By FOIA Research
on June 7, 2023 - Last updated: September 14, 2023

Alvino-Mario Fantini

The American Alvino-Mario Fantini (sometimes Mario Fantini or Alvino-Mario Fantini-Céspedes), born in July 1968, is a far-right, ultra-Catholic author, editor and organizer. Hailing from Brattleboro, Vermont, Fantini grew up in the environment of the School for International Training, in which his parents were heavily involved, and from which he also received a Master's degree in 1998. With his parents having roots in Italy and Bolivia, Fantini identifies as American, Bolivian, and Italian, as mentioned on his Twitter profile.1

In the early 2000s, Fantini made a name for himself as a contributor to various right-wing journals an websites. His career made a leap forward, when he attended the 1st Vanenburg Meeting in 2007, which kicked off the foundation of the Center for European Renewal (CER),2 in which Fantini subsequently became involved. From 2011 until at least 2017, Fantini sat on CER's board, and he may be still on there, although he is no longer listed.3 CER was the publisher of The European Conservative (TEC), a far-right journal edited by Fantini since 2012.4  Around 2021, TEC split off from CER institutionally, and started to appear as a glossy and bibliophile edition four times a year, with headquarters in Budapest, Hungary.

As of 2023, Fantini is the "managing director of the European Center for Documentation and Information, a Vienna think-tank,"5 which is mentioned as co-publisher of TEC in its Impressum section.6 What lurks behind the CEDI/EDIC organization in Vienna remains a mystery. The statement by the Italian journalist Andrea Palladino that it was Otto von Habsburg's European Documentation and Information Centre,7 was promptly denied by TEC on Twitter.8 It is, however, undeniable that TEC has positively referenced Otto von Habsburg on various occasions, and Fantini has been in close contact with the Otto von Habsburg Foundation in Budapest.9

In his role as editor-in-chief of TEC, Fantini is in close touch with the journal's partners and affiliates, including the French far-right Iliade Institute; the French ultra-Catholic and Identitarian Academia Christiana; the Berlin-based Library of Conservatism (Bibliothek des Konservatismus); the Budapest-based Danube Institute; the Brussels-based New Direction think tank; and the Italian think tank Nazione Futura.

Fantini and his wife Ellen (Kryger) Fantini, TEC's managing editor, are close to several Christian, particularly Catholic, fundamentalist organizations and anti-choice networks, such as Agenda Europe, European Dignity Watch, and the Dignitatis Humanae Institute (DHI). As of 2021, Alvino-Mario Fantini was one of the "students" at Steve Bannon's and Benjamin Harnwell's now defunct "Gladiator School" in the Trisulti Abbey, Italy, organized by the DHI.10

Fantini belongs to several influential neoliberal and right-wing organizations, including the Philadelphia Society, the Mont Pelerin Society, the Samuel Johnson Society and the Institut d’Études Politiques. He is currently a member of the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal in Mecosta (Michigan) and the Abigail Adams Institute in Cambridge (Massachusetts).3

Previously, he was honorary Secretary-General of the Hayek Institute in Vienna, Austria, and participated in the Institute's events from 2013 to 2018.3 Fantini was listed as member of the Burgon Society (2013-2020), a UK-based "society for the study and research of academic dress," whose patrons include two retired Anglican bishops. As of 2009, his CV stated that he was a member of the "21st Century Trust and the Salzburg Seminar" and a "founding member of the Vanenburg Society.11 "

Fantini has contributed to a long list of right-wing to far-right publications: The Weekly Standard (2004); American Thinker (2005), Libertad Digital (2006), The Far Eastern Economic Review (2006-2009), Catholic World Report (2013-2020); Crisis Magazine (2013), The American Conservative (2013-2015), The Imaginative Conservative (2014), The New Criterion (2014), The Conservative (2019), published by the ECR party in the European Parliament; Newsweek (2023), The American Spectator, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Times (Falun Gong), among others.

He served as editor and co-editor of multiple publications for the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), such as OFID Quarterly (2009); OPEC Bulletin (2009-2010); OPEC World Oil Outlook (2013-2017); Need to Know: An Introduction to the Oil Industry & OPEC (2013), OPEC Annual Statistical Bulletin (2010/2011, 2014-2015); and OPEC Monthly Oil Market Report (2018).

In an online CV from 2019, it is mentioned that "He previously worked as Latin America correspondent for Bridge News/Telerate in Bolivia, Chile, and Paraguay; communications officer for the World Bank in Bolivia; editorial consultant at the Far Eastern Economic Review in Hong Kong; and editorial page writer at The European Wall Street Journal in Brussels."12 As of 2009, he served on the editorial board of the Dartmouth Review.11 In 2018 and 2019, Fantini was a "a ‘ghost-writer’ for the free-market PR firm Keybridge Communications in Washington, D.C.," according to an online CV.13 14

He is also a frequent public speaker, and has appeared at various events organized by the Alliance Defending Freedom, the Austrian Economics Center (2016-2023), the Danube Institute (2020-2022), New Direction (2021-2023), the De Nicola Center for Ethics and Culture at the University of Notre Dame, CEFAS at CEU-San Pablo University (2022), the Identity and Democracy Group at the European Parliament (2022), the European Resource Bank (2023), the Conservative Political Action Conference (2022), and the National Conservatism conferences (2021-2022).

His online CV states that, as of 2023, "He works, intermittently and remotely, as a doctoral candidate (in philosophy) at Leiden University (research topic: “The Philosophical Roots of ‘Bannonism’: Towards an Understanding of Current Nationalist, Populist and Sovereigntist Movements”)."3

He and his wife live in Vienna, Austria,15 but Fantini spends also considerable time in Budapest, where The European Conservative head office is located. He has been reportedly close to Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and has appeared on events together with the latter, such as CPAC, or at a 2023 press meeting at a Carmelite monastery in Hungary.16

Fantini is the son of a Bolivian mother, born in Italy (Beatriz de Céspedes),17 and an American father (Alvino E. Fantini) with Italian roots.18 Both of his parents were involved in the School for International Training / World Learning, headquartered in Brattleboro, Vermont, where Fantini grew up.

