National Radical Camp Falanga

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This article is about an interwar Polish political party. For other meanings, see National Radical Camp (disambiguation).
For its modern-day successor, see National Radical Camp (1993).
National Radical Camp Falanga
Founded 14 April 1934
Dissolved 1945
Headquarters Warsaw, Poland
Ideology Polish nationalism
National Radicalism
Falangism
Antisemitism
Political position Far-right
Politics of Poland
Political parties
Elections

The National Radical Camp-Falanga (Polish: Oboz Narodowo Radykalny-Falanga, ONR-Falanga), was a Polish political group. It was one of two groups to emerge following the banning of the National Radical Camp (Polish: Oboz Narodowo Radykalny, ONR) in 1934.

Formation and ideology[edit]

The ONR-Falanga was formed in 1934 following a split by members of the National Radical Camp held in Detention Camp Bereza Kartuska. Adopting the name of Oboz Narodowo-Radykalny (National Radical Camp), it soon became known as Falanga as that was the name of its journal (the same thing happening to the rival group, which was known as National Radical Camp-ABC).[1]

The group was led by Bolesław Piasecki and advocated a 'Catholic totalitarianism' inspired by Falangism[citation needed]. However, although clearly derived from Falangism, it has been argued that their Catholicism was even more central than that of the Spanish group[2] and indeed their pronouncment that 'God is the highest form of man' recalled the religious fanaticism of Corneliu Zelea Codreanu.[3] The group is widely considered to have been a fascist movement.[1][4][5] Harshly critical of capitalism and supportive of removing citizenship rights from Poland's Jews[1] it presented itself as the vanguard of the opposition to the Józef Piłsudski.[1]

Development[edit]

Largely based on university campuses, it followed a policy of anti-Semitism and although it only had a few members[6] from this basis launched attacks on Jewish students and businesses.[7] Left-wing activists were also as part of this violent activity.[1]

The group soon came under scrutiny from government forces. Indeed, unlike similar movements in other European countries who regularly held public rallies, the ONR-Falanga held only two such gatherings, in 1934 and 1937, both of which were quickly broken up by police.[5]

For a time the movement became associated with the Camp of National Unity (Polish: Obóz Zjednoczenia Narodowego, OZN) as Colonel Adam Koc, impressed by the organisation of the ONR-Falanga, placed Piasecki in charge of the OZN youth group. Koc called for the creation of a one-party state and hoped to use the youth movement to ensure this although his pronouncements upset many pro-government moderates. As such, Koc was removed from the leadership of the OZN in 1938 and replaced by General Stanisław Skwarczyński who quickly severed any ties to the ONR-Falanga.[8]

Disappearance[edit]

As a Polish nationalist movement the ONR-Falanga opposed the German occupation of Poland and the movement quickly disappeared to be replaced by the Konfederacja Narodu, a group within the Polish resistance that retained far right views.[1] Following the establishment of communism Piasecki was allowed to lead the PAX Association (Polish: Stowarzyszenie PAX), a Catholic organisation that was a front group of the NKVD and which aimed to promote the new communist regime to Poland's Catholics whilst turning them away from the Vatican.[9]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f C.P. Blamires, World Fascism: A Historical Encyclopedia, ABC-Clio, 2006, p. 523
  2. ^ Stanley G. Payne, A History of Fascism 1914-1945, London: Routledge, 2001, p. 262
  3. ^ Payne, A History of Fascism, pp. 321-2
  4. ^ P. Davies & D. Lynch, The Routledge Companion to Fascism and the Far Right, London: Routledge, 2002. p. 324
  5. ^ a b Norman Davies, God's Playground: A History of Poland Volume 2: 1795 to the Present, Columbia University Press, 1982, p. 262
  6. ^ (Polish) Obóz Narodowo-Radykalny WIEM Encyklopedia
  7. ^ J.W. Borejsza, "East European Perceptions of Italian Fascism, S. U. Larsen, B. Hagtvet & J. P. Myklebust, Who Were the Fascists: Social Roots of European Fascism, Scandinavian University Press, Oslo, 1980, p. 358
  8. ^ Payne, A History of Fascism, p. 322
  9. ^ Davies, God's Playground, p. 579