After German doctors became the first to identify the link between smoking and lung cancer, the anti-tobacco movement in Nazi Germany became the first public anti-smoking campaign in modern history. Anti-tobacco movements grew in many nations from the beginning of the 20th century, but these had little success, except in Germany, where the campaign was supported by the government after the Nazis came to power. It was the most powerful anti-smoking movement in the world during the 1930s and early 1940s. The National Socialist leadership condemned tobacco consumption. Research on smoking and its effects on health thrived under Nazi rule and was the most important of its type at that time. The Nazi anti-tobacco campaign included banning smoking in trams, buses and city trains, promoting health education, limiting cigarette rations in the Wehrmacht, organizing medical lectures for soldiers, and raising the tobacco tax. The National Socialists also imposed restrictions on tobacco advertising and smoking in public spaces, and regulated restaurants and coffeehouses. The anti-tobacco movement did not have much effect in the early years of the Nazi regime and tobacco use increased between 1933 and 1939, but smoking by military personnel declined from 1939 to 1945.
A poster for the German election of November 1932 declares, "Das Volk wählt Liste 1 Nationalsozialisten Reichstagswahl." Translation: "The people are voting for list 1, the Nazis, at the Reichstag election."
In all the countries where fascism became victorious, we had, before the growth of fascism and its victory, a wave of radicalism of the masses—of the workers and the poorer peasants and farmers, and of the petty bourgeois class. In Italy, after the war and before 1922, we had a revolutionary wave of tremendous dimensions; the state was paralyzed, the police did not exist, the trade unions could do anything they wanted—but there was not party capable of taking the power. As a reaction came fascism. In Germany, the same. We had a revolutionary situation in 1918; the bourgeois class did not even ask to participate in the power. The social democrats paralyzed the revolution. Then the workers tried again in 1922-23-24. This was the time of the bankruptcy of the Communist Party—all of which we have gone into before. Then in 1929-30-31, the German workers began again a new revolutionary wave. There was a tremendous power in the Communists and in the trade unions, but then came the famous policy (on the part of the Stalinist movement) of social fascism, a policy invented to paralyze the working class. Only after these three tremendous waves did fascism become a big movement. There are no exceptions to this rule—fascism comes only when the working class shows complete incapacity to take into its own hands the fate of society.
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15 June 2009: The Italian National Guard, a vigilante group set to begin foot patrols in Northern Italy, causes controversy when it unveils its uniform in Milan, which is seen as similar to that of the blackshirts.