Throughout Europe, democracy had prevailed by 1919.But by 1939, Europe's countries were split in their ways of government.
Eastern countries went authoritarian, while Western countries stayed democratic.Dictatorship in Europe was by far not something new, but this new, modern form of totalitarianism, however, was.One leader who belonged to the one party in the country led the new totalitarian state.These governments were also different in that they gave more power to the central government, and they were no longer passive about loyalty from their citizens.They demanded "active loyalty and commitment of citizens to the regime's goals," (Western Civilization, Jackson J. Spielvogel, pg. 789).
In these totalitarian governments, modern communication and mass propaganda was used to spread ideas.These countries wanted control over every aspect of life, including economic, social, political, intellectual, and cultural.This control over the masses was meant to serve a purpose; to unite the people in the achievement of common goals.The individual was not allowed any freedoms unless the leader of the state allowed it.The three best examples of these totalitarian governments were Fascist Italy, sparked by a sense of nationalism; Nazi Germany, which were led by harsh racism; and Soviet Russia, which followed an idea of Marxian socialism. Fascist Italy began in the early 1920's when Benito Mussolini started the Fascio di Combattimento (League of Combat).
This was the "beginning of thefirst fascist movement in Europe,"(Spielvogel 789).Mussolini put together bands of armed fascists, called squadristi, who were sent to attack socialist offices and newspapers.Mussolini's power came from a large use of violence and a lot of his support came from the upper and middle classes.Mussolini, to get the Italian government to give up power to him, threatened to march on Rome and seize power..