From the print edition of The New American:
Supposedly Antifa is left-wing, anti-fascist, and opposed to right-wing neo-Nazis; however, it is fascist to the core, supporting totalitarianism and violence — just like neo-Nazis.
Propagandists know that labels are all-important. And successfully labeling an adversary requires repetition, along with dramatic visualization. The deadly confrontation in Charlottesville, Virginia, on August 12, 2017, between the neo-Nazis and the Antifa “Black Bloc” provided the intense optics needed to drill home the repetitious message of the street demonstrators and media commentators for the past year: Republicans, conservatives, Trump supporters (and white people in general) are racist, fascist Nazis, and Donald Trump is the racist, fascist, Nazi-in-chief.
Since Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini are universally regarded as the supreme villains of modern times (if not all of world history), the chief tactic of the Left — communists, socialists, and “progressive” Democrats — since World War II has been to avoid substantive debate on real issues by accusing their opponents of being racist and/or fascist. Hence, the ongoing propaganda campaign by the Antifa militants and their media supporters to cast the violent street fights as Right vs. Left, fascist vs. anti-fascist conflicts.
Not only is this characterization dishonest, but it is being used in a calculated fashion to invest the Antifa anarcho-communists with heroic stature, while simultaneously smearing all those they target and all who oppose them as racists and fascists.
Dr. Mark Bray, a lecturer at Dartmouth College, is an Antifa supporter and the author of Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook. In an interview with the left-wing website Vox, following the Charlottesville melee, he provides this conveniently potted history to excuse the Antifa thuggery: “Anti-fascism originated in response to early European fascism, and when Mussolini’s Blackshirts and Hitler’s Brownshirts were ascendant in Europe, various socialist, communist, and anarchist parties and groups emerged to confront them.” It is a line he has repeated in other interviews generously lavished on him by the establishment media. Antifa’s Ivy League propagandist knows full well what he is doing. By presenting Antifa as valiant opponents of Hitler’s and Mussolini’s present-day minions, Bray confers an immunity of sorts upon Antifa aggression and delegitimizes those whom they violently attack. Being thus misinformed, even many critics who might find Antifa tactics repellent may be inclined, nevertheless, to be more tolerant of the Antifa violence if it is directed at evil Nazis, especially if, as in Charlottesville, it is directed at a mob of skinhead miscreants who are chanting racist slogans.
Dr. Bray and other so-called experts commenting on the Antifa “phenomenon” are disseminating many dangerous lies about their anarchist comrades, as well as about political systems in general. One of the most egregious lies perpetuated by the Antifa apologists concerns the political spectrum. Specifically, it involves the false — but widely accepted — dichotomy that designates socialists, communists, and anarchists as “left-wing,” while characterizing Nazis and fascists as “right-wing.” And since the “mainstream” media rarely miss an opportunity to affix the “right-wing” label to conservatives — and invariably in the most pejorative sense possible — this current narrative reinforces the longstanding disinformation campaign to delegitimize conservatives and “the Right” by associating them with racism, Nazism, and fascism.
However, among the many inconvenient facts exposing the fallacies of this left-right/communist-fascist canard are these:
• In his early years, Benito Mussolini was a leading member of the Italian Socialist Party, which was composed of socialists and communists. His 1932 manifesto, The Doctrine of Fascism, co-authored with Giovanni Gentile, presented a statist, totalitarian philosophy completely compatible with communism: “Everything in the State, nothing against the State, nothing outside the State.”
• Although “totalitarian” today carries a negative connotation (as it should), when Mussolini and Gentile coined the term, they viewed it as completely positive. “Fascism, is totalitarian, and the Fascist State … interprets, develops, and potentates the whole life of a people.” Since both communism and fascism are totalitarian by definition (total government control of everything), it is ludicrous to put them on opposite ends of a political spectrum; they both belong on the left end of the spectrum, while on the right end would be utopian anarchism (no government) and, in-between, limited government.
Photo: AP Images
This article appears in the October 9, 2017, issue of The New American. To download the issue and continue reading this story, or to subscribe, click here.
• The full name of Hitler’s Nazi Party, it should be remembered, was National Socialist German Workers Party, and like Mussolini, Hitler adopted the corporate socialist political-economic model. Hitler notably added a racist component to his model that was not part of Mussolini’s fascism.
• Hitler’s Nazi “stormtroopers,” the street-fighting SA Brownshirts, were composed largely of “Beefsteak Nazis”: “Red (communist) on the inside, brown (Nazi) on the outside.” Many of these notorious communist thugs switched back and forth (from Communist Party, to Nazi Party, and back to Communist), largely indifferent to the minor ideological differences, serving whoever was in power.
• The claim that the Nazis and communists are opposites simply because they fought each other in Germany is as specious as claiming that Mexico’s Sinaloa Cartel and Los Zetas Cartel are opposites because these ultraviolent drug gangs are fighting each other. The same can be said for the competing families of the Italian Mafia, the Russian Mafiya, or similar crime syndicates. Like the communists and Nazis, they are merely competing criminals grasping for power.
