Fascism and the Jewish Question

“The Manifesto on Race could have been avoided. It is a scientific abstruseness of certain scholars and journalists, a German text translated into bad Italian. It is a long way from anything I have said, written or signed in fact…. I have always considered the Italian people an admirable product of diverse ethnic fusions on the basis of geographic, economic, and especially spiritual unity. It has been the spirit that has put our culture on the byways of the world.”

-Benito Mussolini

When comparing and contrasting Fascist Literature from the founding era to today two things should immediately pop out at you. One is the emphasis today’s Fascists put on Race and the Jewish question. The former is partially a holdover from American historical attitudes towards race but the latter isn’t so easily explained. Anti-Semitism has always existed but more often than not has been one of those things that’s more under the surface than explicit, not having a significant part in the political thought of any country up until the 20th century. This includes Fascist writers of the interwar era. Giovanni Gentile, Ugo Spirito, Alfredo Rocco, and while it did play a small part in France and Hungary, it was never integral to the doctrine in those countries. Modern Anti-Semites like to think that these Fascists were educated or awoken during the late 30’s. While downplaying the threat that the Nazis provided and the influence they exerted through their military power on this issue. To deny that reality isn’t blind faith but intentional dishonesty. The spread of Anti-Semitism we see today has nothing to do with the knowledge of any so-called evil cabal bent upon enslaving gentiles but is the outgrowth of our economic and political system, which encourages the degeneracy these same people claim to fight against.

Those who claim that Anti-Semitism is an inherent part of Fascism often have a difficult time when confronted with evidence to the contrary.

* 10% of the Italian Jewish population belonged to the National Fascist Party * 200 Jews participated in the march on Rome

* Aldo Finzi and nine other Jewish deputies were elected to parliament for the Fasci Italiani di Combattimento * After the conquest of Ethiopia, the Beta Israel Community were the beneficiaries of special laws to protect them from violence committed by Christian and Muslim Ethiopians. * Italian occupation zones during WWII refused to turn over Jewish refugees to German officials.

France and Hungary both of which had strong influential Fascist movements share a lack of emphasis on the Jewish question, contrast this with the centrality of National Socialist thought regarding Jews and the blindness of those equating the two ideologies becomes more apparent. When German occupation became a reality, both countries had plenty of collaborators willing to help the Germans round up and take Jews to the camps. Originally, however, Anti-Semitism was not influential in either national movement. Most French Fascists were hostile to Germany so they never embraced the biological Anti-Semitism of the Nazis. French Fascist leader De La Rocque leader of the Croix de Feu, the largest of French Fascist organization of the period completely rejected the Nazis and their ideology so much so, that after a very short time in the Vichy government he joined the resistance. The story of the Arrow Cross in Hungary is much the same, showing no signs of anti-Semitism until shortly before the war. Ferenc Szalasi viewed Hitler as a pseudo National Socialist (using the term in its classical sense) opposing the invasion of the Soviet Union, while believing that the Soviet Union would fall when faced with countries implementing a true national socialism.

The unifying theme running through both of these scenarios is the influence of the structural makeup of international and domestic politics on the ideological content of these movements. The Arrow Cross faced constant pressure and harassment from the government of Admiral Horthy, including seeing their leader Ferenc Szalsi imprisoned on multiple occasions. While in France, most Fascist groups were banned in 1936. This created a situation where Hitler and his government appeared as the lesser of two evils, and given the centrality of Anti-Semitism to National Socialist ideology maintaining a stance critical of Anti-Semitism didn’t seem palpable.

As Europe appeared closer to going to war opposition amongst the left began lumping all opposition parties into an undifferentiated whole. Nazis and Fascists were labeled and treated the same, both as Fascists. This caused a coalescing of the different groups into allies. As much as Mussolini detested Hitler (and from prior comments we know he did) the isolation by the rest of the world after the invasion of Ethiopia and the Civil War in Spain led him to believe that relying on the democracies for assistance against German aggression was a practice in futility. The one hurdle to overcome towards making an alliance was the Jewish question. Having meetings with Goebbels and Himmler sitting across from Italian Jewish Fascists would not have gone over well. The incredible military might of Germany and their initial successes in France and Poland accelerated this trend, creating a situation where European Fascists had to make a decision between supporting the Nazis, or opposing them and guaranteeing their own destruction after the war. Either direction they chose, and there were some on both sides, the outcome would not have been good.

