Since 1992, Italy has been wracked by what has been dubbed a "revolution, " the destruction of the First Republic and the launching of the Second Republic. The five parties that once governed Italy are gone; the leaders who guided Italy for forty years stand accused of corruption, many languishing in jail or exile; and a number of politicians and businessmen committed suicide. All these dramatic events stemmed from the exposure of massive political corruption by a small group of Milan magistrates who became national heroes. Yet this controversial book argues instead that the actions of this group amounted to a coup d'etat, conceived by radicalized magistrates in the 1970s and carried out in the 1990s by these same magistrates for explicit political ends that were ultimately achieved in 1996. The authors examine the sources of the magistrates' political support and protection, the intended beneficiaries of their campaign, and their skillful management of the media. Along the way, they trace the magistrates' violation of the norms of due process and defendants' rights and the preferential treatment given to political and business allies.