[Marxism] Dutch elections: all about Geert Wilders (Trump clone)

Jeff meisner at xs4all.nl
Mon Mar 13 18:09:20 MDT 2017

It has been repeatedly warned that the rise of the far right (following 
Brexit and Trump) would be soon tested in 3 European general elections: 
France, Germany, and the Netherlands. The first of those occurs on 
Wednesday in the Netherlands, and since I'm about the only one on the 
list who posts from Holland, I feel obligated to make a mention of 
what's happening.

As in all these cases, the significant aspect of the election is the 
rise of the far right (or "fascism," but I don't want to argue 
terminology) here in the form of noted Islamophobe Geert Wilders (and 
his nominal party the PVV). The concern is that the PVV has risen the 
wave of anti-immigrant racism, and has recently been the leading party 
in the polls with over 20% voter support (not enough to form a 
government, fortunately). Below is a link to an article I ran across by 
a leading Dutch newspaper they (unusually) supplied in English (I guess 
expecting an international audience). It's basically factual and fair so 
I recommend reading it if you're interested. And anyway, he's been on 
his anti-Islam hate campaign for many years so there isn't much new 
being written about him by the left, let alone in English.

One twist in the last few days involves the Dutch government's actions 
to PHYSICALLY prevent campaigning around an upcoming referendum in 
Turkey (which Turks in the Netherlands can vote in) by members of the 
(ruling) AK party. They refused landing rights to an airplane and 
stopped one in a car from reaching the Turkish embassy. About the same 
thing happened in Germany, as you may have read. I thought it was an 
outrageous denial of freedom of speech and assembly (unfortunately no 
outcry from the left, I believe because there is no sympathy for the 
AKP), and most Turkish felt the same, especially in Rotterdam, where 
demonstrators were confronted by the police and arrested (also arrests 
in Amsterdam). The Dutch PM Mark Rutte is widely seen to have been using 
the crackdown on Turkish political activity in order to boost his 
anti-Islam credentials in the eyes of the voters who might otherwise be 
voting for Wilders for that reason. So there is a tight race based on 
who would be more effectively anti-Islam and anti-immigrant :-(

I should also add (since this isn't covered in the following article) 
that although he is similar to Trump in most ways, Geert Wilders' 
fascism isn't so much inherited from the Nazi tradition (like much of 
Trump's team) so anti-semitism isn't an issue (his hate concentrates on 
Muslims and people of color). He is VERY pro-Israel, frequently citing 
Israel's oppression of the Palestinians as a model for what should be 
done in Europe. He frequently travels to Israel and is believed to be on 
the payroll of the Mossad.

- Jeff


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