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fascism government political system topFascism was a form of government characterized by authoritarian nationalism that flourished in Europe in the 20th century as a political, cultural, and intellectual movement. It represented original contemporary ideas that reflected the changes taking place in society and offered something new and fresh to European youth who despised middle-class life values. As an ideology, fascism is a synthesis of nationalism (devotion to the nation as the highest ideal) with socialism (social control of production and income distribution). It rejects materialism, liberalism, Marxism, and democracy. Fascism has adopted two tools to maintain “national unity”: corporatism and totalitarianism. Under corporatism, political, social, and economic power is concentrated in the hands of social organizations, which plan the economy and settle frictions between social classes.

In a totalitarian state, the government has complete control over society and can intervene in every aspect of the private lives of citizens. Fascism positions itself as a type of spiritual revolution and attempts to create a new civilization based on a community of citizens where all classes and strata find their niche. Another characteristic pertaining to fascism is autarky as a characteristic of self-sufficiency – a self-sufficient economy.

Yes, fascism did not reach the horrors of Nazism. Yes, its social and political platform was attractive to many, and its promises were rich. But we should not forget that the early fascist institutions became the testing ground for the horror that engulfed all of Europe in the early second third of the twentieth century.

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Example of Fascism system

Fascism as a movement emerged in early twentieth-century Italy. It was based on the ideas of General Gabriele D’Annunzio, a philosopher and politician who dreamed of reviving the former Italian greatness. Benito Mussolini, who became head of government in 1922, grasped the desire of the people to free themselves from the weight of a century of fragmentation, the humiliation of failure in World War I, poverty and dislocation. Far from being a revolutionary, he chose to rely on significant capital, rebuild the economy, ban opposition political parties, resort to all the familiar tricks of populism, and finally begin to rebuild the empire, choosing Abyssinia (former name of Ethiopia) as the first victim. This system was called Fascist, from the Latin word fascii, meaning a bundle of thick rods, which since Roman times has symbolized unity. This movement can be described as nationalistic and authoritarian and accept violence as a form of political struggle. Anti-Semitism is not a primary element in the original fascist ideology. For pure Fascism, anti-Semitism was a possible part of the beliefs, but not a necessary one. At first, Italian Fascism did not include anti-Semitism, and it was only after Mussolini allied with Hitler that he too began to use anti-Semitic rhetoric.

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