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Milan, February 24 - March 17, 1967

The establishment hinders the distribution of the magazine Mondo Beat and the Movement faces the establishment: it's the baptism of fire of the Contestation.


On the afternoon of February 24, Tecnografica Milanese has delivered to The Cave 4,000 copies of the third issue of the magazine Mondo Beat (pages and comments of it are published in the previous chapter).

Saturday 25, boys and girls of the Movement are queuing in The Cave, to get copies of the magazine, for the sale in the streets. I am one of them, as I want to see people's reactions.
People are interested and buy, because Mondo Beat is notorious for call it exerts on young people. I sell one hundred copies in two hours, which is not a record. In fact, not only me, but almost all those who distribute the magazine are able to sell a hundred copies in two hours. Each copy costs £ 100, 25 for the seller, who, with two hours of sale, earns £ 2,500. That's a lot of money, since a full meal, including wine, costs £ 400 in popular restaurants.

On the evening of Sunday 26, Umberto Tiboni announces that 6,000 copies of Mondo Beat have been sold, 3,000 of the latest issue (this third) and 3,000 of the previous issue (the second, which was in storage). Thus, the magazine Mondo Beat is in surplus, without receiving subsidies and without publishing any kind of advertising.
In The Cave, we live hours of gaiety, but they don't last long.

The next day, cops of the Urban Brigade are in search of youths who sell the magazine Mondo Beat. The cops ask for the "hawker license", in the absence of which, they confiscate the copies of the magazine and impose a fine of £ 18,000, for "violation of the Law 121 on Public Safety".
After blocking the sale of the magazine, I consult with Umberto Tiboni. We decide to take over the responsibilities that Vittorio Di Russo had in Mondo Beat. Thus, Umberto Tiboni will maintain the contacts between Mondo Beat and other extra-parliamentary groups, while Melchiorre Gerbino will head the public events of the Movement.
Then, in this new role, I seek collaboration among the youths who crowd The Cave.
To assert our rights, it is unanimously decided to confront the Italian establishment to the bitter end. So, we will perform a hunger strike, lasting three days, starting March 4. Whereupon, we will stage a public event, to paralyze the center of Milan during peak evening traffic.
At that, messengers travel towards Genoa, Turin, Padua, Venice, Trento, Bologna, Florence, Rome, to inform the youths of Mondo Beat.



Hunger Strike of Mondo Beat, 4 - 7 March, 1967

(Agency Franco Sapi - March 1, 1967)                                                                                   (L'Unità - March 6, 1967)
Mondo Beat 
contests the system 'two weights and two measures'   In the poster 
reads 'Hunger strike' (Sciopero della Fame)

- Left picture. In the 3 posters reads, respectively "Why are we hindered to sell our magazine?" - "Before asking us, ask nuns for the license of Public Safety n.121" (Note: nuns, unhindered, sold the magazine Famiglia Cristiana in the streets) - "Hundreds police injunctions inflicted on those who distribute our magazine, two of them jailed in San Vittore, others continually stopped and questioned by the police; copies of the magazine seized in Monza".
- Right picture. On the foreground, Dante Palla, one of the most picturesque characters of the Movimento Mondo Beat. A vagabond noble man, who knew all dogs that barked in the outskirts of Milan. A poet, who wrote verses only in the skin of his feet, so that they would be forgotten when the ink had dissolved.
In the poster at the entrance of The Cave, reads 'Hunger Strike' (SCIOPERO DELLA FAME).

(AGI-Il Giorno-March 6,1967)      (AGI-Il Giorno-March 6,1967)      (AGI-Il Giorno-March 6,1967)            (Agency Franco Sapi- March 6,1967)
Giorgio Contini was in charge of the wardrobe in the cellar    The sign reads 'Enough with the abuses 
of the police'   Ottelio Corsi was a 
libertarian traveller, who had participated in the ferments of our generation in different parts of Europe   Antonio Di Spagna had resigned from the 
police a few months before   At the times of 
Mondo Beat,Eros Alesi was 16 years old, he didn't write poems, no one could imagine that he would be remembered as one of the 
most touching poets of the times of the nonviolent revolt of Western youth

