The rise of the far-right across Europe


by Sunny
31st July, 2009 at 5:10 pm    

This week’s Time Magazine has an extensive front-page feature by Catherine Mayer on the turn to the far-right in Europe, focusing on four parties: the BNP, France’s Front National (FN), Hungary’s Jobbik and Geert Wilders’ Partij voor de Vrijheid (Party for Freedom, PVV).

The whole article is really good and worth reading, so I recommend you do that. But I also have a few points to make:

1. It’s good that Geert Wilders is being included in the list of the ‘far-right’. I’ve been saying this for ages. It’s also worth nothing that he has supporters in the UK, especially Douglas Murray of the Centre for Social Cohesion. That tells you a lot about their politics.

2. The writer does a good job of capturing the dilemmas for anti-facists:

…the urgent question is how best to contain the surge. Deny far-right leaders the oxygen of publicity? Tricky — they have a democratic mandate. Confront them? That risks casting them as martyrs, victims who tell unpalatable truths. Expose the racism that often underlies professions of patriotism? Well, yes, but that assumes voters choose far-right parties in ignorance of their views, rather than because they strike a chord. Steal their nationalist thunder by taking tough lines on issues such as immigration? This smacks of capitulation to the very ideas critics seek to defeat.

3. There are some hints towards, but not a deeper look at the solutions. These would be: (a) have politics more about grassroots campaigning and organising; (b) have Parliament more representative of class, gender and race; (c) raising rather than doing anything about people’s concerns (on immigration, globalisation, poverty, housing etc), as Sarkozy has done, while promoting diversity.

4. They could have also interviewed Jon Cruddas MP – who is by far the best mainstream politician to talk sense about the far-right.


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  1. Tom James — on 31st July, 2009 at 5:34 pm  

    “Expose the racism that often underlies professions of patriotism? Well, yes, but that assumes voters choose far-right parties in ignorance of their views, rather than because they strike a chord.”

    So the basic problem is that a portion of the electorate are racist.

    The only appropriate response is for non-racist politicians to make the argument that all the evidence suggests that immigration is not bad for the economy, immigrants are no more or less likely to commit violent crimes than other poor, marginalised people, and that the solution to poverty itself it redistribution of income.

    Also is your 3C intentionally cynical (“talking about issues but not doing anything about them”) or is it a typo?

  2. Edna Welthorpe — on 31st July, 2009 at 6:01 pm  

    Sunny -

    One read the TIME piece and one confesses bitter disappointment!

    Your taste has to be questioned, or else you were desperately rushed.

    The article in TIME was either thrown-together hasty glenda Slag / Polly Filla journalism or it was hacked within an inch of its life by sub-editors.

    The mainstream media ain’t much to get excited about these days but THE ECONOMIST is a far better bet than TIME or NEWSWEEK.

    The MIDDLE EAST QUARTERLY has intelligent articles about what mass Muslim immigration means for Europe and other intelligent and well-informed non-MSM sources tell readers that [by one calculation] Russia will have a Muslim majority by 2050.

    Sunny, MUST TRY HARDER!

  3. Adnan — on 31st July, 2009 at 6:19 pm  

    Yes, MEQ – a Daniel Pipes mouthpiece. A bit “Oceana is at war with Eurasia (or maybe in the future Eurabia?). Oceana has always been at war with Eurasia”. for my goodthinkful self.

  4. Edna Welthorpe — on 31st July, 2009 at 6:23 pm  

    Yo Adnam – SOURCEWATCH ways that MEQ is ZIONIST so it is run by the Jooz

    Here’s the piece I had in mind, written by one Esther Ben-David:

    http://www.meforum.org/2107/europe-shifting-immigration-dynamic

    and I sure HOPE that works …

  5. Edna Welthorpe — on 31st July, 2009 at 6:30 pm  

    Allah Kareem!

    The link in #7 works fine and leads to EUROPE’S SHIFTING IMMIGRATION DYNAMIC and all sorts of good stuff.

    Whether or not you like the political slant of the TIME piece, it was vile and appalling slipshod thrown-together journalism

    I suppose the most honest single source in the MSM after the ECONOMIST is probably HAARETZ, which many right-of-centre Israelis consider to be practically published in the interests of the avowed enemies of Israel

    I miss Munir

    Is he alright? What’s he up to? I hope he’s not stalking rabbis or ambushing Sikhs!

  6. Sunny — on 31st July, 2009 at 6:31 pm  

    Your taste has to be questioned, or else you were desperately rushed.

    Thank god. From someone as bigoted as you, constantly linking to the likes of JihadWatch etc – that’s a compliment

  7. Adnan — on 31st July, 2009 at 6:36 pm  

    Edna – I don’t unfortunately conform to your stereotype so nice try but no cigar.

  8. Soso — on 31st July, 2009 at 7:10 pm  

    I think the whole ‘anti-fascism’ movements are redundant in many ways.

    How do you define fascism?

    Believe me, that question needs to be seriously addressed.

    I’m sure many are familiar with The southern Poverty Law Centre and it’s anti-fascist struggles over the years.

    But when you look at its website and you click on their “hate-map” and paruse the extremist groups operating in the dofferent states, all one sees references to are KKK organisations and, surprisngly, conservative Catholic outfits.

    Just two days ago the FBI arrested Jihadists in North Carolina who were in the final stages of preparing terror attacks. And it’s hardly a secret that many others have been uncovered and their members charges.

    But you don’t see any of this at The Southern Poverty Law Center’s website.

    To look at it is to look at the world of anti-fascism from 35 years ago.

    3,000 Americans died on 911, and in the interim 1000s of others have have been killed all over the globe by fascist jihadists.

    But the SPLC makes no mention of that and appears not to know that radical Islamists even exist.

    It’s surreal.

  9. Edna Welthorpe — on 31st July, 2009 at 7:32 pm  

    SOSO – are you taking your meds properly?

    The SPLC is known – even by Jewish Lefties – to be a brilliant and unscrupulous extortion-and-shakedown operation.

    SPLC is richer than God Himself and exists mainly to make one rich chappie still richer by scaring rich Jooz into thinking that unless they give lots of $$$ to the SPLC, the Gestapo will come back to life and herd them off to be made into industrial lubricants in accordance with the formulae devised by Dr Rudolf Spanner*.

    Do do some sensible reading and stop being so bleedin’ gullible!

    * Nobody seems quite sure whether this yarn is a total myth or not. There was such a doctor and he DID do some research at Danzig but he was NOT – or so it is claimed – turning out soap and industrial lubricants in production-line quantities.

  10. Narinder Purba — on 1st August, 2009 at 5:12 pm  

    For me, the whole rise of the far right mirrors the rise of the right during the interwar years of the 20th century. There are a lot of parallels – economic crisis, the faltering ideology of democracy and its inept leaders, and the far right playing on the fears of scared citizens who want strong leaders.

    Interesting article.

  11. Kulvinder — on 1st August, 2009 at 10:31 pm  

    If this is in the context of the european elections id argue the tendency towards moronic nationalism is little more than a reaction to the perception that brussels is ‘taking over’.

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