The article below was posted this morning on the CVF blog in a slightly different format.
NOTE: The information presented here was part of a team effort by members of the Center for Vigilant Freedom. I owe a great debt to all the people in Europe, Canada, and the USA who helped compile the data. Without all the man-hours they put into it, the Corrections Project would not have been possible.
Update: A reader in Finland sends the following corrections:
I have small corrections for your newest article (Suggested Corrections for Charles Johnson). You have listed interesting parties, and along them are Finnish Persusuomalainen and Suomen Kristillisdemokraatit.
As a Finn I would like to correct two things:
1) There is a misspelling: it’s Perussuomalaiset (True Finns), not Persusuomalainen. Here is their site and some info in English. This party definitely belongs to “intersting parties” list. By the way, Jussi Halla-aho (Inter Arma) was candidate for this party in last parlamentary election in this year. 2) Suomen Kristillisdemokraatit (Christian Democrats) definitely doesn’t belong to this list.
I’ve corrected the misspelling. Suomen Kristillisdemokraatit remains on the list, but is struck through.
Further updates 12/14/07: By mistake, Volkspartij voor Vrijheid en Democratie was listed for the Netherlands. It has been corrected to Partij voor de Vrijheid.
Also, for the United Kingdom, Christian People’s Alliance has been added.
Further updates 12/15/07: Additional updates are being posted only at the CVF version of this post. Additions and modifications to the list of interesting anti-jihad political parties have been made, including parties in Austria and Australia.
From now on refer to that post for details.
Call me Ishmael.
For it does feel as if we’ve been trapped on that whaling ship with Ahab, in obsessive pursuit of the Great White Whale of European right-wing political parties…
Over the last two months, in more than twenty posts, the U.S. blog Little Green Footballs (LGF), run by Charles Johnson, has insistently criticized any U.S. and European individuals or groups who dare to meet with selected European right-wing parties, particularly parties who oppose the Islamization of Europe with actual policy initiatives. His objections are based on the past associations of some members of those parties with yet other groups, such as Front National in France, or during World War II with now long-deceased Nazi collaborators. He has consistently discounted as “obfuscations” and “spin” any counter-evidence published here or on various other blogs — Gates of Vienna, Atlas Shrugs, Conservative Swede, Tundra Tabloids, etc. — including historical or cultural context or specific refutations. He has never published any corrections of refuted allegations.
As background, this debate was started by LGF’s objections to the participation by individuals from two European political parties — Vlaams Belang and the Sweden Democrats — at a two-day conference of individuals working against Islamization of western institutions. Counterjihad Brussels 2007 was attended by over seventy individuals from fourteen European countries, including five participants from the United States. Review the many Counterjihad Brussels 2007 presentations for a detailed view of the Islamization of Europe.
A number of online journalists have expressed concern over Johnson’s seemingly erratic and contentious behavior, including its self-destructive aspects. On a more positive note, we think the LGF case study presents an opportunity to improve online journalistic standards through analysis of LGF’s rapidly degenerating journalistic practice.
The case study problem presented by LGF’s posts is a surprising dumbing-down of quality, to where Little Green Footballs — at least on this topic — is little more than a serial photonovella of alleged comic book “crypto-Nazis.” (LGF’s reporting on other issues is still good, which is why this apparent monomaniacal Captain Ahab-type pursuit of European right-wing political parties has objective analysts wondering what’s going on over there.)
The problem presented by LGF’s journalistic sources is more serious, and was described by political analyst James Lewis at The American Thinker:
The conservative blogosphere is not immune to disinformation ops. If the American Left can’t knock out conservative talk radio with the Fairness Doctrine, they have enough billionaires who are happy to sponsor dirty tricks to split the conservative movement. “Black PR” is quite likely to happen during the coming election. Keep an eye out for it.
It is therefore at least possible that Charles Johnson has been taken in by disinformation. It’s easy to fall for suspicious information on the web.
