Location Russia Russia

The Relevance of Anti-fascism: Roundtable planned in St. Petersburg, Russia

On September 11, 2016 in St. Petersburg, at the initiative of the city branch of the United Communist Party (OKP), a roundtable discussion will be held on “The Relevance of Anti-fascism.”
The ultra-right in modern Russia, the former Soviet Union and the EU countries has acquired such a serious magnitude in recent decades that it has become impossible to ignore. Among young people, there is a growing fashion for neo-Nazism. Marginalized young men and women join the ranks of the right-wing subculture, which has a marked tendency to politicization. Mainstream political parties do not hesitate to use the ultra-right youths for their own interests.

Xenophobic attitudes are not alien to many former Soviet citizens, who see the perpetrators of their plight as “foreigners,” allegedly depriving them of work and prosperity. There are similar sentiments expressed by representatives of the authorities, security forces and mass media, which tolerate migrant-phobia in our society. With devastating impact on the consciousness of citizens, they have attempted to whitewash collaborationist movements, right-wing dictatorships, their leaders and ideologues.

Events in the Ukraine and in a number of EU countries have shown that nationalists are making a serious bid for the conquest of power. The ultra-right in different countries have successfully built networks to help each other. A clear manifestation of these attempts to create an “international” of right-wing extremists was the so-called “International Russian Conservative Forum” held in St. Petersburg in 2015 and attended by representatives of nationalist organizations and even neo-Nazis. According to statements by the organizers of the “Forum,” they are preparing to repeat this disgrace in October 2016.
We believe that it is time for a serious conversation about the far-right danger and to make recommendations for effective social struggle against it.

During the roundtable we would like to discuss the following topics:
1. The origins and causes of fascism and neo-fascist sentiment.
2. Xenophobia as a manifestation of the crisis of the neoliberal system.
3. The ultra-right street culture movement. “Fashion to Fascism.”
4. Far-right in government, legal political parties, education, law enforcement. “Legal Fascism.”
5. Tolerance of collaborationists, right-wing dictatorships, their leaders and ideologues. Problems of historical memory.
6. Xenophobia against migrants. Employment discrimination, nationalism.
7. “Far-right international”: The consolidation of nationalists in the former Soviet Union and Europe.
8. What kind of anti-fascism do we need? Tolerance, friendship or internationalist solidarity?

Participants in the roundtable will include representatives of educational,, human rights, social and left-wing political organizations in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Germany and Sweden. We expect comrades and colleagues from the St. Petersburg Union of Scientists, Association of Marxist Organizations, United Communist Party (OKP), Workers Party of Kurdistan (PKK), the Left Front, the “Resentimet” club, Union Borotba (Struggle), and other organizations, activists, human rights defenders, academics and students.
The roundtable will hear a series of reports, followed by a discussion.

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