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August 07, 2005

Fabbrica d'Armi Pietro Beretta S.p.A.

From the Beretta International Website:

[T]he Beretta Holding Group... key manufacturers of field and competition firearms and optics, as well as trading and distribution companies in Italy and abroad, with a total work force of 2,500 and an approximate annual turnover of 370 million euros.... Fabbrica d’Armi Pietro Beretta S.p.A. (Pietro Beretta arms manufacturing company), which has been handed down over fifteen generations, was active in the village of Gardone Val Trompia in the fifteenth century. Documentary evidence for the family business dates back to 1526.

From the legendary Bartolomeo (ca. 1498 to 1565/8) to Pietro (1791 to 1853), who was the first in the family to begin expansion of the business, to his son Giuseppe (1840-1903), who supervised the transition from national to international horizons, to Pietro (1870-1957), who was able to transform the artisan business into a manufacturing concern by introducing modern production techniques, to his sons Giuseppe (1906-1993) and Carlo (1908-1984), who gave the firm its multinational character, leading the Company to success in the military and commercial markets, Beretta has always produced firearms....

Now Robert Waldmann informs us of Bill Frist's concern for this fine American company, and how important it is that U.S. forces in Iraq be equipped with Beretta handguns rather than with guns from "foreign manufacturers":

Robert's Stochastic thoughts: Is Bill Frist... trying to paralyse Democrats with laughter?... Rather than allow votes on amendments to, among other things, ban torture Bill Frist pulled the defence spending bill... [and turned to] a bill protecting handgun manufacturers from lawsuits. Frist claims this [handgun liability bill] is a way to support the troops in Iraq:

...Frist said that Beretta, the manufacturer of pistols to U.S. forces in Iraq, warned that it may go bankrupt if the lawsuits are not stopped. "These frivolous suits threaten a domestic industry that is critical to our national defense," Frist said. "Given the profusion of litigation, the Department of Defense faces the very real prospect of outsourcing sidearms for our soldiers to foreign manufacturers."

Beretta, as the name suggests, is an old Italian family firm.... [M]aybe it's all a trick. Hunter [at Daily Kos] is already disabled by laughter and unable to point out the Italianess of Beretta...

No matter what Bill Frist and company do or do not do to protect firearms manufacturers in the United States, the fine old Italian firm of Beretta will still be around and still be able to support America's troops in Iraq.

Posted by DeLong at August 7, 2005 08:20 PM