"In 1970 the same flooding occurred and 44 people died in the mud. The lesson went unlearned. Little or nothing has changed as we have seen in Genoa. Politicians talk about building a bridge to Messina while sitting infirm when it comes to investing in our basic infrastructure. We continue building haphazardly without any consideration for the societal or environmental risks, without thinking of services nor the caprice of Mother Nature.
There's not an Italian alive who wasn't left in utter astonishment in the face of an event that we were not only waiting for, but we thought we would be totally prepared for once it hit. Yet once again we were presented with a tragedy in three parts: mediocrity, charlatanism, and superficiality.
What must happen before our Country can one day count on an modicum of seriousness and rigor? Upon efficiency and a sense of responsibility? When will we became a civilized Country?
Each and every time a disaster occurs in Italy, like clockwork, we uncover an absolute sewer festering underneath. Just think about the garbage in Naples, the Aquila earthquake, and the squalid, criminal speculation that time and again reveals its ugly head. There are thousands of examples.
Who knows what other miseries are lurking just below the devastation of Genoa!"
--- Excerpt from an opinion column "Tragedia che si doveva evitare" (An Avoidable Tragedy) by Vincenzo Cerami of the Rome newspaper, il Messaggero on the Genoa floods in which authorities claimed the tragedy (6 dead) could not have been avoided.
After the U.S. GOP blocked a $60 billion bill for infrastructure spending recently in the USA this week, we could well say the same thing (I'm thinking of New Orleans, or the flooding across the U.S.).
You can check out the Yahoo! Video Gallery of the disaster here