Has the meaning of "Antifa" changed?

whynottryit

Asking for a friend.

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maifleur01

I think it must have but I do not know when it did. Until this past year in seeing it on here I always thought it was a right wing organization. I was surprised when I started seeing mention on HT assigning it as a left wing group.

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Kathy

It doesn’t have a party. It is an anarchical group.

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roxsol

Changed from what?

From Google:

The antifa (/ænˈtiːfə, ˈæntiˌfɑː/)[1] movement is composed of left-wing, autonomous, militantanti-fascist[7] groups and individuals in the United States.[11] The principal feature of antifa groups is their use of direct action,[12] with conflicts occurring both online and in real life.[13]They engage in varied protest tactics, which include digital activism, property damage, physical violence, and harassment against those whom they identify as fascist, racist, or on the far-right.[18]

Activists involved in the movement tend to be anti-capitalists[19] and subscribe to a range of ideologies, typically on the left. They include anarchists, socialists and communists along with some liberals and social democrats.[26] Their stated focus is on fighting far-right and white supremacist ideologies directly, rather than through electoral means.[2


Troublemakers, like any far side group.

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whynottryit

Well, I always thought it was a shortened from of anti-fascist which was a good thing...what with fascism being Hitler's gig and all. So I'm trying to understand why they're being considered as domestic terrorists.

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elvis

Troublemakers, like any far side group.

Yep.

____________

maifleur01

... Until this past year in seeing it on here I always thought it was a right wing organization.

But!

From Google:

The antifa (/ænˈtiːfə, ˈæntiˌfɑː/)[1] movement is composed of left-wing, autonomous, militantanti-fascist[7] groups and individuals in the United States.

It's disconcerting for you, I'm sure. Got to try to maintain some semblance of objectivity.

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maifleur01

I am wondering if the group is like the switch in the Republican party from what they used to be to what they currently are. If you look at definitions from 40 years ago for many things the definition then is entirely different from what some organizations are now.

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maifleur01

This is what the definition used to be: "Anti-fascism is opposition to fascist ideologies, groups and individuals. The anti-fascist movement began in a few European countries in the 1920s, and eventually spread to other countries around the world. "

At one time it was not a militant organization as it contained many separate groups doing many things and had different political leanings depending on where it was most active.


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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

Before it was Antifa, it was Black Bloc — antiglobalization.

.

In Italy, Mussolini came to power with his fascist militias, the Black Shirts.


Italian 21st-century fascists have so far used violence against marginalized groups — immigrants and minority communities. The antifa response there — including ordinary citizens — is in the vein of “never again,” and counter-demonstrations inevitably include the song of the WW2 anti fascist partisans.

Some of the most vocal critics of neofascists are surviving partisans (and their families), and those in areas that lived under Nazi occupation in WW2.


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whynottryit

I guess it's gone through a few iterations. Between Charlottesville and Portland, I've not seen violent attitudes from Antifa but have from the neo Nazis then and the Proud Boys now.

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margaux

Interesting blog post with a lot of background info.

Riotlandia: Why Portland Has Become the Epicenter of Far-Right Violence

https://theintercept.com/2019/08/16/portland-far-right-rally/

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elvis

Good background info, interesting. Here's another POV posted 3 days ago:

This coming weekend Portland is expected to be the scene of another clash between far-right groups from out of town and homegrown far-left groups, especially Antifa...

...Actually, there’s good reason to think that right-wing groups would stop showing up in Portland if Antifa didn’t consistently show up in greater numbers and behave badly and often violently. Joe Biggs, the Proud Boys member who is organizing the protest scheduled for this Saturday has specifically said he is coming to confront Antifa: “That group of antifa there in Portland needs to be exposed for who they are.” The right-wing groups are offended by the idea that their views are forbidden in a major American city by a mob of thugs who behave as if they have been given police powers. That’s why these street battles keep happening in Portland, where Antifa has numbers, rather than in San Diego or Los Angeles.

The far-right says they aren’t coming to bring violence but will respond if attacked. Antifa is always willing to engage in violence and has said violence is “exactly what should happen when the far-right attempts to invade our town.” Hopefully, the police will do their job this weekend and keep the two groups apart so that no one gets hurt. But preventing that violence may mean arresting the masked anarchists who are there specifically for that purpose. It remains to be seen if Mayor Wheeler and Portland PD are up to the task.

https://hotair.com/archives/john-s-2/2019/08/15/portlands-far-left-not-happy-mayor-wheeler/

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maifleur01

Coming to confront normally means coming to fight. Means that they wanted to attack and injure someone. Sounds really peaceful to me.

