THIS STORY WAS UPDATED
It is quite extraordinary that the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* continues to play down and deflect criticism for their admiration and support for outgoing US President Donald Trump whose most recent crimes included actively inciting a mob to violently assault the legislative branch of government to overturn the election he lost by seven million votes.
PS leader Jussi Halla-aho, like Trump, suffers from obsessions that are perilous not only to them but to the whole nation.
If Trump is driven by his vanity, Halla-aho’s political message is based on racism and hard-right economic policies in the worst conservative tradition.
Apart from “digging” Trump and claiming that he is the best thing to happen to the United States and the Western world, Halla-aho shows support for the outgoing US president’s immigration policy.
But that isn’t all.
What about Trump’s Muslim ban? What about his open support for white-supremacists and their violence? And who could forget the tear-gassing of peaceful protestors from Lafayette Square for a photo shoot holding a Bible upside down?
Halla-aho and in the case of Trump was quoted as saying in Ilta-Snomat that too much attention has been given to him for his unorthodox style. Even so, he said the outgoing US president raised critical issues concerning global trade, Chinese dominance, and blocking migration.
“It’s a different matter how well Trump succeeded in his goals of curbing immigration, but I think those goals are quite right in themselves,” he said.
When hearing and reading Halla-aho’s views in the media, they should be seen as how he and his party envisage Finland.
Like many PS politicians, who gain political capital and attention by spreading racism, Halla-aho’s aim is to stop all migration from Muslim countries.
That is why it should not come as any surprise what Halla-aho said in Politiken, one of Denmark’s most important dailies, that he’s not interested in becoming a minister or even prime minister. The only reason he is in politics is to change the “scheme and system” of the way Finland’s immigration policy operates.
In plain English, this means to end accepting asylum seekers from Africa and Muslim-majority countries just like what the Danish People’s Party (DPP) wants in Denmark.
Halla-aho and the PS are close ideological allies with the DPP.
Moreover, Halla-aho and his pundits have not criticized once Trump’s inhumane immigration policy of separating children from their parents at the border.
Writes the Washington Post: “All this [last week’s storming of the Capitol building] is crystallized by a scathing new report from the inspector general of the Justice Department on the family separations policy, a report that exposes the startling depths of depravity and contempt for good governance and basic humanity that drove its implementation.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR
Will the blind support for Trump by the PS end up hurting the party as municipal elections near in April?
This is happening at this moment with the PS and its leaders being under greater scrutiny by the media and politicians.
After the historic election of the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party in 2011, when it won 39 seats in parliament from 5 previously, two international events have kept in check the PS and other populist parties in Europe: the bloody 22/7 events that left seventy-seven dead in Norway, and now Wednesday’s storming of the Capitol building in Washington.
Thus, the greatest threat to the PS will be its radical political views that are mostly based on lies and on polarizing society.
The PS aims to turn Finland into a Hungary or Trump-style banana republic, but they will fail.