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, 30 – Mussolini and Fascism, 2

While Mussolini trumpeted the glories of this “great achievement” of crushing one of the only remaining independent African states after its heroic but futile resistance to the power of modern weapons, airpower, and even chemical warfare (a violation of the Geneva Convention), this war had cost Italy dearly, and ultimately Mussolini and his Fascist regime, in several ways.