How successfully did Mussolini manage opposition to his regime

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How successfully did Mussolini manage opposition to his regime


Mussolini maintained a powerful dictatorship, consolidating his power through successfully eliminating any potential opposition from rival political parties, militant fascists, the local government, and the media. To a large extent Mussolini was successful in removing these threats to his regime, and was able to manage opposition successfully, largely because there was limited opposition. There did remain restraints to Mussolini's power from traditional institutions such as the Monarchy and the Church. However the potential threat of these oppositions could not be removed and therefore Mussolini successfully worked to gain their support.


Firstly Mussolini successfully removed any rival opposition in parliament. The greatest possible restraint upon Mussolini's rise to power was the majority of political rivals in parliament who could win a majority of the votes and depose Mussolini - the fascist party as a result of the May 1921 elections had a mere 35 seats in parliament. Mussolini determined to remove any potential threat to his party pushed for the Acerbo Law to be passed in July 1923. The Acerbo law stated that the party that had gained the majority of votes in the election would receive two-thirds of the seats in parliament (provided that it had at least gained 25% of the votes cast). The passing of the Acerbo law transformed the electoral system and secured Mussolini's parliamentary position after the March 1924 elections, in which the fascists gained 65% of total votes cast. However it also gathered increased opposition towards Mussolini to which Mussolini acted powerlessly against. On the 30th of May 1924 Giacomo Matteotti, a respected socialist criticised the Fascists for their corruption and use of intimidation to secure power, and as a consequence, two months later he was found dead. The murder of Matteotti created a huge uproar in which socialists and the Popolari boycotted parliament to force the king to dismiss Mussolini, this was known as the 'Aventine Secession' and had the potential to remove Mussolini from power had it not been the support of the King. However Mussolini did survive the Aventine Secession and successfully regained dominant control of parliament.

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After removing the threat of rival political parties Mussolini was successful in removing the opposition from within the fascist party. Mussolini faced pressure from the more radical elements of the party, the ras led by Roberto Farannaci. Farannaci became increasingly prominent in his criticisms against Mussolini's liberal economic policies, therefore to manage opposition Mussolini appointed Farannaci as the secretary of the Fascist party. This was to an extent successful as Farannaci was able to tame the violent ras. Farannaci in 1925 enacted a campaign of sqaudrisiti violence against all leaders of the PNF who were not loyal to Mussolini ...

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