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Was Fascist Italy Truly A Totalitarian Regime?

Discussion in 'Information Requests' started by DUCE, Mar 19, 2003.

  1. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    Alright, whether or not you guys think it was or wasn't totalitarian....I'm done my paper, (a small one, only 3,037 words)...
    I'll either post it here or give you all the web addy if I post it on the internet.

    I'd love to get some feed back....good or bad....hopefully there won't be too many poor comments :D [​IMG]

    DUCE
     
  2. PzJgr

    PzJgr Drill Instructor

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    Having been ousted by the grand council, I would say that it was not a totalitarian regime. Lets see how Hitler would have responded if the Reichstag voted him out. NOT!
     
  3. Doc Raider

    Doc Raider Member

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    Did your research bring about anything interesting about the relationship between the Fascists and the Vatican?
     
  4. charlie don't surf

    charlie don't surf Member

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    This will be interesting. [​IMG]

    Best regards/ Daniel
     
  5. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    Doc,
    here's a paragraph about what I found....doesn't really have alot to do with the vatican...but it should help...


    The existence of the independent Church presented an extraordinary obstacle for Mussolini. He understood the importance of the Church to the Italian life and soon realized that he could not expect complete political support until an agreement was made with the Vatican, which at the time did not formally recognize the legality of the State. The Lateran Pact of 1929 allowed the Church to be the only authorized non-fascist organization in Italy. The contract reached between the Church and the State marked the peak of Mussolini's leadership.

    -The Lateran Pact consisted of a treaty between Italy and the Vatican and a concordad that regulated relations between the State and the Catholic Church. The treaty produced and independent Vatican State, and recognized the control of the government.


    DUCE

    [ 20. March 2003, 09:26 AM: Message edited by: DUCE ]
     
  6. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Sure Duce,

    learning about the fascists and Italy sounds good. But maybe you should send it in several parts, so that there´s not too much stuff to swallow at one time ??!

    That was kinda interesting, that deal with the Vatican and Mussolini.

    "On February 11th, 1929, an historic treaty was signed between the Italian Government and the Vatican re-establishing the political power and diplomatic standing of the Catholic Church, which had been lost when Italy seized the Papal territories in 1870."

    http://www.biblelight.net/wound.htm

    Upon ratification of the Lateran Treaty, the papacy recognized the state of Italy, with Rome as its capital. Italy in return recognized papal sovereignty over the Vatican City, a minute territory of 44 hectares (109 acres), and secured full independence for the pope. A number of additional measures were agreed upon. Article 1, for example, gave the city of Rome a special character as the "centre of the Catholic world and place of pilgrimage." Article 20 stated that all bishops were to take an oath of loyalty to the state and had to be Italian subjects speaking the Italian language.

    With the signing of the concordat of 1985, Roman Catholicism was no longer the state religion of Italy. This change in status brought about a number of alterations in Italian society. Perhaps the most significant of these was the end to compulsory religious education in public schools.

    http://hist.academic.claremontmckenna.edu/jpetropoulos/holocaust/laterantreaty.htm

    [​IMG]

    Just thinking about Hitler and the church or Stalin and the church...quite different!
     
  7. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    Right you are Kai!

    But I have a limit as to how much I can write per section (quite confusing if you ask me....)

    Anyway, I'll take your suggestion to heart and put in sections at a time, starting tomorrow. :D :D

    DUCE
     
  8. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    ...or today for that matter, I have nothing better to do in my spare....


