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

To what extent did Mussolini consolidation of power in Italy between 1922 and 1928 depend on violence and terror?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

To what extent did Mussolini consolidation of power in Italy between 1922 and 1928 depend on violence and terror? Mussolini's took years to achieve what could be defined as dictatorship. It is certain that the violence and terror exerted by the fascists helped Mussolini gain dictatorship, but there also many other factors that can explain his consolidation of power. All Italians were expected to obey Mussolini and his Fascist Party. Authority was enforced by the use of the Blackshirts - the nickname for the Fasci di Combattimenti. The men in this unit were usually ex-soldiers and it was their job to bring into line those who opposed Mussolini. The motto of the Blackshirts was "Me ne frego" (I do not give a damn"). The Blackshirts did maintain an iron rule in Italy. One favoured way of making people conform was to tie a 'troublemaker' to a tree, force a pint or two of castor oil down the victim's throat and force him to eat a live toad or frog. This punishment was enough to ensure people kept their thoughts to themselves. He achieved some semblance of power after the March on Rome in 1922 when he was appointed Prime Minister of Italy. ...read more.

Middle

People were intimidated into voting for the Fascists and the Fascists took ballot papers from those who might have voted against Mussolini and were brushed aside, which may explain for the Fascists election results and why less votes were taken in. In this sense, the Acerbo Law was an important move to dictatorship in Italy. Mussolini was also very good at propaganda and he showed the Italian people all the other party's weaknesses and as a result persuaded and gained support from the Socialists and Liberals. One incident almost brought Mussolini's downfall, and his power base almost collapsed after the murder of Matteotti, when great anger gripped Italy. Blackshirt thugs did beat up critics but that did not stop Giacomo Matteotti from publicly condemning Mussolini. Matteotti was murdered by fascists and Mussolini was held responsible for this. It is possible that he did order it although this that cannot be proved. 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, which maybe why he went into hiding from the public. ...read more.

Conclusion

A future prime minister would be chosen from a list drawn by the fascist Grand Council. Although it cannot be said that it was just violence and terror, which brought Mussolini to power, it was a major factor and ensured that many of the key reforms necessary to (develop Italy as a Fascist state) or (support Mussolini's rise) could be implemented. His unorthodox methods were careless, unparliamentarily and may explain the 1924 election results. But many people were frightened of the Fascists and were too scared to speak up against Mussolini, as they feared they could end up like Matteotti. It is clear that Italians felt intimated by the Fascist violence and the secret police. Mussolini's skill played a vital role, but he was also helped by the seemingly blind incompetence of his opponents. The Liberals like Giolitti & Orlando were slow to move into opposition and the left wing was divided between many factions, majority socialists, reformist socialists and communists who all distrusted each other. We must also take into account the fact that Mussolini had his fair share of luck and a prime example is the Kings refusal to declare the army to attack the Fascists on the March on Rome, which would never have put Mussolini in power. However it is also clear that without the violence and terror Italy would not have seen the meteoric rise of Mussolini. Kieran Cooling ...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. To What Extent Did Mussolini Achieve his Foreign Policy Aims of making Italy "Great ...

    Austria was the source of this trouble. Germany had long favoured the absorption of Austria from the Austro-Hungarian Empire, particularly when Hitler was appointed Chancellor in 1933. Mussolini was desperate to avoid the "Anschlufs", as Mussolini regarded Austria as Italy's client state. If she lost this, Mussolini would loose respect from other countries.

  2. How Successfully did Mussolini Consolidate Fascist Power between 1922 and 1925?

    Without the support of the elite the Fascists had no money or solid support at the top of the social hierarchy. If the elite withdrew their support, then the Fascist party may have declined. Mussolini had to cultivate symbiosis with the elites and therefore compromised his radical instincts which were to create a purely Fascist state.

  1. To what extent was Hitlers rise to power due to Economic Problems?

    After the Wall Street Crash in 1929 the German economy was once again plunged into crises with mass unemployment and widespread business failure. Taking 1929 levels of industrial production as 100, by 1932, that of Germany had fallen to 53.36 Americans who had been investing abroad began to return their

  2. Why was Mussolini appointed Prime Minister in 1922?

    Although at first Mussolini had little to do with the squadristi, as soon as they began to receive donations and attract support from rural areas, he was quick to take credit for their role as 'protectors of society'. The squadristi were not forcibly resisted and many people worked along side them with no challenge or opposition.

  1. To what extent did Mussolini make Italy 'great, respected and feared'?

    By the time a Treaty of Friendship had been signed in 1926, Albania was nothing more than an Italian satellite. As one of Mussolini's aims was to dominate Europe then he needed to deal with the Allies, Britain and France, they had foiled his plans to annex Corfu.

  2. Which Was the Most Important Reason for the Bolshevik Consolidation of Power By 1924, ...

    Those who lived in the cities and worked in the factories began to flee back to the country to try and produce some food. City populations declined by over 50%. The Red terror was basically an excuse for the Cheka to murder people not because of their actions but simply because of their beliefs and class origins.

  1. Propaganda was the key factor in the consolidation of the Fascist regime in Italy ...

    Propaganda posters portrayed Mussolini as a skilled man of action, photographs showed him working on construction and irrigation projects; others were also published of him running and horse riding. The photographs and posters were used to reach the high number of illiterate members of Italy.

  2. Nazi consolidation of power in 1933 was primarily due to their use of violence ...

    In response to this event, Frick organised the ?Decree for the Protection of People and State?, with Hindenburg signing it. This resulted in a great deal of civil and political liberties being suspended and to the Nazis advantage, the power of the central government was strengthened.

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