The Nature and Character of Fascist Regime: A Historical Review

The difference between patriotism and nationalism is that the patriot is proud of his country for what it does, and the nationalist is proud of his country no matter what it does; the first attitude creates a feeling of responsibility, but the second a feeling of blind arrogance that leads to war. (Sydney J. Harris)

BY: MD IRSHAD AYUB (https://www.facebook.com/mdirshad.ayub)

The term fascism refers to the aggressive and radical nationalist ideology as well as right wing political system, which believes in the ideas of totalitarian, centralised and corporate state.

The fascist regime had come to power in many countries of the world especially Germany under Adolf Hitler (fascism) and Italy under Benito Mussolini (Nazism) during interwar period (1919-1939). These two terms, Fascism and Nazism are commonly referred to a fascist regime. Because of their outlook and attitude, these regimes were rather similar. Moreover, Spain of Francisco Franco was another example of the same. They were aggressive and radical nationalist forces in their countries.

  • The fascist regimes were radical nationalist and right wing in nature.
  • These regimes believed in the principle of racial hierarchy in character. The argument was simple: the strongest race would survive and the weak ones would perish.
  • These regimes believed in the idea of supremacy of state. They practised state worship (statism).
  • These regimes were totalitarian and domineering in nature. They maintained stiff grasp on each and every sphere of human activity in their countries. These regimes were also deeply authoritarian. They enacted various draconian laws to annihilate opponents.
  • These regimes were monstrous and incivility in outlook. The policy of repression and suppression was followed by them.
  • Self-sufficiency of state and centralisation of administration were other important ideas that were followed and pursued by them.
  • These regimes followed expansionist and jingoism-oriented foreign policies. Territorial expansion of state was considered a symbol and prestige of life. As a result of this, Mussolini conquered Ethiopia in order to enhance the power, reputation and prestige of his country. That is why it is commented that fascism is from war and in war it must find its outlet. Fascist forces believed in violence, coercion and imperialism as well.
  • Fascist regimes were antithesis of socialism and communism. They were anti- communist, due to which they did not believe in the efficacy of social justice and change.
  • Fascist regimes believed in dictatorship of one national leader. They also believed in the idea of one party and one leader. Consequently, they repudiated democracy. Mussolini himself said that he had no belief in three basic principles of democracy viz. liberty, equality and fraternity. He had no faith in universal brotherhood.
  • These regimes were militaristic in nature. They had no faith in the idea of peaceful resolution of disputes and the policy of non-violence as well.
  • These regimes used huge amount of special surveillance, covert operation and security forces to control and suppress dissent. Labour power was suppressed to the hilt in these regimes.
  • In these regimes, corporate power was protected. Due to this, they believe in the efficacy of corporatocracy. Though they proclaimed that they were indulging in welfare activities for the benefits of common masses yet they benefitted only the corporate, privileged, business as well as banker classes.
  • They followed populist approach. The people were promised what they wanted. But they never got it transformed into reality. They never kept promise, because they were opportunist in nature.
  • These regimes counted on tactical and diplomacy-oriented approach. They targeted their opponents at a time when maximum damage could be inflicted. Those who oppose policy of fascism were considered to be anti-nationalist. They believed in mass annihilation of opponents.
  • These regimes were cynical in nature. They were always against somebody that was once the source of their strength.
  • They were obsessed with national security concerns. Fear was used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses. As a result of this, they were always indulging in false flag and clandestine operations to wage war against their arch rival country.
  • Religion and government were intertwined. Disdain for intellectuals was a norm. Numerous intellectuals were persecuted in a domineering manner. Also disdain for the recognition of human rights was a routine. Human rights and politico-social rights of people were easily stifled in fascist regimes.

Because of these contributing factors fascist regimes are considered  anti-human, anti-people, anti-liberal and progressive, anti- democracy, anti-communist, anti-freedom, anti-secular, anti-democratic and socialist, anti-religious tolerance, anti-women and children, immoral and unethical, elitism, racist, imperialism, oppressive, intolerant, hard-line, expansionist, unfeeling, insensible, exploitative, discriminatory, bigot, apartheid as well as alien in character, outlook and nature.

The fascist regimes have been severely castigated because they fostered violence, political shenanigans, dictatorship, war, bloodshed, egregious genocide activities as well as animosity. Nowadays the world has been immensely threatened by fascist agenda of different countries. The world has already got into in pre-interwar period. Arms race has got a boost. Geopolitics, geo-economics, oil and gas politics, terrorism, false flag operations, reshaping of world map and clandestine activities have got strength and momentum. As a result of these the world peace is being threatened. So, we have to strengthen peaceful methods to resolve disputes. We have to promote, propagate and popularise our peaceful human civilization.

When human civilization is teetering on the brink of collapse, the power corridors of the world should stop their neo-fascist endeavours. Although different racial groups of the world are not pronouncing their fascist agendas in unequivocal terms, but the tempestuous scenario of the world is itself a proof of the resurgent fascism of different nations the world over. Different ethnicities of the globe are hell-bent to popularise their own brand of fascism in the garb of different ideas disguised as notions of new world order based on freedom as the basic value of humanity. The time has come when this blatant hypocrisy should come to an end and different and divergent ethnic groups should be given a chance to flourish divergently.

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Email id: irshadayub5@gmail.com