Far-left

From Academic Kids

The term far left refers to the relative position a group or person occupies within a political spectrum. Since, by definition, most people are not far from the center, the terms "far-left" and "far-right" are usually used to say that someone is an extremist, not in tune with the majority. "Far-left" is thus sometimes a pejorative term.

The term used to describe people or groups associated with left wing ideas and ideology that are far-removed from the mainstream.

The term must be understood as relative to either the speaker or the context in which they are speaking. So a US conservative may consider any member of a Communist party to be part of the 'far left', while in a communist state there may be 'moderate' communists and 'far left' communists.

In general, it is used to describe persons or groups who hold radical egalitarian views and who seek to achieve radical social and political change by taking over or overthrowing the existing order in society. Depending on a group's militancy and the given political circumstances, revolutionary change may be achieved through democratic or undemocratic, violent or nonviolent means.

Groups that advocate some form of revolution, but without being egalitarian, are generally not part of the far left.

Typically, far-left groups are communist or anarchist, and they strongly oppose capitalist governments and institutions. Sometimes the term "far left" is used pejoratively by those on the right wing to describe any view they perceive as hostile to capitalism.

The term far left is also used to described left wing groups who ally themselves with anti-Western forces (such as radical Islamists, antisemitic groups, violent factions and tyrant regime of the third world). [1] (http://www.benadorassociates.com/article/5163) There have been accusations that the Post-September 11 anti-war movement was hijacked by far-left groups and Islamists, damaging the reputation and credibility of the protests [2] (http://www.zmag.org/content/showarticle.cfm?SectionID=15&ItemID=2527). See main article for further discussion.

In Israel, the "far left" (in Hebrew it is שמאל קיצוני = extreme left) refers to Anti-Zionist left wing groups who oppose Israel and act for its elimination as a Jewish state. Some of these groups participate in violent activities such as vandalism or sabotage of security installations, and though they yet to commit a lethal attack, some of these group vowed their support for Palestinian suicide bombing attacks. Though they have vocal reprenstation in the academy and the media, they are a shunned minority without any significant power in the Knesset (Israeli Parlaiment).


See also

es:ultraizquierda fr:Extrême_gauche

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