Fascism Essay, Research Paper


Fascism is a form of counter-revolutionary politics that first arose in

the early part of the twentieth-century in Europe. It was a response

to the rapid social upheaval, the devastation of World War I, and the

Bolshevik Revolution. Fascism is a philosophy or a system of

government the advocates or exercises a dictatorship of the extreme

right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership,

together with an ideology of aggressive nationalism. Celebrating the

nation or the race as an organic community surpassing all other

loyalties. This right-wing philosophy will even advocate violent

action to maintain this loyalty which is held in such high regards.

Fascism approaches politics in two central areas, populist and

elitist. Populist in that it seeks to activate “the people” as a whole

against perceived oppressors or enemies and to create a nation of

unity. The elitist approach treats as putting the people s will on one

select group, or most often one supreme leader called El Duce, from whom

all power proceeds downward. The two most recognized names that go

along with Fascism is Italy s Benito Mussolini and Germany s Adolf


The philosophy of Fascism can be traced to the philosophers who argue

that the will is prior to and superior to the intellect or reason.

George Sorel, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Georg Hegal are main

philosophers who s beliefs and ideologies greatly influenced the shaping

of Fascist theory. Sorel (1847-1922) was a French social philosopher

who had a major influence on Mussolini. Sorel believed that societies

naturally became decadent and disorganized. This decay could only be

slowed by the leadership of idealists who were willing to use violence

to obtain power. Nietzsche (1844-1900) theorized that there were two

moral codes: the ruling class ( master morality) and the oppressed

class (slave morality). Nietzsche believed the ancient empires were

developed from the master majority and the religious ideas and views

grew out the slave majority. The idea of the “overman” or superman

which symbolized man at his most creative and highest intellectual

capacity was brought about by Nietzsche as well. Hegal believed people

should sacrifice for the community. He thought war was also necessary

to unify the state, with peace bring nothing but a weak society. Hegal

also sustained that laws should be made by the corporate organization of

the state.

Fascism values human nature in a group for the benefit of the

community. The group as a whole is called the human will, which is

ruled by a select group or one leader, with the power being passed down

from top to bottom. Fascism seeks to organize an organization led mass

movement in an effort to capture the state power. When the power is in

the firm grip of the ruler, or IL Duce, the government will be used to

control the population and everything in it so the community will be


Fascism s ideal government would be fashioned around the good of the

community or nation. Everyone would work for the benefit of the nation

and that is all. Regularly this would take place with the merging of

the state and business leadership, with concern only of the nation. In

this the nation will also take care of its members if the need should

arise. This could be money ,shelter, food, or any other need that might

come about.

The ideology of Fascism has been identified with totalitarianism, state

terror, fanaticism, arranged violence, and blind obedience. Adolf

Hitler established his own personal ideology, Mein Kampf, which means

My Struggle. The book was written while Hitler was in prison and not

yet in power. Mussolini fashioned his ideology after he took control of

Italy. Despite their two different angles on the use of Fascism Hitler

and Mussolini both worked similarly on how they established their

principles in the same basic manner. Their principles came from basic

responses to various issues the leaders faced.

Fascism is an authoritarian political movement that developed in Italy

and other European countries after 1919 as a reaction against the

profound political and social changes brought about from inflation, and

declining social, economic, and political conditions. Italy, which was

ready for a new political aspect, was the birthplace of fascist

ideology. Benito Mussolini was the man who brought this ideology to

Italy. Mussolini had been looking for the perfect opportunity to take

complete control of the country and now was the time to do so. Mussolini

said “Fascism, which was not afraid to call itself reactionary does not

hesitate to call itself illiberal and anti-liberal” (Nazi Fascism and

the Modern Totalitarian State) this statement can be easily recognized

in the steps that Mussolini took to gain control of Italy. In 1919

Mussolini and his followers, mostly war veterans, were organized along

paramilitary lines and wore black shirts as uniforms. After defeats at

the polls Mussolini used his new financial backing friends to clothe a

gang of thugs who would attack other street gangs supporting other

ideologies that Mussolini disliked. These black shirts also vandalized,

terrorized, bullied, and on occasion took control of self-governing

governments by force. Paralyzed by these violent occurrences, the

government did little to combat the fascists. Mussolini furthered his

popularity by supporting eight hour days, elimination of class

privileges, universal suffrage, and tax advantages.

Adolf Hitler s Nazi (National Socialist German Worker s Party) party is

the most recognized example of fascism. Nazism is the ideology and

policies of Hitler and his party from 1921 to 1945. Nazism also stressed

the superiority of the Aryan race, calling for the unification of all

German-speaking peoples into one single empire. Unlike fascism, the

state was second in importance, behind only racial purity for the

nation. Hitler used his book Mein Kampf to establish a plan of action

for creating this racially pure state.

In January of 1933 Hitler was named Chancellor of Germany by

Hindenburg. By the end of the year Hitler had concentrated his power as

a fascist dictator and began a campaign for a racially pure nation that

eventually led to the Holocaust. In order for Hitler to maintain his

ability to control the German people he had to organize several militia

groups. Hitler even wrote down important points of the Nazi party that

had to be followed. These Twenty Five points of Hitler s party were

enforced by these militia groups.

