The sooner we admit that the Perussuomalaiset is a far-right extremist party the better for our democracy

by , under Enrique Tessieri

Why is it so difficult for the national media in Finland to acknowledge that the Perussuomalaiset (PS)* party is a far-right political fringe group? This was further confirmed on Monday when Italy’s far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini announced a political alliance to challenge the EU.

Right, you guessed correctly. The PS, together with other far-right groups like the Danish People’s Party (DPP), Germany’s AfD and Lega Nord of Italy, announced that they’d form a political alliance in the EU.

Even if this is news, it is actually old news. The PS has forged throughout the years strong ties with a number of far-right parties like the DPP. where they get their most extremist ideas about migration policy.

Remember PS MP Ville Tavio, who suggested a while back that the PS should form an alliance with France’s far-right Front National?

The PS’ connections and ideological compatibility with the European far right, even neo-Nazi groups, is not news. It is a fact that has been around for a long time but which the media and other political groups have had a hard time admitting.

If we admit it, what does it say about our country, political system and ourselves as a nation? Some correctly call it denial with the help of Finnish exceptionalism.

Oulu Silvennoinen is a researcher on Finland’s far right. He does not vacillate when it comes to calling the PS for what it is: a party with fraternal ties with far-right parties. Silennoinen tweets below: “The PS in its present form [and] is a far-right party agenda which acts and whose modus operandi functions in accordance with the models of the international far right.”

The Finnish media should wake up and call the PS for what it is: A far-right extremist party. Here, in the headline, it continues to give the party the benefit of the doubt by stating that the PS continues to have ties with neo-Nazi white supremacist groups. Read the full story (in Finnish) here.

The PS and Blue Reform decade (2011-19) is Finland’s rendezvous with xenophobia and nationalism.

Finland has paid a high price to learn today that parties like the PS and Blue Reform are a deception because the only thing they like to do is offer simple solutions to complex issues, scapegoat and never offer effective solutions.

For the sake of our democracy, Finland should wake up and challenge extremist parties like the PS and not give them space in the face of consensus and weak leadership.

We should also stop teaching and reinforcing nativist nationalism and far-right ideologies linked to the latter to our children at schools.

The Perussuomalaiset (PS) party imploded on June 13, 2017, 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 never mind Muslims and other visible minorities. One is more open about it while the other says it in a different way.

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.