from left:
- 1st picture. With a guitar, Eros Alesi Pasticca; sitting higher up, Cristo di Monza, then Tella Ferrari, Daniele, Marina, Adolfo, Giorgio Contini. Giorgio Contini was in charge of the cellar of The Cave.
- 2nd picture. Laura, Alfredo, Daniele. Laura was a Milanese Jewish girl, who participated in Mondo Beat; Alfredo was a Milanese who attended university; Daniele was a Venetian, runaway from home. The sign reads "Enough with the abuses of the police".
- 3rd picture. Melchiorre Gerbino talking with Ottelio Corsi Franco, who has Adriana on his left and Tella Ferrari on his right. Ottelio Corsi was a libertarian traveller, who had participated in the ferments of our generation in different parts of Europe.
- 4th picture; Antonio Di Spagna Papà and Laura. Antonio Di Spagna had resigned from the police a few months before.
- last picture; Gunilla Unger is playing cards with Eros Alesi Pasticca. Eros Alesi, a Roman, was the most popular guy of the Movement. He was so careless to go to jail that, at some point, the police became tired and didn't arrest him anymore. Nor the police could order him to leave Milan, since he had his registered residence there. At the times of Mondo Beat, Eros Alesi was 16 years old, he didn't write poems, no one could imagine that he would be remembered as one of the most touching poets of the times of the nonviolent revolt of Western youth.


(various newspapers and magazines)
The beats of Milan do not surrender   Hunger strike of fifteen longhairs   Roberto:'I sleep in a sleeping bag under bridges'

- First picture from left. "A tribe of longhairs is on hunger strike in a cellar" - "Hungry longhairs in a cellar have a devil for hair" - "The beats of Milan do not surrender". The hunger strike was the first event, staged by Mondo Beat, that was reported by all national press.
- Second picture - "Hunger strike of fifteen longhairs" - "Hunger strike of the editorial staff of Mondo Beat" - "They complain that they are hampered in the distribution of their magazine. Solidarity from Turin". In Turin they were particularly interested on Mondo Beat, since many were the youths of that city who participated in the Movement.
- Third picture - "We are ready to starve" (Note: None of us has declared this. This was an exaggeration of the journalist, to make the article more appealing).
In conclusion. Before the '60s, certain categories people in some parts of Italy had suffered from endemic hunger, so, the collective hunger strike of Mondo Beat (which was the first of this kind in Italy) has created curiosity and was a media success.

The hunger strike ends on March 7 at noon. In the afternoon, while the portcullises of The Cave are lowered, the cellar is packed with youths, among them Frenchmen, Germans, Englishmen.
At 4 pm, small groups begin to leave The Cave, taking different directions, for not making suspicious those cops who usually are stationed nearby. The general appointment is at 6 pm under the Arch of Porta Venezia.
Sent by Giuseppe Pinelli, Vito, an anarchist chimney sweep, arrives at The Cave. He loads in his van the placards that will be exhibited during the rally. Vito is instructed to download the placards, at 18 on the dot, under the Arch of Porta Venezia.
Andrea Valcarenghi and Melchiorre Gerbino are the last two people who leave The Cave. Only Umberto Tiboni and Giorgio Contini remain there, to keep it open, since The Cave is a refuge, because the police can not access it, if not provided with a mandate of the judiciary.




"Rally to Contest the Establishment" (Manifestazione di Contestazione del Sistema)
Milan, March 7, 1967


(AGI-Il Giorno-March 8,1967)            (Agency Franco Sapi - March 8, 1967)                                             (AGI-Il Giorno-March 8,1967)
From Porta Venezia we move towards the city center   Dressed in white, Andrea Valcarenghi   After the times of Mondo Beat, when the times to 'occupy' public 
structures have followed, Dante Palla,noblesse oblige,has occupied Castello Sforzesco   Invaluable was Tella Ferrari's contribution to the preparation of the arrays of mimeograph of the second issue of the 
magazine Mondo Beat   Daniele is the one who is waving a hand.Venetian, 
green eyes and a copper hair colour,the pictures of him in The Cave show him always together with one or two girls