School for International Training

The School for International Training (SIT) has its roots in the "Experiment in International Living" (EIL), launched in 1932 by Donald B. Watt, a Princeton graduate who served with the British Foreign Office in Mesopotamia (1916-1919), and after WWI took a job at Syracuse University. By April 1932 Hitler was winning over 36% of the votes for the post as Reich Chancellor and the international Right was eager for Hitler to take over and wipe out the Soviet-accommodating Weimar government. In mid-June 1932, French Premier Édouard Herriot met Franz von Papen, then German chancellor, in Lausanne, where Papen proposed an anti-Soviet Franco-German bloc. That month, Watt launched his "Experiment in International Living," which "brought American and foreign youths together for summer vacations," as the New York Times benignly put it.19 And by the summer of 1934 Watt sent future Peace Corps operative R. Sargent Shriver (1915-2011) to Germany. By 1938 Watt established an EIL headquarters at his home in Putney, Vermont.

R. Sargent Shriver, partly of German ancestry, spent the summer in Germany as part of the EIL program, returning in the fall of 1934 to enter Yale University. Upon his return, apparently favorably impressed by what he saw in the 1934 Nazi state, he opposed to the US intervening against Hitler's project, and subsequently was involved in the founding of the pro-fascist America First Committee. Later he married Eunice Kennedy, the third daughter of the pro-Nazi former US Ambassador to the UK, Joseph Kennedy Sr., who made a fortune peddling British whiskey. Joseph Kennedy Sr. was withdrawn as UK Ambassador by Franklin D. Roosevelt because he was so openly pro-Hitler.

Shriver was an ultra-Catholic and vocal critic of abortions. He was a signatory to "A New Compact of Care: Caring about Women, Caring for the Unborn," which appeared in The New York Times in July 1992 and stated that "To establish justice and to promote the general welfare, America does not need the abortion license. What America needs are policies that responsibly protect and advance the interest of mothers and their children, both before and after birth."20

In 1961, a training project called the School for International Training (SIT) was set up in Brattleboro, Vermont, which then became the HQ for Shriver when he set up his "Peace Corps."21

Alvino E. Fantini

Fantini's father, Alvino E. Fantini, was involved with EIL and SIT from early on "as an Experiment program participant to Mexico in 1954.”17 Curiously, his frequent travels brought him to countries which underwent particularly turbulent political events at that moment.

On his CV it is mentioned that in the summers of 1956 and 1957, he did coursework in "Anthropology, Spanish & Latin American Studies" at the "Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México."22 In Late 1956, Fidel Castro had sailed on the Granma to Cuba from Mexico to overthrow the regime of Fulgencio Batista. In 1959, Fantini Sr. received an academic scholarship from the University of Texas, Austin.22 In 1961, he finished his MA thesis "Illness and Curing Among the Mexican-Americans of Mission."23 In February 1960, he joined the US Army intelligence Corps specializing in Spanish, Portuguese and Italian. He was with US military intelligence from February 1960 to June 1963.

He then left as "leader of an Experiment in International Living" for Belluno Italy in 1963, where there happened to be a major NATO military base with intercontinental Nike missiles targeting the Soviet Union (specifically the "Nato Forcelletto 64° Gruppo I.T., a military facility in Belluno).

By 1964, Fantini Sr. was teaching Spanish and Italian at the Peace Corps Intensive Language training program. Following the CIA-supported fascist coup in Brazil in March-April 1964, Fantini was redeployed as "Fall 64-Winter 65 Language Coordinator, Training Programs for Brazil, conducted in VT & the Virgin Islands, EIL/US Peace Corps."24

In summer 1965, Fantini's dad led a group of students on an EIL to Athens, Greece, although he does not seem to speak Greek. That summer, with the CIA urging the neo-Nazi military to take power against the government which had reasonable relations with the USSR, Greek PM Papandreou tried to fire a gang of CIA-backed neo-Nazi officers belonging to the organization IDEA (Ieros Desmos Ellinon Axiomatikon–Holy Bond of Greek Officers). IDEA included several future leaders of the Greek junta, such as Georgios Papadopoulos. On July 15, 1965, the Greek King dismissed Papandreou to protect his CIA and US military intelligence-trained fascist military (who had been so useful after WWII during the King's Civil War), which triggered a major constitutional crisis.

Beatriz de Céspedes

Fantini Sr. married Beatriz de Céspedes on January 22, 1966.18 According to an article on the SIT website:17

Beatriz Céspedes, the daughter of a Bolivian diplomat, was born in Italy, has lived in Peru, Venezuela, and Argentina, and speaks Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish. She joined SIT as a Spanish teacher and Experiment co-leader in the 1960s. ‘I provided the first foreign accent to the institution,’ she joked. ‘Now we have many.’

