Search Results for: sweden democrats

Social Democrats’ left-green bloc emerge as victors but so did the anti-immigration Sweden Democrats

Sweden’s center-left bloc led by the Social Democratic party is set for a narrow victory over right-wing opponents in today’s parliamentary election, according to Yle. The biggest upset was the dismal showing of the conservative Moderate party, which slipped into third place after the anti-immigration Sweden Democrats. In light of the boycott against the Sweden

(Migrant Tales 12.2.2017): Dear Sweden, don’t play ball with the Sweden Democrats – Finland is the best example of the disaster that awaits you

Dear Sweden,  In all of the Nordic region, we have seen far-right populist parties rise in this century with a hostile even vicious anti-immigration and anti-cultural diversity agenda. Of all the Nordic countries, you are the only one in the Nordic region where populist anti-immigration parties have not formed directly or indirectly a part of government. 

(Migrant Tales 12.2.2017) Dear Sweden, don’t play ball with the Sweden Democrats – Finland is the best example of the disaster that awaits you

Dear Sweden,

In all of the Nordic region we have seen far-right populist parties rise in this century with a hostile even vicious anti-immigration and anti-cultural diversity agenda. Of all the Nordic countries, you are the only one in the Nordic region where populist anti-immigration parties have not formed directly or indirectly a part of government.

The PS has found its political role model in the Sweden Democrats

Perussuomalaiset (PS)* MP Tom Packalén is an example of how the good election result of the Sweden Democrats has invigorated him and the PS to start scapegoating migrants in Finland. Taking into account the poor result of the PS in the last presidential, municipal and EU elections, it’s clear that some PS MPs will do anything to get attention and hopefully votes.

Another scandal hits far-right Sweden Democrats

Sweden Democrat (SD) MP Lars Isovaara is resigning his seat after he spat at a parliamentary security guard, reports The Local. The latest scandal to the far-right party follows an earlier one this month after Swedish tabloid Expressen published a video of an SD MP who got rowdy  in public and hurled racist and sexist

Racism scandal rips far-right Sweden Democrats

Here’s an interesting story that took place in June 2010 in Sweden involving a far-right Sweden Democrat (SD) MP, Erik Almqvist, who got rowdy and started hurling racist and sexist insults in public, reports Swedish tabloid Expressen. The MP naturally denied everything until Expressen published today a video confirming what others claimed he said. After repeated denials, Almqvist

Sweden’s election spells trouble for Muslims, migrants, and minorities

The election in Sweden was of special interest to me since I live next door to the country in Finland. Will the good showing of the far-right Sweden Democrats boost our far-right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party in the April parliamentary election? While it is fair to predict that the election result in Sweden should not hurt

Sweden’s nasty surprise comes home to roost

THE STORY WAS UPDATED Incumbent Social Democratic Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson conceded defeat in Sweden’s nail-biter election to the rightwing parties led by the far-right Sweden Democrats, reports The Guardian. The rightwing parties received 49.6% of the votes, with the left bloc securing 48.9%. If anything, it was a long overdue nasty surprise that permitted

Sweden’s election is now a nail-biter

“The figures show the Moderates, Sweden Democrats, Christian Democrats and Liberals winning 175 seats in the 349-seat parliament against 174 for the center-left,” Reuters reports. The final results are expected by Wednesday.

The bad and good news after Sweden’s 2018 parliamentary elections

There is good and bad news after Sunday’s parliamentary elections. The bad news is that the far-right Sweden Democrat saw its support rise by 4.7 percentage points to 17.6% compared with the elections in 2014, according to Svenska Dagbladet. The good news – if it can be considered as such – is that the result was well below expectations. 

More red lights flashing in Sweden after three mosques set ablaze within a week

After one mosque was set ablaze on Christmas Day in Eskiltuna, two others have been targeted by suspected arsonists in the southern town of Esilöv on December 29 and in Uppsala on New Year’s Day, reports Helsingin Sanomat, Finland’s largest daily.  The attacks against three mosques took place within a week. The far right Sweden Democrats caused a

Sweden calls off snap elections in March 2015 after reaching agreement with the opposition

The minority government of Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has abandoned plans to hold snap elections in March 2015 after reaching an agreement with the Alliance, comprising of opposition parties like the Moderates, Center Party, Liberal Party and Christian Democrats, according to The Local. The far right Sweden Democrats, which caused a political crisis this month, blasted

Michael McEachrane: Seeing Sweden’s race problem for what it is

Michael McEachrane* Two things seem abundantly clear regarding the rise of ultranationalism in Europe today. First, it is symptomatic of a broader form of nationalism which all European states are steeped in. Second, it is this broader nationalism that ultimately needs to be confronted if equality is ever to become a reality in Europe. Read

Will the Sweden Democrat victory give a boost to the PS in Finland?