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Carro

Portland's mayor has handed over the keys to the city to Antifa. "Our town".

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margaux

Then there's the reverse: Why are the Proud Boys coming from out of town to Portland? Leave the city alone.

This started with Joey Gibson and Patriot Prayer. He has held rallies in Portland, Seattle, and the Bay area, though that rally was cancelled due to protests.

David Neiwert, writing for the Southern Poverty Law Center blog Hatewatch, described Patriot Prayer as "trolling" the Pacific Northwest with the intention of provoking a response from far-left antifascists.

That attracted the Proud Boys and RW militia groups, who act as the muscle for Patriot Prayer.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patriot_Prayer

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JodiK

From what I understand, it is neither left nor right, but somewhere in the realm of libertarian, and mainly just unorganized troublemakers. That's the reality.


Media tells us a different story. But today's media is all about propaganda, so...

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margaritadina

''

JodiK From what I understand, it is neither left nor right, but somewhere in the realm of libertarian

''

Nope, it's far left group. The group that declares conservatives fascists and attacks exclusively conservatives is a left wing group.

Some libertarians believe in revolution, some only in peaceful reforms. Anarchists (part of them are libertarians) attack everyone on the left and on the right.

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whynottryit

Finally! I had seen this earlier but couldn't find it again. This is what prompted my question.

Dan Bongino

@dbongino

ANTIFA (shorthand for anti-First Amendment) is a racist hate-group that uses violence and aggression to try and intimidate minorities and women. They use fascist tactics and they only act in packs because they’re too cowardly to act alone. They’re the dregs of society.



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cait1

Antifa was created the the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) in 1932 and its proper name was Antifaschistische Aktion.

It was ALWAYS far-left-wing. And being bolshevik communists, always violent.

Of course, if you support socialism/communism you would not want to think of it as a violent, far-left wing group but would want to prettify it into some kind of pacifist group. That's why so many on the left support antifa by not denouncing it - commies never denounce their most virulent useful idiots until its cause is no longer needed.

That anyone in the internet age does not know this is proof of the incuriousness of that person. Does no one read history anymore?


And I have to call out this:

@ JodiK

but somewhere in the realm of libertarian

There is nothing 'libertarian' about antifa. They are despotic and demand group think, conformity in speech, and promote violence as a means to their ends. How you can think any of that is 'libertarian' is beyond me.

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whynottryit

Well, cait, I was confused by this Dan Bongino guy. What you said in the first paragraph is more in line with my memories of history. However, as with many groups, e.g., U.S. political parties, ideologies/nomenclature can change or evolve, hence, my question.

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cait1

This is the first time I'm reading about Dan Bongino on this thread, whynot. Was one of your comments poofed? Why do you bring him up?

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whynottryit

Scroll up, I think we cross posted.

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Ziemia(6a)

Dan Bongino's perspective is one designed to foment division.

Antifa groups are not generally racist (unless one accepts a definition given by some TrumpFans here on HT) nor do they generally intimidate women.t

(I inserted 'generally' cuz groups are pretty independent from each other.)

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whynottryit

I had just never seen that wording used and wondered if I had just gotten that out of touch.

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cait1

you're correct whynot! : ) Wasn't even showing when I posted the second time. Lags happening with this new formatting?

I think Bongino was being tongue-in-cheek. He knows where antifa originated but many of America's antifa group demand group speak and wrong speech (including wearing MAGA/Pepe iconography) will get you punched, kicked and maced, hence his 'anti first A' comment.

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whynottryit

I didn't think they were fascist either which made Bongino's comment even more confusing.

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Ziemia(6a)

They show up where Proud Boy types show up. Both sides willingly carry weapons such as sticks (sometimes disguised as flag poles).

PS I know someone who claims, at times, to participate in Antifa. This article includes the argument she uses (the lower section)

https://www.theperspective.com/debates/left-support-antifa/

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whynottryit

Cross posts again, cait. Perhaps the anti-first amendment part but the rest doesn't appear to be tongue in cheek. He seems to be quite misdirected in his understanding of the term.

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whynottryit

After I finally was able to find that tweet again, I looked at a number of his other tweets. He repeated that term at least four times over the course of the day. Just seems strange to do that.

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whynottryit

Thanks, Ziemia.

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carolb_w_fl_coastal_9b(zone 9/10)

Everybody should be anti-fascist, IMO.

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Kathy

Bognino is saying Antifa is anti-first amendment changing the name from anti-fascist. That is discounting the fact the Proud Boys and other White Supremacists are fascists.