Or as Richard Miniter from Pajamas Media wrote, before Johnson’s management relationship with that organization was severed:
I suspect that Charles Johnson has not met any of the Vlaams Belang leadership or even interviewed them. He is simply following a left-wing link. He does not offer evidence, based not on his own experience, reporting or careful deliberation, but simply links to web sites of virulent critics- virtually all of whom have not interviewed party leaders or spent any time understanding the nuances of Belgian politics. The blind leading the blind.
Why take the word of political rivals’ at face value—without contacting the accused yourself? Do you we turn to right-wing ideologues for objective coverage of Hillary Clinton? Or do we weigh their statements against evidence?
This underlines the biggest weakness of the web—and underscores why bloggers will not displace the MSM anytime soon. Links are not evidence; they are leads to be seriously investigated. It is time for the web to grow up.
This LGF case study will make excellent fodder for future college students in Journalism 101 courses. As a study aid, we’ll look at LGF’s primary sources, and then recommend corrections that should have been posted. Even better, we’ll use the ethical standards of the Society of Professional Journalists as a rubric.
1. — Diligently seek out subjects of news stories to give them the opportunity to respond to allegations of wrongdoing.
Based on LGF posts, no attempt was made to obtain a response to the allegations made about Vlaams Belang and Sweden Democrats. To compensate for that lapse in ethics by LGF, CVF and other blogs have posted published interviews, statements, parliamentary speeches, etc. to provide a response to the allegations — all dismissed by LGF without any citation or discussion as “obfuscation.” Any official statement or published interview by Vlaams Belang officials is dismissed as “obfuscation.” Statements of support for Israel, opposition to anti-semitism, opposition to holocaust denial, all dismissed as “obfuscation.” The presence of non-white party members and officials in Vlaams Belang, potential proof of a lack of racism? Carefully not mentioned in any posts. Historical background? “Obfuscation.”Any discussion at an analytic level above the photonovella journalism of LGF? “Obfuscation.”
2. — Identify sources whenever feasible. The public is entitled to as much information as possible on sources’ reliability.
LGF has relied primarily on left-wing, highly biased sources for evidence, photos, videos etc. — all of which have been available for years on anti-Vlaams Belang and Sweden Democrat websites run by opposing political parties. LGF has not disclosed the bias of these sources, which means that the readers are not able to judge for themselves the sources’ reliability. Vlaams Belang and Sweden Democrats are both completely public about their far-right pasts, and both have publicly rejected earlier positions and members that were far-right. Both parties have fought multiple election battles against left-wing opponents, so all the evidence “disclosed” by LGF was simply recycled from past campaigns. LGF’s “discoveries” were already very old news in Belgium and Sweden. It is conceivable that LGF might even lose credibility with their largely conservative/libertarian readers, if they knew that LGF was relying primarily on extreme left-wing sources for the Vlaams Belang and Sweden Democrats reporting. Readers should ask: why does LGF uses primarily left-wing sources when covering Vlaams Belang, but excludes from analysis VB’s copious archive of parliamentary motions, speeches, interviews, etc? At the least, this is journalism several degrees less professional than the mainstream media. Here are four representative left-wing sources for various photos or videos posted at LGF, with no disclosure of the source’s ideology:
LGF Source #1: Blokwatch is a website dedicated to opposing the Flemish independence party Vlaams Belang. Blokwatch is run by Marc Spruyt, author of two books critical of VB, who with another LGF source Øyvind Strømmen, is a member of the European Consortium for Political Research’s “Standing Group on Extremism & Democracy.” Spruyt, Strommen and their 600+ colleagues have a vested interest in creating an expansive and politically correct definition of “extremism”:
The majority of the members work on issues of political extremism (ca. 375 [out of 600+]). The bulk of them research movements and ideas related to ‘right-wing extremism,’ including antisemitism, fascism, nationalism, and populism. Only some 30 members study (also) the extreme left.
