Tuesday 7th of February 2023

fascist UK supported fascist italy, before fascist ukraine was supported by fascist USA......

Benito Mussolini’s seizure of power in Italy in 1922 was secretly assisted by the British government, which bet on the fascist dictator to protect its interests in the Mediterranean, a new book claims.

Backed by violent gangs of black shirts, Mussolini set up a fascist regime in Italy in the 1920s, banned Jews from public life in the 1930s and sided with Hitler in the Second World War before he was lynched by partisans in 1945.


by Tom Kington


Although he battled the British in Africa during the war, archives show that Mussolini partly owed his rapid rise to British officials who helped to organise his 1922 march on Rome, according to Giovanni Fasanella, co-author of Nero di Londra.


“The British helped orchestrate the march and propel Mussolini to power because they wanted to make him the key figure in a government which would be useful to them,” he told The Times.

Thousands of Mussolini’s followers descended in Rome on October 28, persuading Italy’s king to ask him to form a government.

Documents from the UK National Archives reveal that the British ambassador to Italy, Sir Ronald Graham, was in touch with the leaders of the march days before the event as they gathered in a palazzo in Perugia owned by Romeo Adriano Gallenga Stuart, a half-English aristocrat who the book claims was an informant for British intelligence.

During the march Graham cabled London to say one of his secretaries was being “constantly” updated by the marchers as they converged on Rome. “We believe the ambassador was giving the fascists useful advice,” the book’s second co-author, Mario José Cereghino, said.

British officials hoped to use Mussolini to give them a strategic edge over rival powers in the Mediterranean.

According to recently released documents, Sir Samuel Hoare, who knew Mussolini when he was head of British intelligence in Rome between 1917 and 1918, later claimed that British money had been used to “form the Fascist Party and to finance the march on Rome”.

Nero di Londra will be published in Italy this week before the 100th anniversary of the march and as Mussolini returns to the spotlight after the election victory last month of the Brothers of Italy party, which evolved from Italy’s postwar fascist MSI party.

After the 1922 march Graham met Mussolini and sent London a glowing report, saying he was impressed by his “discipline”.

Mussolini’s secret relationship with Britain had started five years earlier in 1917, when he was working as a journalist and Hoare put him on the payroll of British intelligence, paying him £500 in five months. Italy at the time was fighting alongside the UK, France and the US in the First World War but Britain was afraid it would pull out of the conflict, just as revolutionary Russia did in 1918.

Flush with British money, Mussolini, then 34, urged his newspaper readers to keep up the war effort and sent his gang of violent veterans to break up peace protests.

Hoare, who later became Lord Templewood, revealed in 1954 that he had recruited Mussolini, before the British historian Peter Martland found evidence of payments in Hoare’s papers, which were made public in 2001.

Nero di Londra adds new details to those years, claiming Hoare used the codename The Count for Mussolini and worked with senior Italian freemasons to aid the dictator’s rise. British intelligence officers also used the Rome correspondent of The Times, William Kidston McClure, as middleman for communicating with pro-war groups.

Fasanella said Hoare brought to Rome his experience of working in the UK with the Anti-Socialist Union, which broke up left-wing meetings. “Hoare had specialised in the use of violence and propaganda in Britain and he brought that method to Italy,” he said. Cereghino added: “Mussolini’s career between 1917 and 1922 would not have taken the path we know without the influence of the British conservative establishment.”










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