White Power Music – Scenes of Extreme Right Cultural Resistance

Anton Shekhovtsov, Paul Jackson (Eds): White Power Music – Scenes of Extreme Right Cultural Resistance.Mapping the Far-Right, Volume 2, Searchlight Magazine/Radicalism and New Media Research Group, August 2012.

This volume shines a spotlight on various far right musical scenes all over Europe. The first part of the book is made up of country-specific looks at the scenes in Germany, France, Sweden, Greece, Hungary and Romania, and the Czech Republic. The second part consists of three articles: one about the memory of Ian Stuart Donaldson, one about women in White Power music, and one about „White Power music and censorship in the Information Age“.

The articles differ a great deal in how they approach the issues. The article about the German „Rechtsrock“ scene limits itself largely to that particular brand of white power rock, and is basing itself to a considerable degree on the reports of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz, BfV). These should be taken with a grain of salt as we have seen in the context of the murders of the National Socialist Underground. The author is staying close to the music associated with traditional neo-Nazism (NPD and DVU parties) and doesn’t investigate the more transversal forms of far-right subcultures. Nevertheless it can serve as an introduction to a particular field of German far-right music to a reader unfamiliar with the topic.

The second article is concerned with France, starting off with the phenomenon of „rock identitaire“, and the involvment of protagonist Fabrice Robert in various national-revolutionary and national-Bolshevik sects until his recent activities as a leader of Bloc Identitaire. The article traces the nationalist rock back to the 70’s and the influence of the Italian Janus group up to the present via skinhead hate rock and NSBM, expanding the spectrum into far right techno since the 90’s. [Read more →]

“Fight for Freedom” – The legend of the “other”Germany (book review)

Curt Geyer, Walter Loeb u.a.
Fight for Freedom
Die Legende vom anderen Deutschland
2009, 255 Seiten, 18.-€, ISBN: 978-3-924627-19-5,
herausgegeben von Jan Gerber und Anja Worm im Auftrag der “Materialien für Aufklärung und Kritik” (Halle).
Aus dem Englischen von Ursula Folta, Ulrike Folta, Philipp Graf, Peter Siemionek, Anja Worm, Robert Zwarg, Sebastian Voigt, Martin Schmitt, Christian Thein und Paul Mentz

“But, at the same stage of the war which led many people into emotional outbursts to the detriment of their reason, I never renounced what I regarded as my duty towards the other Germany, the real Germany. (…) Nazism represented the enemy within. Hitler had to be defeated so that Germany might live.”
Willy Brandt: In Exile, p. 100f.

Willy Brandt, who served as Mayor of West Berlin and then German Chancellor, voiced here an idea that was widespread both among German exiles, and prominent in both West and East Germany: The Nazis didn’t represent the “real” Germany, but were oppressors of the German people. This view was particularly widespread in different sections of the Left.

On another end of the left spectrum, the Stalinists’ definition was “Fascism in power is the open, terroristic dictatorship of the most reactionary, the most chauvinistic, the most imperialistic elements of finance capitalism” (Dimitroff, 1935). This obviously implied that the German people were the first victims of a conspiracy of evil forces.
This “definition”, athough it is actualy more of a propaganda slogan, denies the rather obvious fact that National Socialism in Germany was a genuine mass movement. The “socialist” element in its ideology is deemed pure demagogy.

Both views, the social democratic and the Stalinist, are merely examples of a broad front of similar opinions which permeated the German exile community, and became a prevalent force in the post war years, when they helped re-integrate Nazis into different post war societies. [Read more →]

Most read Datacide articles in 2012

As we did a year ago we look at which articles were the most read ones of the past year (online):

2012 was the best year for datacide online so far with the most views/reads and November 2012 was the best month in the history of the site since it was launched at the beginning of 2009 (replacing the old archive site and the temporary blog). Considering that datacide 11 came out in February 2011 and the next issue only in October 2012 and, connected to that, the fact that only very little material was posted during 2012 (19 posts) this is a really good result. It shows that more people find out about the magazine and the rich archive of articles besides the new additions. It’s not surprising that most articles read online in 2012 were from issue 11 or earlier as the majority of texts from number 12 are not even online yet and the ones that are were posted in November or December.

