What the fuck is wrong with people? Are they completely stupid? You’d think that, with Nazis on the rise again, emboldened by the election of crypto-fascists like Trump, every rational person would be busy condemning the bastards. But no, instead we seem to have slipped into a parallel universe where those opposing the Nazis are the bad guys. I despair at the number of otherwise relatively sensible people I’ve heard of late condemning the tactics of the so call ‘Antifa’ movement, who have tried to counter Nazi thugs in places like Charlottesville. But apparently I got it wrong it was the anti-fascists who were the thugs. Really? This bizarre situation seems to be born from some unholy alliance of the right – who want to denigrate anything successful which has a left wing basis – and hand-wringing ‘liberals’ who don’t like anything that doesn’t involve trying to resolve conflict with endless wittering and cups of tea. At heart, their argument seems to be that the anti fascists are awful people because they are prepared to fight back against the Nazis, countering force with force where necessary. That’s right, actually fighting Nazis isn’t the way to fight Nazis. Presumably, we should just let them march through our streets, spilling their racist bile and smashing the windows of Jewish-owned businesses.
The trouble with this argument – that it is wrong to use violence where necessary to fight fascists – is that it becomes especially ludicrous when applied historically. Presumably, these characters would have condemned everyone who faced down Moseley and his black shirts at the Battle of Cable Street in 1936. Not to mention all of our parents, grand parents, uncles, aunts, great uncles and aunts, who fought in World War Two. I mean, how bloody outrageous of them to take up arms against the fascists – they should have concentrated on peaceful means of resolving the conflict. After all, just because the Luftwaffe was bombing our cities, the Kriegsmarine’s U-Boats sinking unarmed merchant ships and the Nazis turning Jews and anybody else who didn’t conform into lamp shades, that was no excuse for resorting to violence. Clearly, we should be condemning people like my Uncle Charlie, who was a flight engineer on a Lancaster bomber and spent a fair part of the war dropping bombs on Nazis. What a bastard!
Now, I can understand the motivation of the right and the press they control in trying to discredit the anti-fascist movement in this way: they are opportunists who will seize upon anything they think will undermine their political opponents, Even if that means giving succour to Nazis. But I would have hoped that all those wishy washy liberals and ‘centrists’ would have sufficient intelligence to see through such strategies, to realise that the right is, as ever, trying to manipulate them and divide the opposition. But apparently not. They’ve fallen for it hook, line and sinker, regardless of the facts: it was the Nazis who were the aggressors in Charlottesville (the incident which precipitated this manufactured backlash against the anti fascists) – they were the ones who murdered an unarmed counter protester, not the anti fascists. The problem with these bleeding heart liberals and so called centrists is that they are obsessed as being seen as ‘reasonable’ and ‘moderate’, to the extent that they will seize on anything that distances them from what they see as the extremes of the left. Even if that means that they end up cosying up to and facilitating the right, not to mention the extreme right, (just look at our own Liberal Democrats eagerness to form a coalition with a reactionary right wing Conservative party in 2010).
But by trying to deny legitimacy to any reaction to fascist aggression on our streets beyond finger wagging and tut-tutting, they are enabling the Nazis, giving them a free pass to do as they please. Obviously, these anti anti fascists would say that the rule of law is paramount and that we should allow thw appropriate authorities to deal with the Nazis on our streets. Except that, for one thing, the bastards don’t recognise the rule of law (except when they are in power and can bend it to their own ends), and, for another, history has shown us that we can’t rely upon the police to effectively deal with the fascists. Just look at Cable Street in 1936 again, for example, when the authorities refused to ban the provocative fascist march and the police actually enabled the march by trying to stop those protesting against it. The fact is that we have to be prepared to defend ourselves against the Nazi bastards by any means necessary. Believe me, I’m not an advocate of violence, but you have to be prepared meet force with force in the last resort. Doing nothing isn’t an option: like they say, all that is required for the triumph of evil is for good men to stand by and do nothing.
It all comes back to the question we explored a couple of editorials ago: is it OK to punch a Nazi? The answer then was a qualified ‘yes’ and I haven’t changed my opinion since, What has changed since then is the virulence of the Nazi threat (I don’t call them ‘Neo Nazis’ by the way, as there is nothing ‘neo’ about them – it is the same old fascist ideology being peddled). They seem to be on the rise again, which is hardly surprising considering the kind of reactionary rhetoric coming from the mouths of the likes of Trump and May. Damn it, our forefathers fought a war to defeat these bastards, That’s right hand wringing liberals: fought. Because that’s what you have to do to these evil bastards – fight them and defeat them. They aren’t ‘decent chaps’ who can be reasoned with: Neville Chamberlain tried that approach with Hitler and we ended up with World War Two. But hey, maybe we got the origins of World War Two all wrong – sure, Germany might have invaded Poland but, as ‘President’ Trump observed of the events in Charlottesville, ‘there was blame on many sides’. Just look at how violent those Poles were when those Panzers drove peacefully down their streets. A complete overreaction. The same goes for the holocaust – just like those anti fascists in Charlottesville the Jews were probably carrying clubs and looking for trouble.
So, if you are one of those idiots condemning anti fascists, when you find yourself being bum raped by some Nazi thug festooned with with swastika tattoos and sporting a Hitler moustache, don’t expect me to save you by punching them in the face. I wouldn’t want to offend you with such a vulgar display of violence, after all.