FIR criticizes historical revisionism in the Baltic States and Poland

7. April 2018

For several years now, the FIR protested against state efforts of historical revision in the Baltic republics and in Poland.

This year again, under the protection of the state organs and with the participation of representatives of the state in Latvia, the veterans of the SS-associations and their friends marched in Riga. Anti-fascists, on the other hand, were prevented from expressing their opinion.

In Poland, with the law on “de-communization”, the government has decided to erase names of streets and squares, as well as eliminate numerous monuments and places of remembrance. In Walbrzych they tried to eliminate the street signs with names of Polish-born communists who had fought in the Resistance in France against the German occupiers. Only clear protests from French veterans associations stopped this project. In other places, citizens refuse submissions, but the governmental “Institute for National Memory” insists on this historical revision. The Russian government particularly criticizes the fact that the law on “de-communization” plans to demolish about 500 monuments throughout the country dedicated to Soviet soldiers. Some of these monuments have already been destroyed.

In March 2018, PiS, the governing party, passed a law on the “demotion of communist military” with its parliamentary majority. It refers to soldiers who served in the army between 1943 and 1990 and acted “against the raison d’etat.” They should be posthumously denied the grade. With the degradation, the “moral order” should be restored, explained the PiS. This law is decidedly directed against former head of state General Wojciech Jaruzelski, whose demotion was planned 10 years ago. At the same time, however, this law also denounces the importance of the Polish People’s Army (Armia Ludowa) and the Polish units within the framework of the Red Army forces. We remember that also Polish units played a major role in the liberation of Berlin and the Sachsenhausen concentration camp.

A few days ago, it was announced that Poland’s President Andrzej Duda had vetoed a law on the demise of communist military. The legislative proposal of the right-wing conservative government grant the victims or their descendants no opportunity for explanations or legal opposition, Duda justified his decision on Friday. He also pointed to a “blurring” in the law.

The FIR welcomes this decision and calls on its member federations, the World Veterans Association (WVF) and its members to increase political influence on the Polish President so that this law will be rejected in principle.

We owe it to the recognition of all the fighters in the ranks of the anti-Hitler coalition.

(Deutsch) FIR kritisiert Geschichtsrevisionismus im Baltikum und Polen

7. April 2018

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

Peace movement today more important than ever!

30. März 2018

The FIR welcomes the various activities of the German peace movement and the peace forces in other countries on these Easter holidays. As United Nations “Ambassadors of Peace”, the FIR and its member federations have been working for decades to overcome the East-West conflict, to achieve comprehensive disarmament and to eliminate the causes of war. However, we are currently experiencing that the action of the peace movement is more necessary than ever:

For months, the political debate in the NATO countries has demanded that all countries should raise their arms budget to the extreme sum of 2% of gross domestic product. In many cases, this means a doubling of the costs of preparing for war. In addition, the transfer of further military units to the eastern areas of NATO is announced, which is clearly directed against Russia.
The FIR calls on all states to join the peacekeepers’ demand for “disarmament rather than rearmament”. We see an important positive signal in Russian President Putin’s announcement that Russia will lowering the armaments budget in real terms.

The international situation is currently increasingly strained by the speculative claims of the British government in the case of Skripal. Without real evidence, the Russian government is accused of attempting to kill. Dangerous gestures and the expulsion of Russian diplomats from numerous NATO-affiliated states are severely straining international relations. The political response of the Russian government is used as a pretext for further escalation by the NATO countries.
The FIR calls on all governments to return to the path of normal diplomacy, to engage in serious dialogues, and to avoid escalation within European communications.

In particular, the peace movement calls for its Easter actions to end immediately the illegal military operation of the Turkish government in the north of Syria, contrary to international law. It is not acceptable that a reactionary regime under the guise of NATO approval wages war on foreign territories, breaking the sovereignty of the Syrian state, against those who succeed the fight against the common enemy of the peoples, the so-called “IS-Islamic State”. If the international community sees it as a task to combat the threat of reactionary IS-associations, then the states must also take a clear position against the Turkish military action against the Yezidi people in Afrin.
The FIR calls the Turkish government to stop the war on Syrian territory and the international community to stop supporting politically such military aggression.

