Benito Mussolini, also know as Il Duce,was the leader of the Fascist party in Italy. He was initially a Socialist but, following the ostensible Italian penchant for switching on a whim, as in World War 1 and World War 2, he soon switched his political alignment for his own political means. The product of this switch was the Fascist party, a party which envisioned a nation in which the state's needs were capital to the operation of society, and in which the individual lived for the betterment of the state.
Mussolini on the cover of Time magazine

Mussolini created the five tenats of Fascism in which he would rule Italy.
1. The state was above the individual.
2. The individual was given sufficient rights- The state gives you rights.
3. The state must expand (imperialism).
4. There is to be a dictatorship with no majority rule.
5. Glory is the reason to make any decision.

Italy, following World War 1, was a nation of weak coalition governments without direction or authority. Generally speaking, the only common contention between all the parties of the various coalitions was a stanch opposition to Bolshevism. Thus, Italy was the ideal catalyst for the rise of a man such as Mussolini.

He came to power in 1922 and was not forced out of power until 1943. During this time, Mussolini attempted to form Italy into his ideal of the Fascist State. this involved the severe limitation of individual rights, expression, the exaltation of the state and an overtly bellicose foreign policy. It is important to note, however, that Mussolini was unable to fully succeed in his vision for Italy. He simply lacked the strength and ability (Things his German protegé Adolf Hitler possessed) to make Italy the totalitarian state espoused in his treatise on Fascism.
When Mussolini came to power, did away with personal freedoms and other Italian political parties. In 1923, the constitutional government that had been instituted in Italy eroded under Fascist control, which allowed Mussolini to distance himself from the chamber.

Mussolini started out as a journalist who was against the Establishment and had a thirst for power. He showed this later in life when he tore down the Italian government and replaced it with what he called "an Anti-Party"². He served for a brief time in the army, but when the war ended he focused his time on bringing in members to the Fascist party.

He belived strongly in imperialism and pursued an expansionist policy, specifically in Italian East Africa.

When World War II started, Italy entered on Germany's side. However, when the Allies landed in Sicily, a meeting of the Grand Council elected to remove Mussolini from authority and restore power to the crown.

Throughout his reign, he attempted to boost Italy's population substantially. It was encouraged that women give birth regularly, and awards, benefits, and honors were given to families with the largest amount of children.


This is a picture of Benito Mussolini found on Wikipedia

. MH.jpg
This is an image of Benito Mussolini and the leader of Germany, Adolf Hitler. Found on Wikipedia.

This is an image of Benito Mussolini (left) with other leaders of the Fascist Party during the March on Rome. Found on Wikipedia.

¹Wolfson, Robert and Laver, John. Years of Change: European History 1890-1990.
²Encyclopedia Britannica. Macropedia, Volume 22.