Europe’s and Finland’s radical right: toning down diatribe rhetoric

by , under All categories, Enrique

By Enrique Tessieri

We are seeing today how the impact of the killings in Norway have placed the far right and right-wing populist parties under greater scrutiny.  If these parties are now forced to tone down their anti-immigration message that fueled their rise, will greater scrutiny dull their most powerful weapon and weaken them in the end?

Over a week and a half after the horrific events that gripped Norway, there is evidence that a clear shift has taken place in the debate over immigration and Islam.

The change is significant considering how radical right parties before 22/7 saw no end to their growth thanks to their diatribe rhetoric against immigrants and Islam.

In Finland it has rudely awoken some parties out of their deep sleep of denial over the menace of the radical right especially after the election victory of the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party on April 17.

Social Democratic Party secretary Mikael Junger openly challenged PS MP Jussi Halla-aho to step down as chairman of the administration committee, whose responsibilities include among other matters immigration policy.

Even President Tarja Halonen and Prime Minister Jyrki Katainen have openly condemned hate speech more energetically than ever before.

Reaction in Europe has been similar, according to the International Herald Tribune. “Most of Europe’s right-wing parties have condemned the actions of Anders Behring Breivik… whose lawyer says is probably insane. Sill, politicians have begun to question inflammatory oratory in the debate over immigrants that has helped fuel the rise of right-leaning politicians across Europe in recent years.”

In Finland, PS MP James Hirviisari, Halla-aho’s crude alter ego, suggests that a failed immigration and multicultural policy explain why Breivik went on the rampage.

In a thread under his Uusi Suomi blog entry, Norjan verilöyly (Norway’s bloodbath), he offers an explanation why Anders Behring Breivik snapped and started his mass killings. “I really am not surprised that something like this could happen in Norway. In the last years at least ALL (100%) of tens of those accused of violent rapes have been caused by immigrants/foreigners that have come from outside Europe.”

Sensible people in Finland and Europe understand that anti-immigration and anti-Islam groups pose today a threat to our democratic way of life. Breivik is a case in point.

There is a danger that pushing Halla-aho and his Counter-Jihad followers to a corner could weaken PS MP Timo Soini and force the party to take a more radical line against the EU and immigration.

On the other hand, it may well be that we are finally acknowledging and seeing the real face of the PS that we have not wanted to see thanks to our silence.

All that has now changed after 22/7.

  1. Method

    I’m getting tired of reading about people assuming what happened inside Breivik’s head without reading the manifest he put out. This whole “he was this and that” talk, it’s just in the core of stupidity as can be. It reads right there, but still people like Hirvisaari put things in that aren’t there. He didn’t snap, he wasn’t feeling “ill”, dude was putting love signs in his logs and making jokes about what he was going to do. There’s no evidence of that. The whole manifest is just rhetorics, means to an end, I think it really could have been anything. Seems he wanted to just kill people for the fun of it, but he had to rationalize that somehow.

    Basicly, everyone’s just riding him to bash whoever they don’t politically like and that’s as dishonest and as low as can be.

    And Jungner is a self-satisfied asshole too. I mean, who does he think he is to suggest anything? Who asked him? No one.

    On the main issue though, you might be right. I’d still consider if their hate speech rhetoric really is their best weapon, or is it the dismissive attitude before Halla-aho got votes. PS-party seems like a trash bin for all the votes of people who are sick and tired of being dismissed. It’s anti-other parties. Whatever the Kokoomus, SDP or so say, PS is against that. That’s really not the PS or Soini’s fault. It’s just that in Finland there seems to be basically be two options, the PS or the others. Now there’s democracy for you. For or against…

    You can’t stop people from talking. There’s a “master hating” customs in Finland, the powers that be start ordering and bullying, it’ll just make the PS have more voters – as far as I understand it.

  2. Singaporean_in_Finland

    I can’t believe that even after what has happened in Norway, Halla-aho still has the nerve to find excuses for what this evil man has done!

    Either we are for TERRORISM or we are against it. Halla-aho only finds excuses for TERRORISM if it’s done by a Christian extremist.

    Lets not forget that in the guy’s manifesto he lists Halla-aho’s writings as part of his inspiration. Consequently, Halla-aho inspire TERRORISTS.

  3. Method

    Singaporean:

    Does he, or is that just another example of the core of the stupidity?

    Meaning did you read it[the manifest]? And is he a christian extremist? Would you point out the page in the manifest that made you think so, so we can discuss it. If you can’t, go to the first line.

