Berlusconi and Ukip ally hunting UFOs, Bilderbergers
Italian euro-deputy Mario Borghezio wants the EU to establish a European UFO Centre, thinks that the Bilderberg Group is a secret world government and was once found guilty of setting fire to the possessions of homeless immigrants living under a bridge in Turin.
Some people may consider his views to be those of an eccentric at the very least, but the MEP is also a prominent member of the Lega Nord, which is no fringe group, but rather the far-right political party that is the major coalition partner in Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's government and the main ally of the UK Independence Party's eurosceptic Europe of Freedom and Democracy group in the European Parliament.
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In his latest effort, on Wednesday (7 July), Mr Borghezio held a press conference in the EU parliament building in Strasbourg and presented a written declaration signed by a full 23 of his fellow MEPs demanding that EU member states declassify all documents relating to unidentified flying objects.
The written declaration notes that "many members of the scientific community have been looking into the issue of UFOs and have denounced the systematic covering-up of information on the subject."
The Lega Nord politician and his co-signatories also call on the EU to set up a scientific centre "for the analysis and dissemination of the scientific data gathered [on little green men] to date by various European bodies and governments."
Finally, he demands that the state archives of the European Union's 27 member states be opened up and for records to be declassified.
His extraterrestrial concerns echo his worries, raised last month at another parliament press conference in Brussels, on how the Bilderberg Group, the clubby, annual get-together of political, business, media and military elites, secretly rules the world.
The Bilderberg press conference was conveniently used to promote a new book by the pony-tailed Russo-Spanish conspiracy theorist Daniel Estulin, who on his website calls Herman Van Rompuy, the European Council president and Bilderberg member "an unloved, short, evil little man [who] has gnawed his way into the bowels of power."
Messrs Borghezio and Estulin do not go so far as to say that the Bilderbergers are in reality under their skin a race of alien reptilian humanoids, as put forward by fellow conspiracy theorist David Icke, who accuses George W. Bush, Queen Elizabeth and Kris Kristofferson of the same secret identity.
The Lega Nord man and his writer friend do say that the alleged Bilderberg world government dates back to 1439 and controls the planet's economy however, having engineered the introduction of the euro and the ongoing global economic meltdown.
The war in Afghanistan, they go on, is in truth about supplying drugs to Wall Street, while the next step in the Bilderberg masterplan is the destruction of the American dollar.
The UFO and Bilderberg initiatives are not Mr Boghezio's first brush with controversy.
In July 2005, he was found guilty of arson for having set alight the pallets of immigrants while they were sleeping under a bridge in Turin during a vigilante attack.
In a 2006 interview with Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera, he said: "On stage at political rallies I can transform myself, I say everything that comes out of my stomach. It's exciting. No, more, it's almost an orgasm."
Ukip was quick to distance themselves from the UFO proposal. Spokesman Herman Kelly told EUobserver: "The press conference today was in no way connected to the UK Independence Party or the EFD. It was entirely the personal initiative of Mr Borghezio."
The Italian mission to the EU however was much less definitive about the matter when asked whether Mr Borghezio's thinking on UFOs was representative of the Italian government's official position. "It's a very good question," said a press officer. "I have no answer for you."