Spruyt lists as a partner in his efforts Patrick Coeman, now owner of the antifa.net website, which is host to extremist left-wing antifa, autonome and anarchist groups across Europe. Here are the websites hosted by the Blokwatch partner antifa.net:
- AG NordWest
- AG no tears for krauts — halle
- AK Antifa Potsdam
- Anti-SVP, Hugo Team
- Antifa CR Marburg
- Antifa Greece Forum
- Antifa Saar
- Antifa u7 Berlin
- Antifa United
- Antifa Roßwein Döbeln Leisnig [RDL]
- Antifa Westmittelfranken
- Antifa Yaroslavl
- Antifa Z Heilbronn
- Antifa[x] Recklinghausen
- Antifa-AG Uni Bielefeld
- Antifa-Gruppe Apolda
- Antifajugend Premnitz
- Antifa-Seite für Bremen undUmzu
- Antifa-Seite für Verden
- Antifainfo Neumünster
- Antifascist Action Bratislava
- Antifascist Action Russia
- Antifascistische Actie Den Haag
- Antifascistische Actie Nederland
- Antifaschischer Arbeitskreis Halle
- Antifaschistische Aktion 13 [AFA13]
- Antifaschistische Jugend Mannheim
- Antifaschistische Aktion Gera [AAG]
- Antifaschistische Aktion Koblenz
- Antifaschistische Aktion Lausitz
- Antifaschistische Aktion Leverkusen — [AALEV]
- Antifaschistische Aktion Limburg
- Antifaschistische Aktion Ravensburg
- Antifaschistische Aktion Ulm / Neu-Ulm Antifaschistisches Aktionsbündnis Baden-Württemberg (AABaWü)
- Antifaschistische Gruppe Bonn (Never Again)
- Antifaschistische Gruppe Südthüringen [AGST] Antifaschistische Gruppen in Aachen und Umgebung
- Antifaschistische Gruppen im Westhavelland
- Antifaschistischer Widerstand Schwäbisch Hall
- Arbeitskreis Antifaschismus Mainz
- *** arg.antifa.net
- *** artthur.antifa.net
- Autonome Antifa Frankfurt am Main
- Autonome Antifa Moers
- Autonome Antifa Teltow-Fläming
- Autonome Antifa Koordination Thüringen
- Autonome AntifaschistInnen Weimar
- Autonome Gruppe Oberland
- Bündnis gegen Rechts Braunschweig
- Bristol AntiFA
- Crusty Trusty gig
- De Nar, Autonoom Anarchistische publicatie
- grodno SHARP Skins
- Guerilla, Let The Revolution Rock
- interskins International SkinHead Group
- Institut für mentale Hygiene
- Jugendantifa Münster
- Portalseite Antifaschistischer Initiatieven im Jena
- Onderzoeksgroep Kafka
- La Banda Vaga Rätekommunistisch — anarchistische Gruppe in Freiburg
- Left Resistance Arnstadt [LRA]
- *** nrw.antifa.net
- Offene Antifa Münster (OAM)
- Offene Antifa Recklinghausen
- Probsteier Forum Antinationalismus e.V.
- Projekt Antifa Aachen
- Russian Anarchist Skinheads
- *** slf.antifa.net
- SoMBrero — Solidariteit Mexico-België
- Stop Nieuw Rechts
- *** tegenpropaganda.antifa.net
- Ufa Antifa Resistance
- Veganlink Vegan In Movimento
- Venceremos Antifa-Aktionen in Dresden
Of course, LGF has every right to use information from Blokwatch or Blokwatch’s autonome, antifa and anarchist partners; and LGF readers should have every expectation of full disclosure of Blokwatch’s bias.
LGF Source #2: Øyvind Strømmen. Strømmen’s book on “Eurofascism” will soon be published. He is fond of applying the “fascist” label rather widely — to Oriana Fallaci, also here, where he states that support for Fallaci can lead to “politically motivated violence.“ In his “fisking” of Mark Steyn (America Alone) he denies the existence of any Eurabia project, and then gives us our marching orders: “So, here’s the deal: An increasing number of Europeans will be Muslim. Deal with it.” Elsewhere he writes of the fascists whom he finds everywhere EXCEPT in Islamofascism, for which he is an enthusiastic apologist:
– – – – – – – – –
Instead of worrying about Islamofascism, European politicians should worry about not-so-good, old-fashioned European fascism, which increasingly makes it presence known in a number of European countries. Groups on the socalled far right use the onesidedness of the media to their advantage; and are gaining a momentum. The spokesmen of fascism are once again being listened to as wise and daring voices, voices who speak out against the “occupation” of Europe by “strangers”.