The Swedish election result not only showed a shift and set for a minority-left government, but historic gains made by the far-right Sweden Democrats. Conservative Moderat Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, who conceded defeat late Sunday, said he will hand in his resignation Monday after eight years in power. Just like the anti-immigration Peerussuomalaiset (PS)* in

Romany minority discrimination case sparks government outrage in Sweden

The Swedish government has called a crisis meeting due to a discrimination case of a Roma woman at Stockholm’s Sheraton Hotel, reports Helsingin Sanomat. The woman, who was invited by the government to speak at a seminar on discrimination of the Roma in Sweden’s capital, was escorted with her traditional dress out of the hotel’s

Sweden is right, Finland wrong in its strategy against anti-immigration parties

Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt reiterated to Helsingin Sanomat the government’s plans to isolate Sweden Democrats despite the latest polls in Sweden, which show the anti-EU and anti-immigration party making gains. Even if the Sweden Democrats have tried break free from their neo-Nazi and racist image, the party led by Jimmie Åkesson has suffered a number

Racism Review: Sweden – No Longer the Exception to Western Racist Rule

Authored by Tobias Hübinette and L. Janelle Dance Since May 20, 2013, mass vandalism, material damage and outbursts of rioting in the poor and non-white suburbs of Greater Stockholm have dominated Swedish and international news media. This civil unrest was sparked when, on May 12, the police shot and killed a 69-year-old man from Husby, one of

The long battle for ethnic equality has begun in Sweden and Finland

One wonders how Sweden’s embattled migration minister, Tobias Billström, could make his “blonde, blue-eyed” comment on asylum seekers and get away with it without losing his job.  Here in Finland we give prime television time to representatives of  racist association like Suomen Sisu, whose views on cultural diversity don’t vary greatly from the U.S. American Nazi

Turun Sanomat: Finland Democrats eye PS’ anti-immigration vote

The Finland Democrats, which bases its political agenda on the far-right Sweden Democrats, aims to become a new party and compete for the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party’s anti-immigration vote, reports Turun Sanomat. The creation of a new anti-immigration party reveals the ever-negative debate in Finland surrounding immigrants and immigration.   The PS is the only party that

Reports: Greatest threat to immigrants are not far-right groups in Sweden

Two reports published on November 9 in Sweden show that the greatest threat to immigrants and visible minorities in that country aren’t far-right groups, but everyday intolerance and racism from white Swedes. What does this report say about Sweden and suggest about how foreigners are treated in Finland? Contrary to our neighbor, Finland’s third-largest party

Media Monitoring Group of Finland [1]: Finland’s “youth gang problem” is Finland’s denied “racism problem”

The youth gang “problem” in Finland is a knee-jerk racist reaction. On and off, we have read about our youth gang “problem” with sensationalist headlines from newspapers that should know better. Remember back in 2014, when radical-right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* MP Tom Packalén created quite a stir when he claimed that a youth gang in East

Finland’s lurch to the right and its Islamophobic fuel

Where they burn books, they will ultimately burn people also. Heinrich Heine Thanks to Social Democrat Prime Minister Sanna Marin, leaders of the Left Alliance, Green League, and the Swedish People’s Party, there is a public reaction to the radical right and blatantly racist campaign promises by the Perussuomalaiset (PS).* Prime Minister Marin recently slammed the PS as

President Sauli Niinistö throws weight behind opposition’s election campaign by citing youth gang “problem”

President Sauli Niinistö, who has a track record of speaking disparagingly about Muslims and asylum seekers, was quoted as saying on Yle’s 8:30 news that he fears Finland “apparently” is “moving a bit” on Sweden’s path concerning youth gang violence. “It’s a very, very unfortunate and dangerous phenomenon, we seem to be following a bit

Twitter (Ville Tavio): Welcome back!

The far-right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* is the most Trumpian party in Finland’s parliament. Its parliamentary group leader Ville Tavio, who has spoken highly in the past of similar far-right politicians like France’s Marine Le Pen of France, is happy that former President Donald Trump is back on Twitter. Twitter banned Trump after he incited an insurrection

STATEMENT: Yle should stop picking on minority youths and stick to facts

It was in 2020 when Helsingin Sanomat published a big story about the dangers of youth gang violence in Helsinki. The story received a lot of criticism because it spread the misinformation that youth crime is rising in Helsinki and Greater Helsinki.  It isn’t surprising that the state-owned broadcaster, Yle, has spread the issue, especially

Trump, Putin and the Perussuomalaiset

Former President Donald Trump is a threat to USAmerican democracy, and Russian President Vladimir Putin a threat to world peace. While these leaders spread their toxicity and hatred on other people and nations for political gain, our Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party has nothing more than praise for them. Well, that was before Trump and Putin became