Céspedes received her MA from SIT (Brattleboro, Vermont) in 1977 (Thesis: Teaching of Advanced Spanish from a Sociolinguistic Perspective).25 She retired sometimes around 2017, “after 50 years with the organization.”26


Alvino-Mario Fantini was born in July 1968.27 He attended Brattleboro Union High School, from which he graduated in 1986.28 Already from early on, he was involved in EIL and SIT, spending time in Italy in 1985 with EIL.29 Fantini has a sister, Carla Lineback (née Fantini), who also works for SIT.26


Dartmouth College

Fantini studied philosophy and theology at Dartmouth College as an undergraduate, receiving his BA with a thesis on the “Catholic Religious Orders, Secular Societies and Resistance to Modernity” in 1990.30 That year, he contributed a short article to the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine.31

Charles J. Sykes

In 1990, he was also a research assistant of Charles J. Sykes, a convert to Catholicism, who at that time hosted a right-wing radio talk show, first as a substitute host for Mark Belling at WISN in Milwaukee. By 1992, Sykes got his own show on WISN, kicking off a long career in radio, in which he became famous for pressuring Republicans to stick to the party line. Fantini helped Sykes with his book publication The Hollow Men: Politics and Corruption in Higher Education (Regnery Gateway ,1990).32 In the preface of the book Sykes says:

I also want to make special mention of the invaluable assistance provided by my research assistant, Alvino Mario Fantini-Cespedes, a Dartmouth senior, who took time from his studies to track down much of the documentation for this book. His enthusiasm was a constant inspiration and a reminder of what the issues are ultimately all about; this book, after all, was written specifically with students like Alvino Mario in mind.

After Dartmouth, Fantini "earned graduate degrees in international development, journalism and public policy in Europe, Latin America and the United States," according to a 2023 CV.3 In 1998, he received an MA in Intercultural Management from the School for International Training (in which his parents were heavily involved at that point) with the thesis “Portfolio Investment, Private Capital Flows and Developing Countries.”33 That year, he acted as a Experiment in International Living group leader in Spain.29


The Weekly Standard

In 2004, Fantini contributed two opinion pieces to The Weekly Standard (1995-2018) a US right-wing and neoconservative political magazine.34 In the December piece called "Buttiglione Brouhaha," he came out on the side of the controversial Italian politician Rocco Buttiglione, Minister for European Affairs (2001-2005).35  

Rocco Buttiglione

Buttiglione made headlines when in 2004 José Manuel Barroso included him on his list of nominees for the European Commission as Commissioners for Justice and Equality. During his hearing before the European Parliament's Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice And Home Affairs, Buttiglione was asked about his stance on homosexuality and women. Buttiglione responded that he considered homosexuality a sin, and also stated his belief that the family "exists in order to allow women to have children and to have the protection of a male who takes care of them."36 The PES, ALDE and Green/EFA groups expressed reservations regarding Buttiglione's ability to take positive political action regarding citizens' rights, and threatened to reject the entire proposed Commission. Buttiglione received plenty of support from the Catholic fundamentalist Communion and Liberation movement in the course of the controversy,37  long speculated to be a CIA front,38 to which he has been devoted since the beginning of his career.39 On October 30, 2004, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi announced that the Italian government would withdraw Buttiglione's nomination, however, kept him as Ministers for European affairs in the Italian government. Thus, Buttiglione "became the first government nominee to be blocked by the European parliament."37

In Fantini's piece in The Weekly Standard one can read:35

I was disappointed with Christopher Caldwell’s “Sins of Commission” (Nov. 15). It could have been a great introduction to the successful smear campaign against Rocco Buttiglione, originally chosen to be the European Union’s justice commissioner. But it fell far short of this.

First, I thought Caldwell treaded too lightly on the issue of Europe’s growing anti-Catholicism. Stronger words—and additional information—should have

been used to talk about the crude opposition to Buttiglione and the growing intolerance of European bureaucrats and interest groups toward religion in general (and Catholicism in particular).

Second, and perhaps more worrisome, Caldwell’s piece contained one glaring factual error that could have (should have) been easily caught. Buttiglione did not found the Catholic lay movement “Comunione e Liberazione” in 1968. Rather, it has its roots in another movement started in Italy in 1954 by Luigi Giussani, a Catholic priest known around the world. The name Comunione e Liberazione began to be used in 1969.


In 2005, Fantini became a member of the executive board of the Dartmouth Association of Latino Alumni (the Mellon Foundation financed the Latin American and Caribbean Studies program at Dartmouth).30 That year, he also appeared as a contributing editor of the Vermont Commons newsletter.40

American Thinker

In March 2005, he contributed a series of articles to the website American Thinker, the first one titled "Bolivia on the brink - again,"41 the second one headlined "A coup looms maybe - in Bolivia."42 American Thinker was founded in 2003 by Ed Lasky, Richard Baehr, and Thomas Lifson, and initially became prominent in the lead-up to the 2008 U.S. presidential election for its attacks on then-candidate Barack Obama. In June 2005, he wrote another article for American Thinker with the title “The Dutch Adrift."43 In July 2005, followed another article, titled "Europe's Leviathan."44


1st Vanenburg Meeting

Fantini had taken part in the 1st Vanenburg Meeting from July 3 to 6, 2006, in Putten, Netherlands, which brought together key right-wing players from across Europe and the United States.2 Host of that initial meeting was the Dutch Edmund Burke Stichting (Edmund Burke Foundation, EBS), a fiscally liberal and ideologically right-wing think tank founded in 2000. At that first Vanenburg meeting, it was decided that a European-wide organization should be set up on the model of the US Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI), with which the EBS had already been collaborating. This resulted in the creation of the Center for European Renewal in the following year.

Participants of the 1st Vanenburg Meeting in 2006. From left to right: Caspar v. Schrenck-Notzing, Bertil Haggman, Alexandre Pesey, Diederik Boomsma, Chantal Delsol, Fr. Marcel Guarnizo, Andrew O’Connell, Harald Bergbauer, Stephen Bartulica, Roger Scruton, Bart Jan Spruyt, Marco Respinti, Andreas Kinneging, Michael Mosbacher, Frank Lothar Kroll, Mark Henrie, Milowit Kuninski, Michiel Visser, Kate Pesey, Benjamin Bilski, Matthias Storme, Douglas Murray, Pablo Nuevo, Andras Lánczi, Jonathan Price, Jorge Soley, Tamas Lánczi, Roman Joch, Mario Fantini and Voijtech Belling.

