British Conservatives ally with Spanish Franco fascists


This 30 May 2019 video says about itself:

Inside Spain’s far-right battleground: ‘When Franco was alive, it was safer

Vox became the first far-right party to win more than a single seat in Spain’s parliament since the Franco era when it won 24 in the general election. Last week, it fought its first mayoral campaign in El Ejido, a town in Andalucía with a population of 90,000 people, 30% of whom are migrants. Many of them work in the 150 square miles of greenhouses that surround the town. We follow the campaign and talk to Spaniards and migrants.

The recent European elections were a disaster for the British Conservative party of, basically already ex-, Prime Minister Theresa May. They have only four members of the European parliament (MEPs) left. Still, these MPs are members of the international European Conservatives and Reformists caucus in the parliament.

From the euobserver site, 19 June 2019:

Spain’s far-right Vox joins ECR group

The three MEPs elected on the list of Spanish far-right party Vox joined the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR), the … group announced on Wednesday. It said ECR now consisted of 62 MEPs from 15 EU countries, down from 70 in the previous five-year parliamentary period. The ECR, previously the third-largest group, looks set to be the sixth-largest group, falling behind [the Christian democrats, the social democrats,] the liberals, greens, and the … ID group.

The ID group is the caucus of French neo-fascist leader Marine Le Pen.

Apparently, the British Conservatives are happy to be in the same caucus as the admirers of Spanish dictator Franco of Vox. That is not totally surprising. As the British Tories used to be in a caucus with the Latvian Waffen SS of Adolf Hitler.

Not all European right-wingers are happy with the Vox neo-fascists. The Belgian Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie (N-VA; right-wingers, but not as far-right as that other party in Flanders, Vlaams Belang), according to Belgian daily De Standaard today, did not want Vox to join the European Conservatives and Reformists caucus. The feelings of dislike are very mutual. ‘We would love N-VA not to be there’, a Vox spokesman said.

This is because Vox wants violent repression of the Catalan people, like happened in the ‘good old days’ of Franco. While the N-VA favours Catalan independence.

Vox are not the only extreme rightists now becoming the political friends of the British Conservatives. Also in the ECR are now three MEPs of the Dutch FvD party. FvD leader Thierry Baudet is inspired by French anti-Semite and ex-MEP Jean-Marie Le Pen, and by United States racist Jared Taylor. The Dutch Christian Union did not want to be in the same caucus as the FvD. The Christian Union is one of the four parties in the Dutch right-wing coalition government. Though right-wing (anti-abortion, anti-equal marriage for LGBTQ people), Thierry Baudet’s blatant xenophobia goes too far for them. So, they left the ECR caucus.

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Spanish Supreme Court supports Franco fascism


This 29 August 2018 video says about itself:

Franco victims‘ remains exhumed from mass grave

Dozens of victims of Spain’s dictator General Franco have had their remains exhumed from a mass grave near Valencia

Read more here.

It looks like the Supreme Court in Spain is about as far-right as the United States Supreme Court, packed by Donald Trump with extreme right judges, including at least one open supporter of fascism.

These Spanish judges studied law during the Franco dictatorship.

By Alejandro López in Spain:

Spain’s Supreme Court endorses 1936 fascist coup

17 June 2019

Spain’s Supreme Court has issued a ruling endorsing the 1936 fascist coup led by Generalissimo Francisco Franco. It led to the three-year Spanish Civil War, in which the victory of Francoite forces backed by Hitler and Mussolini established a fascist dictatorship that lasted until 1978.

The Supreme Court handed down an injunction halting the acting Socialist Party (PSOE) government’s plans to remove Franco’s remains from a state-run mountaintop monument, the “Valley of the Fallen”. It argued that removing Franco’s remains to a less prominent location would be “extraordinarily harmful” not only to the general’s family but to the “public interest”. It added that the public interest required understanding the “significance of don Francisco Franco”, don being an honorific prefix in Spanish.

