Mussolini, Benito

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Was Benito Mussolini's rise to power due to his particular abilities, to national political and social issues, or to good fortune? Why?

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Mussolini’s rise to power has to be attributed both to his personal skills and to the issues that were important in Italy following World War I.  The fact that the issues of the time worked in Mussolini’s favor was good luck from his perspective.

No leader is able to take the kind of power that Mussolini took (as opposed to having it handed down to him like a Kim Jong Il) without having skills.  This is particularly true for someone like Mussolini who rose from nowhere (he was the son of a blacksmith) to gain such total power.  Therefore, we can clearly see Mussolini had skills.

But Mussolini also rose due to the issues of the time.  Italy was, at the time, in serious turmoil.  There were many strikes and peasants were seizing land from large landholders.  In this sort of a situation, a party that promises law and order, like the Fascists did, is more likely to be embraced.

Therefore, Mussolini’s rise was due to all of these factors.

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