A newswoman since 1953 and co-owner of the local paper in her hometown in central Kansas, she lived to see her Marion County Record, as well as her home, raided by police on Friday, for reasons that defied both law and logic. It is not hyperbole to say that this attack on the people’s right to know appears to have killed her. On Friday, police showed up looking for evidence that a reporter had run an improper computer search to confirm an accurate report that a local business owner applying for a liquor license had lost her driver’s license over a DUI. According to coverage of this story on the Record’s website, the reporter “made no attempt to conceal her identity, providing her name.”
On June 22, the White House held a “welcoming ceremony” for visiting Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the South Lawn of the White House, where members of the public could register to attend. I signed up, along with my friends Keya and Apoorva. Our goal was not to welcome Modi, but rather to be a visible presence as dissenting voices. We wore t-shirts with the hand-painted message “Modi=Fascist” under our outer garments and smuggled in printed signs denouncing the Modi government’s human rights violations and persecution of religious minorities. An overwhelming majority of the crowd of more than 1,000 were Indian American, and judging by their chants and their visible symbols, many were Modi supporters.
In Italy the Republic has never been able to fully settle accounts with fascism. By that, I mean that, under various conditions and in different cycles of Italian history, the antithesis between fascism and anti-fascism could emerge again, albeit in ever-changing ways. Anti-fascist culture has been through many ups and downs. It has, at times, enjoyed an absolutely overwhelming hegemony, also because of its rebirths — as in the early 1960s, and as in the long cycle opened up by 1968 and 1969, that is, in moments when it resisted attempts to erase or manipulate it — when it resisted attempts to reduce anti-fascism to nothing more than an ancient, historical memory. But what we are seeing today is another turning point.
Italy is one of a few countries in the European Union without a legal minimum wage; 21 out of 27 EU countries have instituted minimum wages. In Italy, minimum wages are only determined in collective labor agreements, but these salaries are often very low — around four to six euros per hour. In addition, Italy is the only country in the continent where since 1990, real wages are not growing — they even diminished by 3% in the last 30 years. Thus, one out of 10 people in Italy are working poor, among the youth, this number increases to one out of six. Already a year ago, Potere al Popolo started a political campaign seeking the introduction of a legal minimum wage. At the end of May, together with the alliance Unione Popolare, we submitted a legislative proposal to institute a minimum wage of at least 10 euros (US$ 10.72) per hour, which will also be automatically inflation-linked.
The conflict now raging between the West and Russia and China is a struggle for global power. At the end of the Second World War the economic weight and influence of the United States allowed it to dominate world trade and manufacturing but also to control financial markets as well as build a system of global political and military alliances and bases which reinforced its control. Today its imperial dominance is under threat. The US is trying to prevent the emergence of rivals for world hegemony and block the development of a multipolar world. But it still maintains a residual power based on the role of the dollar as well as its military forces and political pacts.
In the colonial context, the colonized have no rights that the colonizer ever really needed to recognize. Therefore, any social space that Africans in the U.S. experienced were won through resistance. The historic fight for African self-determination and liberation from the anti-human colonial/capitalist system has been an uninterrupted feature of what we claim as the “Black Radical Tradition.” An unapologetic opposition to the U.S. colonial/capitalist project and U.S. imperialism centers the Black radical tradition, along with internationalism and a commitment to socialist transformation. It is this tradition of principled, militant resistance that has been a constant source of concern and, consequently, systematic repression of Black/African radicalism by the U.S. colonial/imperialist state.
Each year, the Odessa Solidarity Campaign has promoted actions on May 2 to mark the date in 2014 when a right-wing mob led by openly fascist organizations murdered at least 42 anti-fascists at the House of Trade Unions in Odessa, Ukraine. The Odessa Massacre took place just a few months after the violent coup that replaced a pro-Russian president with a pro-U.S. one. Not surprisingly, the U.S. was heavily involved in promoting the coup. Today Ukraine has an authoritarian government that openly collaborates with neo-Nazi organizations, incorporating them into its military and promoting the memory of Ukrainian fascists who shamefully collaborated with the World War II Nazi occupation of their country.
