This report is describes a recent interview of Noam Chomsky, a social scientist and political activist. Earlier this year, Chomsky warned that antifascist violence played into the hands of the far right and justified state repression. In a more recent interview, Chomsky continued on this idea and explained why the antifascist movement is giving power to the far right. This report is for subscribers of Low Intensity Conflict.
In an exclusive interview with The Independent, social scientist and political activist Noam Chomsky warned that the antifascist movement in the U.S. was leading to the growth of the far right and state repression. Chomsky has been an advocate of the left for years, but voiced his frustrations with the far left in the interview by saying that “physically preventing members of far-right groups from expressing their views is counter-productive.”
In the interview Chomsky also warned of “fringe groups that have initiated the use of force in ways that are completely unacceptable and are a welcome gift to the far right and the repressive forces of the state, while also providing some justification for the absurd claim that antifa is comparable to the far-right forces.”
The 89-year-old Chomsky spoke out about attempts to compare the modern far right to the fascism that was present in Europe during the twentieth century, explaining that the two are completely different scenarios. “The differences are radical… In the 1930’s, the Nazi’s ruled Germany, fascism had been established for years in Italy, and there were powerful fascist movements elsewhere,” as opposed to today, where there are no significant fascist movements.
Chomsky’s final warning in the interview is to stop “bulldozing debate, [because] doing so misses the opportunity to examine what the far-right wants to achieve… Unlike repression of the left, typically tolerated (even approved), repression of the right elicits great concern and sometimes support for the targets, as they claim the high moral ground of ‘defending basic civil rights. That’s quite apart from the opportunity cost, the failure to use the opportunity to expose their doctrines and actions, and the threat they pose to civilized existence.”