Whether you look at the Strait of Sicily or at the Middle Eastern border, Italy is a country that has “a certain history and a certain place in the world, but which often does not know exactly what it is, has no strategy, no vision”: to contribute to build it is the goal that Lucio Caracciolo, founder and director of the historic magazine Limes, and his team have given themselves by inaugurating, yesterday, the school of Geopolitics of Limes.
Why a “school of geopolitics”?
“With Limes in 28 years we have accumulated a long experience, the school is a bit of an act of restitution. We want to contribute in our small way to the formation of the Italian ruling class. And the answer I must say was very positive: the adhesions were more of 1000, we had to make a considerable effort to select the classes, with different paths for young graduates and for public and private decision-makers “.
When we talk about geopolitics we think of international relations, economics, law, but then we discover that the clash between the US and China is also played out on microchips or that the next great transformation will be quantum computing. Do you need to know quantum physics to understand the world today?
“No, you need to know history and geography. Geopolitics is the analysis of power conflicts in specific spaces and times, most of the way in which geopolitical actors move depends on their history. Quantum mechanics, cybernetics they are tools, they can be used in different ways, but nations move not so much for accounting reasons as for sentimental ones “.
How much does power try to influence those who do geopolitical analysis, work as a think tank?
“In my experience of Limes the influence of power tends to be zero, I have never received a phone call from this or that leader so to speak. For think tanks it is different, they are very often instruments of influence for states”.
Forming the ruling class, he says. Is geopolitics a matter for elites?
“As far as I am concerned, I would teach it in elementary schools, understanding the world in which we find ourselves, the relationships of power – from the local to the universal – mapping the reasoning of power, listening to the voices we disagree with is fundamental to being citizens and to be a country “.
How are Caracciolo’s cultural and informative maps built, what does he read in the morning?
“Apart from the Italian newspapers, I read the Germans Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Southgerman newspaper, the Americans Washington Post, New York Times, the French Le Figaro, but also Mediapart, which is not about geopolitics but deals with interesting topics even if very well aligned. Of The world I could do without. And then the Financial Times and other sites like Geopolitical future“.
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“The one that struck me most in recent years was Le Bureau des légendes”.
What books are you reading?
“One on the cartographic reason, on how maps are conceived. I am rereading Sciascia and there is a book that I read and reread: the Leopard. Exceptional how from a specific story it succeeds and enlightens you on the Italian trajectory”.
He gave his first lecture yesterday immediately after Draghi’s words about Erdogan, the “dictator”. What do you think?
“I think that beyond Erdogan’s sexism and unpleasantness, the deplorable story of Von Der Leyen gives a sense of how the European Union is perceived. What remains of this almost theatrical representation is: I am Erdogan, who you are ? “.