Lauching of the European Network of Anti-Fascist Parliamentarians.
LANCEMENT AU PARLEMENT EUROPEEN DU MANIFESTE ANTIFASCISTE EUROPEEN ET DU RESEAU EUROPEEN DES PARLEMENTAIRES ANTIFASCISTES
La conférence de presse pour la présentation du Manifeste Antifasciste Européen et le lancement du Réseau Européen des Parlementaires Antifascistes s'est tenue Mercredi 4 Décembre dans le Parlement Européen de Bruxelles. A la conférence de presse ont pris part la Présidente de la GUE/NGL (Groupe confédéral de la Gauche unitaire européenne/Gauche verte nordique) Gabi Zimmer, le député européen Grec (SYRIZA) Nikos Hountis, la députée Allemande (Die Linke) Annette Groth et le député Grec (SYRIZA) Dimitris Tsoukalas.
Apres avoir signalé que la GUE/NGL a mis le Manifeste Antifasciste Européen a son ordre du jour, Gabi Zimmer a souligné combien réelle et grave est actuellement la menace d'extrême droite et fasciste en Europe, et a terminé en appelant a la mobilisation antifasciste de la gauche européenne et au soutien du Réseau Européen des Parlementaires Antifascistes.
La présentation du Manifeste Antifasciste Européen a été faite par Dimitris Tsoukalas, tandis que Nikos Chountis et Annette Groth ont mis l'accent sur le fait que la très dangereuse montée de l'extrême droite et du néofascisme presque partout en Europe met la gauche européenne devant ses responsabilités l'obligeant à donner la priorité à la mobilisation antifasciste avant qu'il ne soit trop tard.
Le Réseau Européen des Parlementaires Antifascistes est déjà appuyé par 25 députéEs venant du Royaume Uni, de Grèce, de l’Etat Espagnol, d’Irlande, du Pais Valencia, d’Allemagne, de Suède, d’Israël, du Luxembourg, de Catalogne, du Portugal et des Pays Pas, tandis que le Manifeste Antifasciste Européen est signé par plus de 110 parlementaires de divers pays européens (53 sont de SYRIZA).
Les deux documents qui suivent sont la vidéo de la conférence de presse et le texte (en anglais) de la présentation du Manifeste Antifasciste Européen faite par D. Tsoukalas.
"Dear friends and comrades,
First of all, the European Antifascist Manifesto wants to sound the alarm, the emergency against the deadly threat represented by the impetuous rise of far-right racist and neo-fascist forces throughout Europe! Because we have now to admit it: This threat is actually direct and immediate. It does not concern anymore just one country, as for example my country, Greece, but all of us. Who could dare say today that we are not witnessing in Europe the come back and the resurrection of the worst nightmares of the thirties?
The aim of the European Antifascist Manifesto is clear: Unite antifascist forces, that is trade unions, social movements, political parties and, most of all, citizens in order to build, as soon as possible, a powerful unitary European antifascist movement. That is why we do not want to substitute already existing antifascist movements or networks of any kind. We do nor want to divide, we want to unite because it is more true than ever that… united we stand, divided we fall. Only united beyond national frontiers we could take initiatives such as the ones we are now beginning to prepare, the organization of a European Congress of antifascist intellectuals, writers and artists or the European networking of football antifascist supporters clubs.
This European Antifascist Movement has to be the heir of the great antifascist traditions in our continent, has to build bridges with this precious antifascist past that id now almost forgotten. It is no accident that our Manifesto ends with the phrase “This time, history must not be repeated”. Yes, we have to learn from history in order not to repeat the errors of the twenties and thirties that led to the worst tragedy of human history, to Auschwitz, to Birkenau and Treblinka, to a World War with its 60 millions of dead people.
If this European antifascist movement wants to fight successfully the neo-fascist threat, it has to invest and to organize its forces in the long run, to reject any sectarianism as well as to combat far-right in all fields of human activities, without any exception. And the only way to do that is to trust common people, to encourage their networking where they live and work, study and develop their capacities. Why? Because nobody else than common people can translate generic antifascism in concrete demands, programs and most of all, to antifascist actions. That is why the European Network of Antifascist Parliamentarians we are launching today, offers a first concrete example of this kind of antifascist networking we are proposing to all European citizens who want to resist effectively the terrible far-right and neo-fascist threat. Our antifascist resistance has to be democratically conducted by the popular masses themselves.
Dear friends and comrades, we have to admit that more difficult days are coming and that we are now engaged in a race against neo-fascism and racist barbarism. We have to organize and act now and not tomorrow, because tomorrow could be too late. However we are confident that what we are doing is the right thing. As said the German theologian and martyr of the anti-nazi resistance Dietrich Bonhoeffer, “The only fight which is lost is that which we give up”…
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 moral and 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 impetuous rise of the extreme right and the emergence of an ultra-violent mass neo-fascism 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 a 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 has transformed 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 astrategic 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.This time, history must not be repeated! NO PASARAN!