Political paralysis is snuffing out what is left of our anemic democracy. It is the paralysis of doing nothing while the ruling oligarchs, who have increased their wealth by nearly a third since the pandemic began and by close to 90 percent over the past decade, orchestrate virtual tax boycotts as millions of Americans go into bankruptcy to pay medical bills, mortgages, credit card debt, student debt, car loans and soaring utility bills demanded by a system that has privatized nearly every aspect of our lives. It is the paralysis of doing nothing about raising the minimum wage, despite the ravages of inflation, around 600,000 homeless Americans and 33.8 million people living in food insecure homes, including 9.3 million children.
Munich, Germany - On February 18, Saturday, anti-imperialist, leftist groups protested in Munich, Germany against the ongoing 59th annual Munich Security Conference (MSC) which began on Friday February 17. Left-wing groups including the German Communist Party (DKP), Socialist German Workers Youth (SDAJ), and others marched in the city and slammed MSC as the conference of warmongers. The mobilization saw the participation of tens of thousands of people who condemned the conference and called for peace. Anti-fascist groups also denounced the far-right groups who also organized protests in Munich on Saturday.
The cold-blooded assassination of Manuel Esteban Paez Terán, also known as Tortuguita, Spanish for “Little Turtle,” is a reminder that fascism in the United States cannot be reduced to the political intentions of avowed white nationalists. African/Black and Indigenous people residing in the settler-colonial project known as the United States continue to be subjected to a cycle of state-sanctioned violence and political repression with bipartisan consensus. People of the global majority and their allies must not allow these latest episodes of injustice to go unanswered. The Atlanta City-Wide Alliance of the Black Alliance for Peace (BAP-Atlanta) has been working with a coalition of Indigenous people, African/Black people, other people of color, and Euro-Americans to prevent the construction of “Cop City,” as BAP-Atlanta expressed in a recent statement. The statement highlighted the obvious nexus between the proposed $90 million police-training facility site, where Tortuguita was killed on January 18, and the white supremacy-fueled genocide, militarism, and oppression the U.S. empire exercises both outside and within.
We are witnessing the rise of a unique brand of U.S. fascism, which has once again reared its ugly head and has made higher education one of its primary targets. This fascist attack on the university is made possible by the longstanding neoliberal withering of its institutions, which now rely mostly on underpaid contingent workers. The disempowerment of university labor runs hand-in-hand with a right-wing ideological front — rooted in rampant anti-intellectualism and rugged individualism — which seeks to control what knowledge universities can produce and teach. In order to counter this attack on higher education, faculty unions must scale up their organizing efforts against neoliberalism and the rising tide of fascism. It is not surprising that former President Donald Trump accused universities of “radical left indoctrination.”
Well, they have done it to us again. What for most White Americans is a simple inconvenience, a traffic stop, became for an African American another series of frames from a horror movie. Instead of being pulled over, given a ticket and sent on his way; Tyre Nichols was pulled out of his car by the police, sadistically beaten and sent to the hospital to die. The villain or beast from this real-life horror was not Dracula or Frankenstein. The spawns of Satan that beat Tyre Nichols are not made-up characters from the minds of Bram Stoker or Mary Shelley. This villainous threat to the African American community is real! They are stalking the streets of our cities and towns for more victims every hour of every day and night. This threat, these body snatchers don’t need the cover of darkness or need to operate in the shadows. They conduct their evil in broad daylight under the color of law. They are the urban army that is sworn to “protect and serve”.
This movement has many of the elements we recognize as fascism. Fascism is a far-right political approach that offers what the historian Robert Paxton calls “compensatory cults of unity, energy, and purity” to people obsessed with perceived humiliation and social decline. Historically, fascist movements have taken the form of militant nationalist parties that turn against democracy in alliance with elements of the conservative elite. They engage in “redemptive violence” to pursue “goals of internal cleansing and external expansion.” Although it may seem to have come out of nowhere, today’s American fascism has roots in a surge of far-right violence in the late 20th century. We have much to learn from the recent evolution of fascism — and from anti-fascist responses — to help understand far right violence today.
On Sunday January 8, supporters of former far-right Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro invaded the Supreme Federal Court, the National Congress, and the Planalto Palace, the office of the president, breaking through the blockade of the Military Police and the National Security Force at the Esplanade of Ministers in the capital Brasília. After invading the headquarters of the three branches of government, the violent groups vandalized the buildings, looted the armory at the Planalto Palace, and caused tremendous damage to public institutions. Following the acts of violence, President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva condemned the situation, criticized the complicity of Brasília’s public security forces in the attacks, and decreed federal intervention in public security of Brasília until January 31.