from left:
- 1st picture - At 6 pm, the rally starts at Porta Venezia. From Porta Venezia we move towards the city center.
- 2nd picture - Barry McBuir is holding the signboard 'Violence is of the weak' (LA VIOLENZA É DEI DEBOLI). Barry McBuir was an Anglo-Italian, whose mother owned that villa in Rapallo, where Vittorio Di Russo wanted us to go to meditate. In the same picture, Andrea Valcarenghi, dressed in white.
- 3rd picture - Dante Palla smoking a cigarette. After the times of Mondo Beat, when the times to "occupy" public structures have followed, Dante Palla, noblesse oblige, has occupied Castello Sforzesco.
- 4th picture - Tella Ferrari with her inseparable notebook. She was a Milanese Israelite, 16 years old. Invaluable was Tella Ferrari's contribution to the preparation of the arrays of mimeograph of the second issue of the magazine Mondo Beat.
- 5th picture - The youths of The Base of Mondo Beat. Daniele is the one who is waving a hand. Green eyes and a copper hair colour, the pictures of him in The Cave show him always together with one or two girls.

                                                ( AGI - Il Giorno - March 8, 1967 )                                                                        (Agency Franco Sapi - March 8, 1967)
Zafferano has 
participated very actively in the events of the Movement    Barry McBuir is lying down on the ground with arms raised   Indeed,Celere was well known for its violent behaviour   Alfio D'Agosta was a Sicilian of 
a modest family,with schooling barely sufficient.At Mondo Beat,he has developed a great personality and has undertaken actions 
which made of him a historical figure   When news and pictures of Nicola Paterlini's wounding appeared in the 
press,his parents rushed to Milan,to take him into care

from left:
- 1st picture - With a flowered shirt, Zafferano, a Roman, an intimate friend of Eros Alesi. Zafferano has participated very actively in the events of the Movement.
- 2nd picture - Sitting on the ground, waving a hand, Giorgio Cavalli Ombra, a Milanese upper middle class. He has participated in the events of the Movement from the very beginning. His father, disappointed because of this, was very strict with him, told him not to come home anymore. "For our family, you are just a shadow" - his father said to him. The term shadow in Italian is ombra and Giorgio has adopted this pseudonym for himself. Ombra was one of the most famous youths of the Movimento Mondo Beat. In the same picture, Barry McBuir is lying down on the ground with arms raised.
- 3rd picture - The intervention of the special police unit "Celere" was very violent. Indeed, Celere was well known for its violent behaviour.
- 4th picture - Alfio D'Agosta Giuda carried to a van by two soldiers. Alfio D'Agosta was a Sicilian of a modest family, with schooling barely sufficient. At Mondo Beat, he has developed a great personality and has undertaken actions which have made of him a historical figure.
- 5th picture - Nicola Paterlini Lino was kicked by the police and had two ribs broken. He was a Lombard, the most talented guitarist among the many of Mondo Beat. When news and pictures of Nicola Paterlini's wounding appeared in the press, his parents rushed to Milan, to take him into care.


    (Il Giorno-March 8,1967)           (L'Unità-March 8,1967)                 (Corriere d'Informazione-March 8,1967)    (Corriere della Sera-March 8,1967)
Antonio Di Spagna Papa',a Lucan,a former cop,was the most 
seriously injured among the many   In the pictures,Antonio Di Spagna and Nicola Paterlini 
lying on stretchers    Cristo di Monza was always at the forefront of the events of Mondo Beat   In this picture, Eros Alesi holding the signboard 
'Do not criminalize our consciences'.He was wounded and had three stitches in a hospital

from left:
- 1st article - Police attack against longhairs lying on the ground.
Antonio Di Spagna Papà, a Lucan, a former cop, was the most seriously injured among the many. He suffered a concussion for the blows to the head that his former colleagues gave to him with a placard, after they had pushed him into a van. He was guarded in a hospital for two weeks, whereupon was jailed for two more weeks, on the pretext of "resisting the police". At the Police Headquarters, embarrassed because of Di Spagna's past in the police, they did the impossible to keep him away from Mondo Beat, but didn't succeed, nor could they enjoin on him an order of mandatory expulsion, since he had his residence registered in Milan.
- 2nd article - Savage aggression of the police against young beats in Milan. In the pictures, Antonio Di Spagna Papà and Nicola Paterlini Lino lying on stretchers.
- 3rd article - Police attack against 200 longhairs. In the picture, Daniele standing, Cristo di Monza half lying. Cristo di Monza was always at the forefront of the events of Mondo Beat. He was shy by nature, so that sometime seemed standoffish, but in reality was a gentle and supportive guy.
- 4th article - The streets of the city center blocked by a riot of longhairs. In the picture, Eros Alesi holding the placard 'Do not criminalize our consciences' (NON SCHEDATE LE NOSTRE COSCIENZE). He was wounded and had three suture stitches in a hospital.
Corriere della Sera, with this article, has shown all its animosity against Mondo Beat, since the Conservatives suspected that, somehow, Mondo Beat converged with the Communists.


