The Carabinieri are one of the multiple police forces that I have previously referred to, their history being that they were once a part of the armed forces, and are a cause of controversy for some because they retain much the same uniform as they did when they were part of the Fascist forces fighting Allied troops.  Of course, if you have read Captain Corelli’s Mandolin or seen Nicolas Cage hamming his way through the film adaptation, you might be more inclined to see the Italians as a bunch of good guys in the thrall of the more sinister Nazis.

Whatever the truth, the fact is that for Italians the force are a source of jokes about stupidity.  Most countries have at some point made politically incorrect jokes at the expense of their neighbours, or perhaps regions in their own country.  For many years this was the Irish joke in the UK.  In Italy it is the Carabinieri joke, but the police don’t seem to mind; they even publish some of these jokes on their website.

They don’t help themselves really.  They strut and pose in their shades with the impunity that comes from carrying an automatic weapon.  You’d think they’d at least be able to get hats that fit…




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