“They must make peace,” stated Mussolini. If they did not, they would lose their empire, or perhaps their home islands would actually be invaded and captured by the terrible might of the premier Fascist power in the world, which all could now see wielded the most fearsome war machine ever seen. Italy would then be unopposed in making the Mediterranean “Mare Nostrum” and extending Italian rule across North Africa and into the Balkan Peninsula in south-east Europe.
Tag Archives: Hitler
The Uses of History, 32 – Mussolini and Fascism, 4
Mussolini and Hitler were able to provide spectacle and a strong propaganda image of mutual regard and ideological kinship, but there was always tension and ambiguity in their relationship. All the more among the leadership of their respective parties and governments. As the German power grew and Hitler’s triumphs accumulated, Mussolini felt increasingly threatened by comparison and he was determined to establish the credibility of Italy’s (and his) claim to national greatness by taking an independent course.
The Uses of History, 31 – Mussolini and Fascism, 3
Hitler admired Mussolini’s willingness to defy the Western democracies and the League and his canny judgment that he would get away with it. He was taking notes for his own future plans of expansion in the not-too-distant future. Mussolini was showing up the weakness, which the Fuhrer considered moral failure, of his opponents. This was a lesson definitely not lost on him. Hitler rarely admired anyone else, and respected no other living statesman – with one exception, the Duce!
The Uses of History, 29 – Mussolini and Fascism, 1
It is no longer very popular to suggest that anything positive or of lasting benefit was produced under a Fascist regime that lasted slightly longer than 20 years. At the time, for the first ten years or so, a good many Italians (obviously not of socialist or leftist persuasion) thought that overall conditions in the country really improved. Most people had jobs and could make ends meet, contrary to the unrest and turmoil of the years before “Musso” took power. “The trains actually run on time,” was one famous quip. The Mafia was reigned in, suffering the same brutal treatment from Fascist strong-arms that they were accustomed to use against their opponents. Godfathers going to prison was not unusual.
Screamers and Yellers of both Right and Left are guilty of the same offences and of equally undermining democracy. Pushed to their logical ends (as Mr. Spock would have it), both roads end up in the darkness of tyranny and slaughter of all who stand in their way. As Spock tells us, “It is illogical to say that an illegal occupation by the forces of the Right is better or worse than an equally illegal occupation by the forces of the Left.”
The discussion of Fascism current today in the social and mainstream media usually ignores and is largely ignorant of the real, historical experience of Fascism. This is deplorable when these examples are still within living memory of our oldest citizens, many of whom are survivors of the terror of having lived under real fascist governments and persecution.
This Jesus Business
Why? What do these masses of the underclasses see in him that we of the rich and self-sufficient Western uber-class cannot or choose to no longer see? Jesus identified most profoundly with the weak, the poor, the oppressed, the down-trodden, the forgotten, those of no account. He challenged the mighty and powerful of the elites of whatever sort. The oppressed and hopeless and least esteemed are still those that flock to him, just as it was two thousand years ago. And, just as it was two thousand years ago, the rich despise him, mock him, and seek to kill him/get rid of him.
The Third Way, 22: The Allure of Rome, Part 3
Part of Rome’s genius was adoption and adaptation—the ability to absorb and assimilate all comers, repurposing them to serve Rome’s dominant vision as the great civilizer of the world, the great unifier giving everyone equal access to the same gods and guiding principles. The Emperor was the supreme symbol, the creator and maintainer of this unity—the “Saviour of mankind”, the “Son of God” (Jupiter, Zeus, Amon-Ra, Baal, whichever high deity was relevant to the people in question). Every subject and citizen of the Empire owed their final allegiance to the Emperor as the incarnation of Rome’s “genius”, or “Spirit-Guide”.
The Third Way, 20: The Allure of Rome, Part 1
Rome incarnated a direct claim by humans to establish an eternal kingdom on earth by right of conquest and coercive power. Local gods could bow and be absorbed into Rome’s in order to survive, or be annihilated like those of the Carthaginians and Druidic Celts. The Jews and Christians challenged Rome’s nature at its root. Both paid a massive price in millions of lives for continuing to seek and honour the true Creator.