Thus far, the “Antifa” movement, supposedly created in opposition to what they call fascists (thus Anti-Fascist, or Antifa), has faced little organized opposition to their violent intimidation tactics. President Trump, however, in an interview with The Daily Caller, warned them on Wednesday that they could face physical opposition to them that would be “tougher,” and “much more violent.”
“They better hope that the opposition to Antifa decides not to mobilize,” Trump said. “Because if they do, they’re much tougher. Much stronger. Potentially much more violent.”
If that were to happen, the president said, “Antifa’s going to be in big trouble. But so far they haven’t done that and that’s a good thing.”
Traditionally, American politics has tended to focus on get-out-the vote efforts, political rallies, passing out literature, and the like, and has avoided much of the violence associated with politics in some other countries. With Antifa and many contemporary leftist groups, however, they have openly advocated public confrontations with those with whom they disagree.
Most of the time, this is in a public place, such as when leftists who harassed Texas Senator Ted Cruz and his wife at a Washington, D.C., restaurant. Senator Rand Paul (R-Ky.) was physically assaulted on his own front lawn by a neighbor (a supporter of socialist Senator Bernie Sanders). Even non-politician Tucker Carlson of Fox News has been harassed — by people showing up outside his home.
Actually, Carlson was not home at the time, but a protest group calling itself SmashRacism DC demonstrated outside Carlson’s home last week in D.C. They spray-painted their logo on his driveway and shouted accusations that he was promoting white nationalism.
The leftist mob even slammed into the front door of Carlson’s home so hard that they cracked it, all the time chanting, “Tucker Carlson, we will fight. We know where you sleep at night!” adding ominously, “You are not safe.”
Carlson’s terrified wife — who was home alone — called 911.
Antifa and related groups have justified their violent tactics, arguing that such activity is necessary to fight authoritarianism. Their members have even participated in brawls with white nationalist demonstrators, such as in Charlottesville, Virginia, last year. When President Trump blamed both sides for the violence there, he was castigated for doing so, with some arguing that he should have blamed only the white nationalists for the violence.
The Anti-Defamation League explained that Antifa is “rooted in the assumption that the Nazi Party would never have been able to come to power in Germany if people had more aggressively fought them in the streets in 1920s and '30s.”
Perhaps. But the facts are that Communists and National Socialists (Nazis) staged street brawls frequently in Germany in the years leading up to Adolf Hitler taking over the German government. In fact, such violence helped destabilize the German government, paving the way for Hitler’s Nazi dictatorship.
Trump is not calling for white nationalists or Nazis to combat Antifa, but he is predicting that continued Antifa violence will most likely lead to a countering violence. “Antifa better hope that the other side doesn’t mobilize,” Trump said. “Because if you look, the other side, it’s the military. It’s the police. It’s a lot of very strong, a lot of very tough people. Tougher than them. And smarter than them.”
Trump added about the potential opposition to Antifa, “They’re sitting back and watching and they’re getting angrier and angrier.”
Unfortunately, such violence fulfills the goals of extremist groups, whether Antifa, white nationalist, or others. Such violent behavior on a regular basis does create anger in a society. Karl Marx and other like-thinking radicals have always favored conflict in society, which they call “the class struggle.” In this regard, men are pitted against women, the young are pitted against the old, the rich and the poor are pitted against one another, and racial tensions are used and exacerbated in order for Marxist groups to advance their goal of fracturing society.
That is why white nationalists such as Richard Spencer are so valuable for the cause of communists, antifa, and other left-wing radicals. They provide a convenient enemy, as they cause disruption in society.
A perfect example of this strategy is detailed in the book Klandestine: The Unotld Story of Delmar Dennis and His Role in the FBI’s War Against the Ku Klux Klan, by William H. McIlhanny II. McIlhanny detailed how the volatile racial situation in Mississippi in 1964 (dramatized in the partly historical movie Mississippi Burning) was used by leaders of both the Council of Federation Organizations (COFO) and the White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.
According to McIlhanny, the COFO was formed in late 1963 with the help of the NAACP. “Most COFO workers migrated from college campuses and elsewhere throughout the nation to Mississippi with the idealistic hope that they would take part in the improvement of the standard of living and political rights” of African-Americans in the state.
“Unfortunately,” McIlhanny wrote, “COFO soon demonstrated that it was not worthy of the fine ideals of so many of its misguided followers.” He said that they seemed mostly interested in “creating hatred and resentment among the races.”
Delmar Dennis, a Methodist minister who infiltrated the KKK for the FBI, found that certainly to be the case for the White Knights of the KKK. Dennis was able to get into a leadership position alongside Samuel Holloway Bowers of Laurel, Mississippi, who was the Imperial Wizard of the White Knights of the KKK in Mississippi. What he found out about the KKK on the inside was that Bowers was anything but an anti-Communist, even having portraits of Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin up in his home.
“In special Klan leadership meetings,” McIlhanny wrote, citing Dennis, Bowers explained that he hoped to increase “civil rights agitation and sympathy,” along with “more and more control over Mississippi by Washington.” Bowers told Dennis that he had been a member of the Communist Party USA while in college at the University of Southern California.
Bowers told an astounded Dennis, “The typical Mississippi red-neck doesn’t have sense enough to know what he is doing.”
Hopefully, Trump’s predictions of violent reactions by Americans disgusted with left-wing violence will not come true. Such violence will do little to combat Antifa, but will only advance their cause. But, as was documented in the book Klandestine, groups calling themselves “white” nationalists might just as likely be led by communist “red” agitators, putting normal Americans — black and white — in the crosshairs of violence.
Photo: AP Images