Saturday was a day of marching neo-Nazis and coded populist anti-immigration rhetoric

by , under Enrique Tessieri

 Blue Reform (formerly Perussuomalaiset*) MP Sampo Terho took part on Saturday in YLE’s Ykköaamu talk show. Later in the day in Tampere, neo-Nazis and other fascists held demonstrations. 

One of the matters that struck me the most about Terho’s interview was when the host, Seija Vaaherkumpu, asked him about what differences there were between the Perussuomalaiset (PS) and his newly formed party.

One of the matters he said was that Blue Reform doesn’t like to “yap about migration” in the opposition but wants to influence policy in government.

Yes, right, Terho. When you were head of the PS parliamentary group, your former party and you spearheaded the tightening of immigration policy by making family reunification an impossible dream for many migrants. You did away as well with residence permits given on humanitarian grounds; you shortened appeal times, you undermined the legal rights of asylum seekers and poisoned the air with your oversimplified rhetoric.

One good distinction between Blue Reform and the PS concerning immigration policy is how they express their racism and contempt for cultural diversity (anti-white supremacy). Terho’s group speaks more in code while the PS says it straight out. Terho is also minister for European affairs, culture and sport as well as chairman of the Association of Finnish Culture and Identity, which systematically destroyed – and continues to undermine – cultural diversity with the help of whitewashing.

Watch the Ykköaau talk show here.

Another important matter that arose in the interview is Terho’s hostility towards asylum seekers and Muslims. He showed as well that he is still an anti-immigration populist with a deep love of neo-liberal economic policies.

Meanwhile, around one thousand people took part on Saturday in Tampere in neo-Nazi and anti-fascist demonstrations, reports YLE News.

Writes Sakari Timonen in his blog about the demonstrations that such a march with neo-Nazis would take place in Finland in 2017. “What is even more surprising,” he writes, “is that all those who peacefully opposed the Nazis are automatically labeled [by the media] as left-wing, violent anarchists.”

The fact that there was such a march, which was convened to protest the possible dissolving by the Pirkanmaa District Court of the neo-Nazi association Suomen Vastaanrintaliike, is a good question by Timonen.

One answer is that Finland has done dear little to wipe out fascism. Denying that this is a problem, like racism, is the problem.

Writs YLE News:

About one thousand people from different parts of Finland participated in neo-Nazi and anti-fascist demonstrations in the city of Tampere on Saturday.

The protests were organised by the Nordic Resistance Movement and the opposing group, called “Tampere Without Nazis”. The counter-protesters numbered some 800 people according to police, an estimated four times more than the neo-Nazi rally.

Former PS member Terhi Kiemunki taking part in the demonstrations together with others who made Nazi salutes. Note some of the demonstrators wearing white supremacist Soldiers of Odin coats. Source: Uuninpankkopoika Saku Timonen’s blog.



* After the Perussuomalaiset (PS) party imploded on June 13 into two factions, the PS and New Alternative, which is now called Blue Reform. Despite the name changes, we believe that it is the same party in different clothing. Both factions are hostile to cultural diversity.  One is more open about it while the other is more diplomatic. 

A direct translation of Perussuomalaiset in English would be something like “basic” or “fundamental Finn.” Official translations of the Finnish name of the party, such as Finns Party or True Finns, promote in our opinion nativist nationalism and racism. We, therefore, at Migrant Tales prefer to use in our postings the Finnish name of the party once and after that the acronym PS.