AUSTRIA - New Newspaper "The Red Flag" published

We want to indicate on a new revolutionary and democratic Newspaper in Austria, "The Red Flag". Following we document an article on that new newspaper from the Austrian Comrades of the "Antifascist Action".


A new newspaper: The Red Flag


Recently, there was published a new newspaper organ from Austria that we would like to highly recommend to our readers: "Die Rote Fahne. Revolutionary democratic newspaper". The newspaper can be found online (rotefahne.at), although there will also be a monthly print edition.



In the newspaper's "About Us" section, the editorial board lays out in detail why there is a need for an independent press that serves not the powerful, but the oppressed and exploited. "The media of the rulers are organs fused with the capitalist monopolies and the state apparatus. They divert the attention of consumers from the fundamental questions of our society, the international situation and their epoch. Instead, they preach depoliticized news coverage in which the people have to endure politics and, at best, can express their opinions in elections." (Excerpt from "About Us") In contrast, it is the democratic press that "promotes a sense of community and solidarity [and] holds the conviction that 'truth is not mortal, lies are not eternal.'" This principle is also confirmed in the growing discontent and distrust of the media of the monopoly press, the so-called "mainstream media."


A point worth emphasizing from the self-understanding of this new newspaper is also an aspect of the political function of the imperialist press. It says that this "propagates selfishness and isolation against the collective, the sense of community and solidarity. Its political function is not only to conceal and distract from exploitation and oppression, but also to prevent the exploited and oppressed from uniting, recognizing their common interests, and beginning to act." That the press system in general would only have the function of "neutral reporting" or "source of information" is the pseudo "neutral" opinion spread by the rulers and their institutions. Even in the history of the workers' and people's movement, the press has not been a "neutral" entity, but a hard-fought field between the rulers and the ruled. To create one's own press that serves the exploited and oppressed is part of the democratic and revolutionary struggle of the workers and masses. The statement of the "Red Flag" says: "It is an illusion to believe that there could be a democratic press that has no militant and partisan character. The democratic press is not "neutral" and not impartial, it works in the interests of the majority of the population."


"Die Rote Fahne" has, in addition to general reporting with the sections Austria, International and Feuilleton, also a section "Dossier", which means "collection of writings on a subject" (Austrian dictionary). The current Dossier (to be updated monthly) is a compilation of articles on issues related to the revolution in Peru. (...) Among other things, the articles are dedicated to military aspects of the revolution, the current president Pedro Castillo, as well as painting as part of the artistic expression of the revolutionary movement.



The current dossier

The name of the newspaper is not chosen by chance, as it is already stated in the title "Since 1918". In "About Us", the more than one hundred years of continuity of the "Red Flag" is briefly explained and it is shown that it was part of all the great struggles of the workers' and people's movement in Austria. Even when Austria was occupied by the Nazi fascists, the newspaper continued to be published illegally. It is not for nothing that at the end of the statement it says: "Today, Die Rote Fahne is an organ that should help the progressive parts of the people to establish revolutionary and democratic unity. To the great heritage and character we commit ourselves with this mission."


Such an organ is absolutely needed, so we also want to support it and promote its dissemination. Speaking entirely with Bertolt Brecht:


Mr. Keuner meets Mr. Wirr, the fighter against newspapers. "I am a great opponent of newspapers," says Mr. Wirr, "I don't want newspapers." Mr. Keuner said, "I am a greater opponent of newspapers: I want other newspapers."


Johanna K.