Mussolini dies in July 1940

On this site there has been a variety of scenarios proposed where Hitler is assassinated, usually by 1943, where it is generally supposed the succeeding leaders would be more successful in prosecuting the remainder of the war. I wonder what the result would be if something like this happened to Italy, after they have entered the war and are unable to extricate themselves from it, but before Mussolini does further spectacular damage.

Don't get me wrong, I do not envisage something as fanciful as an Axis victory with such a change, but I do wonder if on the micro level things will be more successful for Italy. The Italian Army had many faults including inferior equipment, poor leadership, outdated doctrine and an archaic organisational structure. However I think it fair to say that their biggest single problem was the political interference of Mussolini and the idiotic schemes he often plunged them into with little or no planning. The fighting tenacity of the Italian soldier was often highly praised by both sides during the war, but it was recognised they were poorly led. The timing of this POD means that the major damage is already done (ie Italy entering the war - and entering it unprepared). However removing Mussolini from the helm also might remove the disastrous invasion of Greece, or if not remove it entirely at least allow the Army to make adequate arrangements in preparation for it.

I'm unsure who would take over in such an instance, probably Ciano, although the level of power he yields is unlikely to ever match that of his predecessor. In such a scenario the Monarchy might start to reassert itself which is probably a good thing for the Italian Military since many of their better officers were more royalist than fascist.

Any thoughts of the above?
 
How about Italo Balbo (EDIT: He is RIP already!), if he lived longer or Benny dies a bit earlier, he could take over. Or Dino Grandi? Or perhaps one of his sons, either Bruno or Vittorio.

Ciano strikes me as the least likely candidate, though. One thing is certain and that this probably butterflies away Greek adventure, and possibly even African offensive. Eventually though, Lybia becomes a battleground and Italy is evicted out of Africa. They might surrender before the Allies ever invade Sicily, though.
 
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How about Italo Balbo? He could take over. Or Dino Grandi? Or perhaps one of his sons, either Bruno or Vittorio.

Ciano strikes me as the least likely candidate, though. One thing is certain and that this probably butterflies away Greek adventure, and possibly even African offensive. Eventually though, Lybia becomes a battleground and Italy is evicted out of Africa. They might surrender before the Allies ever invade Sicily, though.
Balbo is dead by July 1940. I admit he would be a potential candidate (his exile to Libya is damaging though) if the POD was moved back a few weeks, although Balbo strikes me as especially competent in the Italian Regime and he is likely to do his best to pull Italy out of the war ASAP. In fact his survival on its own is an interesting POD because I almost imagine him pulling a Darlan and defecting Italian Libya over to the Allied side when it's clear Libya (and Italy) is lost.

EDIT: Ninja'd
 
How about Italo Balbo (EDIT: He is RIP already!), if he lived longer or Benny dies a bit earlier, he could take over. Or Dino Grandi? Or perhaps one of his sons, either Bruno or Vittorio.

Ciano strikes me as the least likely candidate, though. One thing is certain and that this probably butterflies away Greek adventure, and possibly even African offensive. Eventually though, Lybia becomes a battleground and Italy is evicted out of Africa. They might surrender before the Allies ever invade Sicily, though.
Without the Greek fiasco, & possiblly even no significant German forces sent to Lybia the med may be much more peacefull than OTL. I also wonder if a entire Italian army would be sent to the Eastern Front. Maybe just a small corps of Facist volunteers?

Shaby;7408715 ... and Italy is evicted out of Africa. They might surrender before the Allies ever invade Sicily said:
Surrender is not impossible, but some sort of armistice is more likely. the unconditional surrender thing did not emerge until January 1943. That leaves two years & then some for the Italian leaders to draw the correct conclusions and seek terms for exiting the war. If they do so in late 1941 or early 1942 the Allies are liable to listen closely as removing a entire theatre of war from their headaches may be seen as attractive.
 
Possiblly. It really depends on who succeeds Musollini. We have thus far assumed a less agressive or more conservative government, but one can also consider that younger more ambitious and impractical men might seize the government.
 
I rarely post in after 1900 so if I'm wrong about this apologies in advance: Could we see King Victor Emmanuel move to end the war much earlier? In OTL he didn't move against Mussolini until 1943, when the invasion of Italy was well under way, but with Mussolini dead, would the King attempt an earlier armistice or would this be ASB, considering the fact that Germany controlled almost all of western Europe by that point? Also, could this death lead to Italy remaining a monarchy after the war or was the monarchies end a forgone conclusion?
 
Would Hitler and the new Italian leader be satisfied with Yugoslavian and Greek neutrality? Perhaps if the German resources slated for those countries instead end up in Libya might we see the fall of Egypt? If Egypt were to fall Greek and Yugoslavian neutrality is absolutely rock solid without the hope of British supply.
 
