Revision NotesYegor Lanovenko
Rise to Power
The Liberal Government has never had much support. From 1911 - unstable coalitions.The Mutilated Victory - Italy with 600 000 soldiers dead in the war gained very little, did notFiume - which was important for them. 1914 saw the worst unrests.By 1915, 5 million immigrated to the USA, which was seen as humiliation. Plus 2 millionunemployment from the returned soldiers.The debt by the end of the war was 85 million lira, compared to the 16 million in 1914.In 1919, 32% of the votes in election went to the Socialists, which horrified all the MiddleClasses. The Liberals did little to pacify the workers appealing for better wages andworking hours. NItti tried to encourage the factory owners to appease the workers. In thecountryside, peasants started to occupy land from their landlords.1919-1920 - The Two Red Years - where there was most strikes and unrest and the fear ofa Socialist revolution was the biggest. This fear pushed many to support the emergingFascists.Mussolini was working in a Socialist newspaper, but moved away from Socialism as hefavoured war, and the Socialists called it an “Imperialist Adventure”.He establishes a new ideology to help the “combatants and producers”, i.e. soldiers,farmers and factory workers. The movement was yet without any clear ideology in 1919.Giolitti was always too scared to use force against the workers on strikes, as in 1920 when400 000 workers occupied the factories. Even though these occupations were alwaysunsuccessful, they weakened the position of the government in the eyes of the public.Another success for the Socialists in 1920 Elections.In 1920, the right in the North of Italy began to take over - the Fascist Squads weresupported by the landowners who were terrified by the peasants unrests. The local Fascistleaders, ras, used more and more apparent violence to increase the visibility of control andorganization. Mussolini promote it in his own newspaper.In 1921, the Fascists won 35 seats. Giolitti hoped to form an anti-Socialist coalition withthem, thinking the Fascists would get absorbed by the system. The coalition lasted onemonth. Mussolini moves away from the idea of Social reforms to win the support of factoryowners. From 1921-22 there was a lot of unrest, and the squads contributed to it.