Protesters filled the streets of Greece's major cities this evening, Wednesday, over the murder of anti-fascist rapper Pavlos Fyssas by a Golden Dawn member.
The protests followed a day of enormous rallies as public sector workers struck for 48 hours across Greece.
A group of thugs in Golden Dawn outfits attacked Pavlos, an active anti-fascist, after a football match in Piraeus last night.
Panos Garganas is editor of Socialist Worker's sister paper in Greece Workers Solidarity. He said, “Pavlos was active in his local anti-Nazi committee, and had performed in a big concert against fascism that they organised.
"So he was well-known and well-loved by anti-fascist activists—and well-known and hated by the Nazis too.”
Petros Constantinou, coordinator of the Movement Against Racism and the Fascist Threat (Keerfa), spoke at the main strike rally in Athens today. He said, “There is so much anger at the killing that thousands went from the strike rallies in the morning onto the anti-fascist protests in the evening.”
One of the biggest demonstrations was in Piraeus. There was a huge turnout from local people. It united the left—the Socialist Workers Party, Syriza, anarchists, and the Greek Communist Party (KKE), which has previously preferred to march separately.
Golden Dawn members with baseball bats attacked trade unionists in the KKE last week.
“The strikes meant that the fascists were marginalised,” said Panos. “And their response to that has been to go on the offensive with this new spate of attacks.”
Anger at the killing has even hit the Tory-type New Democracy party that leads the fragile coalition government. Public order minister Nikos Dendias has talked about bringing in legislation to make sure “violence” does not go unpunished.
But his ministry spends more energy persecuting anti-fascists. It is currently pursuing two prosecutions against Keerfa coordinator Petros Constantinou. http://socialistworker.co.uk/art/34459/Defend+Greek+anti-fascist+Petros+Constantinou+from+second+prosecution
And there is much anger at the police patrols that did nothing to stop Pavlos' murder.
The real potential to stop Golden Dawn lies with the working class. There are already debates in some unions about calling strikes against the Nazis. And local government workers are set to decide what action to call in the growing revolt against the sackings tomorrow.
“Today's successful strike and rallies, together with the anti-Nazi anger, are creating a situation where any mass meeting will vote for action,” said Panos. “The mood is to press on.”