The job that Mario Draghi undertook last year was from the start difficult, if not contradictory.

The government that he formed may theoretically have served “national unity”, but in fact it was held hostage by certain populists who sought to gain time in order to secure a better showing in the next elections.

One of those populists is the leader of the Five Star Movement and former PM Giuseppe Conte, who chose to abstain from yesterday’s confidence vote.

He thus triggered Draghi’s resignation and the ensuing political crisis at a very difficult juncture for Italy, as it places in doubt the passing of the state budget and the push for critical reforms.

In fact, the crisis is yet another repercussion of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, as the basic difference between Conte and Draghi (which brought the splintering of his party) involves the provision of military aid to Kyiv.

After all, one of the basic objectives of Russian President Vladimir Putin has always been to undermine, by any means possible, the European construct by fueling insecurity and tensions.

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