    Also, would you please link the sources to where Halla-aho is finding the excuses? Let me guess, you have none, you just believe what you want to believe. I’ll even help you:

    “- Väkivalta syyyttömiä ihmisiä kohtaan on aina ja kaikissa tilanteissa tuomittavaa. Tämä on täysin yksiselitteinen kantani ollut aina ja on sitä tässäkin tapauksessa, Halla-aho sanoo. ”

    “- Violence against the innocent has always been and will always be condemnable in any circumstance. This has always been my stand, and it is that in this case, says Halla-aho.”

    http://yle.fi/uutiset/teemat/Norjan_tragedia/2011/07/halla-aho_vakivalta_syyttomia_kohtaan_on_vaarin_2747117.html

    “Either we are for TERRORISM or we are against it. ”

    You are on our side or you’re against us? Nice. There’s a line I think Breivik would agree with. Also very common way of thinking when you’re in a gang or in a war. Besides the economical war we’re in, what war would you think we are in? What do you suggest we do? Kill all the christians, muslims, left wingers, right wingers, basks, irish protestants, farmers, fertilizer sellers, gun makers/owners, video game makers/players, movie makers/distributers folk music makers/listeners, hate mongers, bankers, politicians, what? Art of war is not to start a war.

    Or do you think we should ban all the ideals and believes that exist in the manifest? Think before you say it, because I will go and make a list of many of the people quoted on that 1500 page manifest. You might find it that you agree with some of them or have thought they make sense.

    Chill, dude. I do understand you are shocked. I do understand you’re angry. So was I. This man attacked young people and children. He also attacked the values that are mine. But putting the blame on someone who didn’t do anything is wrong. It’s only human, but it’s still wrong.

  4. Singaporean_in_Finland

    @Hannu “I really am not surprised that something like this could happen in Norway. In the last years at least ALL (100%) of tens of those accused of violent rapes have been caused by immigrants/foreigners that have come from outside Europe.” There’s your excuse straight from Halla-aho’s mouth!

    @Method We can start on the first page where you find a huge red Cross, the symbol of the Knights Templar. He continuously references the Knights Templar that he claims to be a member of. He cites the group as an “international Christian military order” that fights against “Islamic suppression.” But who were the Knights Templar? Back in the 12th century, their responsibility was to protect Christian pilgrims traveling to the Holy Land during the Crusades. The Knights subsequently joined the fight to reclaim Jerusalem from the Arabs, but were forced out and returned to Europe where they were persecuted by King Philip of France with the backing of Pope Clement V. They were disbanded by the year 1312, but Breivik claims the Christian military order has been re-founded under the name PCCTS as an armed “anti-Jihad movement”.

    In addition to being a Christian extremist, he is also a Zionist extremist filled with hatred for Palestinians. From his manifesto:

    “I myself am a Protestant and baptized / confirmed to me by my own free will when I was 15 but today’s Protestant church is a joke. Priests in jeans who march for Palestine and churches that look like the minimalist shopping centers. I am a supporter of an indirect collective conversion of the Protestant church back to the Catholic. In the meantime, I vote for the most conservative candidates in church elections.

    The only thing that can save the Protestant church is to go back to basics.”

    “So let us fight together with Israel, with our Zionist brothers against all anti-Zionists against all cultural Marxists/Multiculturalists”

    One important lesson for us to draw is best stated by Praveen Swami, senior journalist at The Hindu, a day after the manifesto, which asks India’s right wing parties for help in ridding Europe from Muslims, was released: “Like Europe’s mainstream right-wing parties, [India’s] BJP has condemned the terrorism of the right – but not the thought system which drives it. Its refusal to engage in serious introspection, or even to unequivocally condemn Hindutva violence, has been nothing short of disgraceful,” http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/lead/article2290619.ece?service=mobile

    Brushing this guy off as a “lone wolf” and an isolated case, the way the media is doing is extremely dangerous. They will be held responsible when it happens again: ‘. . . two more cells exist in my organization…’ — Ander Behring Breivik in police custody (Reuters 7/25/11)

    • Enrique

      I am always amazed in Finland when it comes to the PS, and especially when it involves Jussi Halla-aho, how much we steer from the original issue, which was a quote founded on the PS MP’s Facebook page on July 24: “Many Finns who didn’t reach an orgasm when it wasn’t a Hommaforum (follower) that did not burn the pizzeria in Tampere, are now demanding payback time with interest. For you information I do not take back anything that I’ve written and do not take any responsibility for what Breivik did; I plan to continue along the same path because bad immigration is bad and multiculturalism sucks ass irrespective of what Breivik did.”

      This is the issue — what he wrote (and has written) and the ideology he represents. By the way, the person who made the above-mentioned quote is an MP. Soini is totally quiet (it doesn’t seem to worry him a bit about the language used by some of his MPs).

