This book is the first detailed English-language study of the politics of Estonia during its previous period of independence. It examines the unique case of the Estonian Veterans' League, which won an overwhelming majority in a national referendum for its constitutional amendment, creating a powerful presidency. The Veterans appeared set to triumph in the 1934 elections, but were thwarted by the establishment of an authoritarian regime. They continued their activities underground until their aborted coup attempt led to the imprisonment of their leaders. Some Veterans later became collaborators during the Nazi occupation. The author also compares the Veterans with fascist movements in neighbouring countries, and concludes that, despite similarities, the Veterans differed from the fascists in fundamental respects. By using formerly unobtainable archival records this study fills a considerable gap in the literature on the Baltic states, and it should be of special interest to students of European fascist movements

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