(Published in Gerarchia, July 1937)
By Niccolò Giani
For us Mystics Fascism is Mussolini and only Mussolini. This, even though we know and remember exactly what he said in 1921 when asked, "How then was Fascism born; amid what conflicting passions, sympathy, hatred, and lack of understanding? It was not only born from my mind or my heart, it was not born only by this meeting that we held in March 1919 in a small room in Milan. It was born of a profound, perennial need of this our Aryan and Mediterranean race..."
Fascism is not an instinct but an education, and therefore is aware of its mystique, which is knowledge of Mussolini. Look, for example, at the definition that he gave to the Revolution, determined in 'The Doctrine of Fascism': "...when a Finnish philosopher recently asked me to give him a sense of Fascism in one sentence, I wrote in German: "we are against the comfortable life."" Is this right here not the essence of the Revolution? Has not the comfortable life been the ideal of materialism? Have not Liberalism, Socialism and Communism arisen and fought in the name of individual hedonism?
Is not discomfort the symbol of the spirit of restlessness? Looking for new and better, the will of tomorrow, the desire of struggle, that is to say, of true progress? Therefore, with this definition Mussolini fixed the most important and most distinguishing attribute of Fascism: the Civilization of the Spirit. Indeed, how is it he can say:
"We represent the exact antithesis of the whole order of democracy, plutocracy, and Freemasonry, of all the immortal principles of 1789."
Is it not, perhaps, because Rousseau, Marx and Engels, although different in their attitudes, were all representatives and bearers of materialism? It is precisely for this reason that Mussolini, giving the right name to the last century, could write in 1922:
"All creations of the spirit — starting with religious ones — are coming to the fore, and nobody dare keep up the attitude of anti-clericalism which, for several decades, was a favourite of democracy in the Western world. By saying that God is returning, we mean that spiritual values are returning."
And it is because Fascism is the return of the spirit in the West, because it is the return of the values of the "Aryan and Mediterranean civilization", because it is the return of the true and Roman Catholic Europe, that Mussolini was able to affirm that "the idea, doctrine and spirit of Fascism is universal. It is Italian in its particular institutions, but it is universal in spirit; nor could it be otherwise." He was also able to declare that "Fascism has now acquired throughout the world that universality which belongs to all doctrines which, by achieving self-expression, represent a moment in the history of the human spirit."
The belief that "Fascism will be the model of Italian and European civilization of this century", is it not based on reality? Does it not rely on the fact that Fascism is the realization of what philosophers and artists of the past, and of this century, in every part of the world, have called for? May not the Revolution of the Blackshirts be the long-awaited historical nemesis? Is it not the triumph of all those schools, of all those currents which, in the age of materialism, have maintained the torch of the spirit and have continuously passed it down to a haggard but determined minority, small but strong-willed, that in the world today has become the vast majority: Fascism, National Socialism, Rexism, Catholic and Corporative Austria, Salazar's Portugal, and Franco's Spain?
"From where comes wisdom? What is the origin of the force? It is through the thinking of men that the soul of God spreads throughout the world."
And so we arrived at the hour of crisis, what Mussolini called, "the crisis of the system". Now at this time the systems of matter have met with those of the spirit, the materialistic civilization is a struggle of life and death against the spiritualist civilization. That is, us, in recent years. We are at Moscow against Rome. We are at the bloody battle of Red Spain against Franco's Spain. Thus it is that we can say that today Fascism echos all the hopes and all the odds, all the trends and all movements, all schools and all the parties that for a century and a half, in our old world and in the new America, have kept the torch of the spirit and fought for its triumph. And so Mussolini is champion not only of the Italic people, but of the whole human world and the eternal forces of the spirit, echoing the forerunners of yesterday and the combatants of today who under all latitudes are engaged in this same battle because Victory will become commonplace.
For Orestano just as for Dainelli, for Charles Petrie as for Christopher Danyson, for De Reynold as for Thaddeus Zielinski, for Weber, for Grzybowski, for Manoilesco, for Karl Anton Rohan, Garcia Morente, Francesco Coppola, Alfred Rosenberg, Gimenez Caballero, Bodrero, J. Rennell, Pierre Gaxotte, Tucci, Daniel Halévy, Orario, von Beckerath, Apponyi, André Gervais, Georges Valois, etc., is not the civilization of the Fasces (Littorio) really — in spite of everything — the beginning of the implementation of their visions and their dreams, their advances and their meditations?
That's why in today's world we are talking about two mysticisms. On the one hand the mystique of Rome, which is the mystical spirit, behind which are aligned forces who believe and fight in the name of European tradition, in the name of "Aryan and Mediterranean" civilization; Catholicism and Fascism, National Socialism and Rexism, the Austria of Dollfuss and Schuschnigg, Salazar's Portugal and Franco's Spain. The other is the mysticism of materialism, the so-called civilization of gold, one that has revived the myth of the bull, which repeats the fate of the Phoenician merchant and Carthage, which continues for 1789 and 1917, behind which flag, red with blood and sacrifices, stands united the arrogant and Communist Russia of Stalin, the France of Blum, and the England of the Masons and Jews. Fascist Civilization is the Civilization of the spirit: that is the great truth of the century. The truth that foreigners, those who do not know us or fight us in good faith, have not yet understood. For them, in fact, we have been and are still violence and reaction, dictatorship and right-wing, but they failed to understand that the bludgeon and castor oil are as sacrosanct as the Crusades, that reaction was not regression but involution and a return to the eternal values of the Mediterranean tradition, that dictatorship was not satrapism but the restoration of the State, that the Right is not harassment and negation of the proletariat but instead exaltation of work which is hierarchy, discipline, ingenuity, technique, tenacity. And it is the spirit, and from this fundamental initial position of the Revolution descends, in perfect harmony, all other principles of Fascism, all those indisputable points that together constitute the "Mystical Fascist". Is not the spirit faith, will, and action? That is why Mussolini, against atheism, moral fatalism and historical determinism, and against the irresponsibility and cowardice of materialism has launched the three words "believe, obey and fight". Is not the spirit harmony, hierarchy of values and fairness? It is in this name that the Duce proclaimed "order, authority, justice" against the chaos of egalitarianism, the anarchy of universal embraces, and the gouge of the strong over the weak, venerated by materialism.
And so Mussolini said that the "state is an absolute before which individuals and groups are relative", and yet "all within the State, nothing outside the State, nothing against the state." But this is not statolatry because the Duce also said: "Valuing the individual", though not individualism. Knowing the 'Pensiero di Mussolini', the equation of Fascism with Spirit is indisputable... That's why its pages will assist many foreigners, and also not a few Italians who, in the Year XV of the Fascist Era and Year II of the Empire, still believe that fascism is just a good political regime and nothing more. However, the youth of the world knows — or will know — that in the symbols of the Cross, of the Aquila, and of the Fasci hath been reincarnated the Mediterranean civilization that, in the name of Latin and Catholic Rome, created the Europe of yesterday, and today, in the name of the Littorio, it must restore the continent to its tradition and to the task that is assigned in the life of our little Earth. But — let us remember — only in the thought and action of the Duce is the Doctrine of Fascism, and in it is fully synthesized and expressed the Civilization of the spirit: to know and make known this thought and action is therefore the watchword of the youth of Mysticism and, we are certain, not only of them.