Socialist Worker

Greek Golden Dawn Nazis: a warning from history

Issue No. 2303

Nikolaos Mihaloliakos, leader of Greece’s fascist Golden Dawn party, is using the publicity he has gained since the Greek elections to deny the Nazi Holocaust.

In a TV interview last Sunday he declared, “There were no ovens—this is a lie. There were no gas chambers either.”

Golden Dawn polled 7 percent in the Greek general elections earlier this month. Like most European fascist parties it formally denies its Nazi nature.

But in Golden Dawn’s case the pretence is pretty thin. The party’s thugs give Nazi salutes and parade under a swastika-style logo.

Votes for the fascists come primarily from the lower middle class—small business owners and the like who previously supported mainstream right wing parties.

Around a fifth of this lower middle class vote backed Golden Dawn, according to one poll. Another survey shows almost half of all serving police officers in Athens voted for the Nazis.

Capitalist crises do not just hit workers—they also threaten to ruin many of those who bought into the system’s values.

These middle classes form the soil in which the Nazis grow.

History shows that fascists try to use crises to smash the working class—and in extreme situations our rulers let them.

We need to organise against fascism. But we also need to build the kind of resistance that can defeat austerity and strengthen the working class.

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