Saturday, February 27, 2010

Build Revolutionary Anti-Imperialist Opposition to the Nazis

Nazis are coming - Build revolutionary anti-imperialist opposition -     Posted by: "Michael Novick" antiracistaction_la
     Date: Sun Feb 21, 2010 2:34 pm ((PST))

The "National Socialist Movement" (NSM), a neo-nazi formation with a base in Riverside CA, has issued a call for a national gathering of their organization in Los Angeles, featuring a rally on the lawn of L.A. City Hall for which they have already applied for and received a permit, on Saturday, April 17. They will be bringing a substantial number of uniformed nazi thugs and boneheads from around the US as part of their so-called "Reclaim the Southwest Campaign" and pose a clear and serious threat of racist and sexist violence which always follows open nazi organizing. Two years ago, when a similar nazi group rallied in L.A. to commemorate the death of a founder of the racist Silent Brotherhood Aryan underground, several of their members were involved in a racist shooting incident on their way into town from the Inland Empire.

There will be a planning meeting for a revolutionary anti-fascist, anti-imperialist counter-mobilization next Sunday, February 28 at 12 noon at Chuco's Justice Center, 1137 E. Redondo Blvd., Inglewood (that's 2 blocks west and one block north of Florence & Crenshaw). It is important to develop a front or pole of opposition to the nazis that is based in revolutionary pro-liberation anti-imperialist politics, so that it is clear that opposition to the nazis is not a defense of the status quo.

Open nazis are not the main enemy in a struggle against colonialism, capitalism and imperialism, but they are a significant element, particularly in a period of ongoing economic crisis and political instability within the belly of the beast. The National Socialist Movement and similar open fascist forces are seeking greater political legitimacy as well as influence within larger white nationalist and reactionary social and political forces, such as the anti-immigrant movement, the "tea-baggers," and the re-emerging militia movement.

The NSM and similar nazi forces base themselves on two key elements: they present themselves as a para-military type operation prepared to use violence (and in fact are violence-prone, promoting racist, anti-immigrant, anti-gay and anti-communist thuggery and bullying), and they claim to be anti-capitalist and revolutionary (as Hitler did). Liberal-type opposition, which tends to portray them as "extremists," and to defend "multi-racial democracy and tolerance" within the existing system, essentially concedes these strong points to the nazis. It also relies on the police to "maintain peace," conceding the power of the state, which always protects the nazis in the name of "free speech." It is essential to expose the cowardly nature of the nazis as well as the reactionary, pro-imperial nature of their politics by manifesting an opposition based on pro-liberation, anti-colonial/capitalist politics, the right to self-determination and self-defense, and independent direct action.

Too often, even militant anti-racists, socialists and anarchists opposed to the nazis have operated without regard to questions of self-determination and international solidarity, functioning independently of the leadership of anti-colonial liberation forces. It is essential, here in Los Angeles, that opposition to the nazis be based on support for indigenous/Mexicano sovereignty, African liberation, and decolonization for Asian and other oppressed people. The provocation by the NSM provides an important opportunity to bring home the point that ANY revolutionary action and initiative must be based on such principles and on revolutionary anti-colonial leadership.

A little history is pertinent to the importance of organized anti-fascist action led by revolutionary liberation forces. In 1981, the Ku Klux Klan scheduled a rally in Washington DC to celebrate the election and inauguration of Ronald Reagan (who had announced his candidacy in Philadelphia, Mississippi, where civil rights workers Schwerner, Cheney and Goodman were assassinated by the KKK with police compliance). Massive community opposition by local Black DC residents, supported by a national mobilization by the John Brown Anti-Klan Committee, a group of European-descent anti-racists in solidarity with the Black liberation struggle, broke up the Klan rally and chased off the Klansmen. Here in Los Angeles in 1992, the neo-nazi Populist Party, fronted by pseudo-nationalist Robert Brock, put on a program denying Hitler's genocide against European Jews in south-central L.A., dishonestly claiming the participation of Prof. Jeffreys from NY and the local Committee Against Black Exploitation in the film industry. The Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, supported by ARA-LA/People Against Racist Terror, called a counter-demonstration, exposing the lies propagated by both the nazis and the zionist Anti-Defamation League. The LAPD ran riot against community opponents of the nazi gathering, probably one of the factors that fed the '92 rebellion.  More recently, a counter-demonstration with leadership from the Black Riders Liberation Party and Union del Barrio silenced and neutralized a Crenshaw-area rally by the racist Minuteman group and their reactionary Black front-man attempting to provoke Black-Brown contradictions. These were important victories in which there was clear revolutionary internationalist anti-capitalist leadership.

