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The Italian Navy and Fascist Expansionism, 1935-1940, by Robert Mallett

London/Portland, Ore.: Frank Cass, 1998. Pp. xiv, 240. Illus, maps, tables, gloss., append., notes, biblio., index. $26.50 paper. ISBN:0-7146-4432-3.

A very readable look at changing the role and influence of the Italian Navy in Mussolini�s plans for a new Roman Empire. Mallett attempts to refute � not entirely successfully � some recent attempts to portray Mussolini�s expansionism as purely an extension of traditional Italian ambitions, and � somewhat more successfully � the notion that the Regia Marina was �apolitical� and led by �apolitical� officers. He provides an interesting insight not only into Il Duce�s objectives, but the extraordinary degree of confusion, deception, self-delusion, and irresponsibility that characterized Italian strategic and military thought under Fascism.

Reviewer: A. A. Nofi   

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