    (Gazzetta del Popolo-March 7,1967)   (Gazzetta del Popolo-March 8,1967)       (L'Unità - March 9, 1967)                     (Avanti! - March 11, 1967)
Gazzetta del Popolo in Turin, was the
first daily to break the news   In Turin there was a great interest for Mondo Beat, since many youths of that city 
participated in the Movement   L'Unita has taken defense of Mondo Beat,because Mondo Beat 
was attacking the government   The Socialists took moderate defense of the Movement

from left:
- 1st article - "A tumultuous protest of longhairs has blocked for one hour the center of Milan". The author of this article, Guido Boursier, had arrived to The Cave together with some twenty youths from Turin, who had come to participate in the rally. Before it, Boursier had interviewed many of us, among others Frenchmen, Germans, Englishmen. Then he followed the rally, so his newspaper, Gazzetta del Popolo in Turin, was the first daily to break the news.
- 2nd article - "Milan is the guiding-city of Italian beats", by the same journalist, Guido Boursier. As I have already mentioned, in Turin there was a great interest for Mondo Beat, since many youths of that city participated in the Movement, and those youths were from all social classes, which made the situation unprecedented.
- 3rd article - "Strong protest of the youths against police violence". L'Unità, which published this article, was the official daily of the Italian Communist Party, which opposed the government, consequently, L'Unità has taken defense of Mondo Beat, given that Mondo Beat was attacking the government.
- 4th article - "Why against the longhairs?". The Socialists, of which the daily "Avanti!" was the official organ, took moderately defence of the Movement, because they wanted to prove they were progressives, while being part of a reactionary government.

Note:
By reading the articles about the "Rally to Contest the Establishment", one can clearly see how there were two different political positions towards the Movimento Mondo Beat, the one chiefly revealed by Corriere della Sera, which reflected the reactionary area, who wanted Mondo Beat annihilated, and the other, chiefly revealed by L'Unità, who took over the defense of Mondo Beat, since the Communists courted the Movement in an attempt to incorporate it. Between these two positions, which were those of the capitalist bloc and of the Soviet bloc, the one against the other in the Cold War, there was a thin "no man's land", which led to the Global Village, which was not yet visible, but of which one could have intellectual perception. Mondo Beat will proceed along this no man's land, without ever giving anything to anyone of the two blocks, but instead attracting to itself the juvenile vanguards of both sides. It was after the "Rally to Contest the Establishment" that many youths have abandoned the political sections of the extreme left, as well as of the extreme right, and have come to Mondo Beat. These politicized youths have joined the Movement because they had seen how great was the courage of the beats, who faced the power. Then, they would have understood how the beats were sexually emancipated, being not at all penalized by Catholic priests or other false moralists. Finally, they would have understood how far away they themselves had been from reality, ie in the prehistory of Hiroshima, when they had Lenin's letters or Mussolini's speeches as ideological references.


Individual Contestations

The day after the rally, only a few youths have come to The Cave. Many were still shocked because of the police attack of the previous day, others wanted to watch and see which bends would take the tug of war between Mondo Beat and the Police Headquarters. But on that day two young lawyers have come to The Cave, Alessandro Garlatti and Carlo Invernizzi, who had the law firm not far from our seat. They said they were interested in protecting our rights and they wanted to submit to the Court of Milan a complaint against the Police Headquarters, for unlawful conduct against Mondo Beat. They were pupils of the notorious lawyer Francesco Carnelutti. They didn't ask for money, were looking for notoriety.