Explaining why it had decided to suspend the planned exhumation to give Franco’s family more time to appeal, the court referred to him as “head of state from 1 October 1936 until his death in November 1975.” Court sources told media outlets who sought confirmation that there was no mistake in the document, and that the court has no intention to rectify the ruling.

Traditionally, Franco was treated as the head of state starting on 1 April 1939, amid his final victory in the civil war and the ensuing mass murder of his political opponents. The ruling’s unprecedented wording signifies that Spain’s highest court considers the proclamation of Franco as generalissimo and head of state by a gang of fascist generals and coup plotters on October 1, 1936 as legitimate. Mass opposition of millions of workers and peasants in the civil war and the ensuing four decades of the dictatorship would be illegitimate, even criminal.

Franco’s proclamation came only months after his July 17-18 coup against the elected Popular Front government and head of state Manuel Azaña. The resulting civil war shattered cities across Spain and led to the murder of 200,000 political oppositionists, left-wing intellectuals and militant workers, and the detention of 400,000 people in concentration camps. For four decades thereafter, the Francoite regime and its secret police arrested, tortured and killed thousands, outlawed strikes, political parties and trade unions, and censored newspapers and books.

In the international court of working class opinion, Franco was never accepted as head of state, despite his regime’s savage repression. He was an odious and bloodstained criminal. The only powers to recognize Franco as “head of state” in October 1936 were fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, led by Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler, respectively—along with the pope in the Vatican, which described the fascist uprising as a “crusade” against communism.

The fact that Spain’s highest court publicly defends one of the most brutal counterrevolutions in the 20th century is a warning. After nearly three decades of increasing war and militarism since the Stalinist dissolution of the Soviet Union, and a decade of deep austerity since the 2008 global economic crisis, ruling circles worldwide are again envisaging such policies.

The ruling class is reacting to the emergence of mass “yellow vest” protests in France, mass strikes in Portugal and Poland, and mass movements demanding the overthrow of military dictatorships in Algeria and Sudan with a sharp shift to the right.

The international character of the ruling elite’s shift to the far right underscores its political significance. It is a warning to the working class. French President Emmanuel Macron has made statements extolling Vichy regime head Pétain, and a renewed effort, led by Humboldt University Professor Jörg Baberowski, is underway in Germany to whitewash the crimes of the Nazi regime. Far-right parties and politicians are already in government in Italy, Hungary, Poland, Austria, Brazil and beyond.

Terrified by growing anti-capitalist and socialist sentiment, the ruling class is reviving all the political filth of the 20th century. As the WSWS has repeatedly warned, fascism was not an accident of the 20th century, but the inevitable political outgrowth of capitalism. If Franco is rehabilitated, it is because powerful factions of the ruling class are again considering a break with legality and democratic forms of rule.

In Spain, a fascist party openly defending the legacy of Francoism, Vox, has entered parliament for the first time since the Franco era and is backing right-wing coalitions in regions and cities throughout Spain. Promoted in the media, it has recruited six former generals. Two signed the pro-Franco manifesto signed by over 1,000 officers, including 70 former generals and admirals, roughly one-third of the total active number of general officers in the Spanish armed forces.

The Supreme Court’s endorsement of Francoism testifies to the criminalisation of the Spanish bourgeois state after the brutal crackdown on the 2017 Catalan independence referendum. The political establishment came out in favor of the brutal police crackdown and the ongoing show trial of Catalan bourgeois nationalists who organized it. This went hand in hand with the holding of pro-Francoite, anti-separatist rallies legitimating fascism and the Vox party.

The same court has denied the leader of the Catalan Republican Left, Oriol Junqueras—who is standing in the show trial—permission to leave prison to be sworn in as a member of European parliament. This strips the millions who voted for Junqueras of their vote, as Junqueras will not be able to assume his position as an MEP. This enjoys the full support of Brussels, and the acquiescence of the PSOE government …

The only way to oppose the bourgeoisie’s drive to rehabilitate fascism is to mobilize the working class in political struggle independently … There is powerful opposition in the working class to Francoism, which is well within living memory of Spain’s population. …

Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias tweeted that the court’s wording was “a real travesty”. The leader of the … Communist Party of Spain, Alberto Garzon, said that it “says a lot, too much, about the high judicial bodies we have in this country.”