      And all this behavior is due to two factors: (1) because he can’t stand foreigners and (2) because he is one of the spoiled children of the welfare state who was never taught to moderate what he says despite his PhD credentials.

      When it comes to Halla-aho, he has this strange idea that he must wake up people with his provocative statements. The above is one of many he uses.

      What he does in essence is make a mockery of us as a nation and of our values.

  5. Niko

    Enrique

    Why Halla-aho should change his mind after the Norway tragedy? If some immigrant would start to shoot randomly people on the street, tells that he is a Green party supporter and did this because he hates Finns, you wouldn’t change your believes about immigration and multiculturalism either.

    • Enrique

      Niko, this is a ridiculous statement and an attempt to play down what happened in Norway. No matter how much you kick and bitch, cultural diversity is here to stay. It is a fact like the Internet is to many. Or are you planning to deport all those you don’t like in order to make society look white? Come on, Niko, think a little bit about what you are saying!

  6. Niko

    Eh, did you actually read what I wrote and is there some communication problem? I never tried to play down what happened in Norway. It is a tragedy and horrible thing what happened. But do you really believe that because of this one incident suddenly all who criticize multiculturalism would change their minds? I don’t think all Muslims are terrorist either even 9/11 happened. Enrique, you start to be paranoid if you see all the things what wrote in my texts.That’s almost an insult.

    • Enrique

      –But do you really believe that because of this one incident suddenly all who criticize multiculturalism would change their minds?

      Of course not but the truth is that most of the stuff they put our is over-inflated urban myths about other cultures. The only thing that Norway did to them was blow a huge argument that ALL Muslims are terrorists or that we are “good” and they are “bad.” Even if people like Olli Immonen see a “race war” happening with Islam in the future, the truth of the matter is that if a war happens on European soil it will be between “us” as opposed to “them.”

  7. Method

    @Singaporean

    “We can start on the first page where you find a huge red Cross, the symbol of the Knights Templar. He continuously references the Knights Templar that he claims to be a member of. He cites the group as an “international Christian military order” that fights against “Islamic suppression.” But who were the Knights Templar? Back in the 12th century, their responsibility was to protect Christian pilgrims traveling to the Holy Land during the Crusades. The Knights subsequently joined the fight to reclaim Jerusalem from the Arabs, but were forced out and returned to Europe where they were persecuted by King Philip of France with the backing of Pope Clement V. They were disbanded by the year 1312, but Breivik claims the Christian military order has been re-founded under the name PCCTS as an armed “anti-Jihad movement”.

    In addition to being a Christian extremist, he is also a Zionist extremist filled with hatred for Palestinians. From his manifesto:

    “I myself am a Protestant and baptized / confirmed to me by my own free will when I was 15 but today’s Protestant church is a joke. Priests in jeans who march for Palestine and churches that look like the minimalist shopping centers. I am a supporter of an indirect collective conversion of the Protestant church back to the Catholic. In the meantime, I vote for the most conservative candidates in church elections.

    The only thing that can save the Protestant church is to go back to basics.”

    “So let us fight together with Israel, with our Zionist brothers against all anti-Zionists against all cultural Marxists/Multiculturalists”

    I read the parts where he was talking about his atheism:

    “I’m not going to pretend I’m a very religious person as that would be a lie. I’ve always been very pragmatic and influenced by my secular surroundings and environment. In the past, I remember I used to think;

    “Religion is a crutch for weak people. What is the point in believing in a higher power if you have confidence in yourself!? Pathetic.”

    So if an atheist goes and puts a cross on his manifesto, then goes on a killing spree, he’s a hard boiled christian? He could have taken the zen buddhism and it would have given him the same set of “tools” without the nuisance of god or jesus:

    “If you want to fight for the cross and die under the “cross of the martyrs” it’s required that you are a practising Christian, a Christian agnostic or a Christian atheist (cultural Christian). The cultural factors are more important than your personal relationship with God, Jesus or the holy spirit. “

    “Brushing this guy off as a “lone wolf” and an isolated case, the way the media is doing is extremely dangerous. They will be held responsible when it happens again: ‘. . . two more cells exist in my organization…’ — Ander Behring Breivik in police custody (Reuters 7/25/11)”

    Yes, I agree with you there. He could be lying though. I don’t think people who can kill almost 100 people without any kind of stress to show of it, have any trouble lying. I’ve even heard aggressive psychopaths can cheat the lie detector.

  8. Hannu

    “It is a fact like the Internet is to many.”

    And still you dont understand internet and claim to understand something more complex.
    Here is prime example of attack against poor single man in internet, he just dared to ask some singers. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NENlXsW4pM
    Someone probably told all of those people to attack.

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