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Handwritten letter from Felix Pacheco to Benito Mussolini (1920s or 1930s)

Handwritten letter from Felix Pacheco to Benito Mussolini (1920s or 1930s)

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In Rome, renowned Brazilian diplomat Felix Pacheco expresses his fascination with the founder of Italian fascism Benito Mussolini.

Handwritten letter from Brazilian diplomat Felix Pacheco to dictator Benito Mussolini. Three pages of paper and letterhead from the Grand Hotel De Russie in Rome. In Portuguese. 14.5 cm x 19 cm. Rome, Italy, 1920s or 1930s. Excellent condition. Single piece.

His Excellency Mr. President Benito Musolini.

I do not want to leave Rome without repeating to Your Excellency in a very special way my profound admiration for your admirable work of government. I traveled through Italy from north to south and noticed everywhere a fever of renewing action that honors the ability to rebuild, which has always been the hallmark of the Latin spirit and greatly ennobles the regime that integrated this great land of order, of beauty, culture, strength and dream.

Fascism as a doctrine is widely discussed abroad, but what no one can discuss without bad faith is the brilliant set of victories that the party created by Your Excellency's vigorous genius has been able to obtain in the field of effective realisations. Italy now grows threefold cohesive and united, in the scepter of the House of Saboya, in the reconciliation with the Church and in the general enthusiasm that is observed by the guidance of the Head of Government.

The portrait that Your Excellency was kind enough to offer me has its place marked on my work table next to the [His Highness – strikethrough] photograph of the Crown Prince, from whom I had the honor of receiving in the State of Bahia, as Minister of Foreign Affairs of my parents, when His Highness passed through Brazil.

I renew to Your Excellency the expression of my best thanks.

Felix Pacheco
Grand Cross of the Order of the Crown of Italy
Director of Jornal do Commercio of Rio de Janeiro, and former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Rio de Janeiro

Felix Pacheco (1879 - 1935) was a respected journalist and writer and one of the owners of Jornal do Commercio, one of the oldest Brazilian newspapers still in circulation. Elected several times as federal deputy and senator, he assumed the position of Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Artur Bernardes government (1922-1926), which led him to a diplomatic career in Italy.

Benito Mussolini (1880 - 1945) became the Prime Minister of Italy in 1922 and is known as one of the key figures in the creation of Fascism.

During the 1920s and 1930s, several members of the Brazilian federal government and diplomats operating in Italy sympathized with fascism. Such closeness was expressed through the exchange of decorations and favors or, more relevantly, through Brazilian support for various decisions of the Italian government: for example, the war in Abyssinia or the repression of Italian anti-fascists.

In the wake of the 1929 crisis, Getúlio Vargas assumed power in Brazil, which had Nazi Germany and the United States as its main trading partners. Strategic for the supply of raw materials and both countries preparing for war, Brazil accelerated its trade with Adolf Hitler's Germany, but reversed the situation when the Vargas government decided to decisively align Brazil with the USA, after the attack on the Pearl Harbour.

Felix Pacheco was openly Italianophile and close to fascism, as this letter shows, which, years later, he regretted. It is not known whether Mussolini actually received and read these lines, but it remains an interesting - and sad - witness to Brazil's diplomatic and ideological hesitations on the eve of World War II.

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