Alternate History

Devoirism (Quebec Independence)

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Flag of Philippe Pétain, Chief of State of Vichy France

The flag of the Devoirist Party of France, which is recognized as the world's official symbol for Devoirism

Devoirism is a political ideology founded in France by Philippe Petain in 1918 following World War I. It is the equivalent of OTL Fascism. It is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism with an emphasis of citizens serving the state.


Beginnings in France

World War I had left the defeated nations of the world shattered and in a state of disrepair. As countries returned to peace, its citizens were eager to place the blame for their country's defeat. In France, the blame was placed on the weak and corrupt Republican government, the ideals of the French Revolution itself, and uprisings from socialists and communists in the final months of the war. Far right French leaders were initially impressed with the revolutions in Russia, but it became clear that Trotsky's unitarian ideology was not compatible with the far right movement. 

Far right leaders from across France met in Lyon in 1918 to solidfy their ideology. Representatives from the currently biggest right wing party, Action Francaise, met with disgruntled generals such as Philippe Petain, soldiers, and conservative politicians. Though they agreed on many ideas, the two groups split over their opinion on restoring the monarchy and establishing Catholicism as an official state religion. Marshal Petain's own opinion on the state itself being the highest power, and the only way to victory was through duty to the state and absolute loyalty to the state, quickly become the most popular ideology at the conference. Devoirism had been born when the conference ended with the creation of the Parti Devoirist Francais. 

The PDF quickly swelled in size as it spread across France. Marshal Petain would be killed by the Spanish Flu in 1918, resulting in a race for leadership. Eventually, the faction led by Charles de Gaulle would seize control. De Gaulle was extremely charismatic and French citizens rallied around him. Paramilitary forces working for the PDF used intimidation methods to gain the loyalty or silence those opposed to the PDF. In 1922, de Gaulle initiated his plan to gain power. His paramilitaries seized control of strategic points around the country, and he and 33,000 followers marched on the capital at Paris. Devoirist troops gathered around Paris, and the republican government prepared for a siege, but ultimately the Prime Minister would resign and de Gaulle seized power.


Other defeated nations in Europe and the world saw devoirism as a way to regain their power and superiority. Italian military officer Benito Mussolini, already a leader in right wing circles in the Kingdom, solidified his power base by founding the Partito Nazionale Devoirista in 1921. Seeing the success of the French coup, Mussolini gathered his own strength and in 1924 the blackshirts launched their own march on Rome. Just as in France, Prime Minister Luigi Facta resigned, and King Victor Emmanuel III handed power to Mussolini and the devoirists. 

Devorisim spread across the ocean and parties in the defeated New World nations were founded. The largest one was in the Confederate States, led by World War I veteran Hugo Black. The Confederate government, after seeing what happened in France and Italy, were more resistant to devoirist movements in their country. In 1928, the devorists tried to take power when two party members assassinated President Henry L. Whitfield, but their coup failed, and Black was thrown in jail. In the aftermath, paramilitary forces were outlawed in the Confederacy, weakening the devoirists. The devoirists reorganized, and the parties in the Confederacy and in California would change their strategy to winning legally in elections.

The Great Depression

The Great Depression utterly destroyed the economies of the defeated nations, and citizens, seeing how France and Italy managed to stay afloat during the crisis, began to turn to devoirism as their preferred solution. Once again, the devoirists placed the blame on the economic turmoil on the same culprits: communists, socialists, entrenched, stubborn politicians, and Jews and other minorities such as blacks in the Confederate States and Native Americans in California. 

The economic turmoil would lead to the election of devoirist politicians in the Confederacy and California, who immediately began a campaign to disenfranchise targeted minorities, dissolve democracy, and put in place a totalitarian government. These goverments restored the economy using massive spending to rebuild infrastructure and build up their militaries, well past the limit put in place by the treaties that ended World War I. 

Devoirist movements rocked other countries as well. In Europe, with Germany suffering from the Depression, their Central European sattelite states saw a chance to move away from the Empire. In Hungary, devorist Prime Ministers and their parties took increasing control over the country. The Romanian Iron Guard party began to gain power, finally achieving total control of the government on the eve of World War II. 

Devoirist Nations

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