From Brexit to Buchenwald: What the British Ambassador in Rome thinks of Italy

Stunning. The British Ambassador to Italy is currently busy surrounding his Belle Epoque residence in Rome...with barbed wire. Yes, you read that right: Barbed wire like a concentration camp. Buchenwald or Auschwitz in old Rome.

Here's a picture I took today of the walls of the Embassy and what's happening:



You can see a small part of the park (beautiful with a Roman aqueduct running through it). And the detail of the barbed wire on the right, getting unrolled and attached to the wall. I guess they will finish the work on Monday, unrolling it around the whole grounds of the embassy - very large, several acres.

And that street the Embassy is sitting on, Via Ludovico di Savoia, is in the old historic center of Rome, just a few hundred feet from the venerable Basilica of San Giovanni, the cathedral of Rome, the seat of the bishop who happens to be the Pope. 

A fantastic church, here it is at night:




Source: By Livioandronico2013 - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

Barbed wire will definitely change the "feeling" of the neighborhood. It's an eyesore. But beyond the aesthetic problems, what does this say about how the UK feels about Italy? 

Do the British really fear an attack from Italian paratroopers? A raid from the mafia, with bazookas and hand grenades? It really is insulting, it's like saying to the city of Rome: You can't defend us, we'll do it our way and who cares about how it looks. Your city is your problem.

Great diplomacy!

Or perhaps I'm totally misreading the situation. Yes, maybe they have something or someone to hide in the Embassy, a prisoner they can't allow to escape at night, hence the barbed wire...

The villa did have barbed wire around it once upon a time, during World War II when it was the Wehrmacht Headquarters (back then, the villa was the German Embassy, it went to the UK after the war, as bounty).  It still has the rusty remains of that first barbed wire wall, you can barely see them they're so rusty, but they are there, no doubt about it. 

And here I thought all along that one day they would tear down that old rusty wire. But no, the British are conservative, nostalgic even. They love to reverse History as the Brexit vote proved. What they are doing with that bright shiny barbed wire is simply restoring past History.

Can someone tell the Ambassador that there are far less visually intrusive ways to protect UK property? The 21st century has developed excellent security systems and they can all be found in Italy - no need to import them from Britain.
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