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The flag of Albania as an Italian protectorate used by the fascist government

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The Albanian Fascist Party (Albanian Partia Fashiste e Shqipërisë -- PFSh) was a fascist movement which held nominal power in Albania from 1939, when the country was conquered by Italy, until 1943, when Italy capitulated to the Allies. Afterward, Albania fell under German occupation, and the PFSh was replaced by the Albanian Nazi Party.

The PFSh was a branch of the Italian National Fascist Party (PNF) with Benito Mussolini at its head and organized along the same lines and principles, and with its own paramilitary Black Shirts. It was never a mass movement, with membership reported at 13,500 in May 1940; however, during the PFSh's time in power, it did realize the vision of Greater Albania, expanding the borders of Albania into modern-day Epirus and Kosovo. It also engaged in some anti-semitism, with Albanian Jews forbidden from joining the party (though Muslims were allowed to join), and therefore excluded from some professions such as education; future communist leader Enver Hoxha also lost his job as a teacher for refusing to join the PFSh.

In early 1943, Maliq Bej Bushati, an anti-monarchist nationalist, reorganized the PFSh as the Guard of Great Albania and worked to distance Albania from Italy, striking fascist symbols from the flag (two fasces, one on each side of the Albanian eagle) and asserting Albanian autonomy in many spheres. However, the Italian surrender led to the country's occupation by Nazi Germany and changed the political situation in the country.

Upon the German takeover, SD leader Ernst Kaltenbrunner reorganized the Guard of Great Albania into the Albanian Nazi Party, which had formal control of Albania. German control over Albania was looser than in other territories; the Albanian Nazi government did not expand systematic persecution of Jews to deportation or killings. Albanian volunteers did, however, form an SS division, the 21st Waffen Mountain Division of the SS Skanderbeg (1st Albanian).

After the fall of the Third Reich, Albania descended into civil war; some members of the Albanian Nazi Party fought against the communists both in Albania and in Kosovo, with the last of these reported to have ceased fighting in 1951.

Ministers Secretaries of the Albanian Fascist Party

  • 1939-1941 - Tefik Mborja
  • 1941-1943 - Jup Kazazi
  • 1943 - Kol Bib Mirakaj

Ministers Secretaries of the Guard of Great Albania

See also

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