Would Hitler and the new Italian leader be satisfied with Yugoslavian and Greek neutrality? Perhaps if the German resources slated for those countries instead end up in Libya might we see the fall of Egypt? If Egypt were to fall Greek and Yugoslavian neutrality is absolutely rock solid without the hope of British supply.
Presuming that Italy still declares war on the UK but doesn't attack Greece, there'd probably still be the historical Italian invasion of Egypt, and its subsequent defeat in Compass. But without the political need to support Greece, Compass might get all the way to Tripoli, ending North Africa then and there.

Assuming instead that Compass stalls somewhere in Tripolitania, then presumably there'll be an attempt at something like Sonnenblume, albeit facing stronger British forces, although if different German units and generals are sent out in the absence of the Balkans campaign, then we might start diverging from OTL quite rapidly with deeply unpredictable results. But ultimately, the old problems of North African logistics and the ease of defence of the Alamein position rear their head again.
 
Presuming that Italy still declares war on the UK but doesn't attack Greece, there'd probably still be the historical Italian invasion of Egypt, and its subsequent defeat in Compass. But without the political need to support Greece, Compass might get all the way to Tripoli, ending North Africa then and there.

Assuming instead that Compass stalls somewhere in Tripolitania, then presumably there'll be an attempt at something like Sonnenblume, albeit facing stronger British forces, although if different German units and generals are sent out in the absence of the Balkans campaign, then we might start diverging from OTL quite rapidly with deeply unpredictable results. But ultimately, the old problems of North African logistics and the ease of defence of the Alamein position rear their head again.
Is an Italian Greece invasion still possible, although perhaps with more forward planning and adequate preparations than the OTL debacle?
 
If Benny die on July and with the following political chaos, is probable that the King will step on due to the war in that case a separe peace is an high probability as very few in the fascist enstablishment were very happy about this. In the end with some little concession (even symbolic or of little value) for saving face Britain can 'knockout' Italy from the war.
 
What would Italy stand to lose in such a shortened war? Certainly Ethiopia, probably the rest of Italian East Africa. Not sure about Libya, Rhodes and Dodecanese.
 
What would Italy stand to lose in such a shortened war? Certainly Ethiopia, probably the rest of Italian East Africa. Not sure about Libya, Rhodes and Dodecanese.
Depends, a ceasefire just after benny death mean that things has been really stationary on the front line and the battle of Britain is just begun, so a good diplomat can get Italy a white peace with the English
 
Depends, a ceasefire just after benny death mean that things has been really stationary on the front line and the battle of Britain is just begun, so a good diplomat can get Italy a white peace with the English
Do you think it would be over so quickly? I'm inclined to think Italy will need to go along with the alliance even for the sake of honour. After so many years of fascist propaganda they probably don't even realise how weak they are. However when it becomes increasingly clear just how unprepared the Military is, that's when I envisage a cease fire coming into affect. The big problem will be what to do about all those German troops on the border - they should be safe on the Vichy side but an attack through Austria is a big risk. Yes the Alps are perfect territory for defence, but the backward state of the Italian Army is so severe I'm inclined to think any advantages they might have gained in their defence against the Germans will be lost.
 
... The big problem will be what to do about all those German troops on the border - they should be safe on the Vichy side but an attack through Austria is a big risk. ....
Need to look at what sort of reserves the Germans had at various dates. The other half of that is the ability to place the necessary logistics support for a field army in Austria. Combat units training or otherwise building up in Germany or occupied territories are one thing, the support units are another.

If the Allies & italy play this correctly they can leave Germany - Hitler confused as to the real meaning of the event. In 1940 Hitler wanted and actually expected Britain to ask for a cease fire and negotiate a armistice. That idea did not entirely fade and to the end Hitler hoped to find a way to bring Britain to a cease fire. If the Allies are clever they can drop hints via nuetral contacts that a offer for a cease fire to Germany will soon follow as well. Even the italians can play a part in this passing along hints of the same. By the time Hitler figures out this is nonsense Italy will have been able to make its border defense stronger.
 
If the Allies are clever they can drop hints via nuetral contacts that a offer for a cease fire to Germany will soon follow as well. Even the italians can play a part in this passing along hints of the same. By the time Hitler figures out this is nonsense Italy will have been able to make its border defense stronger.
That is a very interesting idea. Assuming these negotiations go ahead do you think it is more likely we will see a neutral Italy or Italy swinging over to the Allied side?

(Although to be honest I'm still not sure Britain would be entirely happy with leaving at least half of the Mediterranean in a neutral state, not when they are in a position to totally defeat the Italians in Libya and Ethiopia.)
 
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