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Europe's fascist resurgence: East and West

The May 24 shooting at the Jewish Museum of Belgium in Brussels, that left three dead, is greeted by the usual ridiculous bet-hedging. CNN typically writes: "The circumstances of the shooting have raised suspicions that it may have been an anti-Semitic attack, but no motive has been determined." Once an anti-Semitic motive is finally conceded, we will next be assured that it was the work of a lone nut with no organizational ties. How many commentators will tie the attack to the terrifyingly good showing that far-right "anti-Europe" paties made in the next day's EU parliamentary election? In France, Front National leaderMarine Le Pen, daughter of xenophobic party founder Jean-Marie Le Pen, boasted as the exit polls rolled in: "What has happened tonight is a massive rejection of the EU." In Britain, the UK Independence Party (UKIP) is on course to win, displacing Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives and burying their coalition partner, the Liberal Democrats. (Globe & MailCBC) And think there's a wide gap between the "anti-Europe" ideologies of the Front National and UKIP and the anti-Semitic doctrines of classical fascism? Think again...

An April 25 account on Britain's SWNS news service noted that UKIP candidate for local office in East Sussex, Anna-Marie Crampton, posted some charming comments to the conspiranoid website Secrets of The Fed to the effect that Jews deliberately murdered each other in the Holocaust as part of a masterplan to create Israel. The comments, which appear to have been purged from the website, included: "Holocaust means a sacrifice by fire. Only the Zionists could sacrifice their own in the gas chambers... The Second World Wide War was engineered by the Zionist jews and financed by the banksters to make the general public all over the world to feel so guilty and outraged by the Holocaust that a treaty would be signed to create the State of Israel as we know it today."

And these was the usual bogus attempt to disavow anti-Semitism—in classically anti-Semitic terms: "The Rothschilds are Zionists... there is a difference between Jews and Zionists. These Psychopaths hide behind and use the Jews. It was thanks to them that 6 million Jews were murdered in the War (along with 26 million Russians!)... I am anti Zionist, not antisemit [sic]. I love the true Israel and the Jews."

UK Metro thankfully reports that UKIP has suspended Crampton as a candidate in the wake of the outrage, and according to International Business Times, she is now claiming to be the victim of hacking—but her supporters have launched a Facebook page in defense of her "freedom of speech." 

Then there's Ukraine, where the question of anti-Semitism has emerged as a political football. Former chocolate magnate Petro Poroshenko appears as the victor in the May 25 presidential race—which took place as Ukraine's interim government is engaged in a military offensive against Russia-backed separatists in the east. The separatists severely disrupted voting in the eastern regions—no polling stations were open in Donetsk and several other districts. Poroshenko pledges to "end war and bring peace"—but also said Kiev will never recognize Russia's "occupation" of Crimea. (BBC NewsKyiv Post)

It's pretty funny that leftists, who have for years been portraying anti-Semitism as a mere propaganda creation of Zionists, are now echoing Putin's propaganda that the new Ukrainian government is a hotbed of anti-Semitic fascists. We've been arguing, first, that this is cynically overstated—but, that there is indeed a resurgent fascist element in the new Ukraine (contrary to the dogma of both sides). And, secondly, that this is a case of the pot calling the kettle black—that there is resurgent fascism on both sides in the Russo-Ukraine conflict, and Putin is in a very poor position to be making accusations of "fascism." 

Yes, the recent spate of anti-Jewish attacks has been in Ukraine—although there is the predictable unclarity as to whether they were carried out by "real" Ukrainian neo-fascists or pro-Russian provocateurs. But  in The New Republic offers a round-up of recent anti-Semitic outbursts in Putin's Russia. To cite but one example, last month the Jewish daily Forward noted that Russian state television's hatchet-job "documentaries" about Ukrainian politicians Yulia Tymoshenko (ex-PM and Poroshenko's rival in the election) and Arseniy Yatsenyuk stressed, in ominous terms, their alleged Jewish background. The "documentary" on Tymoshenko stated: "She completely hides her origin. But for many, it is no secret that the father of this woman with a hair-braid—Viktor Abramovich Kapitelman—has Jewish roots."

Ioffe adds: "In Ukraine, meanwhile, the Jews are standing with the provisional government in Kiev, which has even appointed one of them to run the Dniepropetrovsk region."

Isn't it just like those tricky Jews to deny being persecuted the one time we actually want them to be?

Meanwhile darlings of the Idiot Left like always-annoying William Engdahl pose "China, Russia and Iran as a resistance against global fascism." Will you please shut up?

This simultaneous fascist resurgence among pro-European forces in Ukraine and anti-European forces in Britain and France (and Russia) is instructive. We've noted why Jews and progressives in Ukraine seek to move towards the EU: It offers basic standards of human and civil rights, at least in theory—in contrast to Putin's Eurasian Union project. But Ukrainian rightists, who only seek distance from Russia on nationalist grounds, also joined the movement that brought down the Moscow-aligned Yanukovich regime, and are now in influential places in the new government. Meanwhile, within the EU, austerity is provoking a backlash readily exploited by the neo-fascist right. This should give Jews and progressives in Ukraine pause...


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