Mediterranean into a “Roman lake” once again. He held a great deal of power over crowds when he gave his rousing speeches.[Only joy at finding such a leader] can explain the enthusiasm [Mussolini] evoked at gathering after gathering, where his mere presence drew the people from all sides to greet him with frenzied acclamations. Even the men who first came out of mere curiosity and with indifference or even hostile feelings gradually felt themselves fired by his personal magnetic influence. . .—Margherita G. Sarfhatti, The Life of Benito Mussolini(tr. Frederic Whyte)
In the early 1920s, Benito Mussolini rose to power in Italy. The Italian people were inspired by Mussolini's promises to bringstability and glory to Italy.Control by Terror Mussolini organized his supporters into “combat squads.” The squads woreblack shirts to emulate an earlier nationalist revolt. These Black Shirts, or party militants, rejected the democratic process in favor of violent action. They broke up socialist rallies,
smashed leftist presses, and attacked farmers’ cooperatives. Fascist gangs used intimidation and terror to oust elected officials in northern Italy. Hundreds were killed as new gangs of Black Shirts sprang up all over Italy. Many Italians accepted these actions because they, too, had lost faith in constitutional government.In 1922, the Fascists made a bid for power. At a rally in Naples, they announced their intentionto go to Rome to demand that the government make changes. In the March on Rome, tensof thousands of Fascists swarmed toward the capital. Fearing civil war, King Victor Emmanuel III asked Mussolini to form a government as prime minister. Mussolini entered the city triumphantly on October 30, 1922. Without firing a shot, Mussolini thus obtained a legal appointment from the king to lead Italy.
Mussolini and the National Fascist Party led the March on Rome in October 1922. Fewer than 30,000 men participated in the march, but the king feared a civil war and asked Mussolini to form a cabinet.1.DRAW CONCLUSIONSHow did postwar disillusionment contribute to Mussolini's rise?