Fascism . . . used mass violence against its opponents to bludgeon them into submission as a means of overcoming them. Today’s threat to democracy, surely, is more insidious, involving, as a start, a populist appeal to voters that produces the kind of overwhelming electoral dominance that Hitler, who never secured more than 37.4% of the vote in a free national election, failed to achieve. That is why he deployed hundreds of thousands of stormtroopers, following the example of Mussolini’s squadristi, to turn democratic success into dictatorial power. For today’s enemies of democracy, it is the coercive institutions of the state that play the key role, not private armies of thugs.
Richard J. Evans, “Fascism and The Road to Unfreedom review – the warning from the 1930s”, in theguardian.com ; London : Guardian News and Media Limited, 19 july 2018 (excerpt La Litera información)