Nations rarely get great leaders who inspire many people to join them. These leaders are talented without a doubt and can change the course of history for the countries they lead. This is the true story of one such leader who completely changed the country he came to lead.
Our great leader was born to an ordinary man. He had no history of any political power in his family and his mother was a wonderful lady who was always taking care of people.
As a young man he travelled around a lot and came to be known for his intelligence and unruly behavior. He was popular with the ladies and was deeply patriotic about his country. In his youth he was well known for his sporting abilities, physical agility, passion for music, authoring a few books and his debates with his contemporaries. His inspiration from his youth till his death was the work of an author who gave the concept of ‘khudi’ (ego).
It was not long before he became the spotlight of all media outlets. He wrote and spoke passionately and always had an audience waiting to read and hear what he had to say. He was a brilliant orator and mesmerized the crowds and gave hope to people who were sick of the system. He was also known for his philanthropic works and went on to build organizations and structures that would be revered by everyone who saw them. Every time he called for donations people would donate generously and women even gave away their wedding rings to support his philanthropic activities.
He joined politics early onwards and rose on to become a prominent name but did not have any success in terms of gaining power in elections. He made some political mistakes of siding with the wrong parties which he would go on to regret later, but he later commented that it was his political immaturity at that time and that he had learnt from his mistakes and failures.
Eventually tired of seeing the inefficiency of all political parties around him he made his own political party. This party was based on the idea of a revolution to clean away the inefficiency and corruption in his country and take his country to glory. His party was in opposition to social class discrimination, dynastic politics and supported national sentiments on the important matters of the day. The mainstay of his party was nationalism of the country wherein he believed that his country which despite being overpopulated was a country full of talent and wealth. His ideology dismissed the ideas of sub castes and races and believed that the entire country is one. His party repeatedly denounced the failures of democracy as a failed system. It rejected all forms of egalitarianism and VIP culture and demanded that citizens should perform civic duties themselves because the state had failed. He also emphasized on the youth and the importance of education to revive the country. His party’s idea of the failure of the state was because of corrupt and inefficient leaders and it was emphasized that if the right leader was to come his country would progress and become a great country. His central idea was that a leader was needed who would be himself completely clean, someone energetic and ruthless with all the corruption and inefficiency that was rife in his country.
An underlying concept of his political philosophy was that his country was facing intervention and the problems faced by the people were because of foreign countries which were influencing the matters of the state. These countries were blamed for blocking the economic potential of his country. The people wholeheartedly supported the idea that their country was in shambles because of the foreign powers.
He contested the general elections from his party but did not get many seats in the parliament. Eventually he led a long march of 30,000 people to his country’s capital to protest and denounce the prime minister of that country. He did have the support of the majority of the people within that country who kept supporting him because of the promises he had made in his speeches. Initially he was faced by a long dharna but eventually the establishment of that country gave in and transferred the power to him and forced the prime minister to resign. He went on to become the prime minister himself and changed the course of history for that nation.
The name of our great leader was Benito Mussolini of Italy.
Upon attaining power he removed all constitutional and legal bars on his power. He removed all responsibility to the parliament which he saw as a corrupt and archaic structure. He also formed a dictatorship over all forms of local government. During his time to assert his power he did not hesitate to lay sieges on towns, use torture and hold the women and children of opponents as hostages so that they would give themselves up. Italy was turned into a police state with very strict laws. He later admitted that this was his only option lest anyone else turn up to Rome with a sizeable number of protestors and force him to resign.
He changed the culture and education of his country. He was revered as the greatest leader in history and was formally called ‘the leader’ by all state structures. His party was constantly involved in massive propaganda centered around the personality of Mussolini. All teachers and journalists were approved by his party before they could perform their jobs. All students had to pay their respects to Mussolini before beginning their lessons.
His fascist party had a basic tenant the idea that only that party has the right to rule. All other parties were quelled with use of strength and force. All other leaders were lampooned as being corrupt, inefficient and traitors of the country. The party promoted a corporatist economic systems and people who had performed well in the corporate world were taken in as party central leaders. It was a party that at the same time rejected the conservative, socialist and liberal doctrine.
The Italian Fascist party like other fascist parties have several distinctive themes. They employ the constant use of mottos, slogans, songs, symbols and flags that are always prominently displayed.They have powerful slogan being chanted everywhere by their supporters like “long live the leader”, “many enemies, much honor”, “Mussolini is always right” etc. They use other parties as scapegoats to unite their supporters. They create an environment of fear and panic leading people to believe that their country is on the verge of complete destruction. They believe in the supremacy of the military over any civilian body of authority. They have a disdain for democracy which they view as a corrupt system. They control the mass media and other networks of communication and force their symbols, signs, personalities and other such paraphernalia down other people’s throats. Religion is always used as means to justify their actions and religious examples are rampant in their speeches. Corporate power is protected and the industrial and business aristocracy is always respected. Labor movements and rights are suppressed. They have a disdain for intellectual output and most of the people who question their motives or actions are labelled as corrupt or pseudo intellectuals. They all have a belief that they enjoy mass support of the people and constantly try to convince the general public that they are most popular and finally they themselves openly engage in election rigging. With these features common amongst fascist parties they have managed to grasp the public imagination and support many times in the past. The only regrettable commonality between all fascist movements is that it always ends up destroying a country. This blame of such destruction comes down not to the fascist party but to the general public itself which starts a cult of hero worship of a leader and willingly dedicate themselves to a person rather than an ideology. Such blind following of a person rather than an idea eventually leads to the leader himself going insane with power and ego.
History now remembers Mussolini as a man who was a tremendous failure and as a man who killed countless countrymen to remain in power. To his credit he did do some economic projects that considerably reduced unemployment and corruption temporarily but eventually he led Italy to complete destruction. By the time he was done, Italy was in a worse state than it had ever been and people lived in constant fear. He was eventually captured by an underground resistance movement and his body was hung in one of the central squares. Masses of Italy greeted Mussolini’s death without any regret. Mussolini had promised his people Roman glory but his ego and megalomania had overcome his common sense and he ended up bringing only misery to his people.