[Marxism] Fwd: European Antifascist Μanifesto

michael a. lebowitz mlebowit at sfu.ca
Sun Feb 24 10:15:24 MST 2013


*European Antifascist Manifesto*


Sixty eight years after the end of World War Two and the defeat of 
Fascism and Nazism we are witnessing almost everywhere in Europe the 
rise of extreme right. But, and this is an even more distressing 
phenomenon, we see the emergence and growth to the right of this extreme 
right, plainly neo-Nazi forces which, in some cases (Greece, Hungary,…) 
are putting down roots in society building popular, radical, racist, 
ultra-violent, and pogromist mass movements. Their declared objective is 
to destroy all working class trade-union, political and cultural 
organizations, to crush any citizens’ resistance, to deny the right to 
difference and to exterminate –even physically- those who are 
“different” and those who are most vulnerable.


Like in the 20’s and 30’s, the ultimate cause of this extreme right and 
neo-fascist threat is the deep economic, social, political and even 
moraland ecological crisis of capitalism which, giving the debt crisis 
as a pretext, is leading to an unprecedented attack on the standard of 
living, the freedoms and rights of workers, of all those from below! By 
exploiting the fears of the well to do of the risks of a social 
explosion, the radicalization of middle classes destroyed by the crisis 
and sweeping austerity measures as well as the despair of marginalized 
and impoverished unemployed people, extreme right and most of all 
neo-Nazi and neo-fascist forces are growing everywhere in Europe. They 
are gaining mass influence in the poorer layers of society turning this 
influence systematically against traditional and newer scapegoats 
(immigrants, Muslims, Jews, LGBT, disabled people,…) as well as against 
left wing organizations and trade unions.


The influence and radicalism of this extreme right is not the same 
throughout Europe. However, the general implementation of sweeping 
austerity measures is already making the rise of the extreme right an 
almost general phenomenon.  The conclusion is clear: */The fact that the 
spontaneous rise of the extreme right and the emergence of an 
ultra-violent mass neofascism are no longer an exception to the European 
rule now impels the antifascists of this continent to confront this 
problem in its real dimensions, that is as problem of European 
dimensions!/*


However, saying all that is not enough if we do not add that the fight 
against extreme right and neo-Nazism is */extremely urgent./* In fact, 
the neo-fascist threat in many European countries is already so direct 
and immediate it hastransformed the antifascist struggle into the first 
priority, a battle of life and death, in which the left and the workers’ 
organizations,freedom and democratic rights, solidarity and tolerance 
and the right to difference are all at stake.*/Saying that we are 
engaged in a race against racist barbarism and neo-fascism corresponds 
to a reality verified every day in the streets of our European cities…/*


Considering the depth of the crisis and the enormity of the social 
damage it produces, the intensity of political polarization, the 
determination and aggressiveness of dominant classes, the historic 
importance of what is at stake in the current confrontation and the 
extent of the rise of the extreme right it is clear that the antifascist 
struggle constitutes a */strategic choice/* requiring an organizational 
plan and a long term political and militant investment.  Therefore, 
antifascist struggle has to be closely linked to everyday struggle 
against the austerity measures and the system which generate them.


In order to be efficient and meet the expectations of the 
population,*/antifascist struggle has to be unitary, democratic and be 
conducted by the popular masses themselves. /*To this end, citizens have 
to organize their antifascist struggle and their self-defense 
themselves. At the same time, and in order to be effective, this 
struggle must be global, confronting the extreme right and neofascism 
everywhere, the poison of racism and xenophobia, chauvinism and 
militarism, of the cult of blind violence and the denial of gas chambers 
and Auschwitz itself.*/In short, in order to be effective in the long 
run, the antifascist fight has to propose in actions an alternative 
vision of society, diametrically opposite to the one proposed by the 
extreme right. /*That is a society founded on solidarity, tolerance and 
fraternity, rejection of machismo, rejection of women’s oppression and 
respect for the right to difference, internationalism and scrupulous 
protection of Nature, defense of democratic and humanistic values.


This European antifascist movement has to be */the heir of the great 
antifascist traditions of our continent! /*To that end it should lay the 
foundations of a social movement with stable structures and everyday 
activities, penetrating the whole society, organizing antifascist 
citizens in networks according to their profession, residence and 
sensibility, carrying out the fight in all fields of human activities 
and  assuming completely the task of the –even physical- protection of 
the most vulnerable citizens, the immigrants, the Roma, the national, 
black and ethnic minorities, the Muslims, the Jews and LGBT people, of 
all those who are systematically victims of State racism and the fascist 
mob.


It is therefore because the need for antifascist mobilization on a 
European scale is becoming day after day more pressing that we who sign 
this manifesto, are calling for the establishment of a mass unitary, 
democratic European Antifascist Movement, able to confront and defeat 
the brown plague which is raising its head on our continent. We will do 
our utmost to have the founding congress of this European Antifascist 
Movement, that we need so badly, to take place in Athens in the spring 
2013 and to combine it with a big European antifascist demonstration in 
the streets of the Greek capital. *
*


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*This time, history must not be repeated!****NO PASARAN!*




**




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Michael A. Lebowitz
Professor Emeritus
Economics Department
Simon Fraser University
8888 University Drive
Burnaby, B.C., Canada V5A 1S6
Home:   Phone 604-689-9510
Cell: 778-230-6137






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