1. Dance before the Police come by Neil Transpontine  (from Datacide 11). This one shot up in the statistics when a Guardian article by Dan Hancox from last July linked to it. But it was much read before then, having already been at number 6 of the most read articles of 2011, obviously touching on one of the key themes of datacide.

2. You’re too Young to Remember the Eighties – Dancing in a different time by DJ Controlled Weirdness (from Datacide 10) A slow burner that has attracted a lot of readers over the last year, becoming one of the most read articles on the site, despite – as far as we can tell – not being linked to from any “prominent” sites. Nice.

3. Dope smuggling, LSD manufacture, organised crime & the law in 1960s London by Stewart Home (from Datacide 11), up from number 9 of the previous year’s most read. This is also the article version of Stewart’s talk at the 2008 datacide conference in Berlin.

4. COIL – Interview from 1986 plus Introduction by Christoph Fringeli/John Balance. Being linked to from Wikipedia and the official Coil site this is the most read post on datacide attracting a steady readership. Somewhat ironic considering the interview was done over a decade before datacide started before it was  re-published in issue 9 (incidentally the issue with the lowest print run of datacide).

5. From Subculture to Hegemony: Transversal Strategies of the New Right in Neofolk and Martial Industrial by Christoph Fringeli, which was the most read piece in 2011 (from Datacide 11). Of course we are wondering who reads this and related articles – Anti-Fascists? Fans of industrial music? Fans of Evola or Jünger?

6. WE MEAN IT MAN: Punk Rock and Anti-Racism – or: Death In June not Mysterious. Stewart Home’s article on Death In June from Datacide 7.

7. What the Fuck? – Operation Spanner by Jo Burzynska from Datacide 2 – and thus the oldest article originally published in Datacide in this list. Was already number 7 in the 2011 chart. Many visitors seem to be coming from Clarisse Thorn’s blog.

8. The Brain of Ulrike Meinhof by Christoph Fringeli from Datacide 9, last year’s number 8 as well.

9. Shaking The Foundations: Reggae soundsystem meets ‘Big Ben British values’ downtown by John Eden from Datacide 11, the second most read article of 2011 still receiving a fair amount of hits.

10. “LONG LIVE DEATH” – on Pasolini’s Salo by Howard Slater from Datacide 6 and one of his brilliant film reviews which also include an article about John Carpenter, the Western and others.

11. Communisation theory and the question of fascism by Cherry Angioma, already a much discussed and re-blogged post from the latest issue, Datacide 12, addressing important issues of the current debates in the communist movement.

12. The Dog’s Bollocks – Vagina Dentata Organ and The Valls Brothers (Interview) by John Eden. Exclusive interview with Jordi Valls that comes second in the only recently posted articles from the latest paper issue, and will no doubt be a contender along with “Communisation Theory…” for the 2013 charts…

Of course we know that by posting this list there will be a tendency that those article will be read again while others that would also be worth a read might be overlooked. Hence here some more or less random links to other articles with the explicit invitation to investigate further by browsing the site:

E.g. the classic Post-Media Operators by Howard Slater/Eddie Miller/Flint Michigan from Datacide 2, or its follow-up text Post-Media Operators – Sovereign & Vague from Datacide 7. Or what about Matthew Hyland’s New Age Policing – Biology is Ideology from the same issue, or maybe The World Made Flesh by Matt Fuller from Datacide 8…?

There are now nearly 300 articles on this site, and the next print issue is being prepared. We have a lot of plans for the future. You can help us realising them sooner rather than later by making a donation or taking out a subscription for 3 issues for 10 euro. Write to (or paypal funds to) datacide(at)c8.com

 

Communisation theory and the question of fascism

It is now more than five years since the start of the financial crisis with no sign of respite from austerity and increasing insecurity.  Neither the old left of unions and parties or the newer social movements of protest and direct action seem to be up to the task of offering a way forward. In the search for new road maps to navigate crisis and the possibilities of life beyond capitalism, the concept of ‘communisation’ has become an increasing focus of discussion.