The PSOE itself, which is running a caretaker government since last month’s elections, has not commented on the ruling.

… Amid a new era of capitalist crisis, the European Union is again incubating fascistic regimes.

Spanish neofascists support bullfighting


This 29 May 2017 video from the Netherlands says about itself:

Franco‘s No.1 Fan: Dutch museum for Spain’s dictator

One Dutch man is such a big fan of Franco, Spain’s dictator, that he’s opened a museum for him in Amsterdam, 40 years after he died.

That Franco supporter votes for the Dutch xenophobic party of Geert Wilders. On the internet, he blames democracy for the coming of ´niggers´, Muslims, drugs and other ´evils´ to Europe. So, democracy should be replaced with Franco style dictatorships. If someone criticizes Franco, then he calls that critic ´rojo de mierda´, commie piece of shit, telling the critic to ´fuck off to Cuba´.

Unfortunately, not all Franco dictatorship supporters are in a museum.

Translated from Dutch NOS TV today:

It is no coincidence that Vox has chosen the bullring in the Madrid suburb of Leganés for a meeting. The party has appeared in recent weeks in all possible places that have something to do with the tradition or history of Spain.

So Vox kicked off the campaign in Covadonga, because of the reconquista that started there, the Christian recapture of the Iberian Peninsula from the Muslims (Moors). Later, because of the European discovery of America, the party appeared on Columbus Square in Madrid.

At the party meeting in Leganés, Eviva España pops out of the sound system, the hit song that once made Imca Marina famous in the Netherlands. Bullfighter Serafín Marín, one of the candidates from Vox, is watching with satisfaction. … “Bullfighting, that’s the future. The left wants to destroy it all.” …

Vox is far right, but is different in one issue from comparable parties in Europe. The party was given a boost by the Catalan crisis and the party meetings are mainly calling for ending separatism.

“We are going to restore order”, party leader Santiago Abascal

Ex-member of the Partido Popular, founded by ex-ministers of the Franco dictatorship, but officially a center right ‘Christian democrat’ party.

calls in the arena of Leganés. “We are going to defend unity and ban the parties who want independence. We are sick and tired of them receiving our tax money. That is how they destroy Spain, the sacred legacy we received from our grandparents.” …

Recently, Abascal still admitted always walking around with a gun. …

The party will participate in the national elections for the first time tomorrow. According to polls, Vox can get 35 out of 350 seats in parliament. From that moment on, the other conservative parties (Partido Popular and Ciudadanos) cannot ignore Vox. …

[AVox supporter says:] “They want to take everything away from us. Vox protects hunting, … bullfighting.”

Spanish fascist Vox party, towards military dictatorship


This 2015 Associated Press video from Spain says about itself:

Fascists gather to commemorate hardline civil war leader

1. Pan right of demonstrators in square giving fascist salute; UPSOUND Spanish National Anthem
2. Men and women giving fascist salute
3. Demonstrators from town of Santander
4. Woman singing fascist song
5. Demonstrators waving Spanish pre-Constitutional flags
6. SOUNDBITE: (Spanish) demonstrator, no name given, Vox …: “I think it is a moment for people, especially young people, to come out and defend some principles and interests to find a solution to what is happening in Spain at this time.”
7. Man giving fascist salute
8. Old woman giving fascist salute
9. Tilt down on woman holding photo of dictator General Francisco Franco
10. Leaders of far right organisations saluting
11. Leader of far right party Fuerza Nueva (New Force) Blas Pinar speaking on podium
12. Wide of demonstrators listening
13. SOUNDBITE: (Spanish) Miguel Menedez Pinar, Pinar’s grandson: “A prohibition of an event like this crashes with the freedom of speech that this system, which I don’t believe in, claims to protect. I will come here year after year and I will go to the Valley of the Fallen because they are a church and a basilica and because you cannot stop a Mass for the souls of the dead of not just Franco or Jose Antonio but all the dead from both sides who fell during the Civil War and Crusade.”
14. Old couple listening to speeches
15. Italian fascist flag
16. Pan right of demonstration