The PS’ and Kokoomus’ “concern” about Finland’s minority youth gangs is dishonest and a political stunt

Watching weekly Thursday’s question-and-answer session between the opposition and government can cause nausea. With parliamentary elections six months in April, expect opposition parties like the far-right Perussuomalaiset (PS)* and National Coalition Party (Kokoomus) to increase their attacks against ALL migrants. The truth about the PS and Kokoomus, the biggest and second-biggest opposition party, respectively, is

Helsinki youth worker Mahad Sheikh Musse’s message from the #authorities to #youth must be clear: Everyone is an individual and responsible for their crimes

Mahad Sheikh Musse* has worked in Helsinki as a youth worker in various roles and with various communities for the past 15 years. If there is somebody who understands minority youth issues, it is him. Migrant Tales had the opportunity to chat with Mahad during his busy schedule.  We all know how the elections in Sweden went.

European far-right parties are part of a conspiracy to replace our democracies

A paradox: “Liberal” Nordic countries like Finland have large far-right parties that feed off racism. If I were to use the racist rhetoric of the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party to solve social problems, I’d be lost. Solutions, like tougher laws, more restrictions, enforcing marginalization, and strengthening institutional racism, would leave me in a bind. Fearmongering and

The Nordic region’s slippery Islamophobic slope

The Nordic saw a predictable political earthquake on September 11, when the right-wing bloc led by the far-right Sweden Democrats nudged the right-wing bloc to victory. The election brought Sweden in line with its other Nordic neighbors: all four now have or had large far-right anti-immigration parties. Of the four countries, the entrenchment of the

Unpublished Finland Bridge column: Hold the Fort (Until Sanity Returns)

Migrant Tales insight: After publishing a regular column for Finland Bridge of Finland Society (Suomi-Seura), the column below written in 2015 was the last one. Apparently, the content of the column was too much for the editor of the magazine, who scolded me for being too critical of the Perussuomalaiset (Finns Party). I had to

What the SAS Airline ad forgot to mention: Racism was also copied

Recently SAS Airline made a video about how everything Scandinavian is copied culturally. What the video forgot to tell us is that even if it copies everything, it is selective about what it copies. Remember the story about a Muslim Swede called Aye Alhassani, who was told flat out that she would have to take

Norway’s anti-immigration party exits government

After the populist anti-immigration Perussuomalaiset (PS)* was left out in the cold from the government in 2017, the election blow suffered by the Danish People’s Party in 2019, and now the exit of the Progress Party (FrP) from the Norwegian government, the Nordic region is momentarily free of Islamophobic populist parties in government. After six

MTV: Normalizing racism and bigotry in Finland with Jussi Halla-aho’s help

After attending a European Network Against Racism in Brussels that ended Saturday, I discovered on my arrival to Finland that Perussuomalaiset (PS)* Chairman Jussi Halla-aho, who was convicted for ethnic agitation in 2012 and who built his political career on Islamophobia, is now a columnist in MTV, Finland’s largest privately owned television station. 

The Finnish media gives a lot of space to Halla-aho and the PS but none to us

It’s clear that the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* is a different party after this weekend, when Jussi Halla-aho, Laura Huhtasaari, Teuvo Hakkarainen and Juho Eerola were elected to lead the anti-immigrant and anti-EU party. Halla-aho spoke of in his policy speech of “nationalistic forces,” which is code for anti-immigration, anti-cultural diversity and anti-EU policies. 

The Finnish Perussuomalaiset and their poker-face-racist remarks

Why would a television station like MTV3 invite a person like Perussuomalaiset (PS)* Youth leader Sebastian Tynkkynen to a talk show about the racist and bigoted statements he’s made about Muslims and migrants? Why would a journalist, who appears to be in the dark about what racism is, treat such a politician with a degree of understanding?

Finland’s xenophobic Denmark slippery slope

Considering that the anti-immigration Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party is in government and that the two other ruling partners, the Center Party and National Coalition Party (NCP), need the support of the PS to downsize the welfare state, it’s clear why Finland is tightening its immigration policy.

Suomalainen rasistinen vihapuhe – syitä ja ratkaisuja

Suomea vaivaa rasistinen viha ja vihapuhe sekä näiden mukana lisääntynyt rasistinen väkivalta. Väkivalta sinänsä ei ole uusi ilmiö Suomessa, joka on Euroopan neljänneksi väkivaltaisin maa ja lähisuhdeväkivallan osalta Euroopan nelonen. Koulukiusaaminen on iäisyysongelma eikä työpaikoillakaan vallitse kiusaamisvapaus. Henkinen väkivalta ei ole pikku juttu – saattaa olla jopa konkreettista pahoinpitelyä haastavampi asia. Sitä on vaikea toisille

Open racism in the PS and Finland for ever?

