Searchlight - May 2011
The Dutch People's Union (NVU) choose the small town of Ede for its quarterly demonstration on 26 March, a key event in the nazi outfit's annual calendar.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the NVU's foundation and is being signalled, it seems, by an effort to grab back its racist and fascist roots.
The motto of the Ede demonstration was "Against Multicultural terror" and, in a press statement, the party's leader Constant Kusters raged that there should be "No integration, no assimilation, but remigration" in a plea for ethnic cleansing.
For years the NVU demonstrated on themes that were not too obvious for the wider audience, flagging them up with such slogans as "Solidarity with Iran", "Against Casino Capitalism, against plutocracy" or "Against the Lisbon Treaty".
With its return to its racist and fascist roots, the NVU is trying to hold its head above the water against the tidal wave of support for Geert Wilders' extreme-right populist Islamophobic Freedom Party.
Also the support for the NVU seems to be in decline, as another group, the Netherlands National Youth (NJN) scoops up racist and fascist youngsters. At its first demonstration, in November 2010, the NJN attracted more than 80 people, while the NVU's last demonstration, in October 2010, attracted only about 50 people. Also groups that support the NVU by marching with their own contingent in NVU demonstrations are wracked with problems.
For example, National Socialist Action split in 2009 and ever fewer activists are now attracted by the ideology and appearance of these so-called autonomous nationalists. Blood & Honour Flanders, meanwhile, is staying away from NVU demonstrations, leaving the way open for their bitter rivals in Blood & Honour Traditional to attend. As for the Racial Volunteer Force, it was only represented by its leaders Eite Homan and Michael Krick.
In Ede, it was no different. Around seventy nazis tramped around a short route in a quiet neighbourhood, where "a state of emergency" had called by the local authority.
Some residents demonstratively turned their back on the nazis, while others tried to heckle their speeches. A group of Rebel Clowns threw bananas at the nazis, shouting "Dutch Bananas First!" The nazis, meanwhile, chanted "The Netherlands for the Dutch, own people first!' and, in German, " The national resistance is marching here", several young boneheads making the Hitler salute without any intervention from the large force of police deployed for the occasion. A White Power flag was also carried, as well as a flag with the German Iron Cross and the German imperial war flag.
A British delegation from the Racial Volunteer Force was led by Mark Atkinson, who banged on about the infamous "14 words" - "We must secure the existence of our people and a future for White Children". Atkinson also spoke about "ZOG", the nazis' antisemitic code for "Zionist Occupation Government" and argued that "that government must be overthrown". Everybody in "the movement" who was not against "Jews and homosexuals" was a traitor, according to Atkinson whose delegation carried a banner with the slogan "Smash ZOG/EDL". The nazis who have switched over to the English Defence League will be delighted.
A German delegation was also on hand carrying a banner with the slogan "The Third Front" and a quote from the German nationalist writer Ernst Junger. The Third Front both refers to the first extreme-right organization in post Second World War Germany and to the Black Front of the Strasser brothers, whose ideology was, inter alia, to build a third force in the thirties of last century between East and West.
All these references to the Nazi period were particularly painful for the town of Ede, which was hit particularly hard during the Nazi occupation with Resistance fighters being executed, man were being deported to labour camps in Germany and mistaken Allied bombings destroying part of the town in 1944.
On another level altogether, on 30 March, a court in Amsterdam announced that the trial of Geert Wilders can be resumed. Wilders is accused of delivering a racist insult to an ethnic group, inciting hatred and discrimination. At the end of last year, the case was adjourned when his lawyer successfully intervened and the judges in the case had to be replaced. During a preliminary meeting, Wilders' lawyer had argued that Wilders could not be prosecuted for the Islamophobic video clip Fitna, because he is not personally in the clip and that it was not published in the Netherlands but in Arizona in the United States.
The only statement the court declared inadmissible is the comparison Wilders makes with fascism, saying "I have had enough of the Koran, ban this fascist book". The public prosecutor is only allowed to prosecute comparisons between Islam and Nazism as ordered by the High Court. If all goes according to plan, the verdict will be delivered in June this year but Wilders thinks he will never be convicted. To prove that he gave an interview to a conservative magazine outlining his plan for the sequel to Fitna, in which he will "unmask" the Prophet Mohammed as "an hallucinating schizophrenic with a brain tumour". Despite his support for the right-wing conservative government, Wilders is continuing his crusade against Islam.
Jeroen Bosch for Alert! and Antifa-Net in Amsterdam