8

il Monumento

“We need soldiers rather than philosophers.” -Il Popolo d’Italia, 1928

One of the reasons why I made this comic is because I see stuff like this every so often: 

And yes sometimes it’s done in a  genuinely funny but a lot of times I think it’s because people forget that nation-tans are characters on their own too, and not just robotic manifestations of their leaders or government policies–after all, most nation-tans have been through multiple differing governments in their lifetime, but every time there’s a coup it doesn’t mean their personality immediately changes. Regarding Italy in particular, I find him really fascinating because, well, he certainly does not fit the description of Mussolini’s cult of virility and heteronormativity, which encouraged aggression and implored males to be the  “military, uncouth, and virile” beings that they “naturally” were, as opposed to the “feminized” intellectual bourgeoisie that was looked down upon. “The fascist regime pursued a pedagogy of virility potentially aimed at every male of every age, proposing once again the ideal masculine model of the combatant devoted to action; in this way it aimed to fight the negative product of modernity: the reflexive, hypersensitive and frail man whose passive and uncertain character derived from an excess of rationality.” (Sandro Bellassai, “The Masculine Mystique”, 2005)  In light of this, while it’s been shown that Feliciano can be an efficient fighter if he wants to, he’d much rather be cooking, flirting, reading and making art and music. He’s much more interested in exploring other cultures rather than dominate them, and while his exact sexuality is unconfirmed, he is definitely not straight. (my head canon is he’s ace pan/quoiromantic!!)   Rather than being a contradiction, this is probably a good representation because, even with all the propaganda and militaristic programs Mussolini put into place, inevitably not everyone could live up to the standard, and some people of course just blatantly ignored it. (There’s also some question about the effectiveness of the regime’s early military training, due to the Italian army’s actual performance during the war, but that’s a whole other issue–and probably)

For all the times he’s the butt of all the jokes, both in canon (ESPECIALLY in the dub), and in fandom, who just want to make him out to be nothing but Germany’s whiny uke, (the very TITLE of the series is a pun on how “useless” he is)  Feliciano Vargas really is one of the wisest characters in the series. Despite, or maybe because of said “uselessness,” Italy seems to have stumbled upon an important truth as well–the truth that the pursuit and lust for Power is ultimately detrimental, and it’s just so much worthwhile to try and learn about and appreciate the wonderful things about people, even if they’re different than you, and even if it means being considered foolish.  It’s the little victories  in life that are much more important to celebrate than the conquering of others. Whatever shady things his government might be up to at any point in history (colonization *cough cough*), Feliciano couldn’t be less concerned with chasing after power and glory–for all his ditziness and for all the times he’s made fun of in canon for being “weak,” remember that as a child he turned down Holy Rome’s offer to “become the greatest nation in the world” because he saw the effect it had on his grandpa. Italy knows that power, while it sure might feel good in the meantime, only leads to more stress and devastation, and it never lasts. It’s something that Grandpa Rome himself learned as well, as seen in the episode where he visits Germany and is asked why he disappeared. “I thought my wealth and power would last forever,” he says. The Rome that Feli remembers, the old man scarred by age and time, is so different than the Duce’s imagination of a sublime, godlike being of unstoppable force and glory. It’s not just about the physical resemblance, but the attitude and meaning behind the representation as well…

And I speculate that Mussolini probably viewed Feliciano more as “the grandson of Roman Empire” rather than as an individual in his own right.

Extra Notes:

-On the first page: in 1925 Mussolini gave permission to Cesare Mori to start an intense and violent crackdown on the Mafia, which while at the time was purported by the government to be successful, when in actuality… it was not.  It also caused several mafia members to move to the United States.

-idk my perspective and scenery game is pretty rusty but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t inspired by the vast architectural interiors of “The Conformist”…

-The Rome Statue is holding the Fasces, which was the symbol of authority in Ancient Rome and from which the Fascist party adopted as its symbol (and name) as well.

-The whole suspicion of intellectuals was kind of the most incredible thing for me, like I’ve always known that dictatorships are suspicious of intellectuals, but the sheer lengths they went to demonize it was just…kind of ridiculous. Mostly because they demonized intellectuals by associating it with being an “infertile intelligence,” and (*gasp*) associating it with femininity “but in the worst sense, for it is a femininity that will never be maternal.” Um yeah. The tenets are just rooted in misogyny…

-Mussolini’s head is really weirdly shaped. 

