The European far right is divided, so what?

There is arguably no more frustrating political experience in Europe than trying to change the way the European Union works. Both on the left and on the right, people have tried it, driven by pro- and anti-European intentions. I spent much of my professional life campaigning for a closer economic union within the Eurozone, before giving up. If a sovereign debt crisis isn’t enough to generate the necessary momentum, what can?

The latest group of politicians to risk this comes from the far right. Under the unofficial rule of Giorgia Meloni, the Italian Prime Minister. Her accomplice is the Hungarian head of government, Viktor Orban. As well as Robert Fico, the Slovak Prime Minister (victim of an assassination attempt on May 15), whose position was strengthened on April 6 with the election of Peter Pellegrini, a fellow populist, as president of Slovakia.

The far right is on the march in Europe, galvanized by opposition to immigration. But it is much less united than one might think. Meloni supports Ukraine in his war against Russia, for example, which is not the case for either Orban or Fico. Meloni and Orban are both socially conservative.

The same cannot be said of Marine Le Pen. France recently became the first country in the world to include the right to abortion in its Constitution. With the support of Le Pen. Alice Weidel, the co-leader of the far-right Alternative für Deutschland (AfD), makes no secret of her homosexuality. She lives partly in Switzerland with her partner, originally from Sri Lanka, and their two children. Meanwhile, in 2020, Orban’s government pushed through a constitutional amendment that states that “the mother is a woman, the father is a man”. The fact that there are disagreements between far-right groups does not surprise me. Their ideologies are based on nationalism.

A formidable political force


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Article source

New Statesman (London)

Since its creation in 1913, this political review, renowned as much for the seriousness of its analyzes as for the ferocity of its comments, has been the forum of the independent left. The title is, by definition, the reference newspaper for the left-wing intelligentsia, but its columns are open to a wide range of opinions. Supporting Labor, the magazine had, unusually, distanced itself from Labor when Jeremy Corbyn, from the left wing of the party, took over its management.

Its circulation has been increasing for several years and will reach 43,000 copies in 2023, its highest level in thirty-five years. Its online version is equally successful, with 4 million unique visitors per month.

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