The Green League’s Vihreä Lanka writes that the hardline anti-immigration wing of the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* comprises of eight MPs in MEP Jussi Halla-aho’s camp with four more sympathizing with the latter, according to Vihreä Lanka, which cites journalist Marianne Lydén.

Turncoats and the Perussuomalaiset of Finland

Can you trust a party that says one thing and then does the other? If you look at the adamant stand that the the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* and its leader, Timo Soini, had against any bailouts for Greece, we have now witnessed one of the biggest turncoat performances in Finnish politics ever. This link in Finnish will

Let´s (not) forget 22/7 and Anders Breivik

As we distance ourselves from the horror of July 22, 2011, when a Anders Breivik killed 77 innocent lives, the more our collective memory begins to fail us. Islamophobia, xenophobia and anti-cultural diversity sentiment have strengthened their grip in the Nordic region after 22/7.

Eva Biaudet: Finland’s ever-culturally and ethnically diverse society in the new century (Part I)

Swedish People’s Party (SPP) MP Eva Biaudet has made a name for herself defending those that don’t have a voice in society and those who are most vulnerable to discrimination and exploitation. If there is a person that can give a picture of where Finland is or should be heading in this century as our country becomes ever-culturally and ethnically diverse, that person is certainly Biaudet.

A letter from a Finn to a Swede

Dear friend, you probably read about the elections in Denmark and how xenophobia raised its head yet again in another Nordic country. The elections in Denmark didn’t surprise me. Two months earlier we had elections in Finland. Here too the right-wing populist Perussuomalaiset (PS)* became the second-biggest party in parliament and are now in government.

The rise and fall of the Perussuomalaiset of Finland

As support for the Perussuomalaiset (PS)[1] wanes with parliamentary elections only a heartbeat away on April 19, we are seeing a very different party  from four years ago. Back then, PS chairman Timo Soini was self-confident and campaigning confidently. He was the darling of the media, the new kid on the block, the underdog, the only

Social media Frankensteins

Ever wondered how a wannabe becomes a social media hit by spreading hatred and racism? There are a lot of these types of politicians and characters around who with low budgets become famous and even get elected thanks to social media. They are called #SocialMediaFrankensteins.  With the help of social media and many blind followers, some

MEP Halla-aho wants a tougher PS stance on immigration

The popularity of the anti-immigration Perussuomalaiset (PS)* plummeted to a record low of 13.3% in December and this has caused visible cracks in the party’s leadership. MEP Jussi Halla-aho, who was sentenced for ethnic agitation, blames PS chairman Timo Soini’s too soft stand on immigration for the drop in popularity, according to Oulu-based daily Kaleva. 

Defining Swedish white privilege #1: Case Björn Söder

Sensible people in the Nordic region and elsewhere understand the threat of far right nativist rhetoric through mouthpiece parties like the Sweden Democrats, Danish People’s Party, Progress Party of Norway and Finland’s Perussuomalaiset (PS)* that parrot their “us” and “them” racism. Sweden Democrat party secretary Björn Söder offers us a good example of how Swedish

Who spreads hatred in Finland: YLE or the PS?

Attempting to gain the maximum political mileage from the act of vandalism against the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* office in Helsinki on Thursday, party secretary, Riikka Slunga-Poutsalo, is pointing the finger at the “green-left alliance” (a favorite catchword that the party uses to describe its enemies) and YLE for comparing it to the anti-immigration far-right Sweden Democrats.

PS claims it has sacked all of its racists and fascists from the party (sic!)

Matti Putkonen said at a press conference Friday that comparing the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* to the anti-immigration Sweden Democrats was spreading hatred against the party. He went as far as to suggest that the attack against its office in Helsinki had something to do with such stories, reports tabloid Ilta-Sanomat.  Putkonen, who was convicted for rape about

Migrant Tales insight on EU elections: Win some, lose some

As the political dust settles after the Euro elections last Sunday, can we claim like the media that the hard right made important gains?  How did anti-EU, anti-immigration and especially anti-Islam parties like the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* of Finland fare compared with the previous elections in 2009?  Apart from the UKIP and National Front of France’s impressive

Selective hatred and racism know no master

Migrant Tales has written on a number of occasions about how intolerance and discrimination are a direct threat to our society since such social ills eat away at our values and thereby undermine who we are. We have demonstrated how anti-immigration parties like the Perussuomalaiset (PS) use selective hatred to ensure their followers that they are

Why are Europe’s Islamophobic politicians and parties so “pro-Israel?”

