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Fascism and Constitutional ConflictThe British Extreme Right and Ulster in the Twentieth Century$
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James Loughlin

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781786941770

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781786941770.001.0001

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Rotha Lintorn-Orman, Ulster and the British Fascists Movement

Rotha Lintorn-Orman, Ulster and the British Fascists Movement

(p.23) 1 Rotha Lintorn-Orman, Ulster and the British Fascists Movement
Fascism and Constitutional Conflict

James Loughlin

Liverpool University Press

This chapter focuses on the first British fascist organisation to emerge in the early 1920s, founded by Rotha Lintorn-Orman. Prompted by the triumph of communism in Russia and its development more widely in Europe, Lintorn-Orman was convinced that Britain’s parliamentary system would be inadequate to meet a serious communist threat and that stronger paramilitary methods would be needed. It demonstrates that, unlike later fascist organisations, informed by a vision of national transformation based on corporatism, Lintorn-Orman’s movement existed to defend existing British values and institutions. The test of its national utility came with the General Strike of 1926 when the Government made unacceptable conditions on accepting its help, thereby causing a split in the movement and a subsequent extension of recruitment activities to Northern Ireland to restore its strength. However, progress proved difficult, due partly to the disreputable nature of regional leaders, the limited relevance of mainstream British concerns in the region and the fact that the region’s Unionist Government had an already effective police force in addition to a substantial paramilitary organisation at its disposal.

Keywords:   Lintorn-Orman, communism, British Fascists, outlook, weakness, Unionist Government

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