Italy (Modern World Nations) by Zoran Pavlovic

By Zoran Pavlovic

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TWENTIETH CENTURY Soon after the end of World War I (1918), in which Italy fought on the side of Britain, France, and Russia, a fascist dictatorship began. In the early 1920s, Benito Mussolini, leader of the right-wing National Fascist Party, came into power. He soon abolished the multiparty system, reduced the king’s power, and introduced himself as Italy’s absolute leader who would resurrect the lost Roman Empire. A decade and a half later, Mussolini entered World War II on the side of Nazi Germany and lost.

Judiciary Branch The Italian judicial system is a product of the original system established during the Roman Empire. It includes several justices: Administrative, Civil and Criminal, and Constitutional Justice or Constitutional Court. The Constitutional Court’s role is to consider and, if needed, revise the validity of laws. Also, this court monitors the separation of powers in the government. Even though the Constitutional Court’s judges cannot be reappointed, they serve lengthy nine-year terms.

This means it is aging. In Italy, the population age 65 and older outnumbers the 14and-younger group by 25 percent. During the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, millions of Italians left their country. Between the 1820s and 1970s, an estimated 17 million people left Italy for other countries in Western Europe, the United States, Argentina, and elsewhere. This loss of people had a huge impact on the country’s demography. Today, the pattern has reversed. In fact, few Italians leave the country, but because of its economic strength, Italy has become a destination for many immigrants.

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