The right’s advances are often classed as a resurgence of classic fascism, and not without reason; yet, the term lends itself to so many interpretations it can become meaningless, as is the case with terms such as terrorism or populism, which always reflect the interests of their users.
Juan Diego García
However, it is clear that some characteristics of the right’s advance are so similar to classic fascism that many governments could well be classed as such, or at least as showing a clear tendency in that direction.
In any case, fascism may be one of the most perverse forms of the bourgeois order; when faced with the advance of the people or an irresolvable crisis, the ruling class decides to ignore the basics of the so-called rule of law, limiting or simply eliminating the very rights and liberties on which representative democracy so prides itself.
Simply by revising the Western powers’ (the “established democracies” ) anti-terror laws, eliminating or drastically weakening the distribution of power and, above all, by those who have never been elected to do so openly exercising real power. Let’s turn then to big banking, multinationals, and big money in general; entities which no longer lead indirectly (as is normal in the bourgeois order), but who openly and unreservedly direct public affairs.
In reality, governments (presidents and minsters) only really obey orders from these effective powers; representatives of the judicial branch take enough care to not pass legislation that affects these real powers, and parliamentarians “decide” laws which are basically created by big business’ consulting teams.
Nuances, just minor nuances remain at the disposal of jurists and legislators. It is no surprise that colourful characters -minor, low-profile leaders- appear at the head of government, and that media manipulation has completely replaced healthy citizen debate on topics of common interest, instead creating public opinion and peddling an alternative politics, just as any commercial product is sold.
Without a doubt, the United States is the most significant example of a caricature of democracy, but the “Americanisation” of political relations affects the democracies of the old world in good measure too.
The crisis is not only economic, though the economy plays a decisive role in this respect. The crisis is also political and social, and goes to the very heart of the cultural order, with persistent expressions against significant sectors of the population: xenophobia, racism, exclusionary and aggressive nationalism, victimisation of minorities and even a resurrection of the past, by European neo-Nazis and white supremacists in the United States.
They are in the minority, as they always were. However, they are very useful as a shock force, cornering the left, claiming the streets and monopolising all spaces of political action.
The neoliberal model is quite compatible with these forms of modern fascism.
On the one hand it reduces the role of the state (especially in maintaining social equilibrium), and on the other it strengthens every repressive apparatus, creating an almost stifling atmosphere in which the hard right has all the guarantees and all spaces are closed to social protest.
It is striking how in the United States the KKK has reappeared without difficulty (did it ever go away?), whilst in Europe old forms of classic fascism are resurfacing everywhere, not only in Germany (where this evil was supposedly eradicated); Franco supporters are reappearing in Spain, and in Eastern Europe, openly fascist groups, heirs of the Third Reich.
And to round up, the central component of new fascism lies in imperialist ventures.
Those of the United States are old news, but now countries like France or the United Kingdom seem to be opting for military ventures in Africa, Asia and Europe itself (Ukraine, the Balkans), reviving their imperialist past, on occasion as simple helpers of the US, at times with their own attempts to return to the past and their former “colonial glories”.
(Translated by Rebecca Ndhlovu – Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) – Fotos: Pixabay