On August 18, 2006, Fantini contributed an article to the Spanish newspaper Libertad Digital, tearing into the socialist government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero.45

On September 24, 2006, Fantini contributed an article to the website America's Future, titled “Emasculated England."46 As of September 2006, Fantini was "Europe correspondent for Brainwash" (not identified) and "an Erasmus Mundus scholar through the European Union."46

Far Eastern Economic Review

In 2006, Fantini started to work for the Far Eastern Economic Review (FEER), published in Hong Kong. That year, he co-authored an article titled “Review Barometer of Asian Development” together with Hugo Restall.47 The FEER, an English-language business magazine representing largely British an American interests in Southeast Asia, was published from 1946 to 2009, first as a weekly, then as a monthly publication. The magazine was founded by Eric Halpern (1907-1991), an Austrian Jew, with capital from Jardine Matheson Holdings, the Kadoorie family and the HSBC bank. There is conflicting information about Halpern's various contacts with secret services. He is said to have offered his services to the British MI5 by the agency itself.48 The Malaysian Insider claimed that Halpern had dabbled with various, including Soviet, secret services, but "that Halpern's main purpose was 'to contact US intelligence.'"49 The FEER changed owners several times, until in 1987, the US publishing firm Dow Jones, a minority shareholder since 1973, took full control of the Review. Fantini joined the FEER a few years before it shut down in 2009 because of dwindling revenues.


Center for European Renewal

A year after the 1st Vanenburg Meeting, in 2007, the Center for European Renewal (CER) was established with headquarters in the Netherlands. Among the founders were the Dutch Andreas Kinneging (Edmund Burke Stichting); the German right-wing publicist Caspar von Schrenck-Notzing (Förderstiftung Konservative Bildung und Forschung); Czech think-tank director Roman Joch (Civic Institute); Spanish publishing executive Jorge Soley Climent; Flemish law professor Matthias Storme; and Alexandre Pesey of the French Institut de formation politique (IFP). In 2008, CER also started to publish a digital newsletter called The European Conservative, which Initially was only a few pages long. Fantini subsequently became involved in CER and TEC.

In 2007, Fantini contributed an article to the Far Eastern Economic Review, reviewing the publication “Escape from Empire: The Developing World’s Journey Through Heaven and Hell" by Alice H. Amsden.50


In 2008, Fantini co-authored the article “Review Barometer of Asian Development” with Hugo Restall in the Far Eastern Economic Review.51


From May 8-10, 2009, Fantini presumably attended the 4th Annual Vanenburg Meeting in Budapest, Hungary, since he wrote the report on the event, published in The European Conservative issue no. 3 (December 2009).11

As of 2009, Fantini lived in Vienna, Austria. In a short biography from that time, it says:11

He previously worked for the World Bank. He has written for The American Spectator, The Far Eastern Economic Review, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Times. ... He is a member of the Philadelphia Society, serves on the board of The Dartmouth Review, and is a fellow of the 21st Century Trust and the Salzburg Seminar. He is a founding member of the Vanenburg Society.


In 2009, Fantini started to work as a writer and editor for the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). That year, he co-authored an article for the OPEC Foundation's publication OFID Quarterly, titled “Linking the Past, Present and Future: OPEC Releases Annual Publications.”52 The summary read:

In a world where energy interdependence among nations seems to advance year-on-year, it is essential to have a handle on just what is happening, as well as where, when and why. ... For OPEC, meeting this challenge is clearly evidenced in two of its annual publications — the Annual Statistical Bulletin and the World Oil Outlook. James Griffin and Alvino Mario Fantini report on the press conference that marked the release of the latest issues of these two publications.

In July-August 2009, Fantini wrote a review of “Tokyo: A Cultural History by Stephen Mansfield, Oxford University Press” for the Far Eastern Economic Review.53

In August-September, 2009, Fantini co-edited the OPEC Bulletin.54


In 2010, Fantini participated in CER's first book publication, as The European Conservative reported:55

The Center for European Renewal’s first book, Plato on Wall Street: Conservative Reflections on the Economic Crisis, was published in Polish in December 2010 in collaboration with the Ośrodek Myśli Politycznej (Centre for Political Thought) of Krakow. The book is a collection of essays and includes contributions by members of the CER, including President András Lánczi, Advisory Board member Roger Scruton, and Founder and OMP President Milowit Kuninski. Other contributors include Harald Bergbauer, Diederik Boomsma, Emma Cohen de Lara, Alvino-Mario Fantini, Attila K. Molnár, Melvin Schut, Jakob E:son Söderbaum, and Agnieszka Wincewicz. The book was formally launched in February 2011 at a seminar at Blackfriars Hall, Oxford University.

In 2010, Fantini was an associate editor of the OPEC Bulletin.56


From 2011 onwards, Fantini appeared on the board of CER,57 and remained there at least until 2017.58 His current CV states that he is stil on the board, although he is no longer listed on there.3


The European Conservative

From issue 6 (Spring 2012) onwards, Alvino-Mario Fantini (USA) became, and remained, the editor-in-chief of The European Conservative (TEC), with Diederik Boomsma (Netherlands), Mark C. Henrie (USA), Jonathan D. Price (USA) on the editorial board. With his accession to the role of editor-in-chief, TEC slowly but surely expanded beyond its scope of being a mere newsletter of the CER.

Ellen Kryger Fantini

In 2012, Fantini married his high school fellow, Ellen (Kryger) Fantini,59 “a Brattleboro native now living in Vienna.”60 Both, Fantini and his wife "graduated from Brattleboro Union High school in the ‘80s…”60 Trained as a lawyer, Kryger Fantini serves as a consultant to various religious fundamentalist organizations. Currently, she is the Executive Director of the Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination against Christians in Europe,61 based in Vienna, Austria.62 She has been a key player in Agenda Europe, a powerful anti-abortion network trying to influence EU legislation. She is also high in demand as a speaker at Christian fundamentalist events, such as the Ukrainian National Prayer Breakfast.63

A picture that Fantini posted of their wedding showed them with two clergymen, with the caption:59

Nine years ago, Dr. Spalek (L) and the late, always missed, Fr. Christoph Tölg (R) helped E and me to celebrate the Sacrament of Marriage, which had been preceded by a moving civil ceremony the year before.

