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5 - Persistence of the Communist Threat and Rising Appeal of Fascism

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 February 2021

Kurt Weyland
Affiliation:
University of Texas, Austin
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Summary

Chapter 5 explains why in the eyes of many status-quo defenders, the quick and decisive defeat of Communists’ early efforts to replicate the Russian Revolution did not reliably guarantee sociopolitical stability. The main reasons were that Communism managed to survive in Russia and that Lenin’s disciples eagerly proselytized, organized, and agitated across the globe. As the world-revolutionary threat kept looming, mainstream sectors remained fearful and searched for stronger protection than liberal democracy seemed to guarantee. In this setting, fascism emerged as an attractive regime model that could reliably protect against Communism. Therefore, fascism held enormous appeal across the globe as well. In fact, Mussolini's takeover of power in Italy stimulated several imitation efforts, which – like the Communist replication attempts examined in Chapter 3 – uniformly failed as well.

Type
Chapter
Information
Assault on Democracy
Communism, Fascism, and Authoritarianism During the Interwar Years
, pp. 131 - 157
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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