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whynottryit

Good point, Kathy, but then he says Antifa is fascist. Made my brain hurt.

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maifleur01

I found it interesting that the definition I found stated they started in the 1920s and were anti-fascist but the other definition mentions being formed in the 1930s and was founded as a communist group. Antifa is not a group but a number of groups. Of course the mention of communism may be an extension of the idea that anyone that does not believe as our current president does is a communist.

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Kathy

Right now the method of countering opposition to RW extremism is blame everything on liberals/leftists. I suppose it works to their cultists who aren’t tuned into facts. They just throw language around like Trump sales spiels. No basis in truth or fact, just word salads.

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Kathy

Bognino is spinning the meaning of Fascism to take the heat off of the Radical RW Movement. Who does he rhink he is fooling? Fascism is RW authoritarianism.


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cattyles

it seems like a good place for agreement would be condemning both groups as violent. I’m disappointed we can’t manage that. I think HT has become about division and propaganda rather than thoughtful discussion.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

Not all adherents to Antifa activism endorse violence.


I heard an interview with one such supporter, and his group was researching employment of known white nationalists, and notifying employers of the activities.


Agree or not with outing white nationalists at their workplace, but this is not violence in the streets.

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whynottryit

He got DJT's attention long enough to get retweeted.

https://mobile.twitter.com/dbongino/status/1162759430657757194





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whynottryit

Donald J. Trump

@realDonaldTrump

Major consideration is being given to naming ANTIFA an “ORGANIZATION OF TERROR.” Portland is being watched very closely. Hopefully the Mayor will be able to properly do his job!

9:04 AM · Aug 17, 2019

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how2girl

Will the Proud Boys get the same naming consideration.

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whynottryit

Highly doubtful.

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cait1

This is how one Proud Boys member describes his group


So we have that... the West is the Best... shades of Jim Morrison coming through there.

The belief that Western Civilization, from which rose the political ideology of self-determination over monarchies/dictatorships, free market systems over a command systems, and natural rights over government privileges.

According to its website, the Proud Boys are “Western chauvinists who refuse to apologize for creating the modern world.”

The groups admits to its fold all races, religions, and sexual preferences and is a Men's Only Club though there's now a Proud Boys' Girls group.

There was nothing menacing on their website as far as i could see - no one masking their face or holding threatening weapons like Antifa loves to do.

I checked out Ziemia's link and found the reasons why the left should support Antifa disturbing but not surprising.

I don't believe for one second that Antifa’s cause is about defending humanity. Beating people up who won't do as commanded is not defending humanity; it's authoritarian and despotic. Antifa dehumanizes anyone who won't bow to their chains.

The claim that "history shows anti-fascist violence is justified" is bogus because all Antifa is about is being violent on anyone who gets in their way, fascist or not. Antifa uses fascism as an excuse to unleash their violent nature.

The one and only comment on the site is this: "Well this is their latest ANTIFA chant. While the left does share this view, they're certainly not going to fess up to it. “No border, no wall, no USA at all!”"

Video on youtube.

Antifa is supported by the leftist sect that wants America fundamentally transformed into a communist state.

Morally, Antifa is no different than the fascists they pretend to want to eradicate - genocide, violence and intolerance doesn't have a side, those things are just what they are.

Antifa are the American version of the Bolsheviks who, with the far leftists, believe the USSA will be a great place to live as long as they are in full control. Useful idiots.

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Kathy

There has been a huge rise in hate crimes, not Antifa. Three mass shooters were stopped last week, not Antifa.

Did I miss it or have any RW denounced Proud Boys?

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carolb_w_fl_coastal_9b(zone 9/10)

Trying to frame AntiFascists as the mirror image of hate groups like the Proud Boys works quite well to the advantage of the hate groups. It's a pretty transparent attempt to obfuscate the truth for the public and media.

And calling AntiFa a violent hate group is part & parcel of the same tactic that tries to label liberals & Democrats haters and racists.

Sowing confusion is the point.

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Ziemia(6a)

As usual, cait1 misrepresents my comment and the source I linked.

Typical yet sad.

"I checked out Ziemia's link and found the reasons why the left should support Antifa disturbing but not surprising."

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Ziemia(6a)

Many here have condemed both sides of these violence-prone groups.

However TrumpFans here still seem to be giving Proud Boys et al a pass.

