A red Renault 4 parked via Caetani, Roma. 9th of May, 1978.
Inside the car's trunk, the lifeless body of Aldo Moro, President of Democrazia Cristiana (DC, the biggest Italian political party at the time).
Moro, kidnapped and murdered by the "Brigate Rosse" (The Red Brigades), a left-wing terrorist group which was very active in Italy's 1970s.
During the three months of his detention (from March the 16th to his death on May the 9th), Aldo Moro wrote dozens of letters, to fellow politicians or adversaries, to his friends and family, even the Pope. Writing to keep hope, writing to maintain the dialogue, writing to remain alive. Writing to open doors and break walls, he who was locked in a Roman flat's small room for weeks.
Writing to keep on doing politics in a paralyzed political sphere.
Through his letters, it's an amazing personality which shapes up before our very eyes: as death is getting closer everyday, he never surrenders, trying all possible means to stop the irreversible, demonstrating immense humanity, empathetic for the ones he loves, convincing with the politicians, confident yet scared; all his energy is focussed on getting the different parties involved to start a dialogue, to get to a compromise that would both save his life and demonstrate what the word "politics" really means.
In vain. The Red Brigades' blind ideology and the inflexible position adopted by the democratic parties, refusing to negotiate whatsoever, had already sentenced him to death from the start.
As much as the Red Brigades, it's Italy's complete political and social sclerosis which killed Aldo Moro in 1978.
Learn more about Aldo Moro here. His correspondence while in detention was recently published in France in an excellent book, that you can find there.
Aldo Moro's tragic fate gives even more strength to Aldo Lado's political allegory in his great giallo "Short Night of the Glass Dolls", where a man locked in a lifeless body ends up being buried alive. Read more from this blog here.