By Enrique Tessieri
It is pretty incredible how a minority like the Perussuomalaiset (PS) that got 19.1% of the votes are blackmailing the rest of the country with their anti-EU policies. It not only wants the majority to join its anti-EU bandwagon, but has among its ranks MPs like Jussi Halla-aho, who are trying to give bigotry a respectable name in Finland.
But can any sensible person in this country play down what the PS hope to achieve politically? One of the main stands of Timo Soini and the PS is Finland’s withdrawal from the European Union and slap more restrictions on immigration.
Has the EU impacted Finland negatively? Have the 2.9% immigrants living in this country formed a threat to our way of life? Why all this obnoxious nationalism? What gives?
If I had the opportunity to interview Soini, one of the questions I’d ask him is how Finland is going to succeed outside the EU? Of course he’ll never give me a satisfactory answer because he is a politicians. Politicians rarely reveal all their playing cards.
Here is one PS politician who likes to bash immigrants on the net, city councilor Hemmo Koskiniemi of Rovaniemi, on how the PS will give Finland back to the Finns. This is what he writes in Uusi Suomi. Scary stuff.
While Soini and the PS may look like foxes in sheep’s clothing, another menace to Finland is Halla-aho and his Suomen Sisu followers.
Here is a good link (in Finnish) of the provocative statements he’s made throughout the years about immigrants. One of the many that ring out was in 2007 when he wrote that, “I am against immigration and I hope a growing number of Finns are against it.”
The fascination of some Finns with Halla-aho and Soini, who opportunistically uses him to lure votes to his party, is a good example of how low politics has stooped in Finland.
Taking into account the problems the PS has already inflicted on Finland through its populism, anti-immigration and anti-EU rhetoric, you don’t need to be an expert to grasp that Finland is on a perilous path.
The PS view of the future of Finland hinges on nationalism, xenophobia and isolationism. In plain English it means recipe for failure.