MINELRES: UNITED: Is Europe Turning Back 80 Years... Into Future?

minelres@lists.microlink.lv minelres@lists.microlink.lv
Sat Nov 8 15:51:54 2008

Original sender: UNITED <dontreply@unitedagainstracism.org>

UNITED E-NEWS 31-10-2008


>From 4th to 7th June 2009 the European Parliament election will be held
in the 27 member states of the European Union and more than 500 million
EU citizens are asked to decide on the future of the biggest
peace-project in the world.

Economic crisis, unemployment, xenophobia, rising nationalistic and
fascistoid movements, violent regional autonomy endeavors etc. are ever
emerging facts that 'unified' Europe is facing. In a disordered period
80 years ago people in Europe once already decided on ways of 'solving'
their problems and fears. The killing results of the extreme ideologies
and fatal leaders people joined concluded after a collateral damage to
the common believe 'Never Again!'. 

The European Parliament election 2009 will be an important issue in the
project of a unified Europe and the way Europe will take in future. What
the UNITED Network monitored, during national elections in European
countries, so far causes worrying in human rights movements all over the
continent. Right wing and extremist parties act as policymakers on
regional and national level and 'Fortress Europe' becomes the doom of a
never-ending stream of desperate people who prefer to risk their lives
than surrender to their fate. 

Italy is rolling back the march of time
The Italian government of re-elected Mr. Berlusconi promised to take
steps against the 'Roma problem' in Europe experienced already in the

"The Italian Minister of Interior is reported to have proposed that all
Roma, including children, living in camps in Italy should be
fingerprinted. This proposal invites historical analogies, which are so
obvious that they do not even have to be spelled out." (Terry Davis,
Council of Europe Secretary General)

More recently the Italian government decided on a segregation policy in
schools. Children with migration background have to be instructed in
separate classes in order to ensure better studying results of Italian

Extreme Right becomes the largest political block in Austria
UNITED for Intercultural Action warns about the danger for European
democracy after the worrying result in Austrian general election on 29th
September 2008. Together the far right wing, formed by the political
parties BZ? and FP?, hold almost 30 % of the overall votes. 

The right-wing extremist party Freedom Party of Austria (FP?), current
leaded by Heinz-Christian Strache won 17,5 % of the votes. 
The 2005 new founded party Alliance for the Future of Austria (BZ?) of
notorious J?rg Haider took part the second time in Austrian general
election and was able to almost triple its votes to 10,7 % - even
surprising for J?rg Haider himself who stated: "Beside the one of
Lazarus (*) my rising is the most striking of history, I believe." Short
after his astonishing performance in the elections Mr. Haider (58 years
old) was killed in a car accident. More than 25 000 people joined the
state funeral, which partly imposed to be a well-staged sanctification.

This is the strongest political mainstreaming of the far right in
Austria since the II World War. It establishes the desire of people who
seek salvation of proclaimed threats from outside in ideologies of a not
reprocessed past.

(*) Lazarus of Bethany appear in the New Testament as man who was raised
from the dead by Jesus

Civil society as key for resistance...
Civil society plays an essential role when it comes to the protection of
democracy and human rights against extremism of any kind. It is not
naturally given that people find a way to handle their fears without
following extremist ideologies and its leaders who are preaching easy
solutions for much more complicated problems of society. We need to be
aware that increasing extreme-right tendencies are not selective
problems, but a broad phenomenon of ignorance and violent communication
affecting society. The dramatic lessons of the 20th Century seem not to
be significant enough for those who vote for hatred.

Our thinking is reflected in our action and Europe's current route is
getting more violent. In 2004 a European-wide poll of the Fundamental
Right Agency (FRA) listed more than 9 millions European citizens who has
been victims of hate crimes. The UNITED Network believes that only an
empowered civil society is able to sustain peaceful cohesion in Europe
and we will continue to actively promote diversity and equal rights of
every human.

An empowered civil society is capable to peaceful shape their
environment in a common sense. How it can work is shown by a recent
example from Germany:
In September the right-wing movement 'pro K?ln' organised an
'Anti-Islamisation-Congress' in the city of Cologne (D). The 'meeting'
was stopped by thousands of citizens who took a clear stand against
right wing extremism.
Participants of the congress had to discover that no taxi driver would
take them to their destination, no restaurant honored their table
reservation and no hotel would give them keys to their rooms. The whole
city rose under the common slogan 'No K?lsch for Nazis'.

..coming up

On 13-14 February 2009 - again - the biggest annual neo-nazi march in
Germany is scheduled to take place in Dresden (D). This right-wing
extremist rally is connected with the commemoration of the bombing on
Dresden on 13th February 1945. Like every year, a large group of more
than 5000 neo-nazi's, including participation of international right
wing extremists, will march through Dresden. 

This is NOT acceptable - RESIST!

UNITED calls for everybody in Europe, NGOs, Activists, Trade Unions,
Members of Parliament... to come to Dresden on 13-14 February 2009 to
take a stand against neo-nazism and help to reclaim the streets of
(More info on this counter demonstration will follow)

It is our choice if we keep silent watching how terrors of the past
repeat, or take an active role in shaping our future - whether with our
vote or active resistance on the streets!

We depend on YOUR help in 2008!

UNITED is not rich and has no stable income!
Though far most of the work at the UNITED secretariat is done voluntary
- still money is needed to keep the network functioning in 2008 and to
secure the cooperation and information flow throughout Europe.

Your donation is most welcome:
- in cash to UNITED Postbus 413 NL-1000 AK Amsterdam
- by bank (preferable) to:
UNITED, Postbus 413 NL-1000 AK Amsterdam
Account: IBAN NL77PSTB0002343715, BIC: PSTB NL2A - Bank: Postbank,
Postbus 1800, NL-1000 BV Amsterdam
(From NL: postbank 2343715)


UNITED is the pan-European network against nationalism, racism, fascism
and in support of migrants and refugees, supported by over 560
organisations in 46 European countries.
How to join the network: see http://www.unitedagainstracism.org 'joining
the network'

UNITED E-NEWS is an irregular email service to over 9000 organisations
and contact persons active in the working fields: anti-racism, refugee
support, anti-fascism, against antisemitism, migration, minority issues,
intercultural youth work, against nationalism etc.

Regular postal mailings, containing publications such as Addressbook
Against Racism, Calendar of Internationalism, Campaign reports, Posters
etc. are sent to over 2400 European organisations. If you also would
like to receive this mailing: see http://www.unitedagainstracism.org
'joining the network'


UNITED for Intercultural Action
European network against nationalism, racism, fascism and in support of
migrants and refugees
Postbus 413 - NL 1000 AK Amsterdam - phone +31-20-6834778 - fax
+31-20-6834582 - info@unitedagainstracism.org -

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