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The wise Ian Buruma on the Trumpists' attempts to construct a global Fascist International: Ian Buruma: Steve Bannon’s European Adventure: "The reputed mastermind of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign has launched a full-scale effort to unite Europe's right-wing forces and bring down the European Union...

...After being cast out of the White House and Breitbart News.... Bannon sees this effort as part of a “war” between... the white, Christian, patriotic “real people” (in the words of his British supporter, Nigel Farage) and the cosmopolitan globalist elites. In the media, at least, Bannon is taken seriously. It would seem to be a tall order for this permanently disheveled American media blowhard and promoter of cranky ideas about cyclical cataclysms to change the history of Europe. Despite meeting such right-wing luminaries as Hungary’s strongman Viktor Orbán, Italy’s Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, and Boris Johnson, the clownish former British foreign secretary, all of whom wish him well, Bannon has almost no experience in European politics. He stunned a sympathetic audience in Prague by ranting against “unfair competition” from foreign countries that use cheap labor. Much of the Czech Republic’s GDP comes from exports, for just that reason.

But the main problem facing Bannon’s effort is that right-wing populist leaders are a disparate bunch.... What they all have in common, however, is reliance on animus, sometimes directed at Muslims, sometimes at any kind of immigrants, very often against the EU, and always against the liberal elites–whom British Prime Minister Theresa May described as “citizens of nowhere.” There is something conspiratorial about this animus, a notion that the common man is at the mercy of a shadowy network of string-pullers that rules the world. In the days when Stalin identified enemies of the people as “rootless cosmopolitans” (meaning Jews), the headquarters of this omnipotent global network was thought to be New York, with branch offices in London and Paris. Now it is located in Brussels.... The sinister globalist elite, represented by George Soros and other liberals whom they accuse of promoting human rights, compassion for refugees, and religious tolerance to further their own interests. They are the ones who are supposedly swamping Christian lands with aliens. They are stabbing Western civilization in the back...


#shouldread

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