    In order to determine if Fascist Italy was truly a totalitarian state, one must first have some knowledge as to what totalitarianism is as well as the differences between totalitarian and authoritarian governments. The term “totalitarian” was first used by democratic critics in Italy during the 1920s to describe the new Fascist government, and was eventually used to refer to Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union in the 1930s. Historians, such as Bruce F. Pauley, have come to a general definition of totalitarianism, although they still cannot agree as to whether or not the definitions fit entirely with any of the so-called repressive states. They emphasize the following: (1) the great power of the leader, (2) the significance of an exclusive ideology, (3) the existence of a sole mass party, (4) the use of terror to eliminate all opposition, usually carried out by a secret police, (5) censorship over the media as well as the educational systems, and (6) an desire to change the basic social, artistic, and literary values of the country. A totalitarian leader must have complete control over every aspect of the country, including the education system and the military, whereas an authoritarian leader has influence only over the political aspects of the country. With these definitions as a guide, this study will attempt to determine if Fascist Italy was truly a totalitarian regime or if it was a developing dictatorship that had the makings of an authoritarian regime and was unable to reach its entirety due to conditions in Italy as well as those in Europe and the rest of the world.

    ....keep in mind this is only the second draft, so there will be some changes to it.. :D


    DUCE
     
  9. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    As with almost all of the dictatorships, a serious event or series of events took place in order to set the stage for an eventual seizure of power. The fall of the Weimar Republic was a critical step towards the rise of Hitler in Germany during the early 1930s, and the October Revolution of 1917, and the resulting Civil War, played a role in the rise of Bolshevism, consequently leading to Stalin in the USSR. In Italy, it was a number of events that helped Mussolini rise to power. The failures of Liberal Italy, combined with the dissatisfaction of the public over the Treaty of Versailles, were some of the more important factors that lead to the downfall of the former government of the country. The public fear of a revolution, such as the one that had taken place in Russia, as well as the desire for national glory were manipulated to give an advantage to the newest political group, the Fascists. Mussolini had founded the Fasci di Combattimento (literally “Groups for Combat”) on March 23, 1919, which, in 1921, became the Partito Nazionale Fascista, the National Fascist Party, after a congress in Rome . On October 27, 1922, Mussolini’s Fascists marched on Rome; while Mussolini conveniently stayed near the Swiss border, ready to flee if the situation called. On October 29, however, King Victor Emanuel III officially recognized the Fascists as a government party and, at the age of thirty-nine, Mussolini became the youngest Prime Minister in the history of Italy.
     
  10. No.9

    No.9 Ace

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    ’Public fear’? The industrialists/landowners financed Mussolini’s movement on condition he restrained the public from pursuing revolutionary Communism. Utterly ironic as Mussolini started out a left wing Socialist finding direction for his feelings in his education. These sentiments were shared by his parents who named him Benito after a revolutionary. Greater than this was Mussolini’s incredible lust for power which saw him switching to whichever political horse he thought was going to win.

    And, what ‘desire for national glory’? Italy, to this day, is notoriously regional in it’s outlook. Mussolini had delusions of great international status, not the worker in the vineyards. Italy was nearly bust after the Libyan episode and more so after W.W.I.

    You’ve also omitted to say that the generals were emploring the king to let them tackle the blackshirts in Rome, while several of the king’s key advisers were already closet fascists and giving him false advice while shielding him from his generals. They frightened him with talk of him being replaced by cousin Ciano, but, whatever, he was a weak little man who just wanted to be king and had none of the blood and guts his ancestors had.

    No.9
     
  11. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    In 1911, the Italians attacked Libya in North Africa. Mussolini led demonstrations against this attack in Forli. He was arrested and sent to prison for five months. However, his action had got him noticed by socialist movements outside of Forli. He was rewarded with the job of editor of "Avanti" (Forward) the socialist newspaper – an appointment he got in April 1912. Most of the contents in the paper he did himself. The popularity of the paper increased and his views reached many people and thus expanded his influence..

    ---------

    In "Avanti" he wrote

    "Let a single cry arise from the vast multitudes of the proletariat and let it be repeated in the squares and streets of Italy: down with war! The proletariat provides raw material, cannon fodder with which states make their history."

    In October 1915, five months after Italy’s entry into World War One, Mussolini left "Avanti". He now saw the war as a "great drama" not to be missed.

