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In his 1794 speech to the National Convention, Robespierre made it clear that the aim of the Revolution was a democracy. He said that the revolutionaries wanted to establish a government based on virtue and reason, one which did not allow for "monstrous opulence" and the "vices and snobbishness of the monarchy." It would be a government free of privileges for aristocrats, and one which located power in its rightful source, the people. To establish such a government, Robespierre argued, it was necessary to "stifle" the "domestic and foreign enemies of the Republic," and to do this, terror was needed. This would involve the dispensation of "swift, indomitable justice," which, while bloody, would be necessary to preserve the ideal state that Robespierre and the other radicals envisioned. The end, which was democratic government, would justify the means, which was the use of violence and fear, which Robespierre argued, flowed from revolutionary virtue.
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