• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explain what Mussolini hoped to gain by entering the Second World War in 1940

Extracts from this document...


Transfer-Encoding: chunked June 2012 EXPLAIN WHAT MUSSOLINI HOPED TO GAIN BY ENTERING THE SECOND WORLD WAR IN 1940. (8) Mussolini had no option but to declare Italy 'non-belligerent' in September 1939 as Italy were completely unprepared for war. This was a humiliating move for Mussolini who had aimed to create an aggressive and warlike nation to make Italy great, feared and respected and to make Italy a major international power. It was a blow to his own prestige and he resented his inferior position. In 1940 Mussolini could no longer stand to be out of war. Germany had become the dominant force in Europe and Mussolini motivated by greed declared war on Great Britain and France in June 1940. ...read more.


The scale of the German victories of the autumn of 1939 and the early summer of 1940 stimulated Mussolini?s greed. There was now the prospect of large rewards if Italy joined the war on Germany?s side. It appeared that the war would soon be won by Germany. It was, therefore, imperative to ?assist? Germany before the opportunity to gain booty was lost. Mussolini was afraid of missing out on the spoils of victory and craved territorial gains. He feared being isolated in a German dominated Europe. He felt great rivalry with Hitler and resented his inferior standing. Italy had been steadily becoming an ?economic colony? of Germany?s; Italy was dependent on Germany for the purchase of many of its exports; Germany owed Italy $40 million ? Italy wanted to secure the payment of this debt by keeping Germany ?sweet?. ...read more.


Mussolini was keen to present himself as a great military leader. Mussolini did not want to be regarded as of similar ?metal? as the neutral democrats of 1914. By 1940 many leading Fascists had come around to the idea of war and saw the benefits of entering, like Grandi and Ciano. Perhaps Mussolini thought that by entering the war he could distract the Italian people from the failures of his domestic policy. For these reasons Mussolini decided to enter the war in June 1940. However it was a major error, as Italy was still economically and militarily unprepared and 'bled while' due to Abyssinia and Spain. There were limited resources and no war time economy. Therefore it led to the eventual fall of Mussolini and the collapse of his fascist regime. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Why did Germany lose the second world war?

    The allied convoys now had very little opposition in the Atlantic and so they could deliver thousands more troops as well as much needed supplies and equipment to the soldiers in Europe. The strengthening and freshening of the allied troops gave a great morale boost to them, and so Germany's

  2. Hitlers Germany

    Fearing a civil war if the Nazis were not won over, Schleicher agreed to lift the ban on the SA and to call new Reichstag elections in return for Hitler's consent. Hitler agreed. Bruening was dismissed on May 30 and the Papen government installed.

  1. Vietnam war

    fled that year, and by 1979 a further 100,000 Effects of War on North Vietnam (DRV) * Women were mobilised in the rural workforce � made up 70% of rural workforce. * 400 000 tonnes per annum of food supplies were obtained from China and the USA.

  2. Unification of Germany and the period up to the second world war

    value was placed on nationalism, huge population explosion, organization was that Bismarck decided of all arrangements, and assembly would be bundersrat and reichstag and 25 states and also had free towns like hamburg, 65 percent of the population was Prussian and more authoritarian like really III.

  1. The battle of Britain was an important turning point in the second world war ...

    Some of their fighter pilots joined up with Britain and helped them fight Germany in the sky. Germany's mistake was that when Hitler ordered his planes to bomb London. He did this because Britain bombed Berlin and he was angry about it and wanted to get his own back.

  2. How did The Second world War help Mussolini Gain power?

    However Mussolini was never a convinced socialist. The views he expressed in his newspaper were not consistent. When Archaism was popular amongst the Italian workers Mussolini advocated anarchist ideas in his newspaper. This seemed to indicate that he was an opportunist. He was very interested in winning followers and getting power for himself.

  1. The causes of the second world war - Problems 1919-1924.

    The League of Nations eventually set up a commission, led by Lytton, to inquire into the Manchuria situation. In October Japan withdrew from the League in protest and ignored its rulings. The league took no action. � In June 1932 the Lausanne Conference succeeded in canceling reparations.

  2. To what extent did the post-war peacemaking and peacekeeping efforts affect international relations leading ...

    Either way, the source was useful in obtaining pertinent information. (86 words) Section D- Analysis Following the Great Depression and the breakup of the League of Nations, France was unable to intervene with the rise of Nazi Germany in any peacekeeping efforts.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work