Every minute I spend writing this blog is a minute not spent on my degree.
Tuesday, 22 January 2013
Holy See's Presence in London
Tarcisio Cardinal Bertone, Secretary of State to the Holy See
A facebook friend of mine today has the status "HOW EVIL CAN YOU ACTUALLY GET!" [sic] with a link to The Guardian's article on the Holy See's property portfolio in London. The guy's studying Classics at Cambridge. He's not thick. But erm... What actually is evil about this...? It's not a secret that part of the
settlement with Mussolini was financial. The Papal States had been
invaded in 1870, by today's standards illegally, so the pope claimed
sovereignty over his territory which was now occupied by Italy. The Papal States existed since the 8th century to 1870, it was a well
established part of the European political scene. To solve this problem, Mussolini signed a Concordat with the Holy See in 1929. The Holy See lost
out big time in the Lateran Treaty because it lost all but the Vatican
from its territory and with it, the ability to collect taxes. The money
actually seems small compensation with that in mind. The Holy See is a
state like any other and can spend its money as it wishes. Every
government has a trading arm. Would it be evil for Luxemburg to own
properties in London? The Guardian seems to be getting very flustered
but I'm not entirely sure why. I'm sure any other state who had a decent sized property portfolio in another country would want to keep it quiet and since that's perfectly fine under British law, where's the problem?