Why should a news organization have a reporter based full-time in Rome?

According to FNC’s Rome-based correspondent Greg Burke, it’s a no-brainer. ”There are more than a billion Catholics, and you have the Vatican here,” he told TVNewser during this writer’s recent vacation to Italy. “You’re always going to have some news out of the Vatican.”

Not to mention that despite the recent political departure of Italy’s never-dull prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, the country “produces good, colorful stories.” For example: the trial of Amanda Knox, and the wrecked Costa Concordia cruise liner.

Important storylines could originate from Italy this summer as well, considering the shaky state of the eurozone. It’s evidence of what Burke predicts will be a news “comeback” for Rome, which experienced its greatest recent media crush in 2005, when Pope John Paul II passed away. The city, Burke says, “is important for a lot of reasons.”

Italy is a second home to Burke, who’s been there for nearly twenty years – first working for Reuters, then for TIME magazine.  Just a few weeks ago, in fact, he obtained dual U.S.-Italian citizenship. One benefit: near-seamless travel within the European Union.

More, including a video interview with Burke, after the jump.

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