Austerity, Immigration, and the Far Right

“Anger at austerity, immigration feeds far right’s rise in Europe,” by Laura Smith-Spark, for CNN:

Two European elections, in France and Greece, have thrust the radical fringe into the spotlight.

In Greece, voters disillusioned by a brutal austerity program pushed through by the two mainstream parties have turned instead to parties on the far left and far right.

As a result, a leftist coalition opposed to austerity is seeking to form a government, and Golden Dawn — an ultranationalist party linked to street violence and neo-Nazism — stands to claim around 20 seats in the new parliament…

Europe’s far-right parties are definitely seeing a resurgence, according to Matthew Feldman, director of the Radicalism and New Media Research Group at the University of Northampton, but the trend is not universal and the austerity crisis is only one part of the picture.

He said the far-right movement has been gaining ground for years, thanks partly to efforts to revamp its previously overtly racist and fascist image…

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