STORYLINE:

Hundreds of demonstrators nostalgic for Spain’s bygone right-wing past gathered on Sunday to commemorate a hard-line civil war leader among tensions after clashes between politically opposed gangs left one person dead, dozens injured and several detained. The rally, held in Madrid’s Plaza de Oriente square next to the former royal palace in the capital’s old quarter, was in remembrance of the killing of Jose Antonio Primo de Rivera in 1936 by leftist forces during the Spanish Civil War.

Tensions were running high after left-wing demonstrators had gathered on Friday in many Spanish cities to protest the death of a teenager stabbed to death by a right-wing activist on November 11. While protests in Madrid and Zaragoza took place peacefully, one in the northern port city of Barcelona led to clashes …

Primo de Rivera founded the Falange, the political movement linked with dictator General Francisco Franco’s regime, which held onto power from 1939 to 1975, following victory in the civil war.

Blas Pinar … hailed the memory of Primo de Rivera and Franco and called the civil war a glorious crusade against communism and atheism. His grandson, Miguel Menendez Pinar, also attended the demonstration. … Among right wing banners and flags an Italian flag from the Benito Mussolini era could be seen waving in the crowd. Chants praising Franco and Mussolini were heard several times as many of those at the rally gave the stiff-arm fascist salute.

Some demonstrators had walked to the Valley of the Fallen, a massive monument housing the tombs of Franco and Primo de Rivera 54 kilometres (34 miles) northwest of Madrid.

By Alejandro López in Spain:

Spain’s fascist Vox party enlists former generals, calls for banning Marxist parties

25 March 2019

This week, the deputy secretary of international relations of the Spanish far-right party Vox, Iván Espinosa de los Monteros, declared that the “ultraleft and [Catalan and Basque] nationalism are the enemies of Spain” and that “between us all we have to finish them off.” He said that Vox would propose outlawing parties that “don’t believe in the unity of Spain and those who don’t renounce Marxism.”

Vox has signed up five former generals to run in the April 28 general elections. Two have publicly defended the legacy of fascist dictator Francisco Franco.

Vox’s policies are openly anti-democratic and reactionary. They include suspending all regional governments, reversing limited measures that sought to address Franco’s crimes, closing mosques, bolstering the Catholic Church, lowering income and corporate tax, and deporting migrants.

Former Navy General Agustin Rosety Fernandez de Castro will head the Vox list in the southern province of Cadiz. Rosety, who served the Spanish army for 40 years under Popular Party (PP) and Socialist Party (PSOE) administrations as Chief of Special Operations, head of the Ministry of Defence’s top body—the General Directorate of Defence Policy—has revealed his true colours.

So too has former General of Division Alberto Asarta who will stand in Castellon. He is the author of the current Spanish Air Force military doctrine and has taken part in Spanish imperialist wars and interventions, leading the Multinational Brigade Plus Ultra II

Plus Ultra was the slogan of 16th century Spanish King Charles V, indicating that the military power of the Spanish empire was not limited to Europe.

in Iraq and UNIFIL in Lebanon.

Both Rosety and Asarta signed last year’s pro-fascist manifesto “Declaration of Respect to General Francisco Franco Bahamonde, Soldier of Spain”, along with 670 other top current and retired officers. Published in the pro-Francoite Asociación de Militares Españoles (AME-Association of Spanish Soldiers), it proclaimed Franco, who slaughtered hundreds of thousands of workers during the Spanish Civil War and founded a 40-year fascist dictatorship, to be the saviour of Spain.

