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Romale, start your own "home defense" against pogroms

Litvínov/Janov, 20.10.2008 19:46, (ROMEA)

According to Minister Ivan Langer, it is perfectly in order for Nazis and fascists to operate paramilitary organizations here. There is, therefore, no reason why you, the Roma, should not have them as well. The state evidently is losing the ability and will to protect you against pogroms. You should therefore defend yourselves. Everyone has the right to self-defense.

An unremovable "liberal" in the service of mafiosi, Nazis and fascists

This sleeping man, Interior Minister Ivan Langer, is a real "liberal". He wants everyone to have the freedoms they deserve - for example, his acquaintance, the mafioso Kutal (of the LTO case) or the entrepreneur Sekyr, connected to the godfather of the underworld, Mrázek. He even wants the neo-Nazi Workers' Party (Dělnická strana) and the National Party (Národní strana), that successor to the Czech fascists, to enjoy their freedoms. Langer shows the individuals named above his friendship by finding them credible and by lobbying for their interests directly with the government and at the bank, and he wants the political parties named above to have truly absolute freedom. No matter what the Nazis or the fascist primitives do, Langer immediately repeats the slogan he has learned by heart: Incident X is just "another drop in the bucket" that will lead to the dissolution of the party.

Of course, by now there have been so many "drops" that not only is the bathtub full, it is spilling over onto the floor. What does Langer do? Once again, he warms up his little story about "drops". Meanwhile, the Nazis and the fascists are laughing at everything and everyone. Due to the fact that the police and some municipal authorities have done nothing during recent Nazi and fascist provocations, the extremists feel rather safe in escalating their own actions against the Roma and Jews.

There is no doubt that Ivan Langer should never have become interior minister, just as it is clear that he should be promptly removed from office (along with his completely incompetent Police President). It was also incompetent of PM Mirek Topolánek to admit he has not selected some of his colleagues well (besides Langer and Dalík there is also, for example, Minister Řebíček), as this led to the pathetic defeat of his party in the elections.

Pogrom

During the Saturday action of the Workers' Party's "People's Militia" in Litvínov, the issue was not that the Nazis had not announced their action to the authorities beforehand, but that they had come to town to take out their anger and hatred on innocent people. This was nothing less than an organized pogrom against the Roma which remains without a single sign of any effort to punish the organizers. The police have declared no such intention and evidently consider this mass effort to beat up and terrorize the Roma to be a misdemeanor offense.

The police also failed in one thing during their own intervention: They underestimated the level of aggression, the tactics, and the number of participants in the neo-Nazi action. At the start there were only half as many police officers as extremists on the square in the center of Litvínov (according to Ondřej Cakl, who has been directly observing neo-Nazi actions for a very long time, around 400 Nazis participated). Additional police vehicles did not arrive until a half an hour into the event, and some arrived even later. This meant the Nazis were able to break through the police cordon and head off in small groups in the direction of the Janov housing estate. Here again there were police errors and technical ones; some of the Nazis got around the police barricades and made it almost all the way to where the Roma were assembled. The police intervened at the last possible moment to prevent a clash.

Home defense should be organized

There have been countless extremist actions at which the police have either failed or programmatically not intervened (and during which they refer to merely observing an ongoing violation of the law as a "tactic") - it is pointless to list them all here. The actions at which police officers have genuinely upheld the law and prevented it from being broken can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Langer, who is responsible for the police, leaves the Nazis and fascists alone in other ways as well. He is tolerating the paramilitary organizations they have founded, which send "patrols" around to places where the Roma live. The Roma in Litvínov were the first to grasp that the state is tolerating violation of the laws by the Nazis and fascists. They therefore organized their first-ever regular home defense. Two weeks ago they pushed 12 "patrolling" Nazis out of Janov, and on Saturday they were ready to stand against the extremists.

It is better to organize and train such home defenses in order to avoid violent excesses by individuals. An organized unit that obeys orders and is under control can defend itself proportionately - and really defend itself, not just be the first to attack. It would therefore be better to create organized home defenses in places where more Roma live together, defenses that will not violate the law during interventions.

Naturally, the situation would be much better if the Roma were not forced to organize home defenses - if, for example, the state were to ban both the paramilitary units of these political parties and the Workers' Party and National Party per se. There are sufficient reasons to do so. Of course, we do not expect this from Langer. His specific brand of "liberalism" concerns neither the Roma nor other minorities. In other words, when someone hides their support for Nazis and fascists "in plain sight", like Langer does, it is difficult to expect him to also stand up for their victims.

František Kostlán, Gwendolyn Albert, Frantisek Kostlan, Translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Tags:  

Czech republic, Janov, Extremism, Neo-Nazism



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