• U.S.

ITALY: Napoleon Nonsense

2 minute read

When Romans opened the leading and authoritative Fascist news organ L’Impero, last week, they read with gladsome surprise that an Italian now “dominates” not merely the U. S. but all the Americas.

The dominator is Amadeo Peter Giannini. He is traveling in Italy, and arrived at Rome, last week; but his home is in San Francisco. Throughout the U. S. he is famed and esteemed (TIME, April 2) as a super-banker who controls with associates, the national Bancitaly Corporation (bank securities) with a capitalization of $150,000,000, and the Bank of Italy National Trust & Savings Association (chain of 300 California banks), with resources of $115,000,000.

Banker Giannini is indeed a dominator of dollars; but his quick, kinetic brain must have rejected instantly the nonsense with which L’Impero welcomed him to Rome, last week, as follows:

“Originating from Italy, one of the poorest countries with the poorest banks. Signer Giannini has succeeded in financially dominating the United States, the world’s richest country.

“This indicates the real strength of that empire of civilization which tomorrow’s Italy will become. As Napoleon once dominated Europe through France, so this modern Italian financially dominates America through the United States.

“He has conquered the Americans at their own game. . . . Giannini, until yesterday a great Italian citizen of America, is now a great citizen of Italy. . . . Countries become great through such citizens and Rome founded the greatest political and human civilization in the world through such personal abnegation and honesty.”

More Must-Reads from TIME

Contact us at letters@time.com