08:10 GMT02 March 2021
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    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini, the 51-year-old great-grandson of Benito Mussolini, is running as a candidate from the Italian party Fratelli d’Italia (Brothers of Italy) in the May European Parliament elections. In an exclusive interview with Sputnik-Italia Mussolini has discussed his reasons for entering politics and important issues facing Europe.

    Sputnik: Why did you decide to give up your prestigious position as a top manager and get involved in politics?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: I did not give up my job as a manager and continue to work, only now a little less. I've decided to enter politics, because I want to contribute to the development of Italy, which I love. I would like to improve and change a lot of things.

    Sputnik: You are the third descendant of Benito Mussolini to enter the Italian political arena after Alessandra Mussolini (MEP, who recently left the party Forza Italia and will soon leave the European Parliament — Sputnik) and Rachele Mussolini (adviser in the municipality of Rome — Sputnik). How have your relatives reacted?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: I told them everything. Our family is quite large, we keep each other informed. Alessandra is more politically competent than me, and when she found out that I had put forward my candidacy, of course, she wished me luck. We also keep in touch with Rachele, she lives in Rome, so we often see each other. They are happy for me and believe that I will be able to defend the interests of Italy in the European Parliament.

    Sputnik: Your candidacy and your election campaign have sparked controversy in the Italian and international media and on social networks. Is it all because of your name?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: Of course, I got a lot of attention. I have put forward my candidacy on the basis of my life experience and professional characteristics. Obviously, my surname played an important role in the history of Italy, however, as I have already explained many times, we must leave this historical period in the past, let historians study it. We must look to the future and stop dwelling on the past. I will run as a candidate from the south of Italy, and the interests of this region will be my priority.

    Sputnik: And yet a Mussolini candidate in our days, when there's a lot of talk about the return of fascism, can be perceived in two ways. What would you say to those who fear the return of fascism?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: Many historians and experts have described it very clearly: fascism originated in a certain historical period, as a consequence of the First World War, and died after another war, with the death of Il Duce. Moreover, a well-known historian De Felice, believed that it was necessary to speak not about fascism, but about "mussolinism". Almost 80 years have passed since the end of the Second World War, and now it's time to focus on the many problems that we have today in Italy and think about the future.

    I am quite surprised that all this controversy arose, especially against me, apparently, the leftists simply did not have any arguments. Perhaps they have lost touch with reality, with the people. And the only weapon that they have left and which they use before every election is the fight against fascism. Therefore, they see fascism everywhere. They are obsessed with it. Instead they should be solving the problems of Italy, dealing with unemployment, the lack of infrastructure in the South, the outflow of young people who, having studied for many years, leave the South and move to the north of Italy or go abroad.

    Sputnik: What happened to your Facebook page? Why was it blocked? Have you solved the problem?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: The problem was solved the next day, when even the media reacted to this censorship. A censorship that Facebook itself could not explain. They apologised and said it was a technical error. But, unfortunately, censorship does not end there. The situation is getting worse, especially in relation to me, and it doesn't allow me to be on a par with other candidates. That is, other candidates can openly express their opinion, and I am limited. For example, I cannot use my real name and surname as a Facebook nickname: Facebook doesn't allow me to create a @caiomussolini profile. That's nonsense! I tried to create profiles @caiolenin, @caiostalin, and, oddly enough, such profiles can be created. This is ridiculous! This is ridiculous, because Facebook is becoming the "thought police" of the twenty-first century. It is an absolutely unfair thing — right now I am in contact with my lawyers and we're preparing to file a lawsuit.

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    Sputnik: The party Brothers of Italy's slogan for the EP elections is "To Europe, to #change everything" (In Europa per #Cambiare tutto). If you are elected to the European Parliament, what will you do first and what will you change?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: All the important points on the changes in Europe proposed by the Brothers of Italy are laid out in its programme. Employment is the priority for me (it is necessary to create conditions for young people in the South so that they can work there and not have to leave), it is also necessary to return investments into sectors that are productive, and there are other areas that are in need of changes. Obviously, Europe is not to blame for all the problems, we spoke very clearly about this. However, we must have influence in Europe in order to implement our projects and defend the interests of Italy. That is, we want to get into the European Parliament in order to improve the representation of Italy in Europe.

    Sputnik: You were born in Argentina and have lived in Venezuela for a long time. How do you assess the latest events in this country? What solution, in your opinion, could be the best one for the people of Venezuela?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: Venezuela is always in my heart. This is the country where I grew up, studied, worked, where I have many friends. It was one of the richest and most beautiful countries in the world and was destroyed by the policies of Chavez and now Maduro. It makes me very sad. There's more than 160,000 Italians in Venezuela. Unfortunately, politically, Italy can do little, because the current government does not have a unified stance on Venezuela. On the one hand, Deputy Foreign Minister Manlio Di Stefano supports Maduro, and on the other hand, Deputy Foreign Minister Guglielmo Picchi supports the self-proclaimed interim head of government — Guaido. 

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    Sputnik: There is only a month left before the vote. What are your expectations?

    Caio Giulio Cesare Mussolini: Of course, my last name is part of Italy's history. But as for me, I would like to ask the voters to evaluate what I have done in my life: I served for 15 years in the Navy for the benefit of our country, then worked in Italian companies and promoted Italy's economic interests abroad. Therefore, I think that I have every chance to help our country in the European Parliament. And, of course, I hope that people will see a real right-wing party in the Brothers of Italy, which defends the interests of Italians not just in words but also in deeds. It's enough to recall that Italy did not sign the Global Compact for Migration precisely because of the Brothers of Italy.

    The views expressed in this article are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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    Tags:
    elections, fascism, mass media, Second World War, European Parliament, Benito Mussolini, Nicolas Maduro, Hugo Chavez, Italy, Venezuela
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