Further Reading:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_of_masculinity_under_fascist_Italy (for a quick overview)

-http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/09523369908714098  Gigliola Gori (1999) Model of masculinity: Mussolini, the ‘new Italian’ of the Fascist era, The International Journal of the History of Sport, 16:4, 27-61,

http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/13545710500188338 Sandro Bellassai (2005) The masculine mystique: antimodernism and virility in fascist Italy, Journal of Modern Italian Studies, 10:3, 314-335,

As usual I’m just a nerdy student, not an expert, so if any of you have any commentary to add please do so!

-Birdy

5

The Motomitragliatrice Blindata d’Assalto “Mias„ .

A curious piece of Italian engineering, the “Motomitragliatrice blindata d’assalto” (“Motorised Armoured Assault Machine Gun”) was apparently designed  in 1935 by the Ansaldo company, a national producer of equipment and guns for the Italian Royal Army.

Weighing a total of 470 Kg, its armour could protect the operator against all small arms´ fire, including 7.92mm Mauser (if shot from a distance greater than 50 metres). A tiny Frera 250 cc engine was to provide traction with a top speed of 4.9 Km/H, and a virtual autonomy of 100 Km.

The “Mias” could be fitted with either 2 twin-mounted Scotti 6.5mm Machine Guns or a Brixia 45mm Cannon.

The project never got past the prototype stage.

Palestinians who throw stones, Molotov cocktails or firecrackers at protests against Israeli occupation forces “will be arrested and held in custody until the completion of legal proceedings,” The Telegraph reports.

“The same will apply to those waving ‘enemy flags’ — including the Palestinian flag — at demonstrations,” it explains. “Those convicted will lose social welfare benefits and drivers’ licenses for ten years.”

In many settler societies, historically the white population not only supported the police, in part they were the police. Unlike in Old Europe, where in general the masses of people were kept disarmed and landless, in settler colonies often the entire euro-male culture revolved around common and cheap access to land and rifles and the bodies of the oppressed. Posses or militias or “Committees of Correspondence” or lynch mobs of armed men enforced the local settler dictatorship over Indians, Latinos, Afrikans, Asians, North Afrikans, women, etc.  And white men of all classes joined in, to affirm their membership in the most important “class” of all. Settlerism filled the space that fascism normally occupies.

January 14th: Swedish mosque attack

The image shows swastikas sprayed onto the front doors of a Swedish mosque. On Monday 29th December, 2014 another mosque was set alight in a suspected Islamophobic hate crime. This attack follows a Christmas Day attack on a mosque which injured worshippers and must be seen in the context of 13 arson attacks on mosques in Sweden this year. 

A far-right Islamophobic party is currently making significant gains in Swedish politics, the Guardian reports that:

Sweden Democrats leaders have likened Islamism to Nazism, and the party wants to cut the number of asylum seekers by 90%. This month, the leader of Sweden’s Jewish community condemned as “good old rightwing antisemitism” remarks by the party’s secretary that Jews could not be Swedes unless they abandoned their religious identity.

The Sweden Democrats more than doubled their vote to 13% in September to become the country’s third-largest party; opinion polls suggest this month’s budget crisis further boosted support for the party to up to 18%.

These appalling developments in Sweden are part of a wider upswing in support for the European far-right, neo-Nazism and anti-Muslim bigotry as was seen in the European elections. 

Churchill's love for Fascism

Just about the greatest myth peddled about Winston Churchill is that he led a great anti-fascist crusade against the Axis power during World War II - his finest hour. What utter baloney. The man welcomed the coming to power of Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler - viewing them as valuable bulwarks against communism. Churchill only became ‘anti-fascist’ when he felt that the British empire was threatened by the expanding ambitions of these rivals. Defending British imperial interests, not fighting a democratic crusade against fascism, was his aim during World War II.