Are you sometimes surprised to read about how many far-right anti-immigration groups are so pro-Israel? Some, like anti-Islam Perussuomalaiset (PS) MP Juho Eerola of Finland, may go as far as to draft a written question to parliament demanding that Muslims renounce publicly their hatred of gays and Jews. A posting by Migrant Tales reposted on

Finland & Cultural Diversity 2013

Compared with the previous two years, 2013 will be remembered as business as usual on the intolerance front. A positive sign, however, is the reaction of some of the Finnish media to racism. Even so, the media in this country continues to give some racists inflated respectability and importance by spreading their prejudice.    The reaction

How does Nelson Mandela (1918-2013) empower us?

The death of Nelson Mandela, who was branded a terrorist by countries like the U.S. and Great Britain, is a sad day full of mourning but full of hope as well. His struggle and triumph over apartheid, a toxic offshoot of white European colonialism, proves that no matter how oppressive a government is, change is

Government talks in Norway are a preview of what may happen in Finland in 2015 with the PS

Take a close look at Norway if you want to see what may happen in Finland after the 2015 parliamentary elections, when the right-wing populist Perussuomalaiset (PS) may be in government.The populist anti-immigration Progress party (FrP) of Norway will form part of a coalition government with the Conservative Party (Høyre), Christian Democrats and Liberals. If the Conservative Party

The shadow of Anders Breivik’s mass killings hang over coalition talks after Norway elections

The landslide victory of Norway’s opposition Conservatives  (Høyre) on Monday was short-lived after the country’s next prime minister, Erna Solberg, faced tough coalition talks with the anti-immigration and populist Progress party (Fremskrittspartiet) of which Anders Breivik was a member and whose cold-blooded killings continue to haunt the country, reports Reuters. Visit Wikipedia site here. Outgoing Labor Party

Fifty years from Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech

Today marks the 50th anniversary when Martin Luther King Jr.(1929-68) gave his historic “I have a dream” speech. When he gave the speech in Washington on August 28,1963, I was eight years old. Even if I knew nothing  about MLK at the time never mind anything about his famous speech, his words would have a

Migrant Tales (July 22, 2012): What have we learned after Norway’s 22/7

What goes around comes around. Exactly a year ago (2012) Anders Breivik carried out his mass killings, which ended up causing the death of 77 innocent victims. Have we learned anything from that tragic Saturday that shook the Nordic region and changed it permanently? In order to answer that question, we’d have to travel back in

Why we must challenge anti-immigration parties across Europe

A political party that bases its popularity on anti-immigration and populist rhetoric is like playing a risky political game of Russian roulette. The game continues until the only bullet in the revolver goes off in your head. Higher bets are placed each time that the revolver doesn’t fire: more xenophobia, more hate speech, more racist

Statement by the Council of Europe’s Human Rights Commissioner: “Europe must combat racist extremism and uphold human rights”

Migrant Tales comment: This statement by the  the Council of Europe’s Human Rights commissioner, Nils Muižnieks, is a good example of  how racist anti-immigration groups are gaining more power in Europe. In Finland we saw the spectacular rise of the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party in 2011. Finland’s anti-EU, anti-immigration and anti-Islam voice got stronger in parliament.  Matters

How ideologically alike is the PS with the UKIP and BNP?

The recent local election victory of the anti-EU and anti-immigration UKIP of Britain is a good example of what Finland experienced with the rise of the Perussuomalaiset (PS) in April 2011. While the United Kingdom and Finland are vastly different countries, the knee-jerk reaction of the ruling parties to right-wing populism and rhetoric is strikingly

Bachmannstein: or, The Modern Icarus

A Finnish friend recently asked me why I chose to take an American angle with my inaugural post here on Migrant Tales, “Of Birds and Feathers: The PS, the Sweden Democrats, and Their American Bedfellows. What could political trends in America tell us what we don’t already know about the phenomenon of the PS and

Could Finland and the Nordic region see Golden Dawn-like fanatics in the future?

The news from Greece is getting more distressing as Golden Dawn neo-Nazi thugs continue to terrorize sensible Greeks, immigrants and other minorities with the collusion of the police. An investigative report by The Guardian exposes how bad things are in Greece at present and why matters will get far worse. Could we see something similar happening in

Our Finnish modern-day eugenicists are no different from the past

Who are those modern-day eugenicists breathing life back into this disgraced pseudo-science whose aim was to create a master white race by wiping out other ones? If we look at Europe and the Nordic region today, we can find many politicians with the same nineteenth-century agenda but in a different context. 

