US/World News

Italian soccer commentator suspended from TV

(JTA) – A former Italian soccer player known for his pro-fascist views has been suspended as a TV commentator after displaying a tattoo on the air referring to Italy’s fascist dictator Benito Mussolini. The satellite channel Sky Sports Italia suspended Paolo Di Canio after he appeared on camera while reporting on a match Sunday, Sept. 11, wearing a short-sleeved shirt that allowed the tattoo on his arm reading “DUX” to be seen. “Dux,” the Latin term for leader, is the origin of the Italian term “Il Duce” – the title chosen by Mussolini, who ruled Italy for two decades and was an ally of Adolf Hitler. The incident touched off a storm of protest from viewers and on social media.“We apologize to all those whose sensibilities were hurt,” said Sky Italia Sports and Sky Media executive vice president Jacques Raynaud. “After a long talk with Di Canio, despite his professionalism and football expertise, together we decided to suspend his collaboration.” Di Canio, who has sported the tattoo for well over a decade, has long been known for his pro-fascist views. In 2005 he was fined twice and suspended for giving the straight-armed salute after matches. He told the Italian ANSA news agency that he was a “fascist, not a racist.”

CAP: Paolo Di Canio

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