Topic: Italy

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🔗 Stolperstein

🔗 Death 🔗 Italy 🔗 Hungary 🔗 Austria 🔗 Netherlands 🔗 Jewish history

A Stolperstein (pronounced [ˈʃtɔlpɐˌʃtaɪn] (listen); plural Stolpersteine; literally "stumbling stone", metaphorically a "stumbling block") is a sett-size, ten-centimetre (3.9 in) concrete cube bearing a brass plate inscribed with the name and life dates of victims of Nazi extermination or persecution.

The Stolpersteine project, initiated by the German artist Gunter Demnig in 1992, aims to commemorate individuals at exactly the last place of residency—or, sometimes, work—which was freely chosen by the person before he or she fell victim to Nazi terror, euthanasia, eugenics, deportation to a concentration or extermination camp, or escaped persecution by emigration or suicide. As of December 2019, 75,000 Stolpersteine have been laid, making the Stolpersteine project the world's largest decentralized memorial.

The majority of Stolpersteine commemorate Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Others have been placed for Sinti and Romani people (then also called "gypsies"), homosexuals, the physically or mentally disabled, Jehovah's Witnesses, black people, members of the Communist Party, the Social Democratic Party, and the anti-Nazi Resistance, the Christian opposition (both Protestants and Catholics), and Freemasons, along with International Brigade soldiers in the Spanish Civil War, military deserters, conscientious objectors, escape helpers, capitulators, "habitual criminals", looters, and others charged with treason, military disobedience, or undermining the Nazi military, as well as Allied soldiers.

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🔗 Casu Martzu

🔗 Italy 🔗 Food and drink 🔗 Diptera 🔗 Food and drink/Cheeses

Casu martzu (Sardinian pronunciation: [ˈkazu ˈmaɾtsu]; literally 'rotten/putrid cheese'), sometimes spelled casu marzu, and also called casu modde, casu cundídu and casu fràzigu in Sardinian language, is a traditional Sardinian sheep milk cheese that contains live insect larvae (maggots). A variation of the cheese, casgiu merzu, is also produced in some Southern Corsican villages like Sartene.

Derived from pecorino, casu martzu goes beyond typical fermentation to a stage of decomposition, brought about by the digestive action of the larvae of the cheese fly of the Piophilidae family. These larvae are deliberately introduced to the cheese, promoting an advanced level of fermentation and breaking down of the cheese's fats. The texture of the cheese becomes very soft, with some liquid (called làgrima, Sardinian for "teardrop") seeping out. The larvae themselves appear as translucent white worms, roughly 8 mm (0.3 in) long.

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🔗 Umarell, men of retirement age who spend their time watching construction sites

🔗 Italy

Umarell (Italian pronunciation: [umaˈrɛl]; modern revisitation of the Bolognese dialect word umarèl [umaˈrɛːl]) is a term in the Italo-Romance variety of Bologna referring specifically to men of retirement age who spend their time watching construction sites, especially roadworks – stereotypically with hands clasped behind their back and offering unwanted advice. Its literal meaning is "little man" (also umarèin). The term is employed as lighthearted mockery or self-deprecation.

The modern term was popularised in 2005 by local writer Danilo Masotti through two books and an associated blog. In December 2020, the word was included in the Zingarelli dictionary.

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🔗 Operation Gladio

🔗 United States/U.S. Government 🔗 United States 🔗 International relations 🔗 Germany 🔗 Military history 🔗 Military history/North American military history 🔗 Military history/United States military history 🔗 Europe 🔗 Italy 🔗 Sociology 🔗 Organizations 🔗 Military history/German military history 🔗 Military history/French military history 🔗 Military history/Cold War 🔗 Cold War 🔗 Military history/Dutch military history 🔗 Rome 🔗 European history 🔗 Military history/Italian military history 🔗 Military history/European military history 🔗 Military history/British military history 🔗 Military history/Post-Cold War 🔗 NATO

Operation Gladio is the codename for clandestine "stay-behind" operations of armed resistance that were organized by the Western Union (WU), and subsequently by NATO and the CIA, in collaboration with several European intelligence agencies. The operation was designed for a potential Warsaw Pact invasion and conquest of Europe. Although Gladio specifically refers to the Italian branch of the NATO stay-behind organizations, "Operation Gladio" is used as an informal name for all of them. Stay-behind operations were prepared in many NATO member countries, and some neutral countries.

During the Cold War, some anti-communist armed groups engaged in the harassment of left-wing parties, torture, terrorist attacks, and massacres in countries such as Italy. The role of the CIA and other intelligence organisations in Gladio—the extent of its activities during the Cold War era and any responsibility for terrorist attacks perpetrated in Italy during the "Years of Lead" (late 1960s–early 1980s)—is the subject of debate.

In 1990, the European Parliament adopted a resolution alleging that military secret services in certain member states were involved in serious terrorism and crime, whether or not their superiors were aware. The resolution also urged investigations by the judiciaries of the countries in which those armies operated, so that their modus operandi and actual extension would be revealed. To date, only Italy, Switzerland and Belgium have had parliamentary inquiries into the matter.

