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Benito Mussolini – Early Life

Benito Mussolini entered the world in 1883.  His mother was a dedicated teacher in the school system with strong Roman Catholic values.  His father was an anarchist and a blacksmith by trade.  He was, also, a member, with active status, of the Italian Socialist Party.  Mussolini’s father was a strong supporter of socialism and had strong beliefs in anarchy.  Benito was named after 3 socialist icons and was raised with atheist beliefs.  Later in his life, Mussolini was baptized in the Catholic faith in an attempt to gain support from the Vatican.

Mussolini gained experience in the blacksmith field while apprenticing with his father but his mother sent him to a boarding school to receive an education.  Benito was a natural student and did very will in school.  He found an interest in Plato and Homer, as well as, philosophers of the time and the teachings of the church.  His studious behavior soon faded and Mussolini was kicked out of school for poor behavior that included stabbing a classmate in the hand.  After joining a public school, he was qualified as an elementary schoolmaster and became a member of the Socialist Party of Italy when he was 18 years old.

One year later, Mussolini had made a move to the country of Switzerland to escape from serving in the military.  He spent so much time studying Marx and Machiavelli that he wasn’t able to keep a job and ended up being deported back to his home country where he volunteered for two years of service with the military. 

In 1908 – six years after his move to Switzerland – Benito Mussolini joined the Marxian Socialist movement.  He resided in Trento where he became the editor of the socialist party newspaper.  He was expelled from Trento two years later for “causing trouble” but was able to publish a political novel before his departure.

Benito Mussolini began calling himself “Professor Benito Mussolini” and became well known for his socialist views.  In 1911 a riot was organized against the Italian war in Libya.  This riot was led by Mussolini, himself.  Mussolini’s involvement in the riot, compounded by his strong words against the war garnered him five months in Italian jail.  The Italian government became displeased with Mussolini and he became the focus of several investigations during this time.  Despite this, Mussolini was becoming quite popular with the Italian people.

Mussolini’s views of imperial powers prompted him to join the army again for the first World War.  He became a dedicated soldier and declined chances to go home after catching typhoid fever and being wounded by a grenade.  He was, also, very popular within the army and was awarded a promotion.  In 1917 a mortar exploded in his trench and Mussolini was injured and sent home.

Upon returning home, Mussolini picked up his editor position and determined that socialism was a failure.  In early 1919, at the age of 35, he reformed the Socialist Party into the Italian Combat Squad and Italian Fascism was born.

Source by Derrick Anderson

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