Why was Italy involved in World War 2?

Benito Mussolini wanted to rule with Hitler. Hitler basically let Italy be allies with him so he could have their war making ability. He sent the Italians to Africa to seize areas that had oil. Hitler desperately needed oil and fuel. Mussolini and Hitler were both oppressive dictators so it is not surprising they aligned.

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Hitler did not send Mussolini to Africa. He had nothing to do with the invasion. Mussolini had dreams of establishing a new Roman Empire. The invasion of Ethopia was part of Mussolini's plan to start the empire.

Hitler was a huge admirer of Mussolini and was inspired by Mussolini's control of Italy. Mussolini established control of Italy before Hitler came to power in Germany. In 1936 Italy and Germany established a formal alliance with a non-military pact. In 1939, after Italy had invaded Albania, the two countries signed a military pact that bound them together further.

Regardless of the alliance with Hitler, Mussolini wanted to create a new empire with himself as the supreme leader. He had territorial desires and wanted to conquer weaker nations to form his new Roman Empire.