‘I am a Socialist,’ Hitler told Otto Strasser in 1930

Daniel Hannan has a useful column in London’s Telegraph on the socialist origins of fascism. I merely describe it as “useful” because it will be read and understood only by people who understand these things already but worth repeating just to remind ourselves who are enemies are and what they stand for.

‘I am a Socialist,’ Hitler told Otto Strasser in 1930, ‘and a very different kind of Socialist from your rich friend, Count Reventlow’.

No one at the time would have regarded it as a controversial statement. The Nazis could hardly have been more open in their socialism, describing themselves with the same terminology as our own SWP: National Socialist German Workers’ Party.

Almost everyone in those days accepted that fascism had emerged from the revolutionary Left. Its militants marched on May Day under red flags. Its leaders stood for collectivism, state control of industry, high tariffs, workers’ councils. Around Europe, fascists were convinced that, as Hitler told an enthusiastic Mussolini in 1934, ‘capitalism has run its course’

If you, too, are of the view that capitalism has run its course you should be aware of the company you keep.

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