Rosety and Asarta will be joined by former Air Force General Manuel Mestre Barea, who fought in Afghanistan, Kuwait, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Iraq and will stand in Alicante. Former General Fulgencio Coll, who will be the candidate for mayor for Palma de Mallorca, was chief of staff of the Spanish Army between 2008 and 2012. General Antonio Budiño Carballo, who oversaw operations in Croatia, Albania and Iraq, will stand in Pontevedra.

The decision of top Spanish officers to hail fascist crimes, join Vox, and run for parliament is a warning to workers in Spain and beyond. As the French army threatens to shoot “yellow vest” protesters, the financial aristocracy everywhere is moving towards fascistic military-police regimes.

This lays bare the claim that the Spanish army was “democratised” after the fall of the Francoite regime. Rather, in line with events across Europe, the transition to bourgeois democracy under the slogan of “forgive and forget” covered up the crimes of the fascists, allowed them to continue their careers unhindered and incubate their successors. The state is deliberately building up the Vox party. It was created by former hard-line PP politicians, appealing directly to the military, the judiciary and the police.

These forces exploited the Catalan nationalists’ calling of an independence referendum to shift the political atmosphere far to the right and legitimize the building of an openly pro-fascist party.

Polls show that Vox does not draw support from the working class. Most if its voters are former PP supporters and middle-class layers earning over €2,000 a month. Only 13 percent of Spanish citizens earn this amount.

Last December, after massive media promotion, the party came from virtually nowhere to win 12 seats in the 108-seat Andalusian parliament and almost 11 percent of the vote. It then became the kingmaker, deciding to back a right-wing Citizens-PP coalition government in the region.

Vox could again be in a position to broker a right-wing government after the national elections in April. According to the latest polls, the party could win 10.3 percent of the vote, or 20 to 23 seats in the 350-seat parliament. Combined with the PP and Citizens the right wing could end up with at least 176 seats—a slim majority over the PSOE and Unidos Podemos.

Espinosa de los Monteros’ threat to ban Marxist parties is also a warning. …

A comment on this article says:

The sheer irony of Vox simultaneously celebrating Franco and promoting Islamophobia is that it was Franco who brought the Moorish soldiers into Asturia that the Umayyad conquerors could not conquer 12 centuries prior. I brought this hard fact once to an Islamophobe singing praises for a Francoist demo in Spain and his hysterical response was hilarious.

Lesbian kiss in front of Vox campaigners in Valladolid goes viral: here.

Manuel Valls, from French ‘socialist’ to Spanish fascists’ ally


This 11 February 2018 video, in the French language, shows a right-wing demonstration in Madrid, Spain, aiming to overthrow the social democrat PSOE minority government of Pedro Sanchez. The video interviews Manuel Valls, ex-Prime Minister of France; now a politician of the neoliberal right-wing Spanish Ciudadanos party.

That demonstration was organised by a coalition of three parties: Valls’ Ciudadanos; the Partido Popular, founded by ex-ministers of the Franco dictatorship, calling itself ‘Christian Democrat’; and the Franco fascism supporters of Vox. These same three parties have formed a coalition to govern the Andalusia region.

By Alex Lantier in France, 21 February 2019:

Thus [French Socialist Party] PS [former] Prime Minister Manuel Valls attended a rally in Madrid of the Spanish right-wing parties including the new fascist party, Vox. This demonstration aimed to install a right-wing coalition government that would include Vox—a party that defends the record of fascist dictator Francisco Franco’s army during the civil war, that is, the use of mass murder against left-wing workers.

Who exactly is Valls? Wikipedia describes him as belonging originally to the Blairite right wing of the French Socialist party.

As Minister of the Interior, he became infamous for anti-Roma racism. From 2014-2016, he was Prime Minister.

Then, he tried to become Socialist Party presidential candidate. However, he lost the primary unexpectedly to more left-wing and far less known Hamon.

Valls then promised to support Hamon’s candidacy. However, he broke that promise, supporting instead Big Business candidate Macron.

