This is not Italy in 1925. Nonetheless there is no comfort to be gained from the gap in place and time. There are too many clear similarities in the Trump administration’s language, techniques and actions.

First, there is the flashpoint issue designed to make populations feel insecure—and therefore, to justify a draconian response.

Trump has used immigration as that issue from the day of his notorious candidacy-launching “rapists and murderers” speech.

And, like Mussolini, Trump is surrounded by his own hard core of fanatics eager to use that issue to achieve their own ideological purposes.