Why Right-wing Nationalist Parties are Gaining the Ground in Europe

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May 11th, 2017 – Fort Russ News –

– Analysis by Samer Hussein for FRN –

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Despite the recent failure of Marine Le Pen to become the president of France and Geert Wilders’ demise at the Dutch parliamentary elections, it is safe to say that the nationalist-oriented right-wing parties are gaining the ground in Europe.

Compared to previous years, their election success has become enormous, given that they are now involved in tight battles to become the leaders of their nations, while previously only enjoying a relative minority of support.

The growing popularity of these parties and movements is not something out of schedule that should be taken as a surprise. Over the past two decades, Europe stagnated greatly in most fields and aspects. As such, fertile ground was given to right-wing nationalist parties who gained their popularity mainly by playing the notes, previously not played by the ruling and second-running parties. 

There are two main types of reasons why right-wing populism is on the rise in Europe. 

The first type of reasons is of economic nature. The past 10 years were critical in Europe. Not only is the European Union heavily tied to the global corporatist establishment, which means that all of its negative effects such as the so-called “global economic crisis” would immediately show consequences in Europe, the ruling political parties in vast majority of all European countries were also running some of the most disastrous neo-liberal economic policies whose wrong decisions are becoming increasingly visible day by day. 

Jobless young people, families that barely push through the day, increasingly difficult working conditions and rigorous tax policies are just some of the many reasons for the major dissatisfaction in Europe, resulting from the neo-liberal policies, adopted by the ruling elites. 

As such, it is not surprising that the nationalist right-wing parties are receiving an ever increasing support from young people, aged 18-35. Disappointed with the fact that, despite their qualifications and received formal degree of education, they are unable to work or are, in the best case, forced to do very marginal jobs, way below the expected standards, usually in an almost slavery-like working conditions and for a rather low wage. 

Not only are these circumstances utterly humiliating, but they are even preventing the young people to actually start their normal lives, get married and/or have children, a thing that almost no one being in such situation can actually afford. Normally, the people fed up with their daily humiliation and the low quality of life, will eventually start sail towards other, more promising shores, even as regards politics. 

Judging by the fact that nationalist parties often offer considerably better employment and economic conditions in their political programme than the ruling and major “opposition” parties, it is not surprising that more and more of the young people are starting to look towards their direction. 

The second major reason why such parties are on the rise is related to their foreign policies. 

While the ruling “social” and “Christian” democratic parties are competing in their loyalty to US and NATO and dragging their countries into the US-led long lasting wars abroad, these right-wing nationalist (and some of the far-left) parties are offering a considerably better alternative, by caring first and foremost for their own countries and staying away from all international conflicts and globalism in general and even maintaining a friendly tone with some of the world’s non-Atlanticist superpowers, namely Russia. 

The foreign policies of the ruling political parties in Europe brought devastating results. By dragging themselves into the US-dictated long-lasting wars in Afghanistan in Iraq, the European countries were introduced Europe to plenty of security risks, in addition to having their economies affected in a rather negative way, with majority of their citizens feeling the consequences.

On top of that, most leaders in Europe tend to have very strong relations with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States, all of whom are known to be spreading radical Islam throughout the world. As opposed to the elitists, most nationalist leaders in Europe are highly skeptical of such collaboration and would rather prefer normalized ties with Russia, China, Iran and Syria, rather than forming the intimate bonds with “the devil”.

A very good example of that would be France. Ever since the arrival of the former president Jacques Chirac, France is no longer the country people used to remember from the time of Charles De Gaulle. Nowadays, France is a puppet state with no clearly defined and determined foreign policy.

The country also maintains very strong relations with Saudi Arabia and Qatar, the world’s largest exporters and financial backers of international terrorism. The two are also among the major investors in France. But their investments do not exactly come “for free”. 

In an exchange for massive Saudi and Qatari investments, French politicians are required to allow the presence of radical Islamic institutions, schools and imams. This, paired with France’s meddling and unconditional support for terrorists in Syria, a thing gravely opposed by Le Pen’s Front National, has greatly contributed to the rise of terror attacks in the country. 

French citizens have since realized what they’ve done by repeatedly expressing their overwhelming support for Sarkozy and later Hollande, whose public support dropped down to 4% not long after the Paris terror attacks and decided to try a slightly different route by vouching for parties, previously not yet ruling.

However, the last French election has nonetheless resulted in the “worst of the worst”. The voters have basically made a decision to support a candidate who will dig an even deeper grave for France than his predecessors, given his friendly attitude towards the global neo-liberal elites, US and EU establishment, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Now, a question arises. Why have French voters decided to elect Macron, despite being aware of his similarities to Hollande? The answer is not that difficult. While it’s indeed true that people wanted changes as under Hollande France stagnated greatly thanks to his disastrous foreign, employment and security policies, a lot of people decided not to support Le Pen due to her right-wing and nationalist rhetoric. A significant part of the French population holds strong leftist leanings and these people would never declare support for Le Pen out of their pure ideological reasons.

Some of these people eventually decided to vote for Macron, considering him “a lesser evil” from their ideological viewpoint, however, many of these people have in fact not even shown up at the voting booths. Indeed, the 2017 French elections had a rather low voter turnout when compared to previous years. 

Despite it’s commonly known that it’s difficult to influence the masses to make radical shifts in the most critical or decisive moments, it’s time to admit that an average voter in the EU, not well familiar with how politics work, has rather legitimate reasons to be confused of who to choose. Indeed, the neo-liberal EU ice cream stand is offering a variety of flavours, however, soon enough it is discovered that pretty much all of them are made of the same core ingredients, hence similarity in taste. 

Judging by their practices, social democrats are closer to the Christian democrats than real socialists, while in turn the Christian democrats have little in common with their title as regards the values of Christianity or conservatism, not to mentions the Greens who often come out as a highly negative surprise. 

As such, the voters are left with two kinds of “extremes”, not being on top yet: the far-left and the far-right. The reason why many do not vote for these parties in the end is either because of the major disagreement as regards ideology of these parties or the fact that they are simply “unsure”, of how the “newbies” will handle the politics and thus decide to go with a more “secure” option, not being aware that the things could hardly be any worse than they are. 

What might bring some changes to the “positive” side in Europe is an increased number of votes, going to both the far-left and the far-right “extremes”. While this might seem impossible at first sight, a syncretic, unified government, consisting of both extremes that would, in that case, be forced to lay off their most extreme views and elements, might actually bring out some positive changes. 

Unless the people are not ready for changes, there will be none. And majority of French voters have proven they want none for the time being, meaning they will be responsible for their own misery, should the things further deteriorate.

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