The three inquiries reached differing conclusions as regarded different countries. Guido Salvini, a judge who worked in the Italian Massacres Commission, concluded that some right-wing terrorist organizations of the Years of Lead (La Fenice, National Vanguard and Ordine Nuovo) were the trench troops of a secret army, remotely controlled by exponents of the Italian state apparatus and linked to the CIA. Salvini said that the CIA encouraged them to commit atrocities. The Swiss inquiry found that British intelligence secretly cooperated with their army in an operation named P-26 and provided training in combat, communications, and sabotage. It also discovered that P-26 not only would organize resistance in case of a Soviet invasion, but would also become active should the left succeed in achieving a parliamentary majority. The Belgian inquiry could find no conclusive information on their army. No links between them and terrorist attacks were found, and the inquiry noted that the Belgian secret services refused to provide the identity of agents, which could have eliminated all doubts. A 2000 Italian parliamentary report from the left wing coalition Gruppo Democratici di Sinistra l'Ulivo reported that terrorist massacres and bombings had been organised or promoted or supported by men inside Italian state institutions who were linked to American intelligence. The report also said the United States was guilty of promoting the strategy of tension. Operation Gladio is also suspected to have been activated to counter existing left-wing parliamentary majorities in Europe.

The US State Department published a communiqué in January 2006 that stated claims the United States ordered, supported, or authorized terrorism by stay-behind units, and US-sponsored "false flag" operations are rehashed former Soviet disinformation based on documents that the Soviets forged.

The word gladio is the Italian form of gladius, a type of Roman shortsword.

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🔗 Aosta Valley Autonomus Region

🔗 Italy 🔗 Geography

The Aosta Valley (Italian: Valle d'Aosta [ˈvalle daˈɔsta] (official) or Val d'Aosta (usual); French: Vallée d'Aoste; Arpitan: Val d'Outa; Walser: Augschtalann or Ougstalland; Piedmontese: Val d'Osta) is a mountainous autonomous region in northwestern Italy. It is bordered by Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, France, to the west, Valais, Switzerland, to the north, and by Piedmont, Italy, to the south and east. The regional capital is Aosta.

Covering an area of 3,263 km2 (1,260 sq mi) and with a population of about 128,000 it is the smallest, least populous, and least densely populated region of Italy. The province of Aosta having been dissolved in 1945, the Aosta Valley region was the first region of Italy to abolish provincial subdivisions. Provincial administrative functions are provided by the regional government. The region is divided into 74 comuni (French: communes).

Italian and French are the official languages, though the native population also speak Valdôtain, a dialect of Franco-Provençal. Italian is spoken as a mother tongue by 77.29% of population, Valdôtain by 17.91%, and French by 1.25%. In 2009, reportedly 50.53% of the population could speak all three languages.

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🔗 Cantu a tenore

🔗 Italy 🔗 Music/Music genres 🔗 Roots music 🔗 A Cappella 🔗 Regional and national music

The cantu a tenòre (Sardinian: su tenòre, su cuncòrdu, su cuntràttu, su cussèrtu, s'agorropamèntu, su cantu a pròa; Italian: canto a tenore) is a style of polyphonic folk singing characteristic of the island of Sardinia (Italy's second largest island), particularly the region of Barbagia, though some other Sardinian sub-regions bear examples of such tradition.

In 2005, UNESCO proclaimed the cantu a tenore to be an example of intangible cultural heritage.

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🔗 EncroChat

🔗 International relations 🔗 France 🔗 Italy 🔗 Telecommunications 🔗 United Kingdom 🔗 Law Enforcement 🔗 Netherlands 🔗 Crime and Criminal Biography 🔗 Crime and Criminal Biography/Organized crime

EncroChat was a Europe-based communications network and service provider that offered modified smartphones allowing encrypted communication among subscribers. It was used primarily by organized crime members to plan criminal activities. Police infiltrated the network between at least March and June 2020 during a Europe-wide investigation. An unidentified source associated with EncroChat announced on the night of 12–13 June 2020 that the company would cease operations because of the police operation.

The service had around 60,000 subscribers at the time of its closure. As a result of police being able to read unencrypted EncroChat messages, at least 1,000 arrests had been made across Europe as of 22 December 2020.

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🔗 Vigenère Cipher

🔗 Italy 🔗 Cryptography 🔗 Cryptography/Computer science

The Vigenère cipher (French pronunciation: ​[viʒnɛːʁ]) is a method of encrypting alphabetic text by using a series of interwoven Caesar ciphers, based on the letters of a keyword. It employs a form of polyalphabetic substitution.

First described by Giovan Battista Bellaso in 1553, the cipher is easy to understand and implement, but it resisted all attempts to break it until 1863, three centuries later. This earned it the description le chiffre indéchiffrable (French for 'the indecipherable cipher'). Many people have tried to implement encryption schemes that are essentially Vigenère ciphers. In 1863, Friedrich Kasiski was the first to publish a general method of deciphering Vigenère ciphers.

In the 19th century the scheme was misattributed to Blaise de Vigenère (1523–1596), and so acquired its present name.

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🔗 Intonarumori

🔗 Italy 🔗 Musical Instruments 🔗 Classical music

Intonarumori are experimental musical instruments invented and built by the Italian futurist Luigi Russolo between roughly 1910 and 1930. There were 27 varieties of intonarumori in total with different names.

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🔗 A Roman road built in 312 BC, is still in use today

🔗 Italy 🔗 Classical Greece and Rome 🔗 Athletics 🔗 Highways 🔗 Road transport 🔗 Highways/European Highways

The Appian Way (Latin and Italian: Via Appia) is one of the earliest and strategically most important Roman roads of the ancient republic. It connected Rome to Brindisi, in southeast Italy. Its importance is indicated by its common name, recorded by Statius, of Appia longarum... regina viarum ("the Appian Way, the queen of the long roads").

The road is named after Appius Claudius Caecus, the Roman censor who began and completed the first section as a military road to the south in 312 BC during the Samnite Wars.

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