• Under the infamous Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, German fascist dictator Adolf Hitler and Soviet communist dictator Joseph Stalin carried out a joint Nazi-communist operation to carve up and brutally subject Poland. They saw no problem cooperating for mutual advantage, but like typical criminals, they inevitably ended up in a deadly struggle for power.
• Communist anarchists, or anarcho-communists, such as Antifa have been throughout modern history the witting or unwitting agents of totalitarian fascism and communism. Unlike utopian/libertarian anarchists who just want to be left alone and philosophically embrace the idea of no government (a condition that has never existed in human society, except as brief transition periods to authoritarian or totalitarian regimes), the Red anarchists want to bring everything down in violence and chaos. Historically, the communists and fascists used them to destroy the existing government and usher in the Total State. Then, as we saw in Russia, Spain, Germany, and elsewhere, the communists rounded up the anarchists and executed them.
Following WWII, the Stasi, communist East Germany’s secret police, sponsored neo-Nazi groups in the West and repeatedly had its communist agents paint swastikas on synagogues and vandalize Jewish cemeteries. The purpose: create propaganda incidents that stir fears and “discredit from within,” giving credence to the Left’s claim that Germany was still unreformed and thoroughly permeated with Nazis. These disinformation-propaganda campaigns, which were especially notorious in the 1970s and ’80s, were occasionally exposed by defectors, or when perpetrators were caught in the act. However, the full extent of these “false flag” operations was not revealed until the Stasi files were opened after German reunification. Similarly, many high-profile “neo-Nazi” incidents in the U.K., Canada, and the United States have been exposed as false flag ops by communists and others on the Left (or by government agencies).
• If fascism has taken hold here in the United States of America to any degree (and it has), we can point not to conservative Republicans, but to that darling of “progressive” Democrats, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, as its author. It was FDR’s liberal-left “Brain Trust” and its beloved “New Deal” that initiated Mussolini’s full-tilt, command-and-control central planning in our country, as we explain below.
Who Are the Real Fascists?
It is a grim measure of how completely dishonest our news media have become, as well as how thoroughly corrupt most of our history books are, that conservative Republicans and not liberal Democrats are most commonly associated with fascism. As I noted in these pages in an article in January 2013 entitled “The Rise of the Administrative State,” the central planning of Mussolini’s Total State was incorporated into FDR’s administration from day one. Frances Perkins, a progressive feminist and the first woman to serve in an American Cabinet, was FDR’s secretary of labor. Secretary Perkins recounted this very revealing incident:
At the first meeting of the Cabinet after the President took office in 1933, the financier and adviser to Roosevelt, Bernard Baruch, and Baruch’s friend General Hugh Johnson, who was to become the head of the National Recovery Administration, came in with a copy of a book by Gentile, the Italian Fascist theoretician, for each member of the Cabinet, and we all read it with great care.
The central thesis of that book, The Doctrine of Fascism, which we quoted from above, please recall, is: “Everything in the State, nothing against the State, nothing outside the State.”
The Mussolini-Gentile text also declares: “Anti-individualistic, the Fascist conception of life stresses the importance of the State and accepts the individual only in so far as his interests coincide with those of the State, which stands for the conscience and the universal will of man as a historic entity.” In doublespeak verbiage mimicking Orwell’s “War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery,” it proclaims: “Fascism reasserts the rights of the State as expressing the real essence of the individual. And if liberty is to be the attribute of living men and not of abstract dummies invented by individualistic liberalism, then Fascism stands for liberty, and for the only liberty worth having, the liberty of the State and of the individual within the State.”
“The Fascist conception of the State is all embracing; outside of it no human or spiritual values can exist, much less have value,” Mussolini’s manifesto states. “Thus understood, Fascism, is totalitarian, and the Fascist State — a synthesis and a unit inclusive of all values — interprets, develops, and potentates the whole life of a people.”
FDR’s “Brain Trust” was composed of collectivists of various ideologies — fascist, socialist, and communist — who were all afire with zeal to “transform” and “restructure” America. Even Adolf Hitler, who had just been installed as chancellor of Germany a month before Roosevelt’s inauguration, was in vogue with many “liberals” and “progressives.”
Harold Ickes, FDR’s secretary of the interior, admitted years later that “what we were doing in this country were some of the things that were being done in Russia and even some of the things that were being done in Germany. But we were doing them in an orderly way.” Roosevelt himself extolled Mussolini as “that admirable Italian gentleman” and told U.S. Ambassador to Italy Breckenridge Long, “I am much interested and deeply impressed by what he has accomplished and by his evidenced honest purpose of restoring Italy.”
“Liberal,” “progressive” Democrats — often aided by Republicans — have been adding to the Roosevelt-Mussolini edifice ever since, with one program, bureau, agency, and regulation after another — all leading toward their fascist idol — the Total State.