It has often been said that we can learn from history to prevent future mistakes. The caveat is that we have to be willing to understand what went wrong in order to make sure that it won’t happen again.
Subjugation and persecution of minorities, perceived enemies, the LGBTQ community, and those with opposing political views.
Degrading women down to the traditional roles of wives and mothers (with the exception of the females in their personal orbit).
Proclaim that they are the one person who can save their country.
They claim to protect “democracy” and ensure law and order while doing the very opposite.
I think this book is a must-read for everyone who believes in a democratic government and what it stands for. As the last few years have shown us, complacency opens the door to a form of government that manipulates and destroys. It is only when we respect and fight for the constitutional way of life can we truly be free.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Strongmen: From Mussolini to the Present is available wherever books are sold.
If Americans have learned one thing over the past few years, it is that democracy is not guaranteed. It must be fought for and earned.
Last week, a new Italian Prime Minister was elected. Her name is Giorgia Meloni. Though she has just been chosen to lead the country, there are already comparisons to Benito Mussolini. Anyone who knows anything about the history of the twentieth century understands that this is not a good sign of things to come.
Though there is the argument that she is a woman, that does not preclude where she lands politically. Fascism is dangerous, regardless of the sex and gender of elected officials and those who work for them.
Obviously, as an American citizen, I have no say in this decision. But what we can all do is be vigilant and speak up. If we don’t, then who knows how long we have left to live in a country that is truly democratic?
Growing up is never simple. We are often faced with challenges that force us to make difficult choices or face a reality that we would prefer not to.
Eternal, by Lisa Scottoline, was published earlier this year. Growing up in Rome, Marco, Sandro, and Elisabetta have been best friends since they were young. Marco is the son of a former cyclist and ardent follower of Benito Mussolini. Elisabetta was raised in an artistically inclined family, Her dream is to become a novelist. Sandro is Jewish and a promising mathematics genius.
Soon, they will all be tested. As a Jew, Sandro’s world becomes ever restricted by the antisemiticNazi race laws. Marco gets involved in local government and Elisabetta must fend for herself. Everything and everyone they know will become unrecognizable, forcing all of them into adulthood and the complications that arise from this transition.
I really enjoyed this book. It was a reminder that the Holocaust extended to the whole of Europe. The Jews of Southern Europe were a target as much as their Central and Eastern Europe co-religionists. What was different was that Rome’s non-Jewish community did not wholeheartedly accept the ideology of the German invaders. There were many who maintained friendships with their Jewish friends and neighbors while helping them in whatever way they could.
Though it is not a quick read, it is well worth the time it takes to complete the novel. I was quickly engrossed in the tale and the changing relationship between the main characters.