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Forte Prenestino: The Wonders of Arianne's Tea Room.

Nessuno | 05.03.2011 08:40 | Flotilla to Gaza | Palestine | World

The owner of Arianne's Tea Room beams at me as she pours the best red wine I have ever tasted. I ask her how long she has been running her Tea Room. She answers that it had been a seven year old dream which came true two years ago. She adds that her Team room is a labour of love and creation.

Looking around I am struck by the beauty of the confines of the rooms. What is most important is the atmosphere and the company that come to sample her world collection of teas and wines.

It is a place that is so comfortable you never want to leave. Arianne always has difficulty in closing but she does it with a big smile and a guarantee that she will reopen.

One of the main reasons the tea room is such a success is its location. It is at the top of one citadel towers of Forte Prenestino, home to Italy's No-global movement here in central Rome. The forte is the largest social centre in Italy and is open to the public most nights with amazing festivals and weekend gigs. Although it is the middle of the winter here in Rome, with temperatures hovering at around zero, the Forte is a hive of activity and political discussion. Soon Prenestino will hold a weekend discussion and events covering the latest developments in the middle east and what to do about it. Whatever is decided, the no global movement will follow worldwide.

If you are after a fascinating experience in Rome and want to talk about politics, Art, Counter Cultures, Listen to the amazing music, sample some of the wine, Tea or the food on the menu, Arianne's Tea room is the place to hang out. It is very much worth the visit just to see how she and her friends have put together this fantastic place!

There is a small stage for local acts, musicians and bands to perform or for films to be screened on the wall. There is an Infoshop and a section where you can buy Prenestino no label clothing which are extremely sought after. Looking around, a small bar leaps out at you with Arianne's smiling face behind it. To the left is a beautiful fire place is the cosiest place in the world if you are lucky to get a seat near it.

As you settle down for the night, and after a couple glasses of wine, you will immerse yourself in the environment and the discussion going on. Last night the discussion was the 'Bunga Bunga Bonking' Berlusconi. Everyone here at the forte is now talking 'post Berlusconi' as though he doesn't exist in office anymore. Like the Rome and the residents of Prenestino, Italy is now looking to deal with some tough problems with the economy and of society. Italy faces some stark choices. It is poorer and more in debt than most other European countries.

It seems that when other world leaders were worried and running scared during this current banking crisis and the ensuing austerity era, Berlusconi was more concerned with injecting himself with Viagra to sustain a sex drive that most young men would be impressed to sustain. All through the summer of 2008, he used government jets to fly out prostitutes and 'everything else' needed for a long parties in the Sardinian Sun. These parties would then continue in Rome and Milan though the winter months of 2008-2009 whilst the rest of the world panicked over the failing of the capitalist ideology. The country was being run by Berlusconi's penis rather than his brain.

Italy may be a country where every single kind of scandal can and has happened. However, Berlusconi has gone a step too far with sleeping with under age prostitutes and he knows it. Currently he is now facing a new trial which whilst will not end up with him going to jail, It will embarrass Italy in the eyes of the rest of the world. If he were to step down and call an election, Italy would be spared. Berlusconi would rather go down fighting to clear his name rather than resigning for the sake of his country. Another reason maybe that he will go down fighting Fini...

An interesting headline i saw the other day said that Berlusconi has to buy people to support him since his own powerbase of supporters has deserted him. His cohort Fini has turned against him and is loitering in the shadows ready to take power. Fini has wanted power since he masterminded the riots and bloodshed during the Genoa G8.

Whilst the embattled Berlusconi hides away in one of his palaces in Rome, Fini decides what happens on the street on Rome and the rest of Italy. Along with his powerbase of the interior ministry and control of most state police forces, it is he who will decide what happens in the future.

A recent example of this power was the recent Rome riots in December. Wanting Berlusconi to go, he provoked the italian left wing in a fight in central Rome with heavy riot police units. Fini successfully shifted the blame for the riots onto Berlusconi whilst covering his tracks as usual. He does not have enough votes to challenge Berlusconi, nor can he take on Berlusconi's control of the media but he can make it impossible for Berlusconi to govern the country. Whilst Berlusconi was bonking Ruby the heart stealer, Fini was circling ready with a plan to unseat him. This plan is now in motion...

I would not be surprised that find out later that Fini has also been assisting prosecutors with various pieces of damning evidence linking Berlusconi to more serious charges than prostitution. Fini has also been trying to win friends within the italian judiciary with the fight against the mafia. We shall have to see. Nothing stays a secret in Italy for that long.

Meanwhile, Rome burns in a metaphoric sense, Its people and its youth condemned to being 'frozen in time' as the rest of Europe moves into the 21st century. Italy can only hope that its political, legal and social structures can rebuild themselves after the 'Berlusconi Era' and give its people a future.

When a society and economy like Italy becomes stagnant, trouble is not far away for the rest of Europe. Fini does not care for the EU or for that matter, Globalisation. Perversely, he wants what the no global wants. The difference is, he is only interested in power and dictatorship whereas no-global wish for a democratic and sustainable outcome for all.
I cannot finish the article without mentioning the topic of revolution in the middle east. Prenestino, the no-global movement and Italy are watching events which have been nonstop for the last few weeks. Currently, Gaddafi is holding out against millions of protesters. He is only surviving by killing large amounts of his unarmed citizens. However, it seems Libya is just the warm up act. The main show, the liberation of Gaza is the main show yet to come. It is reported that the US vetoed a UN resolution on Israeli settlements. This issue is the current impasse preventing peace in the world. Germany pulled its support for Israelis and it also seems that the Netyanhau is the only person who still wants to fight the war on terror and his own shadows.

The inhabitants of the largest concentration camp called Gaza have called for a day of rage. Is the Israeli government only has to ask itself two many unarmed civilians have to die to liberate Gaza? If yes, does Israel want to trigger a global war between christians and muslims as unarmed civilians attempt to liberate Gaza, the largest concentration camp in the world?

I very much hope that the world seizes the chance for world peace or severe middle east war that will not end for a long time. As for America, Is it time to seek peace with the new governments of the region or is it still after revenge for 9-11 ten years on? Already millions have died as reparations for the few thousand killed during 9-11. When will the torture, the killing and domination by the US around the rest of the world be contained?

Will Arianne's Tea Room find a solution to peace in the middle east? Will she find more wines and teas to keep her audience discussing world events, music and art? Will her tea room and the forte itself survive into the future?

I will return in the next few months to write an instalment to article. It is guaranteed that this summer will be an interesting time for the Forte and its inhabitants.