The true face of the PS is being exposed by its poor election results

There’s an interesting editoral on Saturdary’s Helsingin Sanomat (HS) that shows how close Nordic anti-immigration are when it comes to the support they received in recent elections and poll standings. Migrant Tales wrote six days after Anders Breivik murdered in cold blood 77 people on July 22, 2011 that the tide had turned for far right anti-immigration parties

The Netherlands gives Geert Wilders the thumbs down

Voters in the Netherlands did not back Geert Wilders’ calls for the country to ditch the European Union, reports the BBC. Wilders, who has dominated Dutch politics for years, is known for his tough anti-Islam and now anti-EU stance. Among many of his provocative statements, the Dutch politician has equated the Koran with Hitler’s Mein

“After the immigrants, you’re next”

This chilling phrase that was written on flyers in a gay clubbing district of Athens, Greece, is only the tip of the iceberg concerning the ever-growing violence and intolerance spreading throughout Europe. Writes the Trumpet.com: “Masked men on motorbikes patrol the streets of Greece’s streets, attacking immigrants and driving off. Mobs armed with improvised weapons

When will parties like the PS start banning Islam in Finland?

Pär Norling, a leader of  the populist radical right Sweden Democrats of Bolnäs, located about 250km north of Stockholm,  demanded the following on Sveriges Teleivision (SVT): ”Ban Islam in Sweden and deport those who persist in believing in the religion.” When will we start to hear similar demands from politicians in Finland? One matter that

What have we learned after Norway’s 22/7?

What goes around comes around. Exactly a year ago Anders Breivik carried out his mass killings, which ended up causing the death of 77 innocent victims. Have we learned anything from that tragic Saturday that shook the Nordic region and changed it permanently? In order to answer that question, we’d have to travel back in time

Migrant Tales (July 25, 2011): Living in post-22/7 Europe

It is ironic that those right-wing populist and far-right parties that have gone out of their way to warn us about the threat of multiculturalism and religions like Islam have become the threat and Trojan Horses in our societies. In one horrific blow, Anders Behring Breivik did not only strike at Norway’s liberal democracy, but

A question begs an answer: Who are the Perussuomalaiset?

The million-dollar question after the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party’s historic election victory was what kind of party had entered the Finnish political stage. After over a year in parliament and numerous scandals that have rocked the PS, a question still begs an answer: Who are they? If you seek an answer directly from the party, the response

Finland & Cultural Diversity 2011

In many respects 2011 was a watershed year for Finland and Europe concerning the rise of anti-immigration parties and xenophobia. The biggest news to hit Finland this year was without a doubt the April 17 election, which saw the anti-immigration Perussuomalaiset (PS) party win 39 seats compared with only 5 in 2007. On July 22 Anders Breivik gunned down most of his 77 victims in Norway.

guardian.co.uk: Far-right Finnish politician Timo Soini bids for presidency

Timo Soini is excited about Italian bond yields. “I just heard that the interest on Italian 10-year loans is now over 7.3%,” he whispers as a cast-iron lift hoists us from the ground floor of the monumental Finnish parliament to his office above. “This is a horrendous situation.” But it’s clear that, from his political standpoint, it’s actually quite good news.

How to confront anti-immigration parties in the Nordic region

The societies of the Nordic countries are still models for the rest of Europe and the world when it comes to social justice, equality, and inclusion. Slower economic growth is not the only threat that they face today, but an ever-growing minority that believes that exclusion of certain groups is acceptable.

Ten matters that ignite the debating spirit of Migrant Tales

Migrant Tales will never censor opinions that aren’t racist. One of the strengths of this blog has been its diversity of opinions on immigration, Finnish identity and other topics. Even so, some matters get our adrenalin circulating faster than others. Here are the top 10:

Elections in Nordic Region send clear message to Finland’s PS

Anti-immigration populist parties in Norway and Denmark have suffered defeats in recent elections after mass-killer Anders Breivik went on the rampage on July 22. Both blows came this month. The first one was in the Norwegian municipal election, where the Progress Party (FrP) saw its support plunge by 6.1 percentage points to 11.5%. The second one happened Thursday in Denmark.

Der Spiegel International: Right-Wing Populists Face Test in Denmark

Just two months after the politically inspired massacre in Norway, a right-wing populist party, one of Europe’s most influential, will face a test of voter sentiment at the ballot box. The Danish People’s Party has been instrumental in tightening at least 20 laws pertaining to immigration and migration.

Ten steps to tame the beast of racism and prejudice in Finland

Like alcoholism, racism is a social ill that exists but is rarely recognized as a problem. In countries like Finland we are still debating whether racism and prejudice is a problem or not. How much must racism grow for us to accept it as a serious problem that threatens our present Nordic way of life?

Living in post-22/7 Europe

It is ironic that those right-wing populist and far-right parties that have gone out of their way to warn us about the threat of multiculturalism and religions like Islam have become the threat and Trojan Horses in our societies. In one horrific blow, Anders Behring Breivik did not only strike at Norway’s liberal democracy, but tore a hole in the argument of the anti-immigrant populists and fanatics.

