Opinion: Before Trump an anti-fascist was a patriot defending democracy

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The greatest threat to America and its people remains fascism – particularly domestic fascism. Until a few years ago, being against fascism was regarded as being a patriotic American, and then a dyed-in-the-wool fascist took up residence in the White House. Not long after Trump’s poorly-attended inauguration, his white supremacist supporters began labeling opposition to Trump’s white supremacist tendencies as inherently wrong, un-American, and anti-fascist.

During World War II over 16 million Americans fought in a mighty bloody war to crush fascism as a means of preserving democracy. Today, with a fascist in the White House, being against fascism and supporting America’s Constitution and representative democracy is terrorism fraught with danger from America’s fascist-in-chief Trump.

America as a representative democracy is being savaged by Trump and his far-right, authoritarian, and  ultranationalist loyalists dreaming of Trump’s uncontested dictatorial power and violent suppression of the opposition – precisely what the nation has witnessed live and in living color over the past two weeks.

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The events surrounding yet another Black man being murdered by a racist white police officer while three colleagues looked on revealed to Americans precisely what the United States War Department warned was a genuine threat to American democracy – domestic fascism. It is almost certain that until Trump, no American institution, and certainly no federal government official, would have dreamed that any American opposed to fascism would be labeled a terrorist.

In 1945 after America and its allies defeated fascism in the Second World War, the U.S. War Department recognized fascism’s inherent danger to democracy and issued a memorandum titled “Fascism!” The official government memorandum addressed the prospects of what it called “domestic fascism” labeling it “a genuine threat to America’s democracy.” The war department memorandum laid out the conditions that would contribute to the rise of fascism including how fascists would use “undemocratic methods that are properly defined as fascist.” The memorandum stated:

At various times in our history, we have had sorry instances of lynchings, vigilantism, terror, and suppression of civil liberties. We have had hooded gangs, Silver Shirts, and racial and religious bigots. All of them, in the name of Americanism, have used undemocratic methods and doctrines which experience has shown are properly identified as ‘fascist.’” (author bold)

The War Department then warned the people that, “An American Fascist would not proclaim that he is a Fascist. Fascism always camouflages its plans and purposes . . . It would work under the guise of ‘super-patriotism’ and ‘super-Americanism.’” (author bold)

Last week Trump utilized a different, but just as effective, means of camouflage to conceal his intent to rule like a proper fascist dictator claiming he was a super law and order president. It is typical that a criminal would openly claim that law and order was his primary concern, and then criminally violate his oath of office. Trump violated his “so help me god” oath by directing his dirty Attorney General to order the military and law enforcement to use rubber bullets, flash grenades, and chemical weapons against American citizens exercising their First Amendment right to “peaceably assemble for redress of their grievances.”

It is not surprising that Republicans led by Attorney General Bill Barr and Trump have tried in vain to portray patriotic Americans against (Trump’s) fascism as terrorists responsible for all manner of offenses against Trump. On Friday it was reported that “none of the 22 criminal complaints representing the first wave of protest charges mention ‘Antifa’ in any way.”

The report’s authors also noted that “Antifa isn’t an organization, but a decentralized movement and collection of tactics;” such as protesting against white supremacists, religious bigots, Nazis, and fascists led by Trump. The criminals involved in violence during the protests were either anarchists or Trump’s acolytes in the far-right “boogaloo movement.” The authors summarized Antifa’s involvement in protests thus:

What it (criminal complaints) definitely demonstrate is that anti-fascism is not a driving force in the current protest violence.”

In a typical claim by one of Trump’s war mongering Republicans in the Senate, Tom Cotton (R-AR) tweeted: “Let’s see how tough these Antifa terrorists are when they’re facing off with the 101st Airborne Division.”

If Cotton had a modicum of intelligence regarding American war history, he would certainly know that the 101stAirborne Division was instrumental in laying waste to two fascist regimes during World War II. In fact, this author’s uncle served in that esteemed division during WWII and claimed the only reason to go to war was to crush fascism. Cotton, Trump and Barr have no concept of history or they would stop defaming Americans supporting and preserving democracy as terrorists.

It is apparent to any semi-conscious American that Trump and his un-American allies are raging against anti-fascists because they are either devout fascists or support Trump’s fascist regime. As the U.S. War Department elucidated in 1945, domestic fascists (like Trump and his devotees) would claim to be “super-patriots” and “super-Americans” and be comprised of gangs, racial and religious bigots and use “undemocratic methods” to instill terror – including “suppression of civil liberties in the name of Americanism.”

There is only one reason Trump is labeling patriotic Americans against fascism as terrorists – because he is a fascist. During World War II the entire nation mobilized against fascism and made huge sacrifices to preserve democracy. Trump has made it abundantly clear that he has no use whatsoever for democracy because it is the polar opposite of his preferred means of ruling as a dirty Hitler-like fascist dictator.