The Socialist Party said they might expel him. Valls then tried to become a Macron party politician. They did not want him.

Valls’ second wife divorced him. Valls burned his bridges to France and moved to Spain and the Ciudadanos party.

If I would be Ciudadanos, then I would be wary about Valls causing conflicts in the party, and maybe departing under a cloud, to join: the Partido Popular? Or Vox?

Spanish Francoist neofascists VOX and their opponents


This 4 December 2018 video from Spain says about itself:

Thousands of demonstrators swept through Seville on Monday night after the far-right Vox party won 12 seats in regional elections. Protesters forced their way inside the city’s university before marching on the official seat of the Andalusian government. A number of spontaneous demonstrations have been held in key cities across the region, including Granada and Malaga.

On 19 January 2019, Dutch daily NRC published a report by Koen Greven on Spanish extreme right party VOX. Its title is, translated, ‘Right-wing machos fight leftist achievements‘.

The article says VOX is based on nostalgia for the (Franco dictatorship) past. Translated:

A Spain where abortion was illegal, no gay marriages took place, bullfighting was not questioned, migrants played no significant role and the Catalans were oppressed.

Greven interviewed political science professor Fernando Vallespín of the Universidad Autónoma of Madrid. According to Vallespín, VOX differs from some xenophobic parties in other European countries as they are not anti-European Union at all.

VOX in Andalusia say they will continue to demand deportation of 50,000 immigrants from the region.

In recent weeks, the anti-immigration party, also opposed to feminism, has been massively protested against in virtually all major cities. The party refuses to endorse a widely supported pact on combating domestic violence and sexual aggression against women. In Seville, the capital of Andalusia, last Tuesday a crowd of angry women tried in vain to prevent the parliamentarians of Vox from being appointed. They waved banners and called for the departure of “the fascists of Vox“.

The women are afraid that the right to abortion or gay marriage will be threatened again. “We do not want those Vox fascists in our parliament. they want to take away the rights that we have fought for for years”, says Victoria Bautista from the coastal city Cádiz, in front of the parliament building. “LGBTQ people would no longer be able to marry. Migrants would be deported. Women will become outlawed. We live in the 21st century. We will not take a step back. I will always be a socialist and will keep fighting for a better Spain!”

A group of retired socialists, who play bowls in front of Sevilla’s Santa Justa station, attributes part of the rise of Vox to the socialist PSOE. “The last time I did not vote”, Francisco Ortiz admits. The man next to him nods. He did not either. Ortiz: “The socialists have ruled for forty years in Andalusia. That is not good. Then you will get used to power. … Do not get me wrong: Vox is nothing for us at all.”

“We are going to make Spain great again“, says the slogan of Vox party leader Abascal. In a campaign film he drives gallop across an empty prairie. Accompanying text: ‘The Reconquista starts in Andalusia’.

The Reconquista were medieval wars, resulting in the kiling or expulsion of all Muslims and Jews from Spain.

On Sunday, tens of thousands of people joined a protest called by Spain’s main right-wing parties in Madrid’s Plaza de Colon. The Popular Party (PP), Citizens, and the far-right Vox party had chartered hundreds of buses to bring right-wing supporters from across Spain, calling to “throw out” social-democratic Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez over his talks with the Catalan nationalists. Between 20,000 and 45,000 people attended the protest, listening to speeches from right-wing politicians. Also participating were groups like the neo-Nazi Hogar Social (Social Home); the Spanish Falange; España 2000; and Spain’s main police union, the United Police Union. The role of this last organisation underscores the critical role of the state machine in promoting the protest and the broader rise of neo-fascistic, anti-Catalan agitation: here.

Yesterday, after the show trial of Catalan nationalists began in Madrid, Catalan nationalist legislators declined to support the minority Spanish Socialist Party (PSOE) government’s budget. PSOE Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez’s budget failed by 191-158. After meeting with his council of ministers on Friday, he is expected to call elections this spring: here.