In this sense, the actions of the peace movement in these days and weeks are more urgent than ever.

(Deutsch) Friedensbewegung ist heute wichtiger denn je!

30. März 2018

, , , ,

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

FIR supports activities for the International Day against Racism

17. März 2018

Demonstrations and other events in several European countries, March 17, 2018

The UN’s International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination was inaugurated in 1966 to commemorate the 1960 Sharpeville massacre, which saw 69 anti-apartheid protestors killed and 178 wounded for taking to the streets against the regime’s racist pass laws. In commemorating the massacre, the UN General Assembly called on all world states and organizations to participate in a program of action to combat racism and racial discrimination.

That is why anti-racist initiatives and member federations of FIR organized this year in several countries activities in the streets. Because today we are facing a massive rise in racism across the globe. Migrants and refugees are being scapegoated for the effects of austerity. The whipping up of anti-Muslim hysteria in the press has led to a dramatic rise in islamophobic attacks with visible Muslim women the primary target. Trump’s Muslim ban, his racist ‘wall’ project and equivocation over white supremacist and fascist marches have led to a climate of racism and fear across the US. Meanwhile in Europe, the rise of the Freedom Party in Austria, Front National in France, AfD in Germany, Jobbik in Hungary, the “Freedom and Direct democracy party” the DSSS party in Czech Republic and the recent nationalist demonstration in Poland are signs of a resurgence of the far right which requires a serious and coordinated effort to turn back. Racist hostility encouraged by right wing politicians and media towards Refugees and Roma is often turning into violence. Islamophobia and Antisemitism are on the rise across the continent.

The initiative “uprise against racism” formulated the slogan:

No to racist scapegoating of Minorities! No to Antisemitism and Islamophobia! Refugees Welcome!

Demonstrations and other activities took place in London, Glasgow, Cardiff, Paris, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Prague and Vienna. In Poland United Against Racism (Zjednoczeni Przeciw Rasizmowi) organized manifestations in Warsaw, Wrocław, Tricity (Gdańsk, Gdynia, Sopot), Stationary demos and pickets: Szczecin, Kraków, Toruń, Elbląg, Lublin, Opole, Poznań, Katowice, Radom Olsztyn. In Greece, United Movement Against Racism and Fascism (Keerfa) marched in Athens, Thessaloníki, Patras, Herakleio, Chania, Giannena, Volos and Xanthi. In Germany too events in 25 cities took place.

(Deutsch) Keine Ehrung der lettischen Waffen-SS! Aufruf zu internationalen Protestkundgebungen

15. März 2018

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

(Deutsch) 80 Jahre “Anschluss” Österreichs durch Nazideutschland – Niemals vergessen!

11. März 2018

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

80 Years of the German annexation of Austrian – Never forget!

11. März 2018

These days we have to remember the political and military occupation of Austria by the German Wehrmacht on March 12, 1938. After resign of Bundeskanzler Schuschnigg, he was a right wing politician, forced by Austrian Nazi-groups one could see swastika-banners in several Austrian cities and the German Wehrmacht crossed the border.

The “Anschluss” marked the final of the “First Republic” and a sovereign Austrian state.

It is fact that a majority of the Austrian people welcomed – from different reasons – this development. And it is also well known that a lot of Austrian fascists in the ranks of the German Wehrmacht, the SS, SA and Gestapo were responsible for horrible crimes – war crimes and crimes against humanity until genocide.

But we as FIR remember also those people they tried to resist against this occupation regime. The first declaration came from the Central committee of the KPÖ (Austrian communist party) from Prague exile, because of the political persecution by the Schuschnigg-government. They declared:

“People of Austria! Defend yourself, resist the foreign invaders and their agents. Come together, Catholics and Socialists, Workers and Peasants! Join, now and for all, to the front of all Austrians. All differences of world view, all party differences step back before the holy task, which is put today to the Austrian people! Stand together against Hitler, stand together to chase Hitler’s Soldateska out of Austria again!