However, there are other, less successful examples. In 1983, here in L.A., the nazis, the Aryan Nations, the Klan, and Metzger's White Aryan Resistance, were able to hold a triple cross-burning in the San Fernando Valley/Sunland area, with the complicity of the LAPD and the compliance of the racist zionist Jewish Defense League, which had advance intel on the time and place of the cross-burning. Several of the people involved later became fugitives as members of "the Order" Aryan underground, responsible for a number of racist killings and robberies. In Toledo, OH, 3 years ago, a nazi group called a pro-police rally and march in the Black community. Anti-Racist Action and local anarchists called a counter-action, but the principal response and opposition arose spontaneously from local Black residents outraged at the nazis and their police protectors. A mini-rebellion ensued, in which police brutalized community people and made mass arrests, out of which several people were eventually imprisoned on felony charges, despite ARA support for legal defense efforts. In Riverside CA last year, the NSM was able to hold a second rally, after their first one was broken up by militant opposition (while liberal forces held a counter-rally several miles away). At the second rally, police were in massive control, as the dominant anti-nazi forces accepted police "free speech" pens separating them from the nazis. The Brown Berets on the one hand, and direct action anarchist anti-fascists on the other, were isolated and either subjected to arrest (Berets) or marginalized (anarchists). The lessons from those experiences point to the need for united action based on international solidarity, respect for self-determination, solidarity and self-defense to lead the anti-fascist protests that are sure to emerge.

In the current period, the nazis are attempting to 'seize the time' of the deepening economic crisis of militarism, unemployment, foreclosures and austerity in education and social services to project themselves as a pseudo-revolutionary alternative to business as usual, by scapegoating African and indigenous people, migrants, Jews, LGBTQ people and the left. Opposing them means putting forward that authentic anti-capitalist revolution, anti-imperialist social transformation and decolonization is the only solution to the crisis of the empire. Such a pole of attraction can win over the poor and working people of all nationalities who are increasingly disillusioned with and frustrated by corporate domination and politics as usual.

All who are committed to joint anti-imperialist anti-fascist work, on the basis of international solidarity and support for self-determination and self-defense, are invited to participate in a campaign to shut down the nazis and send them packing, beginning with the planning meeting next Sunday, February 28 at 12 noon at Chuco's Justice Center, 1137 E. Redondo Boulevard, Inglewood CA (bordering south LA -- 2 blocks west of Crenshaw, one block north of Florence at West Blvd.). Please call Anti-Racist Action-LA/People Against Racist Terror (ARA-LA/PART) at 310-495-0299 for more information. Below, FYI, are the 4 Points of Unity of Anti-Racist Action for those interested in joining ARA. If you want to call or FAX the city to urge them to pull the permit and shut the nazi rally down, the permit office's number is 213.486.0640 and their fax number is 213.486.0670. Mayor Villaraigosa and the city councilmembers' phone numbers can be accessed by calling 311.

In solidarity,
Michael Novick, Anti-Racist Action-LA/People Against Racist Terror (ARA-LA/PART)

1) WE GO WHERE THEY GO: Whenever fascists are organizing or active in public, we're there. We don't believe in ignoring them or staying away from them. Never let the nazis have the street!
2) WE DON'T RELY ON THE COPS OR THE COURTS TO DO OUR WORK FOR US: This doesn't mean we never go to court. But we must rely on ourselves to protect ourselves and stop the fascists.
3) NON-SECTARIAN DEFENSE OF OTHER ANTI-FASCISTS: In ARA, we have lots of different groups and individuals. We don't agree about everything and we have a right to differ openly. But in this movement an attack on one is an attack on us all. We stand behind each other.
4) We support abortion rights and reproductive freedom. ARA intends to do the hard work necessary to build a broad, strong movement against racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, homophobia, and discrimination against the disabled, the oldest, the youngest and the most oppressed people. We want a free classless society. WE INTEND TO WIN!

Anti-Racist Action-Los Angeles/People Against Racist Terror (ARA-LA/PART) PO Box 1055 Culver City CA 90232
310-495-0299 (click on "publication" for PDFs of "Turning the Tide" or to subscribe to the ARA E-News.

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