[Original en català] · [Versión en castellano]
It is clear that the crisis is bringing a growth of the extreme right in Europe, especially with the National Front in France and, even worse, with Golden Dawn in Greece.
In Catalonia, this danger is also present. But here we can celebrate the success of Unity Against Fascism and Racism (UCFR). This broad movement contributed to the fact that the far right party, Plataforma per Catalunya (PxC) —which supports Golden Dawn— did not get any seats in the parliamentary elections last November. This was admitted by Josep Anglada himself, a historic Francoist and currently leader of PxC, with his insults and threats against UCFR.
The appearance of a Nazi centre in the Barcelona neighbourhood of Clot has worsened the situation. It disguises itself as a leisure centre for young people, but we know that it was set up by members of PxC, together with other more open Nazis and fascists. We know that since it appeared, there has been an increase of Nazi stickers and graffiti in the neighbourhood. Following the successful thousand strong neighbours’ demonstration against the Nazi centre, called by the local UCFR group, there have been attacks against left and progressive groups’ premises in the area.
The fascists accuse UCFR of being a “violent organisation”. In fact, as can be seen from its website, UCFR is made up of hundreds of diverse bodies, ranging from an association of relatives of victims of the Nazi camps to the entire trade union movement. It may seem strange that the fascists attack in this way the Scouting organisations or the federations of esplais (leisure youth movements); the federations of NGOs involved in solidarity or charity work; the Jewish Film Festival of Barcelona and the Roma (“Gypsy”) associations… all of whom form part of UCFR. But the explanation is obvious if one recalls that the Nazis banned all independent youth leisure activities, imposing the Hitler Youth; and that they dissolved all NGOs into a single Nazi organization. And as we know, the Jewish and Roma populations, among others, ended in the death camps.
With their attacks, the fascists show what they really represent.
They don’t only attack UCFR in general; they also personally attack some of their activists. It is very significant to see against whom they direct their hatred.
One is known as a gay activist. The fascists have used horrible homophobic insults against him.
The other special target of the fascists’ hatred is a person of Amazigh (Berber) origin.
By attacking these individuals, maybe they think they can isolate their victims. They may think that everyone else will say “well I don’t agree with these individuals on this or that point”, or “it’s their own fault”. That won’t happen. UCFR is a plural movement, with people of different views. But where we agree is in opposing fascism and racism, and when they attack these individuals, and UCFR in general, because they have worked for a united social movement against the extreme right, they attack each and every one of us.
The bailout of Spain makes it more urgent than ever to stop the far right. The country that has seen most cuts is Greece, and is no coincidence that this country has seen the fastest increase in a Nazi party.
Many years ago, Pastor Niemöller, victim of the Nazis, said:
First they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for the communists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a communist.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak out because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
Then they came for me
and there was no one left to speak out for me.
We do not want to return to the horrors of the past. We have to say enough is enough. Enough of the spread of fascism and the normalisation of racism. And enough of the far right’s attacks on Unity Against Fascism and Racism and its activists. We will not accept an attack on a person for being LGBT or North African, nor for being a woman, a Muslim, Jewish, Roma, a trade unionist, a socialist, an independentist… Anyone could be their next target. We publicly declare our support for UCFR and for its people, who are also our people. We too are against fascism and racism.