The emergence of Benito Mussolini

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  • The emergence of Benito Mussolini
    • Conditions
      • Father's socialist ideology
      • Good oratorical skills
      • Socialist politics -> was arrested
        • Worked for socialist newspapers
      • Weak and divided Italy
    • Why?
      • WW1 (1914-18)
        • Against Italian intervention at first but later in favour of it because he wanted Italy to  reclaim land from the Austro- Hungarian Empire
          • Expelled from the Italian Socialist Party because of pro-war views
        • Fought in the war from 1915 until 1917
        • Demonstrated that Italy was unprepared for war
          • Inflation and debt followed
      • The Red Two Years (1919-21)
        • Protest against the post-war social and economic conditions
        • Inspired by the Russian Revolution
        • Food riots, looting and street violence
          • Government lost control
          • Industrialists and landowners turned to paramilitary organisations because the government under Giolitti's policies didn't offer effective protection to their properties
    • Methods
      • The Italian Combat Group, March 1919
        • Inspired by the Roman Empire
        • Ex-soldiers, discontented socialists and anarchists
        • Italian regions had their own fascist leaders but they agreed that Mussolini should lead Fascism at a national level
      • Appointed as prime minister
      • Gave titles to officers to make them feel special
      • Giacomo Matteotti
        • Killed by fascists after insulting Mussolini
          • Injected fear to the public
      • Roman Catholic Church
        • Mussolini portrayed himself as a good Catholic to gain the church's support
          • E.g. renewed vows to his wife and christened his children in a Catholic Church in 1923


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