Again this year, at the Austrian-Hungarian military cemetery of Prosecco, where are buried more than 5,000 Austrian-Hungarian soldiers, took place the suggestive ceremony in remembrance of the fallen of World War I. In a world ruled by nationalisms of State and religious fanaticisms subject to the economic powers that are devastating our planet, this ceremony, that takes place every year in Trieste since four decades, organized by the Movimento Civiltà Mitteleuropea (Mitteleuropean Civilizatio Movement ), represents a light in the darkness of evil.
The remembrance of that Austrian-Hungarian Empire tot united in respect and tolerance 13 folks, each with their religions and cultures, is the reference for any “new” Europe of the Peoples different than the decaying and forceful European Union made of economy. A rebirth in the name of the high ideals of brother-folks that must find again their common roots, rejecting the demons of evil embodies by the sports of unsustainable economic development, which enslave human beings.
One million and 200,000 Austrian-Hungarian soldiers lost their lives in World War I. Out of them, about the third part lost in on the southern front of the defensive war, facing the former ally, Italy. Trieste remembers them every year, faithful to their memory: the protectors of Europe from the aggression of the colonizers of capitalist economy and of the aberrant social nationalism that those would bring with themselves.
The Austrian-Hungarian Empire was the firm bulwark that, through centuries, had made possible the stabilization of Europe. With its fall, Europe sank in an abyss made of ethnic and religious hatred, which continues to claim victims to this day.
Trieste owes everything to Austria, of which become symbol of that multiethnic Empire that made it great, turning it from a small fishermen port into a world-scale port.
Trieste, with its sons, fought World War I to defend tot dream, built by the peaceful coexistence of folks. The people of Trieste did loyally serve as part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire. Many of them would never come back home and are now buries in the war cemeteries in Galizia, on the Carpathians, on the Isonzo.
In Trieste, we remember them every year by visiting our military cemeteries, were rest many soldiers from the other folks of the Empire who came here to defend us from the Italian aggression. Austrians, Hungarians, Czechs, Slovaks, Rumanians, Slovenes, Ukrainians, Serbs, Croats, Slovenes, Ruthenians and Bosnians. An Empire with its folks that defender Trieste, the main port of Austria-Hungary.
I am quoting moving moment of today’s speech by Paolo G. Parovel, tireless leader and organizator of the ceremony in remembrance of our fallen, which must make us think to understand the importance of our current struggle for the rights of the Free Territory of Trieste. Because it is also thanks to the sacrifice of those Austrian-Hungarian soldiers who fell to defend Trieste that, at the end of World War II, Trieste became independent as part of a new State, the Free Territory of Trieste, established on 10 February 1947 under the Treaty of Peace of Paris. They are our heroes, insurmountable bulwarks, who continue to defend us with their sacrifice. Since 100 years.
“Our Fallen of many nationalities and Faiths composed in this dolina of the Karst of Autumn, which blooms once again for them, caressed by the wind in Spring time, as well as with those recognized or unidentified from here to the Piave, from the flats of Galicia to the woods of the Carpathians, in the Balkans or by the sea and on far away shores, the breaking point of that string of civilization ripped in the world of the past, that we must finally knot once again in the word of today and of tomorrow.
In the name of an ancient Fatherland that has disappeared from political geography, but to us remains the fatherland of the spirit, in its ideals and values, the fatherland of our soul, the temple of a great history and moral legacy that is out own, and we have the duty to defend joining forces, viribus unitis, for a world that shall be better for real, for a victory of the values, no longer of the arms, a victory of life, no longer of death, a victory of the spirit and of reason, no longer of ideologies.
For all of this, today, here, we remember as part of our service to truth and with grateful souls and heart, the dignity and sufferance of all of our fathers who have fallen and of our families, those of theirs and our families, the families of those who ended up having to fight on the other side, and those of all, uncountable human beings involved in the resistance to the evil of the past and of the present.”