Europe is not always what it wants to look like

Kathleen McKinnon

The refugee crisis and rise of far-right “news” sources like QAnon show very much that Europe still struggles with its identity. There is a very clear image of it being the promoter of liberal democratic values as it says in the Stone article (pg. 234), however that image is grafted on to a deeper feeling that on the outside seems to have been let go of in the years just after WWII. As can be seen in previous weeks the far right, fear, “othering,” etc. has never gone away and this is made clear over and over as different circumstances occur such as the refugee crisis but also in the rise of populist regimes as a result of the crisis, not just outspoken people making a point about them. That means that it is not just a few people making noise but enough people are feeling the effect of fearing the “others” to vote in parties that question brining in refugees.

Another theme that occurred in the readings is the US’ influence on race in Turkey (Ezgi Güner) and also the influence it has had on delegitimizing institutions through the Trump administration’s “draining the swamp” ideals and the rise of QAnon not only being in the US with the deep state terminology but spreading in Europe as well (Mark Scott). The international aspects of the far-right are always surprising because they impose an ideology on different circumstances and make them fit. The deep state is exchanged for the European elites, for example, and therefore shoehorns a different culture and different circumstances into wherever it can find relevance because the basic principles are the same.

One Reply to “Europe is not always what it wants to look like”

  1. I think you bring up an interesting point about people voting to bring in people who are against the other. I struggle a bit with this, simply because it seems to promote the far-right idea of the “silent majority.” I think the economic concerns that are brought up to some extent in El-Tayeb are a huge element of this, as migrants, and especially Muslim migrants, are seen as being a threat to neo-liberal economic stability. The same issue with the Roma people in Hungary as well (in terms of not fitting into the economy or being seen as a “leeches”), and the focus on George Soros.

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