The Falange (an abbreviation as discussed below) is a Spanish political organization founded by José Antonio Primo de Rivera in 1933 in opposition to the Second Spanish Republic. Originally a Fascist (broad sense) and National Syndicalist political party, it became a wide-ranging nationalist coalition, closely controlled by Francisco Franco.
Originally the Falange Española, the organization adopted the name Falange Española de las J.O.N.S., or Spanish Falange of the Assemblies of the National Syndicalist Offensive, after its 1934 merger with the Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional-Sindicalista or Unions of the National-Syndicalist Offensive. In 1937, the organization became known as the Falange Española Tradicionalista y de las Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional-Sindicalista after a further fusion with the Carlist Traditional Communion. The Falange was the sole legal party in Spain after Francisco Franco ousted the Soviet-aligned Popular Front government in the Spanish Civil War.
The government of Francisco Franco, which outlasted World War II, is usually not considered to have been fascist or to have changed into a non-fascist government . After 1975, when Spain transformed into a liberal democracy, the Falange lost power. In addition, this splintered the Falange, with several groups claiming the Falangist name.