Karim Akalay Bensellam, a Moroccan father, had a dream since he was a child: to join the Italian Army. He is committed with all of himself, he attended the academy of Modena and, after the training school in Turin, he was finally destined to Belluno. And he made a career: he became the first officer of the Alpini of Maghrebi origins. In the Seventh Regiment was Captain Bensellam, in command of 120 men. Then, major in Aosta. And he can also boast various missions abroad, especially in Afghanistan where he was used as a contact man with the local population.
Steal the place from the Italians
It sounds like a good story, of resilience and integration. But apparently there are those who have never endured that someone like him, with his origins, was given the right to wear the uniform. Why is it so stole the place from the Italians. The Supreme Court sentenced a non-commissioned officer stationed in Belluno to one year and three months of military imprisonment for the crime of continued defamation, with the aggravating circumstance of having committed the crime for the purpose of discrimination, ethnic, national and racial hatred. Finds thus confirms the ruling of the Military Court of Appeal of Rome, which in January 2021 had established the same sentence against Carmelo Lo Manto, a 47-year-old sergeant-major originally from Canicatt (Agrigento) and effective in the Seventh Alpine Regiment. The only concession made by the Supreme Court concerns the possibility that now the judges can re-evaluate the opportunity to grant him a suspended sentence.
There was no good blood
The facts date back to the period from the end of 2014 to the first half of 2017. But there was no good blood between Lo Manto and his superior for quite some time. There had been some scuffles and even Bensellam he had ended up on trial with the accusation of having attacked the sergeant: the affair had ended with an acquittal due to particular tenuity of the fact. Yet it was that very first sentence that triggered the investigation for racism. Because some colleagues had revealed the insults that Lo Manto used to address to the captain, obviously being careful that he did not hear him.
According to the indictment, during the ceremonies flag raising and during training, in the presence of numerous soldiers, the sergeant had offended the reputation of Captain Bensellam with phrases such as: I’m Moroccan of m. to make him pay in one way or another, I’m a Moroccan not worthy of being in the Italian army, He stole a place in the Academy from an Italian, a petty … The sergeant major has always denied any responsibility, claiming to have the evidence of one’s innocence. But there were four testimonies against him, sufficient, according to the Supreme Court, to prove his guilt.
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June 24, 2022 (change June 24, 2022 | 06:45)
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