The modern-day fascists come in all kinds of clothing, some of them dressing like liberals and some of them like conservatives. Many modern-day fascists will deny being so. But fascism is not as easy to recognise as in “V for Vendetta?”, not in most cases. European fascists have learnt to dress themselves in the robes of political correctness, that is — in a suit and with a tie. This is what Eurofascism looks like, and it even appeals to people who are not fascists at all…
LGF Source #3: The Yellowman site, also used as a resource for LGF, inherited the Blokwatch materials after that website stopped updates, and is also a repository for all anti-Vlaams Belang materials gathered by opposition parties over the years. One of their shocked, shocked objections to Vlaams Belang: a photo of a VB demonstration (lower right column) with the caption “Vlaams Belang supports George W. Bush and the war” (“Vlaams Belang steunt George W. Bush en oorlog.”).
LGF Source #4: The primary source used for “evidence” against the Swedish Democrats was Expo.se, a far-left organization associated with the violent AFA that has repeatedly and openly attacked Swedish Democrat candidates and members. The founder of Expo, Tobias Hubinette, wrote in 1996 (Creal no 1 1996 och “Svartvitt” (Black-and-White) [translation from Swedish] :
“To feel and even think that the white race is inferior in every conceivable way is natural with regards to its history and present actions. Let the Western countires of the white race perish in blood and suffering. Long live the multi-cultural, racially mixed and class-free ecological society! Long live anarchy!”
“I started by simply attacking and more or less assault persons that acted in a racist way around me. It could be everything from full-blown skinheads to school-aged children or older men and women”
To get a sense of Expo, look at their U.S. partner: Expo asserts a cooperative relationship with the Center For New Community in the U.S. (CNC), an open-borders group. CNC dismisses any opposition to illegal immigration as “the new nativism.” The latest CNC report is “Nativism in the House: A Report on the House Immigration Reform Caucus.” Here is what LGF source Expo’s partner, CNC, has to say about the House Immigration Reform Caucus:
The Caucus’s extreme ideological agenda, long-standing ties to anti-immigrant groups, and cohesion in a fractured House of Representatives makes it a noxious ingredient in the melting pot of America. It has drawn even well-intentioned immigration reform proposals down into an abyss of nativism and xenophobia.
So much for LGF’s sources. Next we list the corrections that should have been posted, illustrating several other Society of Professional Journalists standards that LGF ignored, including:
|1.||Make certain that headlines, news teases and promotional material, photos, video, audio, graphics, sound bites and quotations do not misrepresent. They should not oversimplify or highlight incidents out of context [this was a major cause for corrections in the LGF case study, where any “context” was equated with the oft-repeated “obfuscation”].|
|2.||Tell the story of the diversity and magnitude of the human experience boldly, even when it is unpopular to do so.|
|3.||Examine their own cultural values and avoid imposing those values on others.|
|4.||Support the open exchange of views, even views they find repugnant.|
|5.||Distinguish between advocacy and news reporting. Analysis and commentary should be labeled and not misrepresent fact or context.|
|6.||Clarify and explain news coverage and invite dialogue with the public over journalistic conduct.|
|7.||Encourage the public to voice grievances against the news media.|
|8.||Admit mistakes and correct them promptly.|
|9.||Expose unethical practices of journalists and the news media.|
|10.||Abide by the same high standards to which they hold others.|
Corrections Concerning Sverigedemokraterna
Oct 24, 2007
“As for the other party I identified as problematic for the anti-jihad movement in this post, Sverigedemokraterna (Sweden Democrats), the web site expo.se has a gallery of photos of their links to neo-Nazis, including this image from 1996:” [photo of a woman in a Nazi-type uniform]”If you research these groups, it’s impossible to miss these disturbing connections.”
