The Footprint of Mussolini - TL

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Sorairo, Feb 20, 2019.

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  1. Dolan Lookin fer Gooby

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    Pseudo-Ethnic and actually more leaning on Civic.

    The Jews are Italians if they are good facists and being proud with their Italian Nationality.

    Libyan Arabs? Do you meant Phoenicians? They aren't Arabs in Italian census, they aren't discriminated either...

    Others are not that clear, but I guess there is a civic line pretending to be ethnic here and there.
     
  2. Hagre Well-Known Member

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    No? IIRC, they thought them lower than the Libyans.
     
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  3. Anglocalvinist67 Well-Known Member

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    Reflecting upon the way the Jews have been treated, and Israel's new attitude towards the enemies of the Jewish people, I see Israel adapting this as their new national anthem:

     
  4. PatrickMtz Well-Known Member

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    Well, on a nice side, ITTL any person openly indentifying as an antisemite will be regarded as a complete lunatic-suicidal psycopath ass**le.

    Also, I was shaking the first time I read the last chapter, just for curious I read it while listening "The Plagues" from The Pince of Egipt. People, don't, it was terrifying.
     
  5. Bookmark1995 Bookmark95 Reborn!

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    Italian Fascist: "So you think the Jews are the spawn of Satan? You must've had a lot of friends in Cairo-OH WAIT! NOT ANYMORE! HA HA HA!"
     
  6. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    Historically, Fascism in Italy was glaringly inconsistent regarding the alternative between civic or ethnic Italianness, with Mussolini himself on record with statements suggestive of both in different contexts.
    My understanding is that a civic view prevails ITTL, but I suppose that inconsistency remains.
     
  7. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    Fascism was not as laser-focusedly obsessed as Nazism with the establishment of detailed racial ranked hierarchies (though they generally were racist, and virulently so in Ethiopia). Ethiopians (specifically Amharas) were not oppressed on the basis of some reasoning considering them racially or ethnically "lower", but simply on their perceived political disloyalty/unreliability.
     
  8. Historymaster Well-Known Member

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    The reasoning often was "Are you loyal to the Italian Empire? Do you see yourself as an Italian Subject? OK, have a nice day. Are you a member of a group suspect of anti-Ialian sentiments? Then stay where I can watch you and keep quiet you ungratefull primitive!"
     
  9. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    Yes, but, at least in East Africa, loyalty was not supposed to be regarded with equality, not even in principle (while I can see that happening in Slovenia and Dalmatia, where, however, "loyalty" was probably to be shown through full forsaking of Slavic language and culture). In the Eastern Adriatic, Fascism will be thoroughly (and forcibly) assimilatory (much less so to Albanians, who will probably be regarded as mostly loyal anyway).
    The same pattern will not apply to East Africa, where the native majority, whatever its loyalties will not be seen as assimilable no matter what.
    I also think that Ethiopians will be regarded as "civilized", to a point at least, but still as inferior under Italian stewardship.
    (In racialist terms, most East Africans will be construed as "not Black" however).
     
  10. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    Also, a note.
    Academic Orientalism in Italy included a few very prominent scholars, well versed in Arabic and other Semitic languages who were also avowed, sometimes high ranking, Fascists. The most important is probably former Minister for Italian Africa, Enrico Cerulli, a renowned Ethiopicist and Arabist as well as a politician.
    In this context of fight to death with the idea of political Arabism, I can see these people to be mobilized to produce ideologically useable narratives about Arabness and Arabic. Laura Veccia Vaglieri, professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies in Rome at the time, would probably at the forefront in this effort (she demonstrated a strong Anti-Semitism IOTL, as she toed the party line, but ITTL she would likely to try to show how Baathism and Pan-Arabism are betrayal of "authentic Arabness" or somesuch. She was a Fascist out of conviction, not an opportunist, although she personally benefitted from her allegiance to the regime and the removal of Jewish scholars IOTL).
     
  11. generalurist Map Staring Expert

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    On the topic of Ethiopia, what is Mussolini's long-term goal? I.E. where does he want the region to be in a hundred years? Natives wiped out and replaced with whites? Some sort of assimilation? Permanently-subjugated capitalist hell resource extraction zone? Something else?
     
  12. XLII Oh joy...

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    Imperium novum. So, neither.
     
