The Middle class:
-Property owners, professionals, business owners, commercial farmers etc.
-They were threatened by the rise of socialism that threatened their property and values.
-They supported the Fascists as they appeared to be the only political group willing to defend against the Socialists.
-This was more worrying to the middle than the lower classes who had little to lose.
-Analysis of Fascist party membership shows young and educated individuals who would be most likely to have blocked opportunities by economic depression
-In Italy forming a stable parliamentary majority had proved impossible since 1919 and making Mussolini PM provided an end to the deadlock.
-Giolitti was unable to form a lasting coalition without the support of fascist deputies.
-The Popolari withdrew their support from a lasting coalition following tax reforms that would have a negative effect on the church.
-The March on Rome gave VE II an excuse to make Mussolini PM.
-Ironically the inability of the socialists to work with the liberals was a major factor in the rise of Fascism.
-Sharp economic recessions
-Inflation and unemployment led to strikes and other industrial protests.
-Since liberalism had 'caused' the bloodbath, many thought that a change of ideas was needed.
Police & Military:
-These would not long tolerate an inefficient and incompetent government.
-Willing to 'look the other way' at fascist anti-socialist violence.
-Fascist ideology was vague and capable of adaptation.
-E.G change from 1919 left agenda.
-Fascists tried to focus ideology in slogans (like all popular movements) rather than fixed ideas - "Believe, obey, fight".
-It was observed that fascism was a matter of the gut rather than head.
-Notion that there was hope of a resolution to long standing problems - this set it apart.
-This throughout Italy contributed to the loss of law and order, socialists were targeted but the violence was also geared towards gaining control.
-Mussolini encouraged the squadristi whilst disassociating himself from the worst excesses.