It took nearly 25 years for me to work up the courage to ask for her hand. But we made it. From Vermont to Vienna.


Fantini appeared as an editor of OPEC's 2013 World Oil Outlook.64 In 2013, he edited also a children's book for OPEC, I Need to Know: An Introduction to the Oil Industry & OPEC (OPEC, 2013).65

Burgon Society

As of 2013, Fantini was a member of the Burgon Society, a UK-based society for the study and research of academic dress, whose patrons include two retired Anglican bishops. He appeared intermittently as member until 2020.66

Mont Pelerin Society

In 2013, he also appeared on the leaked membership list of the Mont Pelerin Society.67

Hayek Institute

On March 13, 2013, Fantini appeared on a panel discussion with Richard Ebeling organized by the Hayek Institute (Hayek Institut, Austria), from then on appearing regularly at events of the organization.68

Catholic World Report

On August 14, 2013, Fantini published the article “Europe’s Cassandra,” in the Catholic World Report,69 an arch-Catholic, right-wing online magazine, founded by the Jesuit priest Joseph Fessio in 1991.

On September 4, 2013, Fantini published another article with the Catholic World Report, titled “The Islamist Spring and the West’s Decline.”70 On September 12, 2013, he published an article in the Crisis Magazine titled “Reconstructing the Christian Past.”71

The American Conservative

On October 21, 2013, Fantini authored another article for the Catholic World Report, titled “Remembering Russell Kirk in St. Andrews.”72 On October 30, 2013, Fantini wrote a piece for The American Conservative, a right-wing magazine published by the American Ideas Institute which was founded in 2002 by Pat Buchanan. The article was titled “A Scottish Remembrance of Russell Kirk."73 On December 10, 2013, Fantini wrote another article for the Catholic World Report with the title “Why the Laity Matters.”74


In 2014, Fantini edited the OPEC Annual Statistical Bulletin (OPEC, 2014).75 That year, he co-edited also OPEC's World Oil Outlook.76


Around 2014, Fantini appeared on the "Social Media Master list Agenda Europe" in the leaked HazteOir/CitizenGo database. CitizenGo is a Christian fundamentalist Spanish foundation and advocacy group, which runs an online platform that launches petitions worldwide to further its cause. It was founded in Madrid, Spain, in 2013 by HazteOir,77 78 a similar Spanish-language platform existing since 2001, dedicated to fight an imputed "gender ideology." Ignacio Arsuaga is founder and president of both, HazteOir and CitizenGo.79

"Social Media Master list Agenda Europe" in the leaked HazteOir/CitizenGo database (ca. 2014).

In January 2014, The Imaginative Conservative republished Fantini's "A Scottish Remembrance of Russell Kirk," published the previous year by The American Conservative.80 The Imaginative Conservative is a right-wing journal founded in 2010 by Bradley J. Birzer, chair at Hillsdale College, and W. Winston Elliott III, President of the Free Enterprise Institute and a Visiting Professor in Liberal Arts at Houston Baptist University.

On March 18, 2014, Fantini hosted a presentation and a "Hayek Walk" with the note "Mentee for Student Groups" for the Hayek Institute.81

On June 12, 2014, Fantini published a puff piece on Brent Bozell Jr. in The American Conservative.82

On June 27, 2014, Fantini was present when Steve Bannon took part in an event at the Vatican, organized by the Dignitatis Humanae Institute.83 84 Bannon's speech, delivered via Skype, is mentioned frequently as a concise summary of Bannon's world view and ideological pedigree,83 particularly his reference to the obscure Nazi ideologue Julius Evola.85 At the event, Fantini was asking Bannon the following question:83

Hello, Mr. Bannon. I’m Mario Fantini, a Vermonter living in Vienna, Austria. You began describing some of the trends you’re seeing worldwide, very dangerous trends, worry trends. Another movement that I’ve been seeing grow and spread in Europe, unfortunately, is what can only be described as tribalist or neo-nativist movement — they call themselves Identitarians. These are mostly young, working-class, populist groups, and they’re teaching self-defense classes, but also they are arguing against — and quite effectively, I might add — against capitalism and global financial institutions, etc. How do we counteract this stuff? Because they’re appealing to a lot of young people at a very visceral level, especially with the ethnic and racial stuff..

In September 2014, Fantini contributed an article to The New Criterion, titled “The Integrative Mind.”86

From issue 9 (Winter 2014) onwards, Fantini's wife Ellen (Kryger) Fantini joined TEC's editorial board.


In 2015, Fantini edited the 50th edition of the OPEC Annual Statistical Bulletin,87 and co-edited the OPEC World Oil Outlook 2015.88 He also helped Gabriele Kuby, an ultra-Catholic German anti-abortion and anti-LGBTIQ activist, with the publication of The Global Sexual Revolution (Kettering, OH: LifeSite, 2015).89

Austrian Economics Center

In 2015, Fantini spoke at the "Free Market Road Show," organized by the Austrian Economics Center, at which he appeared several times in the years that followed.90

On March 4, 2015, Fantini held a speech for the Hayek Institute titled "Global Threats to Free Speech."91

Danube Institute

As of June 2015, Fantini appeared in the orbit of the Danube Institute, a right-wing think tank founded in 2013 by the British John O'Sullivan in Budapest, Hungary. On June 25, 2015, Fantini is quoted on the Danube Institute blog, giving his opinion on James Burnham's 1964 book The Suicide of the West.92

John O'Sullivan

O'Sullivan had taken part in the 2014 Vanenburg meeting, and ever since appeared in the CER and TEC orbit. Previously, O'Sullivan had been a special adviser to Margaret Thatcher, and from 1987 onwards he worked as her speechwriter. At the same time, he served as senior editor for the far-right US journal National Review (1988-1997), since 2016 serving as the journal's editor-at-large.93 In 1996, he founded and co-chaired the now defunct New Atlantic Initiative within the American Enterprise Institute (f. 1938). From 2008 to 2012, O'Sullivan served as as vice-president and executive editor of Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty (f. 1949). O'Sullivan has also been involved in the Heritage Foundation, the Hudson Institute and the 21st Century Initiatives. He moved to Budapest, to set up the Danube Institute in 2013, serving first as director, then as president (since 2016). Danube Institute staffers have been working closely with The European Conservative, and they often appear at the same events.