    It is to you, young men of Italy…..that I address my call to arms…..Today I am forced to utter loudly and clearly in sincere good faith the fearful and fascinating word – war!"

    Mussolini still claimed to be a socialist but his colleagues disagreed. At a meeting in Milan they decided to expel him from the Socialist Party. He told them

    "You cannot get rid of me because I am and always will be a socialist. You hate me because you still love me."

    Why did Mussolini change his stance? It is possible that the influence of his father’s nationalism might have taken precedence over his socialism. But Mussolini, like many others in Europe, answered his country’s call when it was needed. In August 1915, Mussolini had been called up for military service.A mortar bomb wounded him in February 1917 and this put an end to his military service.


    -------

    In February 1923, Mussolini and the Fascist Grand Council introduced the Acerbo Law. This law changed election results. Now if one party got just 25% (or more) of the votes cast in an election, they would get 66% of the seats in parliament.

    When it came for Parliament to vote on the Acerbo Law, many politicians agreed to a law that would almost certainly end their political careers if they were not fascists. Why did they do this?

    The gallery in the hall in which the politicians voted was filled with armed fascist thugs who had a good view of anybody who spoke out against the law. The threat was clear and real. If you voted for the law, you would be fine. If you did not, then you were certainly in danger from fascist thugs.

    Mussolini did say in the spring of 1924 that "a good beating did not hurt anyone."

    In the March election that followed the Acerbo Law, the Fascist Party got 65% of the votes cast and, therefore, easily got the 2/3rds of parliamentary seats – a clear majority. That people were intimidated into voting for the Fascists or that the Fascists took ballot papers from those who might have voted against Mussolini were brushed aside. The Fascists who were elected were bound to support Mussolini. In this sense, the Acerbo Law was an important move to dictatorship in Italy.


    ---------

    Blackshirt thugs did beat up critics but that did not stop Giacomo Matteotti from publicly condemning Mussolini. Matteotti was murdered almost certainly by fascists and Mussolini was held responsible for this. There was overwhelming public outrage at the murder as Matteotti was Italy’s leading socialist Member of Parliament. Newspapers and wall posters condemned Mussolini and in the summer of 1924 there was a real possibility that Mussolini would have to resign.

    A number of non-fascist politicians walked out of Parliament in protest at the murder. This gesture only served to play into Mussolini’s hands as it got rid of more parliamentary opposition. The protestors – named the Aventine protestors – appealed to the king, Victor Emmanuel, to dismiss Mussolini but the king disliked the protestors more than Mussolini because they lent towards republicanism and he refused to take action.

    ---------

    The electoral system was changed again in 1928. Mussolini said after the change:

    Any possibility of choice is eliminated…..I never dreamed of a chamber like yours."

    Workers and employers unions (now known as corporations) were entitled to draw up the names of 1000 people they wanted considered for parliament. The Grand Council selected 400 of these names i.e. people they would approve of. The list of 400 names was presented to the electorate for approval. They could only vote for or against the whole list – not the individual candidates. In 1929, 90% of the electorate voted for the list and in 1934, this figure had increased to 97%. However, all those on the list were Grand Council approved so they were no more than ‘lap dogs’ for Mussolini with no real political power. In 1939, Parliament was simply abolished.

    The power of the Fascists was even felt at regional and local level where mayors, who had been very powerful at a local level, were replaced by magistrates appointed in Rome and answerable to Rome alone.

    ---------

    Like Britain and France, Italy had joined in the so-called "Scramble for Africa" in the C19. However, the prize territories had been conquered by others and Italy was left with unimportant areas such as Eritrea and Somaliland. The Italians had attempted to expand in eastern Africa by joining Abyssinia to her conquests, but in 1896, the Italians were heavily defeated by the Abyssinians at the Battle of Adowa.

