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Post What If France Had Embraced Fascism in 1934?
Created by John Eipper on 12/20/20 8:08 AM

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What If France Had Embraced Fascism in 1934? (Eugenio Battaglia, Italy, 12/20/20 8:08 am)

The failure of the riots of 6 February 1934 in Paris (see Patrick Mears, 19 December) was a missed opportunity for peace in Europe.

Various right-wing groups participated in the riots:

Action Francais--monarchist
Jeunesse Patriotes--republicans but authoritarian
Solidarité Francais--a small group
Fancissme--probably the only one with similarities to Italian Fascism
Union Nationale des Combatants--a nationalistic Veterans association.

What was missing was a charismatic leader with clear ideas, and therefore they were doomed.

Our esteemed moderator JE asked: "Imagine what a Franco-Italo-German fascist axis could have looked like in the 1930s as well as its impact on 1939 and beyond."

As I suggest above, a "fascist" axis (the real Fascism, with its social programs, existed only in Italy and was different from other right-wing ideologies) would have meant peace in 1939.

Do not forget that Poland was long under the rule of the benevolent dictator (may we call him "fascist" too according to the modern vulgate?) Pilsudski, admired by Hitler. The latter participated in his funeral and when in 1939 the Germans troops entered Poland, an official German Army delegation paid its respects at the tomb of the great Polish leader.

We justifiably blame the theory of the Untermenschen, but suppose that the US had lost against Japan.  Imagine the fuss that would been made about the popular American indication of the Japs as yellow monkeys?

Without the pressures from UK and France, probably an accord between Poland and Germany would have been reached for the settlement of the German "Free City" of Danzig. After all, Hitler reached an accord with Italy about the ethnic German Sud Tyrol and for the German ethnic groups in the Baltic States, Bucovina, and Bessarabia.

Without the French cannon fodder (someone said that the British fight until their last ally), the UK would not have opposed Hitler and maybe Edward VIII would have regained influence while Hitler, as he wrote in his Mein Kampf, would have had friendly relations with the British Empire.

Hopefully, the British Empire could have given up Malta, as at the time the majority of the Maltese would have supported a union with Italy.

Even the Holocaust would not have happened as Hitler wanted the Jews out of Germany and he, at least initially, supported the creation of a Jewish state somewhere, as long as it was far from Germany. Himmler collaborated with the Haganah. In spite of the support of the emigration of 60,000 Germans Jews through the Ha'avara from 1933, the German Diplomatic Corps especially after 1938 was worried that such support would antagonize the Arab Communities and was worried about the strong opposition of the Jewish communities in the Western States.
Do not forget that Ze'ev Jabotiski arranged with Mussolini to found in Italy a Nautical School for Jewish captains of the future Israeli Navy.  Also, Avraham Stern leader of the Stern Gang, as late as January 1941 was in favor of military support for Germany against the UK for the creation of Greater Israel in Palestine.  Unfortunately, Palestine was already the land of the Palestinians and another solution should have been found.

A war from the Axis (practically all Europe) against the USSR would then have been possible, followed by an easy victory. The results of such a victory are difficult to imagine, considering the various ethnic groups, including the Soviet Jews, who already had an Autonomous Oblast, all longing for independence. Maybe Israel could have been founded there.

Finally, the US would have had to stick to its Monroe Doctrine.

JE comments:  These "what ifs" make you think.  My Western liberal sympathies of course cringe at the thought of a Europe unified under fascism, but it may indeed have averted World War II.  Still, in the above scenario, WWII would have meant Europe vs the USSR, which would have been anything but a cake walk.  And which side would the US have taken, especially if the UK had remained neutral in this continental struggle?

So in a nutshell, the French Right was missing its Mussolini or Hitler.

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