A few of the points made by Hitler are as follows: immigration of

non-Germans must be prevented, no individual shall do any work that

would I any way hurt the interest of the community for the benefit of

all, a creation of a national (folk) army, all editors and their

assistants on newspapers published in German must be a citizen, and all

material to be published must go through the government for approval.

To keep control of the population and maintain the law, Hitler setup

he set up militia groups to see that everything was in order. Hitler

began to organize the SA, his Nazi storm troopers, which in Mein Kampf

he referred to as ” an instrument for the conduct and reinforcement of

the movement s struggle for its philosophy of life.” (The Rise of

Hitler: A New Beginning) Realizing the liking of uniforms by the German

man the SA adopted a brown-shirt outfit, with boots, swastika armband,

badges and caps. The accessories on the outfit would become important

because of the visual tools providing easy recognition and visibility,

allowing for an increase of notoriety in and out of the Nazi party.

Hitler then created a special unit that would only answer to him and be

his personal body guards. The elite groups was known as Schutzstaffel,

the staff guard or SS for short. The SS took a black uniform , modeled

after the Italian Fascists. Josef Berchtold, a former stationary

salesman, was the groups first leader. The Gestapo, established in

1933, was a secret state police. All these groups were used to carry

out mass murders of anyone or any groups that posed a threat to Hitler

and the party s beliefs. They would also create, destroy, and falsify

any record that would benefit the party and the nation.

Hitler, using modern technology, furthered his power. He used the

microphone, radio, and newspaper to create any appearance that fascism

will be the new political power in the twentieth century. Hitler once

said that “The great masses of people will more easily fall victim to a

big lie than to a small one.” (Nazi Fascism and the Modern Totalitarian

State) He accomplished this feat by use of the microphone, speaking to

thousands at one time he was able to rally support for his cause. He

used the power of the airwaves and print to setup a vial hatred of Jews,

blacks, and the physical handicaps, calling them all imperfections of

society and they must be destroyed. With the Jews being the main

scapegoat of the Nazi party. Hitler could have held to his belief that

the dehumanization and scapegoating of the enemy as an inferior race

could have aided in the plot to justify genocide. Hitler used the media

in the sense that he and his leaders had to approve anything that was

being published. Allowing for selective material to be let about the

party and other world events.

Mussolini s Brown Shirts and Hitler s Nazi s are not the only right

wing element to have an influence in today s society. There are

numerous other groups who have their own agenda to deal with. Even

though these groups have differences generally they do agree on certain

main issues. With their core administration dealing with issues

centering on anti-government. The issues are gun control, taxes,

Constitution liberties, and federal regulations. These militia groups

believe that the government is tyrannical, and there is a secret elite

conspiracy on controlling the government, the economy, the culture, or

all three.

Just as Hitler used the Jews as his scapegoat these militia groups have

there own victims that the use. Federal officials and law enforcement

officers, minority groups, gay and lesbian right activists, and people

of color or immigrants are just a few of the escape whole the right-wing

militia use.

One of the most famous right wing militia movements in the United

States is the Ku Klux Klan, or KKK as it is even better known as. The

KKK is a militia group that got started during the disorder of the

Reconstruction era. Now the Klan s political agenda are a number of

things. They believe the United States government should protect the

jobs and welfare of American s first, not just anyone in the third world

countries. The Klan does not want to continue seeing America sell

itself to foreigners such as the Japanese, America should be owned by

Americans. Closing American borders to immigrants also is a project

that the KKK thinks should handled by putting American troops at the

border of Mexico.

The idea that the end of the world is coming is rapidly growing in

right wing religious groups. Leading the way is Pat Robertson and the

Christian Coalition. Robertson and his Christian Coalition is credited

in helping many of the Republican Senators and Congressmen attain their

current standings. Robertson even believes by reading Revelation 13

that if America were to change its money by putting codes on it that it

have in it the mark of the beast.

Some of the states even have their own militia groups. The Michigan

Militia is just one of the many individual groups. The Michigan Militia

believes that the American government is undermining the individual

freedoms that American s posses, and even selling out to international

organizations. The drug problem is one of the major areas the group

centralizes on. Even though the CIA has taken Noriega out of the drug

cartel in Panama the business is still running just as strong due to

other members of drug families were put back into power.

Most of the people who choose to become part of these groups have

several factors influencing their decision. Desperation generally is

the main reason. They are people who barley are hanging on to their

finical and social status. Wanting to protect themselves and their

children from a life of poverty and hardship they join a group that will

offer a family atmosphere of love and support.

One idea shared by all fascist movements is the evident lack of a

consistent political standard behind the ideology. Each individual

leader would handle every situation a little differently with no sense

of tradition or law. However, one very commonplace aspect about fascism

would be its unsympathetic drive to achieve and maintain state power and

sovereignty. On that road to conquest though fascists are willing to

abandon any principle to adopt an issue more in acceptance and more

likely to gain converts.

Fascism and its right wing counterparts have been influencing twentieth

century politics in every area. Hitler and Mussolini are perhaps the

two most noted people to bring fascism to the forefront of government.

Regardless of the power and force fascism has established in the past

the same conclusion happens every time, it fails. Leading a person to

question the vitality of this type of government.

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