    This defeat had an enormous impact on Italian pride. The loss of 6000 men against a backward army from Abyssinia was difficult for the Italian people to comprehend. However, this defeat did not stop politicians in Italy planning for a new attempt to take over Abyssinia

    As well

    Italy got very little out of the Treaty of Versailles. She had fought on the side of the Allies and expected more as a member of the conquering nations. In fact, Orlando, the Italian representative at Versailles, had been barely spoken to by the American, British and French representatives. This by itself, insulted Italian national pride.

    Mussolini’s declaration of war on Ethiopia followed the pattern of Italian Prime Minister Francesco Crispi (1887-1891) who attempted to implement the Treaty of Uccialli (1890) in Ethiopia. However, the Treaty was fraudulent because, the European version was written to create the deception that Emperor Menelik had given Italy territory. Contrary to the first version, the second version of the Treaty, written in Amheric, stated the need for cooperation with Italy if Ethiopia desired. There was no reference, in the second version, to extending Italy Ethiopian territory. It was Empress Taitu who challenged the deception of the Treaty before the Italian representative to Emperor Menelik and by becoming directly engaged in implementing military strategy against Italy. The failure of Italy to rectify her deception resulted in the Battle of Adwa and the defeat of Italy.

    Mussolini followed a strategy of deception with Ethiopia not unlike that of his predecessor Crispi in that he claimed territory (WelWel) in Ethiopia that he demanded belonged to Italy. However this was not the case as WelWel was several miles within the boundaries of Ethiopia. Mussolini used this false claim to enter into a vicious campaign against Ethiopia. Italy’s actions led to vigorous diplomatic and military protests on the part of Ethiopia and Ethiopians of the Western Hemisphere.

    http://www.marcusgarveylibrary.org.uk/ww2ethioempire.htm

    ----------

    Versailles

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/education/modern/versaill/versahtm.htm

    Vittorio Orlando was the prime minister of Italy. Italy had declared war on Germany in 1915 after the Secret Treaty of London. In the treaty France and Britain had agreed that Italy would be given the Adriatic coast at the end of the war.
    When Orlando arrived at Versailles he expected France and Britain to keep their promises.

    Italy was given the two small areas of Istria and the South Tirol. The Adriatic coast was made part of a new country called Yugoslavia, which included Serbia and Bosnia.

    Most Italians believed that Italy had been treated very badly at Versailles.
    460,000 Italians had died in the war, but at Versailles Orlando was almost ignored.
    Italy had not been given the land that had been promised at the Secret Treaty of London.
    Italy was heavily in debt, mostly to the USA.

    This led to unemployment and unrest in many parts of Italy from 1919 onwards and led to increasing support for Benito Mussolini, the leader of the Fascist Party. He promised to rebuild Italy and recreate the Roman Empire.

    :eek:


    http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/italy_1900_to_1939.htm
     
  12. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Some info on post WW1 Europe to add to the historic picture here

    $200 billion had been spent on the war and nearly every European country was bankrupt. Only the US and Japan came out more financially secure than when they entered the war. European world dominance was over.


    New democracies rose up in Europe and were very unstable. Austria, Hungary, Germany, France and Italy all had difficulty with democracies. Being ruled for generations by monarchies was hard to overcome as well as a large number of political parties.

    The war in the pacific can also trace some lineage back to Versailles. At the outbreak of WWI, Germany had a small but nonetheless existent overseas empire. The Treaty of Versailles saw to it that this empire was divided up between the victors. Germany had several holdings on mainland China in the prewar years, and these holdings were turned over to Japan after the war for its part in the Allied cause. The result was that Japan now had a strong territorial presence in China--a presence that Japan would use to great effect during its later conquest of that country.

