By refusing an audience reserved for Mike Pompeo, Pope Bergoglio has shown the whole world that he has a nerve on China. The comment of the analyst Francesco Galietti for Atlantico Quotidiano
By refusing an audience reserved for Mike Pompeo, Pope Bergoglio has shown the whole world that he has a nerve on China. Bergoglio, incidentally, also refused to receive the elderly Cardinal Zen (88), who came to Rome on purpose to confer with the pope about China. And one of the most unpleasant public gestures of Bergoglio's pontificate has to do with relations between the Catholic Church and Beijing, the slap in the face of a faithful who tugged at him to talk to him about the oppression of Catholics in China by the Chinese Communist Party. For this reason, it cannot even be ruled out that Pompeo himself, openly challenging Bergoglio on China, was considering receiving a refusal from the latter.
Bergoglio is convinced that a democratic US president would ease the pressure on Beijing and the Vatican. For this reason, he preferred to take time with a pretext – the imminence of the American presidential elections – rather than receive Mike Pompeo and treat him coldly. Bergoglio misses twice. For the first time, showing that he has a clear preference in American political contention. A second time, failing to grasp the real scope of Pompeo's challenge. This is entirely played on the level of the moral authority of the papacy, compromised by the agreements with an authoritarian regime like the Chinese one. The Vatican's silence on the extermination of the Uighurs, the suppression of Falun Gong or the violence in Hong Kong is deafening. Completely incomprehensible, then, is the silence on the violence to which Chinese Catholics are subjected. A pontiff who refuses to discuss issues so characteristic of Catholicism abdicates his role and exposes himself to the condemnation of history. Pius XII was publicly massacred for not having condemned the horror of the Holocaust with sufficient force. Bergoglio, however, does not care at all. Otherwise, he would have at least paid attention to the reorientation of the world liberal press against China starting precisely from ethical-moral issues, or to the statements of George Soros, very explicit in defining Xi Jinping as the "worst enemy of open society".
Bergoglio's obstinacy on China is a big problem even for the top Italian political-institutional leaders, all taken to give a last-minute polish to their Atlantic credentials due to the arrival of Pompeo. However, the issue is not of a contingent nature, but involves the foundations of Italian power structures. The relationship between the Vatican and Italy is historically very close. As Andrea Riccardi observed in his preface to Giulio Andreotti's " Secret Diaries " just published by Solferino, Achille Silvestrini, the Vatican high prelate and diplomat, "considered Italy a resource for the Vatican in its international action, also as a source of information ". Well: the relationship between the Vatican and Italy did not break after the end of the First Republic or even with the sunset of the Second Republic. So much so that today the Vatican can rely on devout Catholics on this side of the Tiber such as the head of state Sergio Mattarella and the prime minister Giuseppe Conte, the latter being a disciple of Cardinal Silvestrini . In many respects, the relationship is much less balanced today than it was in the days of the Christian Democrats, when the debate on the need to be Catholic but not clerical was quite heated. There is no trace of this debate today. And it should not be overlooked that the Vatican's intention to proceed with the renewal 'ad experimentum' of the agreements with China was confirmed by the Vatican secretary of state, Mons. Parolin, at a ceremony commemorating Silvestrini. In the presence of the same Count.
This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Start Magazine at the URL https://www.startmag.it/mondo/perche-papa-francesco-ha-rifiutato-di-incontrare-pompeo/ on Mon, 28 Sep 2020 05:53:31 +0000.