Suggested correction: “The assertion that the photograph of Tina Hallgren Bengtsson in a Nazi uniform was taken at a Sverigedemokraterna rally is untrue. At the time this photograph was taken, Ms. Bengtsson had already left the Sweden Democrats, and joined the Nationalsocialistisk Front (NSF), i.e. the Nazi Party. The event depicted in the photograph is most likely an NSF rally. Sweden Democrats continued to purge the party of other members with neo-Nazi sympathies, with a clean break by 2000.”
Oct 25, 2007
“I received an email from Ted Ekeroth, an active politician in the Sweden Democrats, asking me to reconsider my opinion about his party.”If you haven’t noticed yet, I have serious misgivings about both Vlaams Belang and Sverigedemokraterna.”Ekeroth included the following documents with his email, and because I have an enormous respect for the group intelligence of the lizard army, and because I’m trying to be fair even while the hackles rise on the back of my neck, I’m putting them online and inviting comments. (And of course, I’ll form my own opinions as well.)”
Suggested correction: “The Sweden Democrats of today have made a clean break with the past. The leadership of the party is all changed, and problematic members have been expelled. There are no disturbing connections to be found today. The standards should be no different for the Sweden Democrats than for all the other Swedish parties, all of which have disturbing Nazi connections in the past.”
Corrections Concerning Vlaams Belang
Oct 19, 2007
“It’s important to note that not all the people who are hitching a ride on the anti-Islamization movement are doing it for honorable reasons. There are serious issues around the participation of Filip Dewinter (of the ultra-nationalist Vlaams Belang party, successor to Vlaams Blok).”
Suggested correction: “It is not dishonorable for the Flemish citizens to organize politically against the Islamisation of their own cities. In fact, those real-life political efforts may be the real anti-Islamisation movement, on which bloggers are hitching a ride.”
Oct 24, 2007
“Exhibit 1: in 2005, Vlaams Belang MPs shunned a resolution condemning the Nazi death camps.”
Suggested correction: “Vlaams Belang voted against the 2005 EU Parliament Holocaust Resolution because its wording contained support for an EU bill that would criminalize criticism of Islam. Vlaams Belang and the Flemish Parliament passed a resolution the following day commemorating the Holocaust, and an open letter to the Jewish community explaining the EU Parliament vote. Vlaams Belang has taken a strong stance on behalf of Israel and is the most pro-Israel party in Belgium.”
Oct 24, 2007
“Exhibit 2: a White Power flag at a Vlaams Belang rally this month. The other flags are Flemish nationalist flags, and the one partly visible behind the White Power flag is typically used by Vlaams Belang.”
Suggested correction: “When I referred to event with the photograph of the flag as a ‘Vlaams Belang rally’, I was mistaken. The event in question was in fact a VJW (Youth of West Flanders) rally in Brugge. VJW is an entirely separate organization and has nothing whatsoever to do with Vlaams Belang.”
Oct 24, 2007
“Exhibit 3: As mentioned above, the predecessor to Vlaams Belang, Vlaams Blok, was outlawed in 2004.
Suggested correction: “Vlaams Blok was made illegal under the totalitarian Belgian anti-discrimination law, by a judge affiliated with the opposing party, for allegedly ‘racist’ materials such as studies quoting government demographic and crime statistics, and a critique of Islam’s treatment of women by an Islamic member of VB.”
Oct 24, 2007
“Exhibit 4: we don’t only find support for Vlaams Belang at Stormfront. Here’s a post at the ‘Pan Aryan National Front,’ with links to many VB videos.
Suggested correction: “The fact that Storm Front or other anti-Semitic groups link to Vlaams Belang means nothing; Little Green Footballs itself is often linked by groups with whom I disagree. Some anti-semitic forums link to Vlaams Belang to criticize the VB support for Israel.”