Previously, Churchill had praised Mussolini to the skies - the man could do no wrong. Il Duce had “rendered a service to the whole world” by showing the “way to combat subversive forces”. In fact, Churchill thought, Mussolini was the “Roman genius” - the “greatest lawgiver among men”. Speaking in Rome in 1927, he told Italy’s Fascist Party: “If I had been an Italian, I would have been entirely with you from the beginning to the end of your victorious struggle against the bestial appetites and passions of Leninism.”

He heaped similar praise upon Hitler too. After the Nazis came to power, Churchill proclaimed in a 1935 article that if Britain was defeated like Germany had been in 1918, he hoped “we should find a champion as indomitable to restore our courage and lead us back to our place among the nations”. While all manner of “formidable transformations” were occurring in Europe, Churchill continued, corporal Hitler was “fighting his long, wearing battle for the German heart” - the story of that struggle “cannot be read without admiration for the courage, the perseverance and the vital force which enabled him to challenge, defy, conciliate or overcome all the authorities or resistances which barred his path”. If only things had been different, Britain could have done a deal with fascist Italy and Germany against the common enemy - ie, ‘international Bolshevism’.

~Eddie Ford(weekly worker)

bebechka81 asked:

Your posts only tell half the story. I'm not one to troll, but your blog is completely fabricated and full of shit. When the majority of Palestinian people learn how to be civil, then, and only then will your argument about Israelis be a valid one.

Translation: We stole the majority of Palestinian land and destroyed hundreds of their villages by creating the state of Israel and we’re continuing to do so with illegal Jewish-only settlements in West Bank and regular deadly attacks on Gaza by air and sea and even though we have also implemented apartheid and unfair water distribution and a blockade aimed at starving the Palestinian population - to name a few - THIS GENOCIDE IS TAKING FAR TOO LONG WE WOULD REALLY APPRECIATE IT IF PALESTINIANS STOPPED MAKING A FUSS ABOUT BEING KILLED BY ISRAEL AND JUST LEARNED TO BE CiViL BY LETTING US WIPE THEM OUT QUICKER.  

Michael Brown’s Church Burned To The Ground, Pastor Blames White Supremacists

Nov. 26 2014

Michael Brown’s church burned to the ground during the first night of the Ferguson riots. The Flood Christian Church pastor blames white supremacists for the fire that destroyed the house of worship. The Missouri church attended regularly by the Mike Brown family is located about three miles from downtown Ferguson, where more than one dozen buildings were leveled by intentional blazes after the Darren Wilson decision was read on Monday evening.

Pastor Carlton Lee said it was not Ferguson decision protesters but white supremacists who likely burned down the Flood Christian Church, where the Michael Brown family attended.

“I’m very vocal in regards to the Michael Brown case,” Pastor Lee told the media, adding that he has received 71 death threats.

The Flood Christian Church is reportedly the only, or one of the few, buildings destroyed by fire after the Ferguson decision. The Ferguson church is located in a “remote” section of Country Club Hills. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Mike Brown’s stepfather, Louis Head, was captured on video in the moments following the public reading of the Ferguson decision. Lesley McSpadden’s husband shouted, “Burn this b***h down” multiple times in the now viral video.

Reverend Carlton Lee told NBC News that he feels his church was a target for white supremacists because he had repeatedly and publicly called for the arrest of Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson.

“The police called and told me the church was on fire. I was in complete disbelief. I didn’t think anyone would set a church on fire,” Reverend Lee said. “I feel like one of my children has died. I put my blood, my sweat, my tears into this church – getting the church built from the ground up. To see that is was taken down in a few minutes is really heartbreaking.”

Michael Brown Sr. was “just devastated again” about the burning of the Flood Christian Church, according to Reverend Lee. The Ferguson pastor said that he has known the Brown family for several years since officiating their wedding at his church. Just this past Sunday, Pastor Carlton Lee baptized Michael Brown Sr. his wife, Cal, and their children. The baptism was not performed at the Ferguson church which just burned. The religious ceremony was reportedly planned several months ago, and Michael Brown Jr. was slated to attend.

Reverend Lee says Michael Brown was a “fun loving guy to be around,” and referred to him as a “big jokester.” The Flood Christian Church pastor added, “Sunday, we do the baptism, Monday, the church is on fire. It just doesn’t add up. We rebuild. We do not stop.”