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

To what extent would you agree that Mussolinis invasion of Abyssinia was his greatest failure in foreign policy in the period 19221939?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Transfer-Encoding: chunked Jun 2012 To what extent would you agree that Mussolini?s invasion of Abyssinia was his greatest failure in foreign policy in the period 1922?1939? [22] It is undeniable that Mussolini?s invasion of Abyssinia was his greatest failure in foreign policy in the period 1922?1939. In examining this view a good place to start is examining what occurred and what the disastrous effects were for Italy. Ethiopia was an opportunity to lend enormous prestige to the Fascist regime at home, proving the Duce?s claim that he and he alone, could restore Italy to international grandeur. It was a large country and not been part of a European country?s empire; it lacked the means to conduct a modern war. Mussolini also liked the prospect of avenging Adowa. At the oasis of Wal-Wal, a skirmish took place between Italian and Ethiopian troops, in which 30 Italian troops were killed. Mussolini immediately demanded a full apology and hefty compensation. The Ethiopian government replied by requesting a League of Nations investigation. The League agreed and set up an inquiry. ...read more.

Middle

The European powers, led by Britain and backed by her Mediterranean fleet, demanded that Italy withdraw. The Duce had little choice but to agree and, although he did receive the 50 million lire compensation, he did not receive a full apology from the Greeks. The episode was hailed in Italy as a great success for dynamic Fascism, but it also showed that, although Mussolini might be able to bully smaller powers, he was unable to stand up to the great powers, and is therefore a failure. However, the consequences were not quite as severe as with Abyssinia so therefore Abyssinia was a greater failure. Furthermore, we could consider the Spanish Civil War as a greater failure than Abyssinia. A period of consolidation would have made most sense, giving Italy the chance to replace losses caused by the Ethiopian war. Yet, even before the conflict was over, Mussolini had made another commitment ? assisting Franco?s National Front. Italian intervention was based on a sensible wish to have a friendly right wing regime at the western end of the Mediterranean rather than a communist one. ...read more.

Conclusion

Italy, exhausted by its commitments in Ethiopia and Spain, could do little but accept its new ally?s expansion southwards. A powerful Germany with a frontier bordering Italy?s German-speaking provinces was a high price to pay for adventures elsewhere. It made Mussolini increasingly dependent upon German goodwill. The Pact of Steel was singed in May 1939. It may have been intended to promote Mussolini?s ambitions in Africa and the Mediterranean but it also threatened to trap a militarily unprepared Italy into supporting German expansionist plans in northern Europe. With the collapse of the Stresa Front Mussolini became more isolated he was forced to turn towards Germany for increased help and support by 1939. This alliance would prove disastrous in the Second World War, suggesting that Mussolini?s closer relations with Hitler were a foreign policy failure. In conclusion, I believe Mussolini?s invasion of Abyssinia was his greatest failure in foreign policy in the period 1922?1939 because it was the catalyst event that led to all his other failures during this period, such as the Spanish War and his relations with Germany. ...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. Marked by a teacher

    Assess the successes and failures of Mussolini's domestic policy.

    5 star(s)

    annually, and by 1939, this figure had risen to 80 million quintals. However, the problem with this was that the price of grain remained very high, and so trade figures did not increase. This passion for producing more grain also meant that other agriculture outputs, such as other crops that

  2. How effective was Mussolini's Foreign Policy from 1922- 1945.

    Mussolini wanted to be seen as the heart of European politics and to do this he knew he had to be on good terms with Britain and France (main powers). Mussolini played a foremost part in the Locarno talks by settling differences and keeping the peace "improved the lasing chances of peace in Europe" (Lamb).

  1. History - Mussolini's Rise to Power

    by the number of Blackshirts, was enough for Mussolini to be appointed Prime Minister, maybe through fear or, again, naivety. Mussolini's character and personality must also be taken into account. Il Duce had many attributes that contributed to his authoritative persona and charismatic appeal.

  2. Why did Mussolini's Fascist Party become popular in Italy after the First World War?

    Although he tried to build the new city in southern Italy called Mussolinia, only a few foundations were finished. If his plans did not work quickly, Mussolini usually gave up. Most Italians found themselves getting worse off by the early 1930s.

  1. Hitlers Germany

    All the twenty-one defendants at Nuremberg pleaded innocent, and only a few of them admitted that they were guilty of serious transgressions. They also questioned the legality of being tried by non-Germans and by legal principles and procedures for which they claimed there was no precedent.

  2. To What Extent Did Mussolini Achieve his Foreign Policy Aims of making Italy "Great ...

    Mussolini made himself Foreign Minister between 1922 and 1929, but Fascist actual achievements in foreign policy during these years were extremely modest. Mussolini's claim was, " I want to make Italy great, respected and feared". Yet his policy seemed somewhat erratic.

  1. How successful was Mussolini's foreign policy between 1922 and 1939?

    In 1924, an agreement was made between Mussolini and Yugoslavia over the port of Fiume, stating that is should go to Italy. As a result a diplomatic relationship was formed between the Yugoslavian government and the Italian fascist state, despite the fact that Mussolini was extremely anti-communist.

  2. Critically evaluate the successes and failures of Mussolini's domestic policies in Italy between 1922 ...

    Many incentives were placed to encourage marriage and child-birth. Marriage loans were given to increase the desire for children, and as more chilrden were born, less of the loan needed to be paid back. Mussolini himself stated that 12 children is the ideal number for the average family to have.

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