IMPLICATIONS OF THE CENTER-LEFT EXPERIMENT IN ITALY

Created: 1/3/1963

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

RECEIVED"

.

33

intelligence estimate

oris, of this estimatecompletey"

roblenijscq^racei^ftht-Center-Left Coalition Future Implications of me^fcenter-tcTt Exprnrnent

JFK#

central inteuigince Ajjency *PPj

Submitted byiRECTOR OF CENTRAL DxTEJXIGENCE' v/ The following intelligence organizations participated in the preparation of this estimate: The Central Intelligence Agency and the intelligencehe Departments of State, Defense, the'Army, the Navy, and the Air Force.

UNITED STATES ix^TELLIGENCEn Concurring were the DirectorIntelligence and Research, Department of State; TheDefense Intelligence Agency; the Assistant Chief of Staff

the Assistant Chief

tor Intelligence, Department off Naval Operationsepartment of the Navy; the Assistant Chief of Staff, Intelligence, USAF. the Director for Intelligence, Joint Staff; and the Director of the National Security Agency. The Atomic Energy Commissionto the USIB and the Assistant Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation, abstained, the subject being outside of their jurisdiction.,. V

CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY

3 January

SUBJECT: BTE IMPLICATIONS OF TEE CENTER-LEFT EXPERIMENT IK ITALY

IjIJMMARY AND CCHCLUiiinNS

cooperation In Italythe so-called "openingloft"baa succeeded quite veil alnee Its Initiation The coalition has hung together, the parties haveresiliency neconaary to survive the vicissitudes of coalitionscene important legislation has been approved. There have beenchanges in Italian foreign policy, althoughperformance during the Cuban crisis soy have been an effort

to avoid actions or pronouncements which night upset coalition (Paras.)

present arrangement for Sociallot parliamentary supportChristian Democratic-Social Democratic-Republican Cabinet iaby the parties themselves aa en experiment. Conceivably,could go on indefinitely, but we believe that the leaders

of both the major partiea involved, having come ao far, will seek

within tho next year or two to formalize their collaboration and bring the SociQliata Into the Cabinet.

C> Tbe Christian Deoiocrats will probably require further evidence of Socialist dissociation from the CofnaanlstB before they agree to formall zation and oxtenslon of their collaboration with the Socialists. Collnbor ation has been increaaed aince February; additional Christian Democratic-Sociallet local coalitions havo been established. At the saze tioc, SocisOist^cxBBunlst polecrics hove been Increased. Nevertheless, tbe Socialists continue their participation in the General Confederation of Labor, which la Communist led. They hove restated preosures to withdraw, and It is unlikely that they will withdraw for uotae years to cone. If the Socialists can and will take nose further atope toward dissociation frees the Ccesaunlsts, the Christian Democratic leadership can probably obtain party backing for broader collaboration after the elections. (Paras. )

D. The pnrllaaentary elections which will take place in the spring3 will probably not produce any dracatlc changes ln the partyof the Italian electorate. The results will probably neither repudiate center-left collaboration nor incontrovertibly endorse it. It is possible that collaboration may be suspended or dissolved between now and the elections, but thia event would not itself prejudice re-eatabliahment of collaboration after the elections. lfl)

E. If collaboration is formalized and extendederiod of aome years, significant changes in Italian political life would occur. Same leftist elements within tho Socialist Party would probably brook off and ally themselves with the Communlata. There would be strong pressure for the resorption of the Social Democratic Party into the Socialist Party. The Isolation and reduction of Coeanunist strength would ccoa about sioviy and would depend greatly upon tbe depth and duration of Christian Democratic-Socialist collaboration and the degree to which social and econoolc reforms were in fact achieved. We believe extended collaboration vould come about only if tho Socialists provided more explicit ccramltments than they have to date regarding Italianand active cooperation in NATO and the European Economic Coexwnlty, and we believe the Socialists will provide ouch cccirltmenta. Nevertha-lea their participation ln tho govarnment would probably lead to aooo changes ln the conduct of Italian foreign policy and probably to some reduction of support for US and allied positions on international issues,on those not directly related to tho North Atlantic Alliance.

P. The consequences of terminating center-loft collaboration would depend greatly upon the conditions under which the breakup occurred, hov long the collaboration had endured, and vhat had been accompliehed during its existence. If the circumstances vere such aa to drive the Soclallata

back into tbe ansa of the Communists, the consequences vould be worse than if the experiment had never been tried. We believe the Christian Democrats would be aware of the dangers ofreakup and would seek ways ofolarization of political forces. We believe they vould not give themselves over to rightist leadership, would try to adhereeft-of-center course, and would leave open the possibility of re-establishing collaboration with the Socialists. Termination of center-left cooperation would confront Italy vith serious problems of government, but it vould not necessarily leadrisis of regime.)

G. It is noteworthy that the center-left experiment has been initiatederiod vhen Italy is enjoying rapid and unprecedented economic growth. Gross national produce (GHP) rose by eight percentI, and unemployment has been reducedercent. The economic lot of the average Italian has improved, but many of the old problems remain. Italian vage levels are etill the lowest in the EEC, and southern Italy remains poverty-stricken and economically underdeveloped. The experiment does not appear to have significantly affected the so-called Italian economic2 will also register high growth rates although possibly slightly below thoseI- (Para. 6)

Original document.

Comment about this article or add new information about this topic:

CAPTCHA