Net Gains and GUD Reactions: Patterns of Prejudice in a Neo-fascist Groupuscule

ArticleinPatterns of Prejudice 33(2):31-50 · April 1999with58 Reads
DOI: 10.1080/003132299128810542
Using the student organization Groupe d'union et de défense (GUD) as a case-study, Griffin argues that the radical-right groupuscule should not be treated as an embryonic or stunted form of the inter-war 'armed party' epitomized by the Italian Fascist and German Nazi parties. Rather it is to be seen as a genus of extra-parlia-mentary political formation in its own right, perfectly adapted to the inhospitable climate of relatively stable liberal democracy and capitalism in which revolutionary nationalism has had to survive since 1945. As such the groupuscule's true significance lies in its existence as one minute entity in a swarm of similar organisms which can be termed the 'groupuscular right'. This takes on a collective force greater than the sum of its parts by conserving and transmitting fascism's diagnosis of the status quo and its vision of a new order despite its acute marginalization from mainstream politics. Having surveyed GUD's history and activities over the years, Griffin focuses on its ideology, which he identifies as a form of Third Positionism theoretically allied to anti-western Arab nations and heavily influenced by the Nouvelle Droite notion of 'cultural war' against the homogenizing effects of globalization and on behalf of a reborn Europe. He then considers the extraordinary network of historical and contemporary radical-right associations emanating to and from this one formation, a process considerably facilitated by the Internet. He concludes by suggesting that the importance of the groupuscular right, apart from its formation of cadres who may be recruited by mainstream parties such as the Front national, lies in its function as a self-perpetuating, leaderless, centreless and supra-national 'energy field' of neo-fascist beliefs, which, like the Web, is unaffected by the weakness or loss of individual nodal points (organizations).

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