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Valar Qringaomis

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Monday, September 21, 2015

Killing Mussolini / Dogs in Paris

Killing Mussolini | Podcast | History Extra

(on the plot to kill Mussolini) "They carry out plastic surgery to his face. Which is quite an extraordinary thing because I've always associated that with, sort of, Hollywood films and things and I didn't know they did it during the war. And this was the first case I found out about that. So he actually goes under the knife and has his face changed to do this...The British Headquarters that have trained him is in Cairo. Another Italian who he'd been training with, just sort of knocks on the door and says one day: actually, hang on a minute, there's something you need to know. And it turns out, to cut a long story short, that The Dejunta (?) the proposed assassin, had become so excited about his, this plan that he was doing that he told people about it...[Roberto] Farinacci... he's actually in bed here after he'd blown off one of his hands fishing with grenades in Ethiopia... he comes across as this kind of, sort of low-rent Bond villain... he was called the castor oil man of fascism, and that's because he and his thugs, in the 1920s used to ambush, sort of opponents of Mussolini in the streets in Rome and force them to drink castor oil which would have sort of laxative effects...he was given a new metal hand, so he's this kind of villainous, metal-handed, rather unpleasant individual... I actually went to Sicily... I went back to a place called Troina, in Eastern Sicily... I went in to the town archives, which was quite a good fun in itself. Because when I arriived, there were four archivists there... 'the town mayor says that you can't have access to these records'. And then they said 'but we don't like the town mayor, so basically... you can see all you like'...

[On dogs in Paris] In the 18th century, merchants, artisans and others were banned from letting their dogs loose on the cities at (?) day or night. This legislation became even more stringent in the 19th century, when stray dogs were widely reviled for undermining the myth that dogs' main role was to serve humans as loyal companions. Strays symbolised disorder. Observers criticised their fondness for public fornication in the supposedly modern city and, like human vagabonds, were treated as a threat to the rest of the population"
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