25 FEBRUARY 1944, Page 22

Towards the New Italy. By T. L. Gardini, with a

Preface by H. G. Wells. (Lindsay Drummond. 9s. 6d.) SIGNOR GARDINI is an Italian subject exiled from his country since the Abyssinian War. His book is divided into three parts—the economic, social and political situation within Fascist Italy from her entry into the war until the downfall of Mussolini; social and political struggle within Italy from the time of te downfall of Mussolini until the Armistice, July 25th to September 8th, 1943; and, lastly, an exposition of the basic foundations upon which Italy will have to be reconstructed. Mr. Wells has contributed a justly alarmist preface. Many of the events which Signor Gardini describes are so recent that a perfect appraisal of them is impossible, but a very painstaking endeavour to do justice to them has here been made. Admitting the weakness of the anti-Fascist parties. and emphasising that their disunity is the cause of their comparative lack of success, the author staunchly defends their point of view, not only against Mussolini and open Fascism, but also aganist King Victbr Emmanuel and the military dictatorship of Marshal Badoglio. While some of the facts in this book need vertification and all are presented with an ardent and not unpleasing partisanship, it is not to be doubted that this is just the kind of book which should stimulate the public interest regarding Italy and bring more clearly before it the true nature of the Italian problem. Prejudice does not, in this case, prevent the work having a real educative value. The only matter in the book which is perhaps to be unreservedly regretted is the violently critical attitude adopted throughout to the Catholic Church and the Vatican City State.