  13. GalileoFigaroMagnifico Member

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    I remember reading a while back Balbo boasting in a documentary about how, unlike France's "Algerian holdouts" and the British with Ireland, Italy had no such problems. Then the interviewer brings up East Africa, and he hurries to say "Italy proper [including Libya]". So, my guess is that Italy's probably going to be just holding it as the third option you talked about (lines up with Sorairo's description of Ethiopia), eventually resulting in it becoming a most likely bloodier version of the Troubles.

    Also, welp, I was off the mark. And here I thought that my predictions pre-this chapter were a little too severe. Definitely justifies the apocalyptic rhetoric surrounding the Second Arab War, and actually explains the rise of the Israeli left in the 70s alluded to earlier - yeah, it was a war of survival, but the devastation will result in a lot of guilt. The populace will see it as the only thing they could have done, but still regret it. Expecting a lot of heated arguments between the Lehi and Ben-Gurion's party.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
  14. Hagre Well-Known Member

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    That's true but they generally did consider us lesser than the Libyans, though Mussolini is noted as describing Ethiopians as "Hamites." Actually, most people thought that Ethiopians were just half-Black Semites, as one Japanese sympathizer put it at the time.
    Difficult to say. I believe there were moves on Italy's part toward assimilating the supposedly downtrodden ethnic groups, resettling the excess Italian population across the fertile Highlands and southern provinces and attempts at exploiting Ethiopia's pool of natural resources.
     
  15. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    Exactly. Italian Fascism was racist. Ethiopia was actually one of the places that put European racial ideas of the time to test, and the test was (in hindsight) obviously not passed. "Civilized" Ethiopians were thought to be "civilized" because of some "Semitic" ancestry over a "Hamitic" (thus already not entirely "black") substrate. Of course, in the dominant racialist logic of the European discourse at the time, "Semitic" civilization would still be supposed to be inferior (a point that Italian Fascism ITTL may be willing to forgo post-WWII).
    ITTL, this may be go a lot of different ways, though I suspect that an official line about race hierarchies might not be reached (the Beta Israel would be more "Hamitic" than Amharas, yes deemed superior, for example). I am afraid, however, that, for a long time at least, talk of equality between East African natives (including Somalis and Eritreans) and "ethnic" Italians (which ITTL would include at least some native Libyans) would be officially quite off-table.
     
  16. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    I daresay that Mussolini himself did not really know IOTL (conquest for its own sake being the main goal at the time of the war and in the immediate aftermath, and other concerns overriding consideration of the matter afterwards). ITTL, he and his Cabinet would have come about something approaching a coherent policy I guess, but I still expect a lot of cross-purposed policies with each of the above aims in mind at the local level.
     
  17. Hagre Well-Known Member

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    Reminds me of how this one Nazi faction characterized Ethiopians as "Hamitic harbingers of civilization" before it fell to Italy in '36. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if there was some sort of Cushitic hierarchy that dictates the positions of ethnic groups like the Agaws, Oromos, Sidamas, etc. and how they can rise through Italian/Roman society.
    In part, Mussolini conquered Ethiopia simply because of his failure to make much headway in Europe and the raw material crunch that Italy was suffering from, not to say the need to resettle excess population in Ethiopia as well. I think Mussolini and His Generals: The Armed Forces and Fascist Foreign Policy, 1922-1940 by John Gooch elaborates on this quite well.
     
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  18. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    "The need to resettle excess population" was, of course, self-inflicted, and the possibility to settle them in Ethiopia an obvious fantasy. (At the same time, Italians were voting with their feet, by emigrating, mainly, to Argentina and Brazil - and also France and the US).
     
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  19. Hagre Well-Known Member

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    Of course and especially not with the fact that the Ethiopian Highlands were rife with the Patriots.
     
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  20. Falecius Well-Known Member

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    Even if Ethiopian natives had accepted (largely hypothetical) Italian settlers peacefully... most of the Ethiopian Highlands were already relatively densely populated. Without investing money Italy did not really have into technology meant to increase land productivity, as well as changing land uses significantly (and appeasing traditional users, which would also require the sort of tact Fascism was almost intrinsically allergic to) there would little room for productive Italian settlement in any large numbers. IOTL, Rome was absolutely blind to that. Theoretical alternative would have been more or less ethnic feudalism with an Italian upper class exploiting natives (and replacing the Ethiopian own nobility)... but ITTL, I'd guess this would smack of Nazism too much to be done overtly (and would obviously produce violent resistance).
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
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