Thursday, February 27, 2014



Romani people make up officially roughly 0.4% of the population in the Czech Republic - that would be about 41,000 in all.  Yet they get blamed for almost everything wrong that happens there. They face constant harassment and continual discrimination.  It's absurd and it is absolutely racist.  

This coming Saturday right wing radicals and nazis plan yet another anti-Romani march in the town of Plzen. The march is scheduled to last from 14:00 until 17:00. The Czech News Agency reports that a well-informed source says the person who announced the march to local authorities is Pavel Bittmann of Plzeň; a person of that same name has previously been convicted of promoting a movement aimed at suppressing human rights and freedoms.  

According to, 

Bittman told authorities he estimates the number of participants in his event will be 250. He announced it for the purpose of "upholding the rights of all decent citizens of this country and protesting the financing of the anti-Czech, racist ROMEA civic association by the Government of the Czech Republic.

This time the racists will be met with a counter protest called by Plzen Against Racism.  A spokesperson for the group said, "We believe it is not good to let this march happen without a response, because it could then be perceived as something normal in our society."  The group says,it will not place any restrictions on the forms of counter-protest. "We can draw on the sidewalk, play musical instruments, eat, dance, drink, sing, or block the path of the marchers..."  The "happening" has also been supported by an initiative called "We Don't Want Nazis in Plzeň" (V Plzni nácky nechceme).

What is perhaps even more frightening then a march by local nazis is the outreach and invitation recently issued by the fascist Czech Workers' Social Justice Party to Ukrainian nazis to come pay a visit. Many reports have linked the Ukrainian nazis to any number of similar groups across Europe.  Their presence in the Czech Republic should be met strongly by anti-racists and anti-nazis...and all Czech working people.  

The linkage of a nazi like International is a growing and dangerous trend which must be countered and smashed by an international movement of working people, of the multitude before it has a chance to grow further.  We live in a global world where an event here also happens almost immediately there.  This alliance between Czech and Ukrainian nazis is just one more example of the bad side of that coin.  

The following is from


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This photo shows clashes between Ukrainian radicals from the "Right Sector" and armed units of the Berkut special forces on 19 January 2014.

The right-wing extremist Workers' Social Justice Party (Dělnická strana sociální spravedlnosti - DSSS) has invited a representative of the neo-Nazi group Right Sector to the Czech Republic. In addition to the democratic parties of the All-Ukrainian Union "Fatherland" (representatives: Yulia Tymoshenko, Arseniy Yatsenyuk), the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform (Vitali Klitschko) and the fascist Freedom party (Oleg Tjagnybok), Right Sector is one of the most significant radical groups participating in the current revolutionary changes in Ukraine.

"According to the most recent developments of events in Ukraine, it is evident that it was precisely the members and sympathizers of Right Sector who played a decisive role in the protests that the pro-European collaborators led by Klitschko and Tymoshenko have been and still are doing their best to co-opt," the DSSS writes in its press release about the invitation. As many as 100 000 people in Ukraine follow the Right Sector movement on social networks; the group mainly brings together right-wing radicals from various nationalist groups (the Trident of Stepan Bandera, Ukrainian Nationalists, Patriots of Ukraine or White Hammer), including Dynamo Kiev football hooligans who have piggy-backed on legitimate protests against the former government powers.   
The term "sector" in the organization's title is used to refer to the different sections of stands in a football stadium. Experts believe it is a loose association of right-wing radicals from all over Ukraine.
Groups of masked Right Sector fighters attacked police officers during the recent demonstrations with bottles filled with flammable substances, iron bars, and rocks, using "trophy" police shields won during the street fighting to defend themselves. Some photographs have shown the fighters using homemade shields with various symbols on them such as Odin's Cross, a symbol used by the Ku-klux-klan, or the neo-Nazi code numbers 14 (for the 14 words of David Lane) and 88 (which stands for "Heil Hitler").  
Right Sector has about 300 active members. It is the radical part of the main political force of the ultra-right in Ukraine, the Freedom Party, which is led by Tjagnybok. 
"If I were to look for an example and compare it to an ultra-right group in Eastern Europe, then it is definitely like Hungary's Jobbik. Freedom is rather similar, it is a political party with it's own proposal for a constitution that would introduce many horrible things such as a the death penalty for so-called 'anti-Ukrainian activities', which need no further commentary. Essentially anything that goes against the party could be considered 'anti-Ukrainian'," the website quoted a Ukrainian anarcho-syndicalist named Denys as saying in an interview for a US radio station in Asheville.
The Freedom party espouses the legacy of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), a Fascist movement from the interwar period, as well as the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) once led by the controversial figure Stepan Bandera. Svoboda identifies with the ideology of German National Socialism (according to the Annual Report of the Stephen Roth Institute for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism and Racism) and annually celebrates the founding of the Ukrainian Waffen SS division.
The Freedom party is against Russian influence in Ukraine and defines itself as against the country's communist past. It is also notorious for its anti-Semitic, racist rhetoric.
News server Zeit Online reports that in January 2013, Freedom members met with members of the German ultra-right party NPD (the National Democratic Party of Germany) and that the party allegedly also has ties to France's Front National (FN) led by Marine Le Pen.
On New Year's Day this year, Freedom organized a march of 15 000 people to celebrate Stepan Bandera's birthday. The party used the nationalist flag, which is black and red and which the FIFA, the international governing body of the sport of football, has labeled a racist symbol and banned from use during football matches.  
In the last elections, Freedom won more than 10 % of the vote. It has 38 seats in the 450-member Parliament and is the country's fourth-strongest party. 
ryz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert

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