Why Does the End of One Dictatorship Often Lead to the Start of Another Dictatorship?

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A dictatorship is a form of governance wherein one person or group of people has unlimited power with no effective constitutional restraints. The term dictatorship derives from the Latin word dictator, which under the Roman Republic denoted a provisional administrator with supernatural abilities to cope with state emergencies (Fraenkel and Meierhenrich, 2018, p. 3). Modern dictatorships, on the other hand, are more like to old tyrants than ancient dictatorial regimes. The accounts of ancient thinkers of the oppressive rules of Greece and Italy go a long way toward identifying current dictatorships. Dictators typically utilize force or deception to obtain autocratic political power, which they then retain via intimidation, fear, and the violation of fundamental civil freedoms (Geddes et al., 2018, p. 1). In order to maintain public confidence, they may also use mass propaganda strategies. This work was written with the aim of analyzing the emergence and eclipse of dictatorships and the central question of how the fall of one dictatorship affects the emergence of a new one.

Dictatorships are frequently unanticipated; they have emerged among rich, intelligent, and cultural people who appeared to be secure from dictatorial regimes in Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Consider Germany, which is one of the most perplexing and spectacular situations. It was generally regarded as having the best instructional system in the world in the late nineteenth century (Caldeira, 2019, p. 197). Germany would have undoubtedly paved the charge if any schooling institution could fully protect individuals against barbarism.

German conditions deteriorated, and when individuals feel furious or hungry enough, they may occasionally back extremists who would never gather a crowd in ordinary situations. The Germans went into World War I expecting to win and repay their war expenditures by making the losers pay. The German government had persuaded its people into believing they were succeeding, so everyone was taken aback when the reality was revealed. Hitler was among those who protested the Weimar regime. Hitler’s major strength appeared to be as a public speaker, so he started delivering speeches that resonated with Germans who were disappointed with the war’s result (Goeschel, 2018, p. 10). He slammed Jews, industrialists, and other purported criminals, pledging to restore German grandeur.

Then there was the inflationary problem; the victorious Allies insisted that Germany pay large reparations, seemingly without considering how the Germans would receive the money. Trade restrictions made it more difficult for German businesses to gain money through exporting. Tariffs in Europe often quadrupled and were as high as prewar levels. Hitler delivered addresses to what he referred to as poor and hungry billionaires, people who had billions of currency marks and could not purchase a piece of food. Hitler may have been forgotten if the good times had persisted. He required another catastrophe to have a chance at political power. The crisis occurred as a result of a series of faulty policies that hampered business and precipitated the Great Depression.

Hitler agitated for authority nonstop; he travelled incessantly, speaking publicly throughout Germany. He wanted to destroy his competitors, so he vilified them. He condemned them for betraying the country. There were Nazi rallies and marches every night. Hitler’s subordinates publicized him by printing a Nazi newspaper, disseminating Nazi records, and supporting Nazi films (Spielvogel and Redles, 2020, p. 5). Readers should comprehend that Hitler did not take over a small government with a clear principle of separation of powers that was recognized, transferred, and restricted. He inherited a massive welfare state. Private firms involved in the war were converted into government bureaucracies. Private enterprises that officials deemed unneeded were closed down by the government. There was compulsory work, and no one could change employment without the authorization of the authorities.

This passage of history was presented so that people could understand what exactly led to the birth of a dictatorship, here we consider one of the most striking cases that happened relatively recently. From this case, you can draw many lessons and main facts that influenced the formation of Nazi Germany. Poor economic and foreign policies can lead to crises with catastrophic political ramifications (Phillips, 2019, p. 11). Politicians frequently desire arbitrary authority in order to cope with a significant crisis and restore order, despite the fact that underlying issues are frequently caused by poor policy decisions. Many individuals are prepared to go with and support dreadful acts in bad times that would be unfathomable in good times. Prospective tyrants’ apparent desire to eliminate opponents occasionally gives away their objectives. There is no reliable mechanism to keep mediocre individuals out of power.

If people talk about how one dictatorship replaces another, then a pattern emerges that is manifested in the example of Germany, although it was not always a dictatorship. The poor economy and, in general, the life of residents leads to uprisings and attempts to overthrow the current government. However, this does not mean that a new dictatorship will not come to replace it; people are accustomed to living this way for many; it is a choice that suits them. The only factor that they demand is a quality life. Unfortunately, all artificially created dictatorships, namely those that had a different form of government, and such a majority, do not tend to exist for long periods since the people are not used to living this way, and most often, uprisings occur.

In certain circumstances, democracies devolve into dictatorships when elites believe that the democratic system is no longer serves them; the structure is incompatible with their political and financial objectives. Consequently, they may pursue non-democratic solutions to safeguard their riches, prestige, or political power from competing oligarchs or even ordinary people. At times, a democracy may fall apart in a far more violent way, such as through a coup or revolution (Berman, 2019, p. 2). In the case of a revolution, a large section of the people galvanizes against the present ruling government and ultimately topples it, prompting the establishment of a new administration that is not inherently democratic in form. Nevertheless, more often than not, democracy is brought to an end by a violent coup against a democratically elected president, in which a reasonably small but loud political party overthrows the elected authorities. The newly constituted post-coup authority then inhibits democratic freedoms, generally using a national crisis as a reason, and governs rather than through authoritarian tactics.

