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During the 1920s and 1930s many regimes
The most well-known totalitarian regimes were Italian
Fascism, German Nazism, and Soviet Stalinism, whose
characteristics were quite similar:
o Authoritarian systems.The State shall
be controlled by populist and
charismatic leaders, such as
Mussolini, Hitler or Stalin.
There is not any political pluralism or civil rights.The only
official political party eliminates opposition through
violence and repression by paramilitary forces or political
o Economic and social control.
Everything is controlled by the State,
which will be anti-capitalist and anti-
communist in Germany and Italy.
Public-work programmes were used in order to reduce
Propaganda is essential to make the nationals believe in the
Repressive measures were implemented to persecute all
those who opposed the regime.
o Ideological inequality and fanaticism.
Some members of the society are
believed to be superior due to religious
or racial reasons.
Symbols, uniforms, slogans, and songs are used to unite all the
supporters of the regime.
o Hyper-nationalism and militarism.The
nation is essential above all and that
explains why it has the right to military
expansion, which can just be got through
weapons and wars.
These countries needed to expand in order to access raw
1922 and 1943.
1. He joined the
Party in 1902 and
led its newspaper,
Avanti. None the
less, he was
suspended in 1914
when he wanted to
2. He founded a new political party in
1921, the Fascist National Party as well
as a new newspaper: Il Popolo di Italia,
where he published his political theories.
Italy suffered a major political crisis after WWI since they did not get as much as
they expected (IRREDENTISM). Besides there was a social and economic crisis.
The Fascists took advantage of this situation and controlled the rural areas.
Step by step merchants and Catholics began to support Fascism.
On 27 and 28 October 1922 Mussolini marched on Rome with his 30,000
Blackshirts in order to seize the power.
As a result, the king Victor Emmanuel III gave Mussolini the government on 30
The Grand Council of Fascism was created as a new government in Italy.
The King and the Parliament were respected, although Mussolini was appointed as
Duce and Dictator on 2 January 1925.
o Mussolini promoted a capitalist
o Despite criticising industry, he promoted
the heavy industrial sector.
o He sought self-sufficiency and imports
o Public works were developed under this
o Fascist trade unions were created to
represent the workers and the others were
o Fascism counted on the Catholic support. Hence
Mussolini signed the Lateran Treaty in 1929 with the
Pope Pius XI:
Italy acknowledged the independence of
the Vatican as a sovereign state.
Catholicism was the Italian official religion.
Only religious marriages would be allowed.
o Mussolini became more racist with Jews after his
approaching to Hitler.
o Everything was completely controlled by Mussolini
and the Fascist National Party, who imposed censorship
Mussolini believed in Imperialism.
Hence he meant to create an Italian
The rule over Libya was
Mussolini conquered and
annexed Abyssinia (Ethiopia) in 1936.
Albania and Somalia were
occupied in 1939.
Mussolini had very strong ties with
Romania, Austria, Hungary, and
Due to international conflicts with France
and Great Britain, Mussolini got closer to
The Rome-Berlin Axis was created on 1 November
The Pact of Steel was signed between Hitler and
Mussolini on 22 May 1939. Japan also joined this pact
to fight against communism (Anti-Comintern Pact).
National Socialism or Nazism was the German
totalitarian regime between 1933 and 1945.
The origins of this political ideology can be found in
the creation of the German Socialist Workers’ Party
by Anton Drexler in 1918, which meant to fight
Adolf Hitler joined that political party in 1919
and got its presidency in 1921, when he changed
its name into National Socialist German Workers’
Party (NSDAP), which he identified with a new
symbol: the swastika.
His programme was hyper-nationalist (Pan-German), where
Germans should get their Lebensraum (Life-room). It was
also racist (Anti-Semite), where Aryans were superior.
He promised the suppression of the Treaty of Versailles.
He also created several paramilitary forces for the Nazi
SA (Sturmabteilung), which were the Assault
Division, subsequently led by Ernst Röhm.
SS (Schutzstaffel), which were the Protection Corps
or personal guard.
Hitler met other leaders such as
Luddendorf, Röhm, Göring, and Rudolf
Hess, who took part in an attempted coup
d’état they staged in Munich in 1923.
Hitler was arrested and imprisoned in
While he was in prison he wrote
his political manifesto: Mein Kampf (My
The Nazi Party had its first representatives in the
German Parliament in 1930 and it won the
elections in 1932 with a massive popular support:
On 30 January 1933 Hitler is appointed Chancellor
by the President Hindenburg.
Once Hitler got the government he
eliminated the rest of the political parties.
The Reichstag (German Parliament) was
burnt by the Nazis in February 1933, although they
blamed Anarchists and Socialists for that fire in
order to persecute them.
Once Hindenburg died on 2 August 1934, Hitler was
appointed as new German president, and was self-called
o On 30 August 1934 Hitler proclaimed in
Nuremberg the birth of the 3rd Reich, the so-called
o He created the Gestapo (contraction of GEheime
STAatsPOlizei) as a secret political police.
o He developed a programme to reindustrialise and to
o The autonomy of the German Länder (autonomous
states) was abolished.
Hitler made a policy in order to eliminate
all those possible enemies from his point
o Dissolution of the SA on the Night of
the Long Knives (30 June 1934), when all
its leaders were captured and executed.
o Persecution of the Jews once the
Nuremberg Acts were passed (1935).
On 9 November 1938,
the so-called Night of
were created in order
to confine and
Fascist and Nazi expansionist policy
Japan became an ally
USA didn’t want to get involved
GB and France were busied with their
Pact of Steel
France, GB and Poland Treaty
New alliance between France, GB and
Denmark and Norway (Germany)
Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, France (Germany)
Battle of Britain
Battle of the Athlantic
50 million of people died
Production fell down, that resulted in
The neutral countries experienced a
Moral impacts caused by the horrors of
Two new powers apperared: USA and
Main allied nations: Britain, USA and URSS
Teheran conferenceTeheran conference: to end the war quickly
Yalta conferenceYalta conference: to eradicate the Nazi regime,
and divide up Germany, Austria, Berlin and
Postdam ConferencePostdam Conference: Germany’s punishment
Two areas of influence: East and West
Paris ConferenceParis Conference: different map of Europe
It replaced the League of Nations (1945)
46 states and these ideas:
To maintain international peace
To promote and defend human rights
To achieve cooperation
To promote self-determination