The New York Review of Books: A New Approach to the Holocaust

It is fruitless to reduce the manifold evil of the Holocaust to a single cause. Ideology, charisma, conformism, hatred, greed, and war were all very important, but each was related to the others and all mattered within rapidly changing historical circumstances. In his profound study Holocaust, Peter Longerich puts forward an analysis that includes all these factors and shows how politics or, as he puts it, Politik, set them all in motion. In this amplified English edition of his Politik der Vernichtung (1998), Longerich preserves the German term Judenpolitik, and with good reason. In German Politik means both “politics” and “policy,” and the compound noun (Juden + Politik) gives a sense of a joining of concepts that English cannot quite convey.

Helsingin Yliopisto: Populismin juuret ovat kaukana historiassa

“On selvää, että äärioikeiston kannatuksen kasvu on yleiseurooppalainen ilmiö”, sanoo Suomen Akatemian tuore tutkijatohtori Inari Sakki. Monien muiden Euroopan maiden tavoin populistipuolueet ovat moninkertaistaneet kannatuksensa viime vuoden aikana myös Suomessa ja Ruotsissa. Vaikka ilmiö on näkyvä, Inari Sakin mielestä uutta tietoa aiheeseen tuo sosiaalipsykologinen näkökulma.

El País: El ocaso de la tolerancia nórdica

La victoria electoral de los Auténticos Finlandeses ha supuesto una pequeña revolución en el país nórdico, pero sobre todo ha hecho saltar todas las alarmas en una región en la que hasta hace bien poco era casi impensable escuchar argumentos tan extremistas como los que ahora circulan por los Parlamentos nacionales de la zona. Los partidos de extrema derecha y populistas nórdicos ya no pueden ser ignorados porque les respalda una parte del electorado nada despreciable. En Finlandia y en Dinamarca han sido la tercera fuerza más votada. En Suecia han aflorado de la semioscuridad y han entrado en la cámara parlamentaria.

HS: Halla-aho refuses to comment on controversial blog entries

Blog article from 2005 questions notion of human equality

Jussi Halla-aho, a nationalist politician from Helsinki, got 14,884 votes in Sunday’s Parliamentary elections, winning him a seat in Parliament on the True Finns party ticket. Halla-aho had established a reputation with his writings on the Internet.

Finland 2011 election: A perilous watershed

Sunday’s election in Finland was historic for many reasons. For one it ushered in a populist far-right party with xenophobic elements to the Eduskunta (Parliament). In order to comprehend the new political landscape of Finland, we must ask to whom will such a victory be a threat and an opportunity.

Finland election: Flirting with isolationism and xenophobia

In our neck of the woods in the Nordic region, ultra-nationalistic and xenophobic parties have made their mark in Norway, Denmark, Sweden and most likely now in Finland on Sunday when the True Finns are expected to score a historic victory. Will the election embolden other xenophobic parties in this region and Europe? Will it send shock ripples in the EU?

Iltalehti: Perussuomalaisten ehdokas: Holokaustia on liioiteltu

Eduskuntaan pyrkii holokaustin kyseenalaistaja ja rotujen sekoittumista vastustava. Kansanedustajuutta tavoittelee useita perussuomalaisia ehdokkaita, jotka ovat allekirjoittaneet maahanmuuttovastaisen ns. nuivan manifestin. Osalla ehdokkaista on läheiset suhteet äärikansalliseen Suomen Sisuun.

Magma Media: Populismin nousu Euroopassa

Ääriliikkeet ja poliittinen populismi ovat lisänneet kannatustaan eri maissa. Kyse on rajat ylittävästä ilmiöstä. Populismin alla on selvästi toisistaan poikkeavia liikkeitä ja puolueita. Ideologioissa, tavoitteissa, toimintatavoissa ja ääriliikkeiden esittämissä uhkakuvissa on eroja, mutta myös yhtäläisyyksiä.

