Events do not happen in a vaccuum - they are outcomes of history - and some of the present wars on the world are direct ancestors of ancient battles for control. We can see the ancient battle of Roman control over Ethiopia in the following:
"Strabo wrote that Ethiopia was so peaceful that the Romans only needed three cohorts there. However, when the Roman army in Egypt was busy with a war in Arabia, the Ethiopians (Kushites) took over Syene, Elephantine, and Philae, pulling down statues of Augustus Caesar. In retaliation for this raid near the Nile's first cataract, a Roman army led by Petronius plundered the Kushite city of Napata in 23 BC, sending a thousand prisoners to Caesar. In the next generation Kushite king Netekamani and his queen Amanitare built temples at Naga, and King Sherkarer, probably their son, commemorated a military victory with an inscription. Ethiopian civilization founded a new dynasty of kings at Axum soon after 50 CE." - from http://www.san.beck.org/AB1-AfricaAmerica.html
It is in this context that we can see Mussolini's idea to "finish the job" of his predecessor Julius Caeser when he made it a goal to attempt to conquer the land known as Ethiopia. Historically we can also see why they took the obelisk of Axum and placed it in front of the Vatican.