Why No Platform For Fascists
The two posts below concern a right wing political grouping here in the UK that call themselves the British National Party or BNP. They have their roots in another far right group, the National Front. that they are fascists should be clear for all to see, though judging from an argument that took place on Scottish Indymedia not everyone quite realizes the threat that this group would like to pose and the necessity of combating them with all means at our disposal.
To try and clear things up a wee bit I’m going to reprint the contents of a leaflet put together by The Glasgow Anarchists as well as a couple of links below to sites that concern the far right and their aims.
Glasgow Anarchists introduction to…
WHAT IS FASCISM?
As much as the term is bandied about to refer to anything from the behaviour of a strict teacher to the “humour” of Bernard Manning, fascism is quite a specific set of ideas and actions.
WHERE COES IT COME FROM?
Fascism is a very right wing, fiercely nationalist, totalitarian ideology which originated in Italy in the early 20th Century to crush the powerful workers movement which was pushing up wages and threatening revolution. Led by Benito Mussolini, they were funded by various big businesses, such as Fiat and Pirelli, to smash picket lines and attack left-wing organisers.
Italian fascism’s counterpart in Germany – Nazism – like most fascists today used racism to further its aims. Again to combat a powerful working class movement the Nazis attempted to direct public anger at the problems caused by capitalism (mass unemployment, poverty, etc.) onto a racial group – the Jews. To undercut the widespread support for the communists, socialists and anarchists the Nazis used anti-capitalist rhetoric against Jews, portraying them as money-grubbing capitalists, when in fact the vast majority of Jews were working class. Like many fascist groups today, they claimed they would initiate a left-wing economic programme with good welfare and high wages – the “socialism” in national socialism. The Nazi leadership had no intention of putting this propaganda into practice though. As soon as the Nazi Party came into power it violently destroyed all progressive working class organisations. The left-wing of the Party – always unacceptable to German business leaders – was then disposed of in the Night of the Long Knives, having served its purpose of aiding in the destruction of the unions and other working class groups. The first to be sent to the concentration camps were not the Jews who they had blamed for all Germany’s problems, but communists and trade unionists.
FASCISM IN THE UK
The most prominent far right group in the UK today are the British National Party(BNP). They are an offshoot of the National Front who were prominent in the ’70’s and 80’s. Under the leadership of Nick Griffin they have grown tremendously, winning over 800,000 votes in the 2004 European elections. Whilst they are still a small group, not much more than a protest vote party, their threat cannot be ignored.
Throughout the 80’s and 90’s the BNP continued with the tactics of the National Front by attempting to ‘control the streets’ with violent attacks on different ethnic and social groups as well as protest marches and rallies. They were forced to abandon this tactic due mostly to the militant response of Anti Fascist Action, a militant anti-fascist organization that confronted the far right on the streets. They have since attempted to re-brand themselves as a respectable political party with a left wing economic program and a devotion to law and order. They deny accusations of racism yet have a whites only membership policy, they are also extremely homophobic and describe gays and lesbians as ‘perverts’ or ‘creatures’. They also deny the fact that they are fascist.
Politicians are always economical with the truth and like the German Nazis – who called themselves the National German Socialist Workers Party – the BNP are attempting to seem respectable and to cover up their true fascist, genocidal nature in order to garner widespread support.
To put it simply, they are lying about their true nature.
Could it be true however that they have in fact changed their minds and are not the genocidal scum of yesteryear? Well to find out we have to look no farther than the parties leadership. party leader Nick Griffin has been a member of just about every Nazi sympathising group in the UK. Tony Lecomber, BNP number two, was jailed in ’86 for a nail-bomb attack on a south London office. he has also been convicted of making grenades, detonators and bombs as well as for assaulting a Jewish teacher. Other BNP members, including those that have stood in local elections have convictions for assault and stockpiling chemical weapons(Richard Cottage sentenced to 30 months in June ’07)
PARTY OF THE WORKING CLASS?
In most places in the UK the BNP have had little success with their ruse of respectability, most people still recognize them for fascist thugs. In some areas in the Midlands and North England they have met with some success. In areas of great poverty they have devoted their efforts to building community support. By appearing to try and deal with the real problems faced by working class people who are ignored by the mainstream political parties. They have also traded heavily on the anti-immigrant hysteria whipped up by the media, in particular the Daily Mail, The Sun and The Express.
Funny that a party that portrays itself as a party for the voiceless should join in the fervour whipped up by media companies that escape paying millions in taxes every year against people having to survive on £39 a week. They use Asylum Seekers and Immigrants as bugbears claiming they are leeching off honest working British folk. What however do the BNP actually think of British working folk? Well they can answer that for themselves.
What we urgently need and must have to survive is very much less democracy, a very much smaller more carefully selected and more intelligent electorate… Granting a vote to each and every one of the natives of Britain was madness. Lunacy could hardly go further!” [BNP – January 1995]
So we wonder would make up this ‘m
ore intelligent electorate’?
HOW CAN WE OPPOSE THEM?
All of the mainstream ‘anti-racist’ groups encourage people to vote against the BNP. We say that engaging with and voting for the parties who propagate the circumstances that allow the BNP to grow is patently absurd.
Fascists take advantage of people in poverty and attempt to blame poor peoples economic conditions on immigrants or asylum seekers. We need to organize in our communities to fight off anti-social criminals that the police ignore
and to demand better services from the council. We need to form residents associations that can build up strength within the community so as we are not pulled apart by the divisive racism of groups like the BNP. Homeless people can take control of empty buildings that are left empty by landlords and property speculators.
We need to come together to re-build workplace organisation based on solidarity, and direct action to win better wages and conditions, and stop the super-exploitation of foreign workers which keeps all of our wages down. Workers in the public sector, with outsi
de support can help combat the privatisation of our services which slashes jobs and service quality.
We must constantly point out whenever and wherever they are encountered that they offer us nothing and would t
ake from us everything. That they are enemies of the working class and see themselves as being superior to us whatever our race, gender or sexuality.
Finally they must be confronted physically. The BNP are fascist thugs no matter how they dress up their d
espicable politics. They have proven in the past that they are more than willing to use violence against people and it is with violence they must be confronted. The hero of the far right, Adolf Hitler, once said that the only way they(the Nazi Party) could have been stopped would have been if they had been recognized for what they were in their infancy and smashed immediately. This is the only thing we could ever agree with him on.
The use of violence against the far rig
ht is not macho posturing but self defence. these groups would like nothing more than to crush our communities and murder us and our neighbours, our friends and our families.
Genocide is not where Fascism begins but it is where it ends.
Antifa – Militant Anti-Fascist Group
The rise of the BNP and how to stop it – Discussion Document from Revolutions Per Minute
Holocaust Denial – A common tenet of the far right