To begin at the beginning: Antifa—real name: Antifaschisitsche Aktion—was born during the street-fights of the 1932 Wiemar Republic. It was founded by the Stalinist Communist Party of Germany (KPD), although various Communist “anti-fascist defense” units were associated with the KPD much earlier.
Anti-fascist Action’s sole purpose was to help the KPD combat other political parties for control of the streets in the revolutionary politics of the rapidly failing Weimar Republic.
Antifa would form in a similar fashion in the United States, but under a different name.
According to Antifa lore, an effort by young punks to expel neo-Nazis and white supremacists from the music scene led to the formation of Anti-Racist Action (ARA), beginning in the Midwest and then spreading outward. As chapters formed in various cities, regional councils and networks were formed, such as the Midwest Anti-Fascist Network (MAFN) in 1995.
But present at the birth of ARA were members of America’s long-time revolutionary clique, with roots going all the way back to the domestic terror group Weather Underground. Consulting the young anti-racist punks in the formation of ARA were members of the John Brown Anti-Klan Committee (JBAKC). Several separate ARAs would go on to form one of the largest Antifa networks in the country, Torch Antifa, whose website was registered by a former JBAKC member.
JBAKC was formed as a front for the May 19th Communist Organization (MCO), itself founded out of the remnants of the Weather Underground, Black Liberation Army, the FALN and other terrorist groups of the ’60s and ’70s.