The Info List - Historic Compromise

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The Historic Compromise
Historic Compromise
(Italian: Compromesso storico), called also Third Phase (Italian: Terza Fase) or Democratic Alternative (Italian: Alternativa Democratica), was an Italian historical political alliance and accommodation between the Christian Democrats (DC) and the Italian Communist Party (PCI) in the 1970s.


1 History 2 Composition 3 See also 4 Notes


Aldo Moro

Enrico Berlinguer

In 1973, Enrico Berlinguer, General Secretary of the Italian Communist Party (PCI), launched in communist magazine Rinascita a proposal for a "democratic alliance" with Christian Democracy (DC), embraced by Aldo Moro. The call for this alliance was inspired by the overthrow of the Allende Government in Chile. For Berlinguer, the events in Chile proved that the Marxist left could not aspire to govern in democratic countries without establishing alliances with more moderate forces. After the 1973 Chilean coup, there was cooperation between the PCI and DC that became a political alliance in 1976. Then Berlinguer's PCI attempted to distance itself from the USSR, with the launching of "Eurocommunism" along with the Spanish Communist Party and the French Communist Party. However, the Compromise was unpopular among the other centre-leftist groups like the Italian Republican Party
Italian Republican Party
(PRI) and Italian Socialist Party (PSI), led respectively by Ugo La Malfa and Bettino Craxi. Also the rightist Christian Democrat Giulio Andreotti
Giulio Andreotti
had doubts about the accommodation.[1] Finally, the PCI started to provide external support to a Christian Democratic one-party government led by Andreotti. Despite this, several radical communists in the PCI boycotted the government. There was an increase in far-left terrorism, mainly committed by the Red Brigades (Italian: Brigate Rosse, BR). The BR kidnapped Aldo Moro, the then Party President of DC, on 16 March 1978. After several consultations in the Italian Parliament, the government refused the terrorists' conditions, and Moro was killed on 9 May 1978. A strong anti-communist sentiment rose, and the PSI, along with the far-right Italian Social Movement
Italian Social Movement
(MSI), increased their votes in the 1979 general election. Nevertheless, the Compromise continued but it was in decline. At the DC's XIV Congress in 1980, the DC's moderate wing ("Democratic Initiative", "Dorothean" and "New Force") won with an anti-communist programme, obtaining 57.7% of the vote, while the DC's conservative wing and Giulio Andreotti's faction "Spring", ironically, obtained 42.3% with a pro-Compromise program. The new DC Secretary became Flaminio Piccoli, a Dorothean, and the Compromise was discontinued. In November 1980 Berlinguer announced the end of the Historic Compromise. Composition[edit]

Party Main ideology Leader/s

Christian Democracy Christian democracy Aldo Moro, Benigno Zaccagnini

Italian Communist Party Communism Enrico Berlinguer

See also[edit]

Grand coalition (Germany) Strategy of tension Years of lead


^ Fallaci, Oriana (1974). Intervista con la storia. Rizzoli. 

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Italian Communist Party

General Secretary

Amadeo Bordiga
Amadeo Bordiga
(1922–1923) Executive Committee (1923–1924) Antonio Gramsci
Antonio Gramsci
(1924–1927) Camilla Ravera
Camilla Ravera
(1927–1930) Palmiro Togliatti
Palmiro Togliatti
(1930–1934) Ruggero Grieco
Ruggero Grieco
(1934–1938) Palmiro Togliatti
Palmiro Togliatti
(1938–1964) Luigi Longo (1964–1972) Enrico Berlinguer
Enrico Berlinguer
(1972–1984) Alessandro Natta
Alessandro Natta
(1984–1988) Achille Occhetto
Achille Occhetto

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Italian Socialist Party L'Ordine Nuovo Culturalists Communist Party of Italy
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(Garibaldi Battalion) Italian resistance movement National Liberation Committee May 1947 crises AvtoVAZ Tolyatti Italian Communist Youth Federation Marxist-Leninism Bordigism Eurocommunism Meliorism


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/ Democrats of the Left
Democrats of the Left
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Communist Refoundation Party
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Popular Democratic Front (1947–1948) Historic Compromise
Historic Compromise

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