The word itself has been around since the early days of the communist movement. The English utopian Goodwyn Barmby, credited with the being the first person to use the term communist in the English language, wrote a text as early as 1841 entitled ‘The Outlines of Communism, Associality and Communisation’.  He conceived of the four ages of humanity as being ‘ ‘Paradisation, Barbarization, Civilization and Communisation’, while his wife and collaborator Catherine Barmby anticipated current debates about gender with early feminist interventions arguing for communisation as a solution to women’s subordination (Goodwyn Barmby is discussed in Peter Linebaugh, ‘Meandering on the semantical-historical paths of communism and commons’, The Commoner, December 2010).

The Barmbys’ use of the term to describe the process of the creation of a communist society is not a million miles away from its current usage, but it has acquired a more specific set of meanings since the early 1970s when elements of the French ‘ultra-left’ began deploying it as a way of critiquing traditional conceptions of revolution. Communism has often been conceived of by both Marxists and anarchists as a future state of society to be achieved in the distant future long after the messy business of revolution has been sorted out.  For advocates of communisation on the other hand, capitalism can only be abolished by the immediate creation of different relations between people, such as the free distribution of goods and the creation of ‘communal, moneyless, profitless, Stateless, forms of life. The process will take time to be completed, but it will start at the beginning of the revolution, which will not create the preconditions of communism: it will create communism’ (Gilles Dauvé & Karl Nesic, ‘Communisation’, 2011).

Today this broad notion of communisation is used in various different ways, but arguably there are two main poles in current debates – albeit with many shades in between. [Read more →]

Neo-Nazi Terror and the Office for the Protection of the Constitution in Germany

Despite the fact that at least 140 people (AIB 89) were killed by Neo-Nazis in Germany since re-unification in 1990, officially there was no such thing as Nazi terrorism in the Federal Republic. Indeed, if one looks at the book “Extremismus in Deutschland” (Extremism in Germany), published by the Ministry of the Interior in 2004, one could conclude that there is no such thing as violence from the extreme right, let alone murder and terrorism.
The yearly report of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (Verfassungsschutz) for 2010 categorically states that “in Germany no right wing terrorist structures can be detected” (Verfassungsschutzbericht 2010, p.57). The report describes far right violence as “predominantly spontaneous”, and claims it occurs mainly between right and left wing “extremists”.

This view in mainstream politics and media forcibly changed on November 4, 2011, when the dead bodies of Uwe Böhnhardt and Uwe Mundlos were found in a burning trailer in Eisenach, Thuringia. After a initially successful bank robbery by the suspects, police found their trailer and approached it, and then to avoid arrest, Böhnhardt apparently shot Mundlos, set the trailer on fire and then shot himself in the head. Meanwhile in Zwickau, the third of the terror trio, Beate Zschäpe (who had earlier taken part of the bank heist), was busy burning down their safehouse to destroy evidence. A few days later she gave herself up, and has since refused to make any statements.
The murder weapons used in a series of killings between 2000 and 2007 were found in the burned house along with other weapons.

The three right wing militants formed a cell called National Socialist Underground (NSU), and murdered nine men, who were small business owners (eight of Turkish and one of Greek origin), and one police woman in the course of those years. They were also responsible for a bombing in 2001 that severly wounded one woman, a nailbomb attack that wounded 22 people in Cologne in 2004, and for 14 bank robberies between 1999 and 2011.

The “Döner-killings” as they were called derogatorily in the press were heavily investigated by the police, but they did not follow any leads that suggested that the motives could have been racist and from a far right background. Instead the police assumed that the killers were from the migrant community, which often went along with the racist insinuation that the murdered men were somehow involved with criminal networks. This of course added insult to injury to the families and friends. Similarly in the case of the murdered policewoman, the suspicion was directed onto a “clan” of Roma that had parked near-by. The Bavarian police even opened a döner kebab shop in Nuremberg in the course of their “investigation”, while other police units went to consult two different fortune tellers who “contacted” victims and told the investigators completely bogus stories. So not only were the killings racist, the police operations to solve them were as well! [Read more →]

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