amalgamation has already been presented to the world with respect to the street battles in Reggio. Without doubt, the government would love to meet it again (as in the "proof by nine" of arithmetic operations) in a conspiracy organized in Milan, Rome, etc.

The government must be pleasing to the Stalinists, who do so much to be pleasing to it. "Officially," to strike against Rightist extremism so as to "defend democracy" is already pleasing to the P.C.I. [Parti Communiste d'Italie] in its parliamentary image. But if one can also confirm that fascism and extreme Leftism are working together in a conspiracy of this type, this would be an immense pleasure, would render a very useful service, to the P.C.I. in its fundamental function: controlling the workers. The Stalinists begin to see their places set on fire in Italy as in Poland. In Poland, one no longer dares to say that these [rioters] are fascist hooligans. In Italy, one would be fortunate to be able to demonstrate it (even if the demonstration isn't more convincing than it was in the affair of the bomb [at the Piazza Fontana in Milan].

I think that you could perhaps make a beautiful figure in the portrait gallery of the Borghese Family & Company. Up till now, one only saw the old men of Salo.[3] But, if it was a question of showing a link between the milieu of these affairs and irresponsible Leftism, a Sanguinetti would probably be a good choice!

Another thing: in a text published by the French press a dozen days ago, [Rene] Riesel noticed a list of towns in which the police interrogated people in the framework of this inquest. It included a dozen towns in Italy and Paris (I believe, but I am not sure of it, that there were several interrogations in Paris). Riesel noticed that the date coincided with the rue Blainville visit.[4] Perhaps this was an operation demanded by the Italians?

By contrast, for us here, all is calm.

You have had to go to a much more tranquil country,[5] so as to work on your article [The Class Struggles in Italy], which as you see, has increased without cease even before being written.

I suppose that you will soon have news of our friends who remain in Milan. Transmit it to us, one item at a time.

See you soon. Cordially,

P.S. I hope that you have had the time to meet the worker you had to see.

[1] Mario Masanzanica, friend of Gianfranco Sanguinetti.

[2] On the same night (7-8 November 1970) that Prince Junio Valerio Borghese, President of the Fronte Nazionale (F.N.) [a neo-fascist organization], fomented a coup d'Etat, several members of the F.N. were incarcerated, while the Prince took flight.

[3] The veterans of the Republic of Salo (1943-1945) constituted the last island of the Mussolinian regime.

[4] Gianfranco Sanguinetti was warned by an anonymous telephone call that all his papers had been photocopied at the time of a search of his room at l'Hotel de la Paix, rue Blainville, in the 5th arrondissement of Paris.

[5] Gianfranco Sanguinetti found refuge in Switzerland, where this letter to him was addressed.

(Published in Guy Debord, Correspondance, Volume 4, 1969-1972. Footnotes by Alice Debord. Translated from the French by NOT BORED! June 2005.)

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