Neonazi party’s ultimate goal is to establish a one-party regime, in which the state and the party will be identical and the former will operate under orders from the latter
Golden Dawn members stand around a stage during a rally in Athens, 2 February 2013 (Reuters) Golden Dawn’s ultimate aim is to create a one-party state and its attacks on migrants are viewed internally as “badges of honour”, a former high-ranking party member has told magistrates investigating the neonazi party as a criminal organisation.
The individual, whose name has not been released to the public, unsuccessfully ran for the party in the 2012 elections and subsequently worked as a parliamentary researcher for the neonazi party before abandoning it in 2013.
His testimony, which he presented voluntarily, has been described as “significant” by the investigating magistrates.
The witness said that “the ultimate goal of Golden Dawn is to establish a one-party regime, in which the state and the party will be identical and the former will operate under orders from the latter”. He added that the regime would maintain power by spreading its beliefs throughout society and – to the greatest extent possible – “in state institutions, meaning the police and the army”.
Golden Dawn’s plans have clear historical parallels. In 1933, Hitler passed a law linking his Nazi party with the state. Through this process of Gleichschaltung or “forcible-coordination”, the Nazi regime successively established a system of totalitarian control and coordination over all aspects of society.
The witness is the first high-ranking former member of the party to come forward and testify in the investigation. He said he was “falsely, but consciously” a member from 2005 to 2013.
“From the day I decided to quit Golden Dawn, I have been systematically receiving death threats and have been the target of relentless psychological warfare,” he said.
He added that attacks carried out Golden Dawn party members on migrants were considered “medals of honour” internally.
He testified that Golden Dawn was not interested in money or offices, only in disseminating its ideas, adding that any “renunciation of violence” declarations coming from party officials “are completely hypocritical”.
He also claimed that the extensive audio and video footage that top party officials made of Golden Dawn events of every kind did not serve the claimed purpose to remember events but actually functioned to tag members and provide material to blackmail them.
Golden Dawn members display Nazi symbols Golden Dawn’s leader, deputy leader and a number of MPs are being held on remand in prison on various charges, including forming and running a criminal organisation.