Legal aid for antifascists in Dublin
February 2016 saw an attempt by far-right organisation Pegida to stage a rally outside Dublin's General Post Office, the headquarters of the Easter Rising and a symbol of the Irish Revolution. They were met with firm resistance across the city from a mobilisation of antifascists unseen before in this country and they were stopped- they did not pass.
As a result of actions on that day, multiple arrests were made. The authorities dragged the cases out, and only recently trials and sentencing saw suspended sentences and fines amounting to over €10, 000 handed down to people who simply did not want to see fascists stand unbowed on our streets. This was not the first direct action against fascists in Ireland, nor will it be the last. For while Pegida quickly crumbled here in the manner of their various predecessors (with their tails between their legs,) other organisations have sprung up in their place- these too must be resisted.
We must bear collective responsibility for those injured or arrested in their resistance to this fascism- and pay more than lip service to the saying ‘an injury to one is an injury to all.' No one person should have to bear the brunt of being brave enough to put themselves on the line.
To this end, fundraising endeavours have begun to spring up in order to help pay the fines of those sentenced. Several thousand euro has already been raised, but more is needed. We hope this Firefund will help us with our legal defence fund, with any moneys raised going towards paying the fines of those sentenced. Fascism is on the rise again, under the auspices of the alt-right and other elements who seek to cause division in our communities over issues like immigration and Direct Provision. We are a nation of emigrants and would do well to remember that.
IRA veteran Bob Doyle fought fascists both here and in Spain and was unapologetic in his actions- nor should we be. He had this to say at a launch of his book "Brigadista":
“In 1936 there were many apologists for racism and oppression who did not want to see fascism for what it was. Today the fight against those who put profit before people is just as intense, and the stakes are higher than ever. We must make common cause with those in the third world who are now in the front line, as Spain once was.”
We must stand together and face this fight head on.
And together, we will win.
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