Oct 27, 2007
“…here are some more videos on the Flemish Vlaams Belang party and Filip DeWinter, to further support my case that the European anti-Islamization movement is making a mistake by allowing this group to participate.Exhibit 1: a recent video of an interview with Filip Dewinter discussing Turkey and the EU, where we see what is undoubtedly a white power statue on his bookshelf. It’s near the end of this short clip.”
Suggested correction: “The design on Filip Dewinter’s bookshelf (known as ‘Odin’s Cross’ or a ‘Celtic Cross’) is not primarily a ‘white power’ symbol. It has a long and respected history as a symbol of Flemish patriotism and of links to Irish and Brittany nationalism as well.”
Oct 27, 2007
From 1991 video:Dewinter speaking: “: ‘Yes, the Vlaams Blok (Flemish Block) chooses our own people first (slogan: Eigen Volk Eerst). And yes, the Vlaams Blok chooses a Flemish Flanders. And yes, the Vlaams Blok chooses a white Europe.’
Suggested correction: “Dewinter clarifies his statement in this interview: “When I said I was in favor of a white Europe, that was a metaphor. It meant I was in favor of our values, our way of life, our civilization. And yes, it’s a white civilization in the past, I can’t deny that. That has nothing to do with white supremacist or racism, it was just a fact. I am not an ethnical nationalist, I am a cultural nationalist. I believe in cultures and values. I accept that there is diversity now. I accept that other people from other continents live over here, they are part of our civilization now. And it has nothing to do with the color of you skin. It has nothing to do with your race or where you’re coming from. It has to do with your way of life, your values, are you loyal to our civilization …I don’t think Islam is compatible with our way of life, with our values, our European and western civilization. So if Muslims want to live over here, they should accept our values. It’s for them to decide if they can become European and stay Muslim.”
Oct 30, 2007
Vlaams Belang’s party platform asks for full and unconditional amnesty for people convicted for collaboration with Nazi Germany after World War II. Vlaams Belang claims that many convicts were victims of excesses by the Belgian judiciary system against Flemish nationalists. It also states that it has “equal respect” for the suffering of all the victims during the years of war and the repression afterwards, regardless of whichever side they had sided with, or of whichever side the Belgian judiciary maintained that they had sided with. It states that all other European countries have already granted amnesty, and that the 1961 Belgian “Vermeylen” law is no general amnesty law such as in the Netherlands or France, but only possibly grants amnesty after expressing regret about the actions committed.
Suggested correction: “This position is held by the other Flemish independence parties as well, so it at least should be seen as an issue in Flemish independence. In 1998, the Flemish Parliament approved state-aid for thousands of collaborators, who were thereafter to be treated on the same legal basis as “victims of war” who suffered or were persecuted by the Nazis. The 60 Flemish MPs who supported the measure were from the Christian-Social CVP party, the Volksunie and the Vlaams Blok.”
Nov 4, 2007
“Here’s DeWinter with French neo-fascist/Holocaust “minimizer” Jean-Marie Le Pen:”[photo]
Suggested correction: “Dewinter has unequivocally rejected Le Pen’s views on Israel, the Holocaust, and his support for Islamists. A photo showing Dewinter greeting Le Pen at a funeral does not negate his statements”
Nov 5, 2007
“If you’ve been following the misleading claims put out by Vlaams Belang supporters such as Brussels Journal, you probably noticed that they’re now saying that assassinated Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn was a supporter of Vlaams Belang, and never called Filip DeWinter a ‘fascist,’ as cited by Wikipedia.”Two European readers have now emailed links to sources for this quote…”Michael Van Der Galiën… emailed a better translation of Fortuyn’s statement:”‘Those men say unacceptable things. DeWinter is a fascist. I’m a civilized man. You won’t hear me say: “own people first.” And am I not much more sympathetic than DeWinter?’“
Suggested correction: “Pim Fortuyn did not view Vlaams Belang or Filip Dewinter as a fascist, as evidenced by other quotes from him such as this one:”‘Give us a break! Holland is full of monuments to the Second World War. And then Kok endlessly goes from today back to then, and the checkered past, and Nazism. I find it entirely invalid to liken these [i.e., the past and present]. It just poisons the whole topic [of immigrant issues]. I also think the way that Kok describes Haider’s views is scandalous. Haider is not a Nazi. And if he is, then he’s no different than many in the Social Democratic and Christian Democratic parties. Sure, [Haider’s party] have a problem with their checkered past, but all the parties do. And who gave shelter to all the “war criminals” after the war? That was the Allied coalition, and not Haider. So what is Kok on about? Also, it’s not valid to talk about the Vlaams Blok in that way, either. It is senseless to be endlessly milking this Hitler thing. Then and now, are two incomparable realities.’“
Nov 6, 2007
“So, since I want to try to avoid that astonishingly authentic-appearing Belgian government disinformation, let’s go directly to the source this time, with some images from the Vlaams Belang youth magazine (published online as PDF files).”Frequently appearing in this magazine is De Striprubriek, a column about comic strips. The logo for this column is a rat with a fountain pen.And a lovely White Nationalist Odin’s Cross armband.”