On March 9, the coming and going in The Cave has resumed normally.
Of forty or so youths who were caught by the police during the rally, all those who were not resident in Milan had received mandatory expulsion orders. So, some have decided to leave Milan, while others have decided to remain, for contesting the power, conscious of being imprisoned for one month, if caught by the police.

On March 10, around 8 am, six people have left The Cave and walk in the direction of Lyceum Parini. Three of them, Villi Augerau, Alfio D'Agosta Giuda, Pierluigi Perronace Principe, have already received a mandatory expulsion order. The other three are, Ivan, an aristocrat of Russian descent, Barry McBuir and Melchiorre Gerbino.
The six arrive at Lyceum Parini a few moments before 8.30 am, when the bell sounds to call the students. Then the six run up the stairs of the school and make a human cord between the two columns which delimit the access - " Don't tell us - I shout to the students - that you are dying of the desire to be tortured by the math teacher, a virgin lady of fifty, with moustache!".
At that, a young priest makes his way among the students - "Enough! - he says - We want to get inside, otherwise we will roll up our sleeves!" - and he rolls up one sleeve of his cassock. Then, Barry McBuir gives a knee into the genitals of that priest, who bows and withdraws.
At that, the dean of Lyceum Parini begins screaming from a window on the facade of the building.
"You! - I shout to him - try to be more serious and responsible! Don't let these youths become gullible as those of your generation!" - and so forth, for more than ten minutes, until we hear the sirens of two police cars. Then we give to the legs, while the dean, who had gone mad, makes vulgar gestures towards us.
In the afternoon, many students of Lyceum Parini have come to The Cave, to pay a visit to us.

On March 11, Alfio D'Agosta Giuda, who has attended the "Rally to Contest the System" and was one of the six who has contested the Italian school at Lyceum Parini, tells me that he is determined to take further actions. He is aware that he will be imprisoned for one month, since he has already received a mandatory expulsion order. So, we think on how to stage a spectacular action.
Alfio D'Agosta has glued, on a signboard, the document of the mandatory expulsion order, that has received, and walks toward Piazza Duomo, to contest the Police Headquarters

Unusual protest of a longhair in Piazza del Duomo      The Police Headquarters had not the courage to 
put Alfio D'Agosta in prison, since the news of his action was covered internationally
Alfio D'Agosta performing the most exemplary action of the history of Mondo Beat - The moment when Alfio D'Agosta Giuda was arrested by the police

They have arrested him, but the Police Headquarters had not the courage to put Alfio D'Agosta in prison, since the news of his action was covered internationally. So, they sent him by plane to Sicily, to his parents, but it wouldn't take a long time to him to come back to Milan.

On March 12, Cristo di Monza, Morgan, Ronni and Eros Alesi contest the Police Headquarters in Piazza Duomo. They haven't received any mandatory expulsion order, because they have their residence registered in Milan, however they can end in jail on the pretext of "resisting the police".
These are the two funniest pictures of the history of Mondo Beat.

From left,Eros Alesi,Morgan and Cristo di Monza   Behind the left window of the police van,there is Ronni and behind him,Eros Alesi
Cristo di Monza, Morgan, Ronni and Eros Alesi contesting the Police Headquarters in Piazza Duomo (pictures AGI - Il Giorno)

Left picture. From left, Eros Alesi, Morgan and Cristo di Monza.
Right picture. Behind the left window of the police van there is Ronni, and behind him, Eros Alesi.
You had to have a great courage to perform actions as Ronni and the others did, because when you ended in the Police Headquarters in Milan, there were not tarallucci e vino.

This cycle of contestations ended with a poster by Melchiorre Gerbino, shown on a window of The Cave

(Lo Specchio)
The contestation of the grotesque behavior of the Italian 
establishment
And the stars look down

In this poster reads ARRIVALS (ARRIVI) DEPARTURES (PARTENZE). Under 'Arrivals', there are the names of youths arriving to Milan from different cities they had to leave because of police injunctions. Under 'Departures', there are the names of youths leaving Milan, because of the same kind of injunctions.
More below reads "And the stars look down" (E LE STELLE STANNO A GUARDARE) and the date 17.3.67

History of Mondo Beat - Chapter 9