The European Right

In Europe what we call the "Extreme Right" is sometimes called the "Far Right."

In Europe, the "New Right" refers to right-wing anti-immigrant populist nationalism such as Frances National Front with political leader LePen and ideologue deBenoist. Other examples include Jorg Haider’s racial nationalist Austrian Freedom Party, as well as the fascist Italian Lombardy League. That turned into the National Alliance (of Italy).

Further to the right in Europe is the Third Position with politics that reject both communism and democratic capitalism in favor of a third position that seems to be rooted historically in a Strasserite interpretation of National Socialism, although it claims to have also gone beyond Nazism. Third Position politics blends a virulent racial nationalism (manifested in an isolationist, anti–immigrant stance) with a purported support for environmentalism, trade unionism, and the dignity of labor. Buchanan has endorsed the idea of antidemocratic racial nationalism in a number of very specific ways, arguing for instance, "Multi–ethnic states, of which we are one, are an endangered species" because "most men believe there are things higher in the order of value [than democracy]—among them, tribe and nation." In support of this view, Buchanan even cites Tomislav Sunic, an academic who has allied himself with European Third Position politics. (Berlet & Quigley).

Betz has noted that the European right-wing populist movements he studied engaged in xenophobia and racist scapegoating of immigrants and asylum-seekers, but they also distanced themselves from open affiliation with the violent extreme right such as neo-Nazis, and avoided obvious and overt racism. They presented themselves as willing to make "a fundamental transformation of the existing socioeconomic and sociopolitical system" while still remaining within reformism and claiming to represent "democratic alternatives to the prevailing system," (Betz, p. 108).

The US lacks strong openly racist political parties (such as LePen’s party in France or the Republikaner Party in Germany).

Terminology differs. When Koopmans writes about "extreme right and racist parties," in Europe, the phrase probably is meant to be elastic enough to include everyone from neonazis to the electoral efforts of populist nationalists such as LePen in France. For the US a phrase like "race-baiting politicians and the extreme right" would cover the same ground.

  • Overview by Amy Edgington: The Right Wing in Europe

  • With Times Tough, Fascism Coming Back
    By Martin A. Lee, Los Angeles Times

  • Globalization and its Discontents
    Far right backlash against the European Union
    By Martin A. Lee

  • Far right violence soars in Germany
    Government seeks ban on neo-Nazi party
    Part one of a two-part series.
    By Martin A. Lee

  • The CIA'S neo-Nazis
    Strange bedfellows boost extreme right in Germany
    Part two of a 2-part series.
    By Martin A. Lee

  • Reawakening the Beast
    In an atmosphere of ‘fear and despair,’ extra-parliamentary and electoral fascism is making a comeback across Europe
    by Martin A. Lee

  • Halting the Rise of the European Right
    by Glyn Ford (GPMU)

  • SocioSite - from the University of Amsterdam

  • Searchlight Magazine - "Against Racism and Fascism"

  • UNITED for Intercultural Action - European network against nationalism, racism, fascism and in support of migrants and refugees



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