The Stream

Is antifa fighting fascism or raising its profile?

Some anti-fascist groups call for more aggressive tactics against extreme right-wing movements.

Violent confrontations between the so-called alt-right and a group known as the anti-fascist action network are becoming more frequent in the United States. In Charlottesville, Boston and other cities, far-right and white nationalist rallies are being challenged – and sometimes shut down – by black-clad protesters affiliated with the “antifa“, a coalition of far-left groups that includes anarchists and socialists. They believe that using violence as a protest tactic is justified to fight white supremacy and authoritarianism. Critics, though, say that bringing more violence to protests could actually strengthen pro-fascist arguments that more law and order is needed.

In other countries including Germany and the UK, antifa demonstrators are often seen at political events where they protest against capitalism and far-right ideologies.

In this episode, we’ll look at the origins and present-day impact of antifa. How effective is antifa and are their aggressive tactics helping fuel more extreme political views?

Joining The Stream:

Mark Bray @Mark__Bray
Historian and author, ‘Antifa: The Anti-Fascist Handbook’

Eleanor K. Penny @eleanorkpenny
Senior Editor, Novara Media​

Anthony L. Fisher @anthonyLfisher
Columnist, The Daily Beast

Antifa activist

What do you think? Share your views in the comment section below.