Migrant Tales Media Monitoring: Don’t cry Finland if you don’t like migrants

Helsingin Sanomat, Finland’s largest-circulation daily, writes in an editorial about why the country needs labor migrants to secure economic growth and services offered by the welfare state. We are at a critical crossroads: It is the first time in history that more people die than there are newborns. While the editorial invites debate on Finland’s

When countries become nationalism addicts and junkies

Xenophobia tends to pile up. Like blacks in the United States, Finland’s “black” problem is Russia, and from the 1990s, Muslims. In the 1980s, when I lived permanently in Finland, and about 12,000 foreign nationals were living in the country, the racist undercurrent that flowed like a mighty river was ever-present. It reminded you whenever

(Racism Review) Swedish racism: Engineering a false image of democratic solidarity

When I, Masoud Kamali, arrived to Sweden as a political refugee from Iran in 1987, I had heard a lot about Sweden. While serving time as a political prisoner in Iran, one of my first images of Sweden came from an article that I had read in the Iranian Iran’s major newspaper, Keyhan. when I was in jail in Iran in late 1970s. It was about the Swedish Sweden’s charismatic Prime Minister Olof Palme. The article contained a picture of Palme walking his bicycle on the grounds of Stockholm’s famous Citadel and gathering money for the Sandinista movement in Nicaragua. As a leftist believing in a socialist revolution at that time, my prison-mates and I were very impressed by a country in which the Prime Minister dared openly support a leftist/Marxist movement.

Institute of Race Relations: When solidarity fails

In observations made at a side-meeting of the 87th session of the Committee for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD),[1] the IRR’s director warned that Europe’s mishandling of the refugee crisis is fuelling racism.

UPDATE (December 5): Migrant Tales’ 2015 Hall of Poor and Sloppy Journalism

How does the Finnish media give politicians that spread xenophobia and racism inflated respectability and importance? How can they  spread their prejudices and lies about immigrants and minorities without the help of the media? Migrant Tales will begin to collect stories from January 7 written by careless journalists that have been taken for a ride by such

Institute of Race Relations: Roma – fascism’s first victims, again

Liz Fekete Anti-Roma violence draws strength from fascist ideas that linger on in mainstream European thought. On 15 September, a Roma man from Romania, homeless in Sweden, died of injuries sustained on 31 August, when a fire broke out at a Roma temporary tent camp in Högdalen, southern Stockholm. We will probably never know whether

How to tell a Finnish politician that he or she sounds racist

The atmosphere for migrants and minorities in Finland is going to get worse as parliamentary elections near in April 2015. Two recent cases, Perussuomalaiset (PS)* MP Tom Packalén and National Coalition Party MP Pia Kauma, reinforce that matters are going to get worse before they improve. A good way to uncover these opportunistic politicians’ motives

Jussi Halla-aho: “Do not tolerate the intolerant one”

  Migrant Tales insight: We get a lot of email and tip-offs from our readers. The latest one we got is of three blog entry translations in English of Perussuomalaiset (PS)* MEP Jussi Halla-aho, who was convicted for ethnic agitation. This last one, Do not tolerate the intolerant one, was published in Scripta on December 20, 2007.  Apart

National Coalition Party of Finland to spearhead ban on begging

Matters are getting tougher in Finland if you are a minority belongs to an affluent group like the Swedish-speaking Finns or a poor one like the Romany minority. What do both initiatives, to demote Swedish to elective status at schools and ban begging, tell about Finland today?  One way to answer the latter question is

Finland & Cultural Diversity 2012*

If 2011 was a watershed year for Finland with the historic rise of  a hostile party against immigrants and visible minorities in last year’s parliamentary elections, 2012 will be seen as a bittersweet turning point for the Perussuomalaiset (PS).  The year will be remembered as a very violent one for immigrants as well. During “Black

Two-way integration still has a long way to go in Finland

What is the aim of Finland’s new integration law, which came into force in September 2011? While the law talks about two-way integration, what does it mean and how is it promoted?    Finland’s integration program is like an old abandoned Cadillac. It awakens our optimism but discourages us from acting because it is too costly to

The SD (and PS) are far-right anti-immigration parties

There’s an interesting opinion piece on Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter about the Swedish Democrats (SD) and the spread of fascism or neofascism in the Scandinavian country.  While classifying a party as “fascist” may be problematic, there are certain ideological characteristics that expose its true political colors.  Historian and journalist Henrik Arnstad writes: “Fascism is a deeply

YLE poll: The Perussuomalaiset party suffers a new blow in the polls

The many problems of the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party deepened today after a poll published by YLE showed the popularity of the party slipped further by 1.7 percentage points to 14.1%. The biggest party was Kokoomus (22.6%), followed by the Social Democrats (up 1.8% to 19.1%) and the Center Party (16.4%).

HS: Soini antoi tukensa hallituksen ulkomaalaispolitiikalle

Jaakko Hautamäki

Perussuomalaisten puheenjohtaja Timo Soini ei nähnyt mitään ongelmaa Suomen hallituksen ulkomaalaispolitiikassa, kun hän antoi haastattelun saksalaisille toimittajille Sanomatalossa tiistaina. Soini antoi täyden tukensa hallituksen ulkomaalaispolitiikalle ja puolittain suutahti, kun toimittajat kyselivät hänen mahdollisesta muukalaisvihamielisyydestään.