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Domenico Lucano declared as UN-aligned Person of the Year

2021 UN-aligned person of the year
Photo: Secretaría de Cultura de la Nación
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UN-aligned has chosen Domenico Lucano as its Person of the Year 2021. The ex-mayor of the Italian town of Riace has been chosen for his vision regarding the integration of refugees into their destination of choice, while at the same time revitalising a dying town.  Riace became a showcase of prosperity and integration and was hailed in 2016 by Fortune magazine as one of the world’s 50 greatest leaders.

On the 30th September 2021, Lucano was sentenced to 13 years in prison for abetting illegal migration. His “crimes” included awarding waste collection contracts to companies that were set up to help migrants look for work and arranging a marriage of convenience to help a Nigerian woman escape prostitution and find legal work. The accusation that he enriched himself in the process, seems contrived, considering he does not even have the funds to pay for his legal fees. 

Why Domenico Lucano?

The most important fact is that he found the magic bullet. If the authorities were genuinely concerned about justice, why are they locking up his vision behind bars with him? 

It is that vision we support and why we believe that his brave and visionary deeds in creatively supporting refugees should be highlighted. Moreover we believe that the 13 year sentence, almost twice the penalty the prosecution was pushing for, betrays a vendetta against the ideals he stands for, rather than alleged crimes he is charged with. After his conviction, Lucano told reporters:

“Today it all ends for me. There is no justice.”Our message to Domenico Lucano is that it does not end here. We will promote and publicise the good deeds you have done and we will be available in any way we can to help bring about that justice that seems to have eluded you. 

Take ownership of UN-aligned

Unlike most organisations, UN-aligned is, primarily, its members. We are the New United Nations and though just a drop in the ocean, for now, we will carry on growing until we will become a force to be reckoned with! The more of us there are, the more chance we have of achieving our aims. Help us by promoting membership to you friends or to people you think have similar values. If every member added another, membership would snowball and we would be unstoppable! We also need active members: people who roll up their sleeves and contribute to the work of the organisation. Some already have, for instance, by writing articles for The Gordian, or offering to help with proofreading.

No matter what you can do, we want you. Write to us with your talents and we’ll make it work. 

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Welcome to this issue of The Gordian Magazine. Appeasement is like giving the school bully your lunch money to avoid being beaten up. In political terms, however, it is more like giving the school bully someone else’s lunch money, to stop them from being picked on, because we just cannot be bothered to deal with the confrontation. The term often brings to mind the prelude to WWII, a time when, in the name of peace, Hitler was being allowed to threaten, intimidate and torment. We all know how that story ended. However, is history repeating itself so soon again? This issue offers the usual mix of politics, interviews, culture, and galleries by our UN-aligneders across the world, including Ruby Goldenberg, Carla Pietrobattista, Katharina Wüstnienhaus, Atika Harba, Kaitlyn Rivera, Partho Pratim Chatterjee and Eston McKeague. The editors are Adrian Liberto and Ariana Yekrangi.

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