All of the above begs the question. With the end of the Second World War, why does someone who looks to Mussolini, Mosely, Primo Rivera, and other Fascists for inspiration insist on adopting the anti-Semitic ideas of a regime whose actions brought about the destruction of the original Fascism? The answer to a large extent can be answered by referring back to structural causes, not the same ones that led to the adoption of Anti-Semitism in the 30’s but to the ones that we have to contend with in our everyday lives.

Central to Fascist thought is the belief in the collective unit as representing the actualization of the individual. The State being the most important of those collective units also has the most influence over how the political and economic systems are constructed. These systems then in turn create the environment and conditions under which people live their everyday lives. Whether a country is Capitalist, Corporatist, or Socialist the productive relations, which they govern, effect and filter down to all aspects of society. This creates an all comprehensive feedback loop with the ideological content originating at the State level being filtered into the State’s apparatuses to be consumed by individuals, who then through their daily interactions within the system work to reinforce that very system.

The stranglehold Capitalism has upon the American consciousness is reflected in the daily lives of the individuals who compose it and explains largely the growth of Anti-Semitic thought in the United States. Capitalism thrives on growth; in fact, it cannot survive without it. To grow it needs a population base which is servile, docile and without roots. A strong value oriented people with a sound sense of identity and self aren’t amenable to the constant gratification and changing social mores at the heart of Capitalism. Capitalism doesn’t see drug addiction, obesity and sexual promiscuousness as social defects and problems but as opportunities to make a profit. Don’t get me wrong most Hollywood Executives don’t go into making material with the desire to pervert people’s morals. The incentives at the heart of Capitalism, the manner in which it views people as commodities changes morals and outlooks in even the best of us, so often we don’t see the results of our actions or we’re able to find rationales which satisfy us internally while denying reality.

National Socialism and especially Anti-Semitism are an outgrowth of this phenomenon. The idea that there is a cabal of Jews in existence somewhere dedicated to enslaving Gentiles is very simple, easy to understand. It appeals to people’s desire for life to imitate art; for there to be an easily identifiable bad guy bent upon their destruction, who with enough will can be overcome and everyone can live happily ever after. The way that Capitalism has dumbed down our intellects, and shortened our attention spans to make us more amenable to marketing and consumption has produced a revulsion towards anything that takes time and patience to digest, such as political and social problems. The images of Jews with grotesquely shaped hook noses serves the same purpose as modern marketing, of getting you to believe in an idea or product based upon an image. The fact that Banking and Hollywood are over-represented by Jews is accepted by many as evidence for the existence of a conspiracy or certain discrepancies in the Holocaust narrative are used to advance the view that the Holocaust never happened. These techniques are often successful due to how Capitalism changes how we think and act. We’re taught to believe in surface appearances. With reality being composed of what we can see, hear, and taste. Looking behind the scenes, doing research, finding meaning beyond the surface doesn’t satisfy the instant gratification society we live in. Looking back in time and realizing that the people who created the intellectual foundations of liberal democracy weren’t Jews or that any mass genocide, which has taken place, is going to have some discrepancies, which aren’t answerable, serves to muddy the waters for many people. It’s much easier and emotionally reassuring to embrace the conspiratorial mindset.

Then what’s to be done? If the attitude, which is producing anti-Semitic thought, is so hardwired into our society, shouldn’t it be destined to get progressively worse? On the surface yes, but as societies grow and become more technological and complex the social structures which they form develop layers upon layers of authority and interactions, it’s complexity causes contradictions to form which if not addressed causes that structure to begin the process of unraveling. We see this now in modern America. The instant gratification people expect and want when applied to political problems leads to frustrations and dead-ends. This can manifest itself in many ways, from withdrawing from the system completely too different varieties of anti-social behavior becoming more discernible; or through competent articulation a change will start establish itself through the social structure changing it from within.

In the end, cool memes, green frogs, and calling people cucks is no substitute for coherent, reasoned historical and political analysis. To be successful Fascism has to get back to its roots and once more be the exponent of ideas.

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