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Word Count: 1,645
From his coming to power in 1922 Mussolini had one clear policy that would play a major part in how he ruled Italy for the next twenty one years His vision was to raise Italys prestige in the eyes of the world and attempt to re -create an empire to rival that of Ancient Rome To achieve this various policies were introduced to revolutionise and influence most parts of Italian Industry and society in an eventual attempt to transform Italy into a self -sufficient nation from this basis point Mussolini could then follow his colonial and imperial ambitions for enlarging the Italian empire However opportunities such as the World War Two soon showed Italy was unable to maintain a modern war machine and this under -preparation clearly had its foundations in various failed economic and social policies that had been attempted from 1922 onwards When Mussolini came to power in 1922 the Italian economy was backward compared with the rest of Western Europe and its industries though steadily growing needed development and were centralised in the northern part of the country Indeed half the population still made its living by farming and agriculture and even this was flawed by the fact land was not available for everyone However Mussolini had little knowledge or interest in the economy as a whole and adopted policies that were relatively short -term and aimed at making Italy self -sufficient in the event of war Such policies as the Battle for wheat did enjoy some success and wheat production had doubled by 1939 however the land used had to be taken from traditional growing sites such as olives and fruit which eventually reduced income from these products Mussolinis other major effort for self -sufficiency the battle for land was also mostly a failure Indeed marsh land was reclaimed and provided thousands of jobs but the amount of land was limited and the crop output made little difference to the overall
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