Togliatti, Palmiro (pälmēˈrō tōlyätˈtē) [key], 1893–1964, Italian Communist leader. A lawyer, he helped found the Italian Communist party in 1921. He lived in Moscow for many years after the Fascist takeover. Under the pseudonym Ercole Ercoli he wrote and worked for the Comintern. He was chief of the Comintern in Spain during the civil war there. Returning from Moscow to Italy in 1944, he became the leader of the Italian Communist party. As a leading anti-Fascist, Togliatti held cabinet posts in coalition governments in 1944–45, but later led the Communist opposition. A liberal Communist, he advocated greater independence of national Communist parties from Russian control, a doctrine he called "polycentrism." Although he followed a moderate line, he never openly broke with Moscow or disagreed radically on basic policy issues.
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