- By Rebecca Frankel
Rebecca Frankel is senior editor, special projects at Foreign Policy. She is the author of War Dogs (forthcoming in the fall of 2014 from Palgrave), a book about canines in combat, the subject of her regular Friday column "Rebecca's War Dog of the Week," featured on The Best Defense. Before joining FP in 2008, she was managing editor of Moment Magazine, a publication founded by Elie Wiesel in 1975, where she began working in 2003. In addition to her work on war dogs, Frankel has written on a wide range of topics from the religious escapades of singer Bob Dylan to Hitler's family doctor. Her profile of author Joyce Carol Oates was published in the collection Joyce Carol Oates: Conversations in 2006. She has appeared as a commentator on ABC World News and MSNBC among others. In 2011, she was named one of 12 women in foreign policy to follow on Twitter by the Daily Muse.
In the aftermath of the earthquake that’s killed at least 250 people and displaced a total of 28,000 from their homes (17,000 of whom are taking refuge in tents and group camps, some even sleeping in their cars). And in an attempt to offer…comfort, Italy’s prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, has gone and stuck a big old boot in his mouth, again.
While touring makeshift shelters in L’Aquila, the city most devastated by the quake and its aftershocks, Berlusconi remarked:
Of course, their current lodgings are a bit temporary. But they should see it like a weekend of camping.”
Yes, there’s merit in the sunnier outlook of “when you have lemons make lemonade,” but Berlusconi’s comment — made as rescuers continued their desperate search for survivors — was grossly off color.
Though the prime minister did change his position on accepting foreign aid, saying that other countries would be welcome to help rebuild cultural sites.
Marco Di Lauro/Getty Images