The Last Word | January 18, 2012
>>> the coast of concordia ship has become unstable causing search efforts to be suspended for the more than 20 still that may be trapped on that ship. special sensors determined the vessel sank 1.5 meters at the bow and one meter at the stern overnight. rescuers fear this could indicate that the ship may break up in the middle, making their mission even riskier and creating a possible environmental disaster with 500,000 gallons of fuel still aboard the vessel. the ship's captain, francesco francesco schettino is rapidly becoming the most hated man. the man who ordered him back on the ship is reaching folk hero status. t-shirts are being printed with his order, which means get back on board, dammit. the ship's captain offered yet another new account today about how he found himself on shore while his passengers and crew were still trapped on the ship. the passengers were pouring on to the decks, taking the lifeboats by assault. i didn't even have a life jacket because i had given it to one of the passengers. i was trying to get people to get into the boats in an orderly fashion. suddenly, since the ship was at a 60 to 70-degree angle, i tripped and i ended up in one of the boats. that's how i found myself there. lloyd's list revealed today that according to gps records, the ship sailed a similar course in august of last year when it actually came even closer to the coast and possibly within inches of the rock that destroyed the ship this time.
>> must have become perilously close.
>> joining us now, national daily newspaper in italy . first of all, i want to begin by apologize are for any of my italian pronunciations. but tell us what is happening in italy now with these two characters in the story, the captain versus the coast guard commander who ordered him back on to the ship.
>> well, it's as you've said, it's becoming a national drama. first of all, really captain coward, captain schettino is the most hated man in italy . he's a coward but also a multiple serial liar. i trust he will be prosecuted for manslaughter, ship wrecking, and awant donning ship. he's not the only one. others should be prosecuted, too. there were other officers of the crew who abandoned the ship and, of course, there is the issue of corporate responsibility. the company, the company probably knew. it's an open secret in italy that those large cruise ship often sail way too close to the coast. even in venice, you know, you can see them sailing so close to the city. it's very dangerous. but the national drama is due to the fact that there is an anti-hero and people probably identify this captain coward with the worst possible drawbacks and limits in national character, selfishness, lack of discipline, lack of organization, but there are heroes, positive heroes, like some members of the crew who really were able to mutiny and they tried to organize themselves and there was one of them atop and this happens at the very peculiar moment for italy . possibly when the self-esteem of the italian people has really attained a minimum. so that's why it's becoming a symbol of something larger, much larger story about self-confidence of this nation, only two months ago berlusconi was ousted by government. we now have a very respected prime minister. but he has to rebuild self-confidence for whole nation.
>> frederico, thank you very much for joining me tonight.