Berlusconi's Friends

Many people reckon that Silvio Berlusconi – as a politician – is a kind of a featherweight on the world stage (and basically a charlatan). But there are (and were) appraisers around the world and in Italy. Amongst them a few tyrants and dictators.

Silvio Berlusconi meets up with Muammar Gaddafi
The Knight and the Colonel
Muammar Gaddafi, the Colonel Gaddafi, used to receive gorgeous reception in Italy, and Mr Berlusconi kissed the hand of the Libyan leader just to show his love (and to make people talk about him). Watch the hand-kissing video on our YouTube Channel.

Though, something went wrong in 2011 and former friend Silvio has decided (April 2011) to allow Italian fighters to bomb Libya, which is not exactly a sign of friendship nor one of the funny pranks of his. 

In an interview given on 15 March 2011 to Berlusconi's family-owned Il Giornale newspaper, the Libyan leader stated «I am really shocked by the behaviour of all my European friends, particularly by Silvio Berlusconi». And than he said that he had no contacts with Italy or Berlusconi, and added «I'm so shocked. I feel betrayed. I don't know what to say to Berlusconi,».

Viktor Orbán, Hungary's prime minister: he possibly is Berlusconi's favourite politician (alive).

Lovely photo of the two buddies: Viktor Orbán
When they met in February 2002, it was love at first sight: they joked, played arm wrestling, posed for cheesy photos. “For me [Viktor] Orbán has always been the symbol of positive youth's strength”, said Silvio publicly about Viktor, whatever it means. He strongly supported his Hungarian pal, who was utterly beaten in the incoming elections (he will overwhelmingly win the elections in 2010, without the presence of the Italian buddy).

The relationship between Berlusconi and Orbán is a liaison cemented by the populism of two politicians that pretend to be always swimming against the tide (which is basically the contrary of populism), they both dangerously sympathise with ghosts from the past (Berlusconi likes Mussolini, Orbán doesn't dislike Miklós Horthy, the Hungarian partner of Adolf Hitler).

As Mr Berlusconi was expelled from the Senate of Italy and banned from public office, rumours spread that the Italian former prime minister could be a candidate for the European Parliament via Hungary's FIDESZ (meaning Hungarian Civic Alliance, according to Wikipedia), Orbán's national conservative party.

Vladimir Putin and - in the background - his admirer, Silvio Berlusconi
Silvio and Vladimir
Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin. You might know him already, he's been a colleague of Berlusconi's, when their job was being a prime minister.

After a long-lasting career in the USSR's secret services KGB, Putin became the Director of the successor FSB, then he basically seized the power and never gave it up, deciding to play alternatively the role of Russia's prime minister (1999-2000, 2008-2012) or president (2000-2008, 2012- incumbent).

Allegedly he took part on some of Berlusconi's bunga-bunga evenings (and their aftermath).

On a joint press conference in April 2008 Berlusconi 
defended Putin from a saucy question by a Russian reporter miming a machine gun aimed to the journalist. Hardly a funny scene, bearing in mind that over 200 journalists had been killed in the previous ten years in Russia.

In September 2010, when he was paying a visit to Russia, Silvio Berlusconi said that Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin and president Dmitry Medvedev were a gift from God for Russia and the Russians

Silvio Berlusconi on RAI1 asa guest to Bruno Bruno's Porta a Porta talk show
Silvio at Bruno's Porta a Porta talk show
Bruno Vespa, journalist and former Italian public TV channel Rai Uno's news service TG1. He might be enlisted as one of the Berlusconi's men, but the relationship between the politician and the author of several books on Italian politics is not that simple. Being a guest to his TV talk show Porta a Porta ("Door to door") is mandatory if you are a politician (or a beautiful woman, for that matters).

He was born in Abruzzo, when reporting from an earthquake stricken L'Aquila he almost into tears (did not follow Silvio Berlusconi's advice, to take it as a camping night out).

Bruno admires Silvio, and Silvio admires Bruno. The former prime minister rarely misses out Vespa's presentation of new books, which he uses as a good occasion to gain exposure to the media, and quite often Silvio appears on Bruno's talk show. Oddly enough, lately Silvio seemed to be more at ease as a guest tohis arch-enemy Michele Santoro, participating to his old buddy's programme on RAI1.

He knows a lot about Italy's politics (which he might also able to influence, to a certain extent), if you are interested in in you better follow the Italian journalist, who inaugurated his Twitter account (@VespaBruno) in the end of January 2013. The first tweet? Denying his own death, apparently announced by Wikipedia.

Other good friends of Silvio Berlusconi are George W Bush and Tony Blair, we are going to add news, trivia and photos aslo about them.