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margaux

A pass? They are giving them an enthusiastic thumbs-up! It should be just a matter of time before Trump invites them to the WH.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

Here is what sparked the latest interest in Antifa-

-------------------------

Trump's "considering designating antifa an 'organization of terror'

President Trump issued a stark warning to antifa, the collective of militant anti-fascist leftist groups, ahead of a rally on Saturday in Portland, Oregon, where antifa activists were widely expected to confront far-right activists.

"Major consideration is being given to naming ANTIFA an ‘ORGANIZATION OF TERROR,’” Trump tweeted. “Portland is being watched very closely. Hopefully the Mayor will be able to properly do his job!”

Notably, the president did not warn or criticize the controversial right-wing group organizing the rally that antifa was planning to protest against. Organizers Joe Biggs and Enrique Tarrio, who did not receive a permit for the rally, are members of the Proud Boys, a group of self-proclaimed “Western chauvinists” with links to the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville in 2017 and a history of violence against left-wing activists. The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated them as a hate group.

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler told The Oregonian he believed members of the alt-right like Biggs and Tarrio come to Portland hoping to foment violence, well aware that it is home to a large antifa contingent, Rose City Antifa. “I think they come to Portland because it gives them a platform,” Wheeler said. “They know that if they come here conflict is almost guaranteed.”

[. . .]

Trump’s disinterest in criticizing the Proud Boys is part of a longer trend in which he’s remained completely silent or, at most, has been mildly critical of the threat posed by white nationalist and white supremacist organizations, many of whom view his presidency as a boon for their cause and whose language echoes that of the president."

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/8/17/20810221/portland-rally-donald-trump-alt-right-proud-boys-antifa-terror-organization

------------------------------

What it comes down to is that The Southern Poverty Law Center compiles a list of "hate groups" and right-wing violent/racist groups like Proud Boys are on that list. Trumpsters and conservatives resent that and are trying to get back at the list by describing the left-wing anti-fascist groups (Antifa--) in the same terms that the Souther Poverty Law Center describes the right-wing groups. Then Trump announced he was putting Antifa-- on a WH "domestic terrorist" list kept by his people, and the conservative radio talk show host Dan Bognino has joined Trump in distracting the public away from the right-wing groups like Proud Boys by projecting all their violence, racism, and hatefulness onto the [correction:] left-wing group.

Common Trumplican tactic.

Kate

ETA: Obedient to its master's call, Fox news has labeled Antifa a domestic terrorist group.

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margaux

It's very simple. Depict the Proud Boys as non-violent and depict Antifa as being part of the Democratic Party so that Trump and his supporters can scare out the vote from uninformed people, especially the elderly. Someone made an interesting observation yesterday that Trump is now using the good economy as a new fear tactic--if you don't vote for me, the stock market will crash.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

Good succinct post, Margaux.

(I must practice that technique more--succinctness!)


Here is more on the question of what is "antifa"?

--------------------

". . . most definitions of terrorism include the assumption that individuals are committing violent acts because of an underlying political motive. But measuring the motives of individuals is complicated. Usually, we are forced to take their word for it. For example, in most respects the horrendous 2017 murder of 58 people at a concert in Las Vegas resembled a terrorist attack. However, the perpetrator never stated clearly what the motive of the attack was. Without such a statement, it is difficult to distinguish terrorism from other forms of violence.

Antifa illustrates these complexities. Thus far, it is more of an amorphous movement than a group. People who call themselves antifa or are labeled by others as antifa are most often engaged in legal behavior. The most convincing recent cases for classifying antifa actions as terrorist probably come from the 2017 conflict in Charlottesville and the 2019 attack on Ngo. But uncovering the motives of the individuals involved even in these high-profile cases is complex. Certainly, there are obvious differences between the street brawls attributed to antifa and the systematic violence perpetrated by either ISIS or the El Paso shooter. In the light of these complexities, the debate about the status of antifa is likely to be guided more by political ideologies rather than hard evidence."


https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/portland-braces-proud-boys-protests-here-s-what-trump-doesn-ncna1041441

--------------------------------

Hope that helps.

Kate


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Kathy

Russian propaganda concentrated on Antifa falsehoods as campaign meddling.

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adoptedbyhounds

When some hear "ANTIFA" they think Anti First Amendment.

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whynottryit

ABH, of course "some" think that when the idea is promoted by their principle news source. I am seeing shades of the Black Panthers and the KKK dynamic shaping up, unfortunately. I hate I've lived long enough for history to repeat itself.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

" When some hear "ANTIFA" they think Anti First Amendment. "


And they are obviously wrong!


anti-fa[scist]


Real easy.


Kate

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adoptedbyhounds

We know that, Kate. Thanks for sharing.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

You're welcome, Nik.

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