To the Summer/Fall issue 2015 of TEC, Fantini contributed an article titled "A Critique of Modernity — A review of Augusto Del Noce’s The Crisis of Modernity."94 Del Noce came up with the absurd historical argument that fascism was a continuation of communism since it also advanced secularization. The topic seems to have intrigued Fantini, since on September 11, 2015, Fantini published an article in The American Conservative titled “Italy’s Philosopher Against Modernity.”95


In 2016, Fantini co-edited OPEC's World Oil Outlook (OPEC, 2016).96

Dignitatis Humanae Institute

Since 2016 at the latest, Fantini was listed as a consultant for the Dignitatis Humanae Institute (DHI) (as Mario Fantini). The DHI was founded by Benjamin Harnwell, an ultra-Catholic anti-abortion lobbyist and political operative formerly involved in the British Conservative Party. In the 15 years that Harnwell was an active Conservative Party member, he worked as a close assistant to the British-Sri Lankan Conservative politician and business magnate Nirj Deva at the European Parliament. In that period, Harnwell connected with ultra-Catholic and anti-abortionist circles in Brussels, which in 2008 led to the creation of an anti-choice lobby group, the European Parliament’s Working Group on Human Dignity. In parallel to the Working Group, Harnwell co-founded the Catholic fundamentalist think tank DHI with the support of Deva,97 which connects militant anti-abortionists with like-minded figures from the Vatican's right wing. In 2010, he moved to Rome to lead the organization, which became more widely known when in early 2018 Steve Bannon announced his plans to open a far-right cadre school under the umbrella of the DHI in the Abbey of Trisulti, a remote Italian monastery, with Harnwell as director and Deva as primary backer.98 Fantini, had been reportedly a student at the Trisulti school,10 which operated until March 2021.99

On January 14, 2016, Fantini took part in an event organized by the Austrian Economics Center and the Hayek Institute, alongside his wife, Ellen (Kryger) Fantini.100 101

On April 24, 2016, Fantini wrote an article for the Catholic World Report titled “Are Pope Leo XIII and Pope Saint John Paul II ‘Feeling the Bern’?”102

On December 16, 2016, Fantini led a panel discussion for the Hayek Institute together with Larry Goodman, titled "The US in Times of Change."101


In 2017, Fantini co-edited the World Outlook Oil 2040 (OPEC, 2017).103

That year, he held a speech for the Hayek Institute on the topic "Reflections on Trump, Trumpism, and the American Presidency," and moderated a panel discussion titled "The Trump White House: The Good, the Bad and the Strange," alongside Henry Olsen and John Fund.104

European Dignity Watch

As of 2017, Fantini was on the board of European Dignity Watch, alongside Sophia Kuby.105


In 2018, Fantini co-edited the OPEC Monthly Oil Market Report.106

Keybridge Communications

As of 2018, Fantini was "a ‘ghost-writer’ for the free-market PR firm Keybridge Communications in Washington, D.C.," according an online CV on the Free Market Road Show website.13 He was also mentioned in that role in 2019.14

On April 24, 2018, Fantini authored an article for the Catholic World Report titled “Learning Polo: An Introduction to the Spanish ‘Metaphysician of Freedom.’”107

On May 9, 2018, Fantini spoke at the Free Market Road Show (FMRS) in Sarajevo, organized by the Austrian Economics Center, in collaboration with the Alliance of Conservatives and Reformists in Europe (ACRE) group in the European Parliament and the Sarajevo School of Science and Technology.108

On November 16, 2018, Fantini led a panel on the US midterm elections for the Hayek Institute.109


Fantini spoke at the "Free Market Road Show" that took place between March and May 2019, organized by the Austrian Economics Center.12

Renovatio Europae

Fantini co-authored the book Renovatio Europae, sponsored by the Polish Instytut Zachodni, which was presented at an event in Warsaw in March 2019.110 Three other co-authors were associated with CER and TEC as well, notably Chantal Delsol, David Engels, and Jonathan Price, the other co-authors being András Lánczi, Birgit Kelle, Justyna Schulz, Max Otte and Zdzisław Krasnodębski. The book was translated into Spanish, French and German. According to the website of the Spanish publisher EAS111 :

This volume is the result of a research project carried out at the “Instytut Zachodni” in Poznań (Poland) under the name “Renovatio Europae”. This initiative has brought together and coordinated a series of groups of international experts working on the need for a reform of the European Union. One of these groups, under the leadership of the editor of this volume, addressed the theme "identity and values" and met on March 6, 2019 in Warsaw to present and discuss, in the presence of high-ranking representatives of the Polish Government and the Parliament, the documents published on the following pages.