People of Austria! Defend yourself! Make the slogan to action: red-white-red until the death! With its own strength and through the help of the World Front of Peace, a free, independent Austria will be resurrected.”

To remember this date it is necessary to face the tasks of today against the right wing political development in Austria too. The antifascist organization “KZ-Verband” declared on the occasion of this anniversary:

Facing the background of recent exposures about right-wing extremist fraternities in Austria, the fight for democracy, peace and freedom in Austria and the world appears as the collective responsibility of all those for whom “Never forget!” is more than a cheap slogan in election campaigns.”

FIR supports all these political attempts to stop the uprising of extreme right political forces not only in Austria.

(Deutsch) FIR protestiert gegen neofaschistischen Lukow-Marsch in Sofia

17. Februar 2018

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

FIR protests against neofascist Lukov-March in Sofia

17. Februar 2018

This weekend again several hundred neo-Fascists from Bulgaria and other European countries held a public event in Sofia. They showed again Nazi uniforms and fascist symbols. In slogans, they offended refugees, foreigners and Turkish minorities in the country.

The protest against this march was wide. More than 175.000 person supported an online-petition to ban the provocation. Our Bulgarian member federation BAU and other initiatives of the civil society demonstrated against this historical revisionism. It is scandalous that the ban of the march by the Major of Sofia was refused by the Bulgarian High court.

With the following letter to the Bulgarian government and the Major of Sofia FIR supported this protest:

The International Federation of Resistance Fighters (FIR) – Association of Antifascists is deeply concerned about the news from Bulgaria. Our member federation, the Bulgarian Antifascist Union, informed us about the proposed annual neo-Nazi-marching mid of February in Sofia honoring General Hristo Lukov, who was sentenced to death because of war crimes and crimes against humanity in the “Name of People” after WWII.

We do not need to explain you the history of General Lukov. He was a minister of War and a leader of ultranationalist organization Union of national Bulgarian legions. He was “extremely brutal protector of Hitler in Bulgaria”. He had strongly influenced the government to send Bulgarian Jewish in the death camps in Germany. He also was fierce supporter of the idea for sending ten Bulgarian divisions on the East front against the Red Army. All this is well known in Bulgaria and Europe.

What will happen to honor General Lukov?

Torchlight processions, with Nazi uniforms and symbols, neo-Nazi ideas, with hate demonstrations, ethnic, religious and racial confrontations demonstrate neo-fascist worship in front of the memory of this “idol” in the spirit of stylistics; hundreds of young people with skin heads and tattooed fylfots accompanied with music, marches, flags and fireworks are demonstrating on the streets of Sofia. The organizers belong to the Bulgarian fascist and Nazi group’s ultras, to the Bulgarian branch of “Blood and Honor”, representatives of nationalist parties. They are joined by participants from Nazi organizations from Germany, Croatia, Hungary, Italy, Falangist’s from Spain, extreme right representatives from France, by the union “United and ethnically clean Europe”, from the Russian imperial movement and by the Swedish Nazi movement “Nordic Front”. Anti-immigrant rhetoric, the fear of migratory waves, occupying Europe, is turning the policy of “the main stream of conviction” in racism, nationalism and xenophobia.

It is a good signal that social movements and political groups in Bulgaria stand against “LUKOV MARCH”. There was also a protest note from the American ambassador and Russia last year.

We call the major of Sofia and the representatives of the Bulgarian government to ban the fascist marching in Bulgarians Capital. It would be a very bad political signal, if the Bulgarian government – actually the head of the European presidency – would allow European Nazi and fascist to present the swastika and other fascist symbols to honor General Hristo Lukov in their own center.

Ältere Nachrichten · Neuere Nachrichten