The struggle between globalists and nationalists continue to shake the foundations of various segments in society. What started out as a conflict in ideas between outward and inward looking doctrine has spilled over to the streets in rallies and protests. On one side are the champions of nationalist ideology; those who want government to focus on country. On the other side are those who believe in equal opportunity as the means to international cooperation.
The nationalists are referred to as “White Supremacists” largely for the racially-charged tone of their rhetoric. The other side is called “Antifa” short for anti-Fascists. But both sides refer to each other as fascists. How can two extreme schools of thought be aligned to fascism? Does Fascism still exist in this day and age? Or have people grown desensitized to its true meaning?
Fascism has its origins in Italy shortly after the First World War. It was borne out of the need to preserve the nation and not to re-establish traditional monarchies. The fascist movements in the 19th century were essentially a revolt versus the liberal democratic state. It gained ground with the Russian revolution, followed by Italian fascism then Hitler’s failed bid for a revolution.
As an ideology, fascism was popular in Europe particularly at the time Hitler became the Chancellor of Germany. Fascism also had a sizeable following in Italy and other parts of Europe.
In comparison, the right-wing driven movements in the United States while becoming more brazen and frequent, is small in scope when compared to the movements in Europe. Their actions almost seem more reactionary; perhaps even opportunistic without much substance.
One side talks about unfair agreements that discriminate against locals while the other side levies accusations of leading with a racist agenda. It could be that what right-wing Americans perceive as nationalism is more a case of patriotism. In its truest sense, nationalism has a shared national identity.
As both sides continue to disagree on issues, they perhaps should realise that a contrarian view does not make a fascist.