In Darkness at Noon, who does Rubashov refer to when he talks about the "others" who advocate "national romanticism"?

When talking about the "others" who advocate "national romanticism" in Darkness at Noon, Rubashov is referring to Fascists who use ruthless political tactics in the service of extreme nationalism. He claims that the Bolsheviks, on the other hand, only use such tactics in the service of universal reason. As Rubashov claims that history is a rational process, he believes that the Bolsheviks will be redeemed by history whereas Fascists will never be redeemed.

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The main thrust of Darkness at Noon concerns the "end-means" debate. The Bolsheviks, represented by the figure of Rubashov, believed that the end justified the means. In other words, they believed that it was justified to use extreme methods such as violence, repression, and terrorism in order to bring about the workers' paradise that the Soviet Union was intended to be. Rubashov regards such methods as necessary to achieving the Bolsheviks' social, economic, and political goals.

Yet at the same time, Rubashov is also aware that Fascists, the Soviet Communists' great ideological rivals, used exactly the same justification for their own actions. They too argued that brutal methods were necessary in order to gain and maintain power.

Rubashov, however, believes that Communists, unlike Fascists, have history on their side. In keeping with orthodox Marxism, Rubashov holds that history is a rational process that will one day lead to the abolition of the capitalist state and its replacement by a Communist community, in which everyone is equal and all will work for the common good. That being so, he is confident that the brutal methods used by the Bolsheviks will ultimately be for the best.

According to Rubashov, the same cannot be said of the Fascists. Instead of using Machiavellian tactics in pursuit of a rational end, they use them to establish dictatorships based on what Rubashov calls "national romanticism," or extreme nationalism. As this is clearly a departure from the rational unfolding of history as Marxists understand it, the harsh methods used by Fascists cannot be justified. Unlike the Bolsheviks, so Rubashov argues, they do not have universal reason on their side.

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