“Vigilance and Struggle against the ultra-right and Fascism”
Speech by the General Secretary of AKEL A. Kyprianou at the discussion organized by the C.C. of AKEL and “Promitheas” Research Centre on the theme:
9th May 2019, PASYDY conference hall, Nicosia
On behalf of the Central Committee of AKEL, I warmly welcome you all to today’s event to discuss an important and topical issue. I also would like thank the keynote speakers for their presence and participation.
The 9th May is a special day; it must be honored every day. It is the day when the peoples defeated the Nazi atrocity. It is the day when the peoples crushed the monster. It is the day when humanity defended its future with the blood shed by millions of people; it won the future of Humanity. It is the day that conveys its own victorious messages.
As AKEL we honor this day with pride. We made our own small contribution to this magnificent Victory of the Peoples. On 16th June 1943, in a crowning moment of internationalist and patriotic action, AKEL issued a call to its members to voluntarily enlist in the ranks of the armed Allied forces. The participation was on a mass scale and the contribution, as small as it may have been, it has gone down in history.
“Don’t yet rejoice in his defeat, you men! The bitch that bore him is in heat again.” Brecht warned. Unfortunately, he was absolutely right. Fascism is the product of the system. It is a creation of capitalism, of the more reactionary circles of financial capital. It represents the reserve force of the ruling class whenever the system is in crisis. It is no coincidence that prominent officials of the German Employers Association and the banking system played a leading role recently in the foundation of the extreme-right Party for Germany. It is also no coincidence that the approval of the legislation for a 12-hour working day in Austria has been warmly welcomed by the employer’s association of Austria.
The conditions created in societies suffering from a crisis regrettably open the way for neo-fascism to grow. In such cases, as Dimitrov aptly pointed out, “Fascism approaches the masses with a refined anti-capitalist demagoguery, against the banks, the trusts, and tycoons of wealth and launches slogans which at a given moment are the most appealing for the politically immature mases. Betting on the deep frustration of the masses, it wins them over because it plays on their most urgent needs in a demagogic way.” In another reference, Dimitrov went on to note the following: “Fascism acts in the interests of the imperialists”, he notes in another reference, “but before the masses it appears with the mask of the defender of a nation humiliated and invokes affected national feelings.”
Who can’t identify in the references of Dimitrov the darkest moments in the history of Greece during the period of the military Junta, the period of Hitler in Germany, Mussolini in Italy, Franco in Spain, Salazar in Portugal and Pinochet in Chile? Who cannot find in Dimitrov’s references the rhetoric of the Greek junta at that time and of the “Golden Dawn” party today? Who can’t when reading these references cite ELAM’s public interventions?
Right now across Europe, the far right has gained seats in more than twenty national Parliaments, and in some cases, like Austria and Italy, it is in coalition government with the Right. The monster is therefore present, and this makes our duty to counter it even greater. I stress this because in both Europe, but also in Cyprus too, the Right but not just the Right, consciously choose to appease the monster, to provide cover for it and use it accordingly.
It was a conscious political choice when Mr. Anastasiades turned to the extreme right to ensure his re-election. It was a conscious political choice of the governing DISY party to fish in the murky waters of the far-right by engaging every now and then in racist rhetoric against immigrants and refugees, with a rampant anti-AKELism, with “national-minded” outbursts and also with the glorification of Grivas’ actions and ideas. Nothing is accidental. The votes of ELAM supported the re-election of Mr. Anastasiades, completed the required votes for the selloff of the Cyprus Cooperative Bank and the loading of billions of Euros of debt on future generations.
They need ELAM, which is why some circles and forces seek to present neo-fascism and the far-right as just another point of view in democracy. But the time has come to put an end to the lies and for everyone to take a stand against them because bigotry, racism and nationalism is not a different opinion in democracy. Fascism has no place in Democracy. Fascism, by definition, stands opposite to democracy and attacks it.
The events with the serial murders of five women and two children which have shaken the whole of Cyprus were not able to move the branch of “Golden Dawn” in Cyprus to issue even a single press statement. What could it say? Could it criticize the authorities who ignored the allegations made because the victims were foreigners? President Anastasiades’ statement that the state has apologized for the crimes committed despite the fact that the victims were foreign working women is an irony of History. This is indeed a case of institutional racism. On the same day, in the Parliamentary Committee on Labour and Social Insurance both DISY and ELAM opposed the establishment of a Single Labour Inspection Service for inspections to verify whether employers are complying with their obligations towards working people. All of this reminds us of how thin the line is separating the perceptions of the right and the far-right and of the strong bonds which keeps them tied to each other.
For that reason struggle and vigilance is demanded against the far-right and fascism which means we need to expose them always and everywhere. To reveal their true nature. We should remember that Cyprus was immersed in blood because of their very actions. We must isolate them politically, especially among the youth. We should counter them and politically isolate the far-right, calling on every democrat and progressive person of this country to support the only force that has the stature to be their opposing pole: AKEL. And this will be achieved by specific policies and through initiatives, not with slogans.
Intervention of Georgos Koukoumas, member of the C.C. of AKEL and the International Relations Department, at the Hearing “Palestine: What’s Next?” organized by GUE/NGL2015-07-1
- Feb26 2015-02-26
- Nov13 2014-11-13