In 2019, also a German version appeared under the title Renovatio Europae: Plädoyer für einen hesperialistischen Neubau Europas (Manuscriptum, 2019).112 A French edition appeared in 2020 under the title Renovatio Europae: plaidoyer pour un renouveau hespérialiste de l’Europe, Patrimoines (Editions du Cerf, 2020).113

The Conservative

For the October 2019 issue of The Conservative, published by the European Conservatives and Reformists Party in the European Parliament, Fantini wrote an article titled "We can celebrate any culture unless it's Western."114

In December 2019, Fantini uploaded a book by Ernst Jünger, "Struggle As An Inner Experience" (La Lucha Como Una Experiencia Interior) to his personal Scribd account.115


National Conservatism Conference

From February 3 to 4, 2020, Fantini took part in an iteration of the National Conservatism Conference (NCC) in Rome, Italy. Fantini's bio on the NCC website read as follows:116

Alvino-Mario Fantini ... has worked as an editor and speechwriter for various international and multilateral organizations. Currently he is Editor-in-Chief of The European Conservative. His work has appeared in such publications as The American Spectator, Crisis, The New Criterion, Far Eastern Economic Review, Catholic World Report, The American Conservative, and The Wall Street Journal. He serves on the board of the Center for European Renewal, and is a member of the Philadelphia Society, Mont Pelerin Society, and the Institut d’Etudes Politiques. He is currently a Research Fellow at the Abigail Adams Institute and a Visiting Scholar at the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal.

On October 13, 2020, Fantini participated in a conference organized by the Danube Institute titled "Hammer, Sickle and Cross."117

On October 29, 2020, he took part in a panel talk organized by Competere in collaboration with the Austrian Economics Center.118


As of 2021, Fantini was one of the "students" at Steve Bannon's and Ben Harnwell's "Gladiator School" in the Trisulti Abbey, Italy, co-organized by the Dignitatis Humanae Institute.10

The Abbey of Trisulti (Certosa di Trisulti), around 100km southeast of Rome.

On February 16, 2020, Fantini published an article with the Catholic World Report, titled “National Conservatism and the ‘True Europe.’”119 After that, he seems to have ceased his collaboration with the platform.

In 2021, TEC was overhauled once more, this time appearing in a glossy and bibliophile edition, and a considerable increase in staff. As of 2021, the "Impressum" section of TEC's website stated that "The European Conservative is published online and as a print edition four times a year by the European Conservative Nonprofit Ltd. in Budapest, in collaboration with CEDI/EDIC in Vienna and Nazione Futura in Rome."120 Also the website was overhauled, from then on showing a shop section, selling TEC journals from issues 19 onwards with the ISSN number 2590-2008.121

In June 2021, to mark the re-design and re-launch of the publication (with its Summer 2021 edition) it held a panel discussion with several scholars at one of the Scruton Cafes in Budapest, Hungary, named after the late Roger Scruton (1944-2020), who had attended the 1st Vanenburg Meeting and was subsequently heavily involved in CER an TEC.122

Where the sudden influx of money came from to launch a proper journal, including a long list of junior and senior editors, translators, graphic designers etc. remains a secret. Although the journal contains some ads, Fantini states in a speech at the National Conservatism conference in 2021 that ad space is often given away for free to friendly parties.123

Currently, TEC is registered as a Hungarian LLC, with two registered agents: TEC's editor-in-chief, Alvino-Mario Fantini; and TEC's managing director, Kristóf Máté Nagy. However, none of the two are using their real address. Fantini provided the address of his mother, Beatriz de Céspedes, in Vienna (Neubaugasse 76/24). And also Máté Nagy provided an alternative address (c/o Jaczina Beatrix Katalin, 1122 Budapest, Maros utca 34. 3. em. Door 15).124

The relaunch of TEC was announced on the Experiment in International Living website in the most euphemistic terms:29

Alvino-Mario Fantini ... launched a new quarterly publication to expand the diversity of the European media space. Bringing together diverse writings and perspectives on art, literature, philosophy, and politics, the publication—provocatively titled “The European Conservative”—seeks to make available content routinely ignored by the mainstream media. Mario says that at SIT he learned to resist groupthink, which can stifle debate and suppress minority viewpoints. Working cross-culturally with teams from Austria, Croatia, France, Hungary, Italy, the UK and the U.S., Mario has reconceptualized and redesigned this English-language thought journal and is significantly expanding distribution. “My hope,” he says, “is not only to raise awareness of ideas and writings that can find no platform or outlet, but also, in the process, to remind people that the dominant media and entertainment giants do not fully reflect the dazzling variety and rich traditions of different European cultures.”

New Direction

In September 2021, Fantini was a speaker at a New Direction conference in Lisbon, alongside several other TEC and CER staffers.125 Founded by Margaret Thatcher (1925-2013) in 2009, New Direction is a fiscally liberal, right-wing and Eurosceptic think tank established to lobby for its imperatives at the European level.

From October 31 to November 2, 2021, Fantini took part in an iteration of the National Conservatism Conference in Orlando, Florida.126 A video from the speech is available, where he recounted the history of TEC from its early days as a newsletter to the glossy journal of today. He also elaborated on the future plans of the journal, such as instating an investigative team that would "do to the Left what they have done to us," as Fantini put it.123


In February 2022, Fantini was visiting the Otto von Habsburg Foundation headquarters in Budapest.9


From March 2 to 4, 2022, Fantini took part in a conference organized by the Centro de Estudios, Formación y Análisis with in the private Catholic University, Universidad CEU San Pablo (CEU-CEFAS).127 The conference included other TEC and CER staffers, such as David Engels (Instituto Zachodni, Poland) and Chantal Delsol (Hannah Arendt Institute, France), Francesco Giubilei (Fondazione Tatarella, Nazione Futura, Italy). Also Fantini's associates from Budapest, Balázs Orbán (Mathias Corvinus Collegium) and Rod Dreher (Danube Institute) were on the roster.128

Identity and Democracy Group

On March 22, 2022, Fantini was speaking at an event organized by the Identity and Democracy Group in the European Parliament on the topic "Conservative alliances in Europe - engine of the EU reform: Position and plans of the AfD for a future new conservative alliance in the EU Parliament." Besides Fantini, the speakers were: Nicolaus Fest, head of the AfD delegation in the EU Parliament and Gunnar Beck, deputy leader of the AfD delegation in the EU Parliament and deputy leader of the Identity & Democracy parliamentary group.129

