Quote: Ettore Conti on Fascism


Ettore Condi was one of Italy's leading industrialists. This entry from his diary for 2nd January 1940 comments on the mood of the country in the months before Italy's entry into WWII in 1940. Nearly two decades of Fascism had done little to stir the martial spirit of the Italians. Quite the opposite in fact. Reading these comments, it is easy to understand the poor performance of the Italian army throughout the war.

"We may well be on the verge of war: but never has a country wallowed in such a state of apathy and inertia: never has Fascism been held in lower esteem by the Italians. The failings of the dictatorship are now finally evident to all, even to those who had supported it in good faith...The gradual but constant worsening of the quality of leadership, the insolence of the officials in every branch. the spread of profiteering combined with the most idiotic constraints imposed on every aspect of private life have turned the Italians into an amorphous herd that has no sense of will, of faith or inspiration. And with this country in this state, they want to take us to war."
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