It was the fear of communism that was mainly responsible for Mussolini coming to power in Italy in 1922, and for staying there so long. Explain whether you agree or disagree with this view.

Before 1922, Mussolini was a socialist, he had founded a fascist party with a socialist and republican programme and also showed sympathy toward factory occupations. This made the businesspersons worried because fascists were anti- business, anti-church and anti-monarchy. This had a great impact on the election of 1919 in which no seats were won by Mussolini’s party. Due to this defeat in the elections and failure of the factory occupations, Mussolini became the supporter of private property and businesses and attracted funds from wealthy businesspersons.
In late 1920, fascists started opposed and attacked socialists. This won the confidence of private businesses as they saw his as protector of their property and guarantee them law and order. The Pope also started supporting Mussolini when he began to give conciliatory speeches about the church. All this happened when Mussolini dropped the socialist and republican programme and was considered as a good anti-communist weapon. In the 1922 he won the elections and came into power.
That’s why we can say that fear of communism was mainly responsible for Mussolini success. The change from extreme left to extreme right was the key.


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