TEC was one of several official partners of the National Conservatism Conference held in Brussels from March 23 to 24, 2022.130 Numerous speakers at the conference, including Fantini, were involved in CER and TEC: Stephen Bartulica, Hélène de Lauzun, David Engels, Francesco Giubilei, Ellen Kryger Fantini, Anne-Elisabeth Moutet, John O'Sullivan and Anna Wellisz, among others.131


In early May 2022, TEC was present at CPAC Hungary with a stall, giving away free copies of their journal.132 Fantini himself was a panelist at the event. Several TEC and CER staffers were also participating, among them Francesco Giubilei, Matthew Tyrmand, and Anne-Elisabeth Moutet.133

From September 21 to 23, 2022, Fantini took part in an event organized by New Direction, in Tallinn, Estonia, titled "Think Tank Central: Defending Freedom Conference."134

From September 25 to 29, 2022, Fantini took part in the "Young Leaders Academy: Foundations of Freedom" in Split, Croatia, organized by New Direction with the support of the Croatian Centre for the Renewal of Culture and the Leadership Institute.135

Italian Conservatism

From September 30 to October 2, 2022, TEC co-hosted an "Italian Conservatism" conference at the Hotel Quirinale in Rome, alongside the Tatarella Foundation and Nazione Futura. Various TEC figures were featured on the roster, including Fantini, John O'Sullivan, Francesco Giubilei, David Engels, Anne-Elisabeth Moutet, and Hélène de Lauzun. Also present was Lorenzo Fontana of the Italian Lega party; Jorge Buxadé of the Spanish far-right Vox party; Fratelli d'Italia MEP Vincenzo Sofo; André Ventura of the Portuguese far-right Chega party; Italian Minister of Culture Gennaro Sangiuliano; and Balázs Orbán, Political Director of Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orbán since 2021.136

On October 8, 2022, Fantini took part in the 10-year anniversary of the Library of Conservatism (Bibliothek des Konservatismus) in Berlin.137 The event was headed off by Dieter Stein who recalled the history of the library, particularly the eminent role of Caspar von Schrenck-Notzing. BdK director and member of TEC's editorial board, Wolfgang Fenske, then presented the current activities of the BdK. An éminence grise of the Vanenburg meetings and the CER, Andreas Kinneging, held the keynote speech, “Conservative and national? A necessary differentiation." After that, two panel discussions took place, that included i.a. the Belgian right-wing publicist David Engels, a TEC contributing editor since 2021. And notably also, Gergely Pröhle, director of the Otto von Habsburg Foundation in Budapest.

Event commemorating the 10-year anniversary of the Library of Conservatism on October 8, 2022. From left to right: Marco Gallina, Werner Patzelt, Dieter Stein, Gergely Prőhle, Alvino-Mario Fantini.

Event commemorating the 10-year anniversary of the Library of Conservatism on October 8, 2022. From left to right: Andreas Kinneging, Egon Flaig, Wolfgang Fenske, Karlheinz Weißmann and David Engels.

On December 7, 2022, Fantini took part in a conference organized by the Danube Institute, titled "800 years of the Golden Bull." He read his speech from his laptop, which sported the logo of the French ultra-Catholic and Identitarian Academia Christiana.138

A month earlier, TEC had co-hosted an event together with Academia Christiana, alongside the far-right Institut Iliade (Iliade Institute), La Nouvelle Librairie,, TVLibertés, and Le Nouveau Présent Hebdo. The event was advertised on Facebook as follows:139

The 2nd Academia Christiana conference will be held in Paris on Saturday, November 5th. An exciting event not to be missed! Secession or Reconquest? A central question that every conservative must keep in mind today. Should we run for elections or start a family? How to be in the world without being of the world?


In late January 2023, Fantini participated in an exclusive meeting in a Carmelite monastery where journalists and publicists met Viktor Orbán,140 which Fantini recounted in an article for Newsweek.16

Working Group on Conservatism in Europe

In March 2023, Fantini took part in the second workshop of the Working Group on Conservatism in Europe. According to TEC's Facebook page:141

The [currently six-partner] ‘Working Group on Conservatism in Europe’ held its second workshop in Brussels recently.

Local host this time was New Direction, which sponsored an exchange of ideas about the rule of law, security, and the future of the EU.

We are grateful to Ofir Haivry and the Danube Institute for this initiative!

On April 13, 2023, Fantini appeared on the Free Market Road Show in Sevilla, Spain, organized by the Austrian Economics Center.142

The following day, he spoke at an FMRS event in Madrid.143

European Resource Bank

From April 14 to April 17, Fantini took part in a meeting by the European Resource Bank.5 His online CV provided on the event website states:3

Alvino-Mario Fantini is editor-in-chief and publisher of the quarterly print and online publication, The European Conservative, and is managing director of the European Center for Documentation and Information, a Vienna think-tank. ... He has also worked as an editor, researcher and speechwriter for several multilateral organizations. ... He works, intermittently and remotely, as a doctoral candidate (in philosophy) at Leiden University (research topic: “The Philosophical Roots of ‘Bannonism’: Towards an Understanding of Current Nationalist, Populist and Sovereigntist Movements”). He is a board member of the Center for European Renewal in Amsterdam, and a member of the Philadelphia Society, Mont Pelerin Society, Samuel Johnson Society and the Institut d’Études Politiques. ... He is currently a member of the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal in Mecosta (Michigan) and the Abigail Adams Institute in Cambridge (Massachusetts).

On April, 25, 2023, TEC organized a colloquium in Brussels, "The Defense of Civilization: A Symposium on Sir Roger Scruton." Among the speakers were Fantini, Ferenc Hörcher, Sebastian Morello, and Patrick Overeem.144

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