Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Portugal's 20th-century Philosopher-King

 From The American Conservative:

Dr. Salazar opposed the Axis Powers’ expansionism, beginning with Italy’s invasion of Ethiopia in 1935. During World War II, he helped victims of the Third Reich escape Nazi-occupied Europe; Casablanca got that much right. He lent material support to the Allies during World War II, and he would have gladly joined the war on their side. Salazar remained neutral only for fear of driving his neighbor, Francisco Franco, into Hitler’s arms.

The right, meanwhile, doesn’t like to talk about him for fear of being called fascists ourselves. (What nonsense—as if our progressive friends need a reason.) We may hope that Tom Gallagher’s new biography of Salazar will break that silence.

Dr. Salazar, as he was always known, was an economist by training. In 1926, a military junta brought an end to the anarchic, anticlerical First Portuguese Republic; the generals asked him to serve as their finance minister. Within his first year, he restored financial stability for the first time in a century, becoming a national hero. (Read more.)


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