Saturday, March 3, 2012

Speech in Rome, December 31, 1925

The New Rome

By Benito Mussolini

Governor!

The speech that I have the honor and pleasure of addressing to you will be of Roman style, intoned in its concision to the solemn Romanity of this ceremony.

[...]

I recall that when in April 1924 you gave me the supreme honor of welcoming me among the citizens of Rome, I told you that the problems of the capital were divided into two great types: the problems of necessity and those of greatness. After three years of royal commissariat, no objective observer can contest that the problems of necessity have been energetically addressed and largely solved. Rome already has a different aspect. Dozens of neighborhoods have sprung up on the outskirts of the city...

The summary data of your three-year budget are: new roads, increased means of communication, improvement of all public services, schools, parks, gardens, health care, hygiene organizations in defense of the health of the people. At the same time the Forums, such as the Forum of Augustus, and temples such as the Temple of Fortuna Virilis, have been redeemed from oblique silence.

All of this is undeniably thanks to you. All of this is due to your tireless effort and your ardent spirit of ancient and modern Romanity.

[...]

My ideas are clear, my orders are precise and I am sure that they will become a concrete reality. Within five years Rome must appear marvellous to all the peoples of the world: vast, ordered, powerful, as it was in the days of the first empire of Augustus.

You will continue to free the trunk of the great oak from all that still hinders it. You will make way around the Theatre of Marcellus, the Capitoline Hill, the Pantheon; everything which grew up around them in the centuries of decadence must disappear. Within five years, the Piazza of the Pantheon must be visible from the Piazza Colonna. You will liberate the majestic temples of Christian Rome from profane and parasitic constructions. The thousand-year monuments of our history must stand as giants in necessary solitude.

Thus the third Rome will spread over other hills, along the banks of the sacred river, up to the beaches of the Tyrrhenian Sea.

You will remove the inane contamination of tramways that clutter the streets of Rome, but you will give new means of communication to the new cities that will rise in a ring around the ancient cities. A straight line, which must be the longest and largest in the world, will lead from the beating surf of our sea, Mare Nostrum, from a reborn Ostia straight into the heart of the city.

You will provide houses, schools, baths, gardens, sports fields to the Fascist working people. You, rich in wisdom and experience, will govern the city in spirit and in matter, in the past and in the future.

[...]

For three years Rome has truly become the capital of Italy; municipalisms have disappeared. Among other things, Fascism has the merit of having morally and politically given the capital to the Nation: Rome today is very high in the new conscience of the victorious Fatherland.

I would add that the Roman people in recent years have given admirable evidence of order and discipline, especially in these latter days. It is worth living in the greatest Rome that will arise from our tenacious will, from the love and from the conscious and concordant sacrifice of the whole people of Italy.

Governor! Let's get to work, without further delay.

The Fatherland and the world await the fulfillment of their desire, the fulfillment of this promise.