Democracies can also devolve into dictatorial regimes when citizens grow apathetic about politics, retreating from political involvement. As seen by declining voter turnout across most of the democratic globe, this is a rising concern in many democracies (Arendt, 2017, p. 7). Voters may become indifferent if they consider they will no longer make a significant difference in ordinary politics. When citizens’ political decisions do not match their civic values, they may feel alienated (Escribà‐Folch et al., 2018, p. 889). Overall, when supporters think there is a barrier among them and how politicians are conducted in the country’s capital, they tune off political developments (Passerini, 2017, p. 1). This is especially hazardous since it allows totalitarian political leaders to begin restricting political rights for minority groups, if not the entire national population. When the democracy voice is continuously muted, there is no redress challenging undemocratic actions such as voter intimidation or infringements on free expression.

Dictatorships can be transformed into modern democracies in a variety of ways. The most vivid manner in the public imagination is a popular movement, in which a considerable segment of society galvanizes itself to change or topple the government (Teorell and Lindberg, 2019, p. 66). Sometimes these revolutions succeed without resorting to bloodshed on either side, but regrettably, many revolutions devolve into bloodshed as well. On the other hand, liberalization does not always have to be led by a mass movement of the populace; it may frequently be steered by the autocratic elite themself, assuming the elites are under enough strain or motivated to democrat.

The democratic uprising, or the procedure by which a mass movement of a country’s populace forces the government to change or stand down, is the traditional way of democracy. Revolutions often entail a considerable proportion of a country’s people uniting around a limited number of significant, straightforward aims aimed at altering the incumbent administration. A multitude of circumstances can spark such revolutions. One possibility is a sense of societal despair exacerbated by events such as a catastrophic economic slump, military loss, or an enormous hunger (Treisman, 2020, p. 792). Revolutions can also begin as a result of public outrages, such as an unwarranted extralegal action or a big political scandal; in these circumstances, the indignation is significant enough to cause a schism in trust between the public and the government, leading the population to strive to change or overturn it.

Regrettably, violent revolutions are more prevalent in history than peaceful ones. In this circumstance, either the government troops or the revolutionary elevate the crisis from peaceful protests to the use of lethal force. Although it is still feasible for the freedom fighters to establish democratic institutions at this juncture if the progression proves successful, revolutionary movements are more likely to malign the revolution’s aims; if a political change is enacted after conflict, the new system may be just as totalitarian, if not more so, than the former regime.

This part of the work confirms the thoughts that were drawn from the history of Nazi Germany. To replace the old dictatorship, the new one does not come by accident or is not thought out. Most often, states after a collapse are faced with problems that should be comprehensively addressed, and the long process of reconstruction is not suitable for everyone. Thus, people who are not indifferent to their country enter the political scene, but their motives do not always come into contact with the intentions of the people. All this leads to the fact that a person has to apply the measures of totalitarian rule and so in a circle, which indicates that the dictatorship does not cease to exist; only the dictator changes.

To summarize, a dictatorship is a type of government in which one individual or group of individuals has public authority with no meaningful restrictions placed. German circumstances worsened, and when people are angry or starving enough, they may sometimes support radicals who would never assemble a throng under normal circumstances. Poor military and foreign strategies can precipitate crises with disastrous political consequences. Politicians typically seek unilateral authorities in order to deal with a big catastrophe and maintain peace, despite the fact that underlying troubles are frequently the result of poor government policies. Many people are willing to go along with and accept heinous deeds in hard times that would be inconceivable in good times. The apparent desire of prospective rulers to destroy adversaries occasionally reveals their goals.

Democracy decline into dictatorial regimes under specific conditions when elites perceive that the democratic system is no longer suits them; the framework is inconsistent with their financial and political goals. Democracies may also deteriorate into totalitarian regimes when citizens get disinterested in politics and withdraw from political participation. This is a growing worry in many democracies, as seen by decreased voter turnout throughout the majority of the democratic world.

To replace the previous regime, the new one would not happen by chance or without planning. Most typically, nations following a collapse have challenges that must be handled entirely, and the long reconstruction process is not ideal for everyone. Thus, those who care about their nation enter politics, but their motivations do not necessarily coincide with the goals of the individuals. All of this leads to the reality that a person must implement totalitarian measures and so on in a loop, indicating that the dictator does not stop existing; only the ruler change. Despite a large number of cases of the creation of dictatorial regimes, today’s society is increasingly trying to move away from this concept and solve everything collectively. Democracy is what people yearn for under any circumstances because the state should work not for one person but the whole people.


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Caldeira, T. P. (2019). Crime and individual rights: reframing the question of violence in Latin America. In Constructing Democracy. Routledge, 197-211.

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