    Of all of the shortcomings of the Treaty of Versailles, perhaps the most unfortunate was the failure of the League of Nations. Woodrow Wilson, the U.S. president during WWI, had included in his Fourteen Points (upon which the Germans had sued for peace) a stipulation for the creation of an international governing body to resolve future conflicts. The League of Nations, as it was called, was based upon a covenant drafted by Wilson (an idealist), the crux of which called for a collective security agreement between member nations. In the event of an attack upon a constituent, other members would be obligated to provide military assistance. Wilson succeeded in convincing the other participants of the peace conference (namely Lloyd George of England and Clemenceau of France) to agree with this clause, but was unable to persuade the United States Senate. The Senate was afraid that the clause would get the U.S. "sucked into all sorts of little wars" across Europe, and thus refused to ratify the Treaty of Versailles unless it were removed or altered. Wilson, however, was adamant that the treaty be left as is--compromise was not an option. Despite Wilson's exhaustive lobbying efforts (which may have contributed to his death), the United States never did ratify the Treaty of Versailles; instead, it signed a separate peace settlement with Germany in the early 1920’s. More importantly, the U.S. did not join the League of Nations--a decision that ultimately condemned it to failure. Had the U.S. lived up to its new position of preeminence and taken an active role in world politics, the Hitlers and Mussolinis and Tojos of the world might have thought twice before embarking down the road to war.


    http://www.qt.org/worldwar/prelude/prelude1-2.html

    [ 25. March 2003, 09:12 AM: Message edited by: Kai-Petri ]
     
  13. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    You two are both right....

    No. 9
    "...The public fear of a revolution...." refers to the majority of the peasants, who were affraid of a Bolshevik revolution....but I have added some info in there to make that a little more clear....

    Kai
    The majority of the info you posted is in my essay as well, just in different sections....


    But thank you both for your oppinions, I'll make the necessary changes [​IMG] I've also decided to post my paper on the web...so instead of writing a paragraph a day I'll just post the link when it's done.

    Thank you again,
    DUCE
     
  14. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Sorry, Duce,

    If that made you change your mind of putting your work here. That was not my meaning. Indeed I put quite alot of facts here but I am not making any assumptions on the data as it is straight from the sites. Actually I thought you´d do it here.As far as I know some of this info may be wrong footed if some special data is missing?!

    Did Mussolini leave or was he kicked out of the socialist party?

    Did Italy however get almost everything it wanted after the Versailles negotiations? ( some sites claim yes some say not, I´m not familiar with this). Did Mussolini use this to his advantage?

    Mussolini and church?

    Italian foreign policy since the late 1800? Position of England and France in the Mediterranean after WW1 and Italy?
    Austria and Mussolini?

    King and Mussolini.....
     
  15. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    No No Kai, nothing like that, I'd just thought it would be easier for me to post it on a website :D

    Alright, as for your questions:
    Did Mussolini leave or was he kicked out of the socialist party?
    He was kicked out due to his thoughts on WWI (pro-war)

    Did Italy however get almost everything it wanted after the Versailles negotiations?
    Italy gained almost nothing from the Treaty of Versailles....they had demanded land which was not given to them developing into a "mutilated victory"

    as for the others, I will answer when I get home, I'm off to soccer!

    Ciao,
    DUCE
     
  16. Kai-Petri

    Kai-Petri Kenraali

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    Good to hear, Duce!

    And soccer is good for you! Any favourite players...?

    [​IMG]

    Mia Hamm

    [​IMG]

    My fave non-Finnish player, Ryan Giggs, left winger! Man United!

    :D
     
  17. De Vlaamse Leeuw

    De Vlaamse Leeuw Member

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    Yes, my favorite team is Club Brugge!

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  18. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    No real favorite player...but My team is definately Inter Milano and of course, the Italian National Team.
     
  19. DUCE

    DUCE Member

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    If someone could please tell me how to post pictures on here, I'd be glad to show you somme good action shots of my favorite team.

    Thanks
    DUCE
     
  20. No.9

    No.9 Ace

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    Footbal pictures, sure. You close your eyes, say; ”World’s greatest football team”, and shazam!!!

    [​IMG]

    Works every time ! :D

    No.9
     

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