Benito Mussolini

Benito Mussolini, leader of the Italian Fascist movement, was prime minister of Italy from 1922 until he was dismissed in July 1943. After the Italian armistice with the Allies in September 1943, German forces occupied northern Italy and installed Mussolini as head of a new pro-German government. In April 1945, as Allied forces advanced into northern Italy, Mussolini attempted to escape to neutral Switzerland. However, Italian partisans caught and executed him before he could reach the border. This footage is a brief survey of Mussolini's rise to power and rule.


Mussolini, the would-be Caesar, the founder of Fascism, started with an armed gang and finally built it into an army, seizing power after a sham march on Rome in 1922. Also now reported dead, Adolf Hitler came to study and emulate the master Mussolini, busy with plans for Ethiopia, Spain, and Mediterranean empire. [Crowd cheers, Mussolini speaks.] In 1943, Mussolini defeated in Italy, was rescued by Nazi paratroops. Wild-eyed, he ran to Hitler. Now, the last pictures of Il Duce alive. This was the end of Benito Mussolini.


  • National Archives - Film

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