Israeli Flags and Swastikas Abound at Rallies of PEGIDA, Europe’s Anti-Muslim Neo-Fascist Movement

UPDATE 2 (7 February 2016):

The neo-fascist, anti-Muslim PEGIDA movement held a series of demonstrations across Europe on 6 February 2016 in order to spread anti-refugee hatred.

A Reuters photo included in its report shows an Israeli flag at a PEGIDA rally in Dresden, Germany.

Anti-PEGIDA counter-protesters in Dresden carried signs saying “No place for Nazis.”

During the PEGIDA rally in Prague, 20 masked far-right extremists threw molotov cocktails on a center that collects donations for refugees.

Reuters notes that “Far-right groups see Europe’s refugee crisis as an opportunity to broadcast their anti-immigrant message.”

UPDATE 1 (4 April 2015):

Racist, anti-Muslim “Reclaim Australia” rallies were held across Australia in early April 2015. As is the case with PEGIDA rallies in Europe, Israeli flags were spotted at the demonstrations next to neo-Nazis and other fascists.

Original Article:

PEGIDA, Germany’s new anti-Muslim, neo-fascist, white supremacist movement, has spread to the UK, much like a disease.

VICE sent a reporter to the first PEGIDA rally in Newcastle, in northeast England. She interviewed asinine xenophobes who claim that Muslim immigrants are taking over their countries. She captured footage of white British men insisting that they are “oppressed” and “no longer represented” in their white supremacist, patriarchal nations. PEGIDA supporters can be heard saying they are afraid they will be forced to wear burqas. In this topsy-turvy world, white Britons claim they are being “colonized.”

In spite of this riveting, farcical masquerade of anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant bigotry, perhaps the most striking aspect of the rally are all of the Israeli flags juxtaposed against a ubiquity of swastikas.

The following are screenshots from the video:

pegida uk vice israel flag 1

pegida uk vice israel flag 2

pegida uk vice israel flag 3

pegida uk vice national front flag

This is the flag of the National Front, a neo-Nazi British party that wants to ban immigrants of color from entering the country and then forcibly expel all non-white residents, to make a 100%-white nation. The party had around 14,000 paying members in the 1970s, but was largely absorbed by Margaret Thatcher’s neoliberal capitalist Conservative Party. It still exists today, and is growing, thanks to these same austerity measures and neoliberal policies that have plunged much of the population into poverty and desperation.

pegida uk vice swastika flag

pegida uk vice neo nazis with flags

Next to the red swastika flag, the black flag has a sun cross or wheel cross, a symbol of white supremacy, with the words “white pride” below.

pegida uk vice swastika helmet

As can be seen, Israeli flags abound, right next to people wearing swastikas. The host reports “I’ve been walking through the crowd and honestly I’ve seen a ton of swastikas and variations on swastikas; that seems to be an image that is consistent throughout the crowd.”

PEGIDA was founded by a neo-Nazi who spends his free time dressing up as Hitler.

pegida leader dressed hitler

Anti-fascist activists who counter-protested also took pictures of Israeli flags from the other side of the street.

This is not the first time Israeli flags were waved at PEGIDA rallies. They have also been spotted at PEGIDA rallies in Munich, Berlin, and more.

This should not be too surprising. Zionism is and has always been an anti-Semitic movement. Zionists have a long history of working with fascists. Jewish-American marxist, veteran civil rights activist, and historian Lenni Brenner compiled 51 historical documents evincing Zionist collaboration with the Nazis.

Nazis and Zionists both have the same repugnant goal, after all: Remove Jews from Europe (and elsewhere). Zionists provide Nazis with a “solution”—send all the world’s Jews to Israel. Fascists use racism, intimidation, and violence to remove Jews; Zionists happily oblige and settle them in Israel. Racist right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu exemplified this strategy when, in the wake of the horrific Paris terrorists attacks in February 2015, he urged a “mass immigration” of Jews From Europe.

Zionism has very similar domestic goals and policies within Israel too: ethnic and religious “purity,” opposition to miscegenation, opposition to migration of those of different ethnicities and religions, an obsession with maintaining a demographic majority, etc. The National Front and other fascists want to impose these same policies in their own countries.

Consequently, Zionism must be opposed not just because it is an explicitly colonialist movement that has resulted in the ethnic cleansing, mass expulsion, torture, death, and incremental genocide of Palestinians, and not just because it is racist against Arabs and Africans, but also precisely because it oppresses Jews (particularly Orthodox Jews, who, for religious reasons, already oppose Zionism).

As anti-racists who oppose all forms of racism, and especially all forms of anti-Semitism, we must condemn the anti-Semitic Zionist movement.

The PEGIDA Disease Is Spreading

The good news is UK police estimated that there were only approximately 400 PEGIDA supporters at the demonstration, whereas 2,000 anti-fascist protesters gathered to counterprotest PEGIDA.

The bad news is that the PEGIDA disease has also spread to the US. As of March 2015, the PEGIDA USA Facebook page had almost 4,000 likes. PEGIDA USA is also active in various accounts on Twitter. The funny thing is, not only are the people in PEGIDA USA stupid because they are fascist bigots; they are even more stupid because the E in PEGIDA stands for “Europeans.”

Once again, nevertheless, we should not be surprised. Racist and fascist movements thrive off of ignorance and stupidity—and, more dangerously, off of harsh economic conditions imposed by neoliberal governments that are enamored of austerity. The PEGIDA disease will continue to spread worldwide until these policies are opposed. Poverty breeds right-wing extremism. Economic justice is the most crucial factor in the anti-racist struggle.