Suggested correction: “The Black Rat is a widespread symbol of youthful rebellion, used in both Flanders and Wallonia by groups of varying political persuasions. As I acknowledged earlier, the Celtic Cross or Odin’s Cross is not primarily a ‘white power’ symbol in Flanders, but rather a symbol for separatism and independence. This fact, plus the absence of any other evidence supporting such a connotation for the cartoon, leads me to conclude that there is no basis for referring to it as a ‘white power rat’.”
Nov 9, 2007
And here’s Koen Dillen enjoying the company of Belgian nazi collaborator Leon Degrelle, ranking Standartenführer in the Waffen SS
Suggested correction: From the statement by Koenraad Dillen: “Yes I met LD on 11th of July 1992. I was 27 years old at the time.I finished my studies in 1987 with a paper on the french writer Robert Brasillach. The director of my thesis was a left wing professor of literature, named George Adé. He died in 1992. I got “maxima cum laude” with my thesis.Before the war, Robert Brasillach published a book on “Léon Degrelle et l’avenir de Rex”. Since my paper deals a lot with Brasillach and Belgium, I took a genuine interest in Degrelle and wrote about him. He was an important figure in prewar politicics and played a major role during the war years. After the war, in exile, he continued his life in Spain as a writer. Soldier on the eastern front, Degrelle was convicted, in absentia, for high treason. But he was never charged with war crimes.I had neither sympathy, nor animosity for Degrelle in 1992. He was 84 years old at the time. He interested me as a person who played a historical role. No more, no less. I had no political functions at the time.In may 1992, I started a weekly column on French intellectual life and politics in the newspaper ‘t Pallieterke. I still write my article every week. So I have a partly job as a journalist.Degrelle talked to me. He explained me for example, why Franco did extradite Pierre Laval, the prime minister of collaborating France who was executed by De Gaulle and not him, the SS-general. (“Because I was Catholic, and Laval not”.) It was an interesting testimony, never published in any book. Why should I be blamed. I had a few drinks on his terrace. Fifty years after the war, it was not up to me to act as an attorney general ! He signed some books and photos. Did I have to refuse ? I met the former bolchevik commissar Lew Kopelev in 1987. He signed his memories for me. Does it make me a communist ?….I had interviewed and toasted with many french socialists — eg. the former minister of Foreign Affairs Roland Dumas. It doesn’t make me a socialist.”
Why Political Parties Matter
Legislation is still a good way to oppose Islamization in the U.S. and in Europe. Some political parties — minority members of coalitions who nonetheless have representation in parliaments and local governments, and often a swing vote — have made opposition to Islamization an objective in the party platform.
Other political parties have objectives that achieve the goal of resisting Islamization through more indirect means:
- limiting or stopping immigration from Islamic countries or all non-European countries
- deportation of illegal immigrants and convicted immigrant felons
- limits on the age of immigrants
- stronger counter-terrorism policies
- policies permitting self-defense
- policies permitting criticism of Islam without being persecuted for “racism” or other discrimination
Each country has its own unique political and cultural capabilities to oppose Islamization, but cross-pollination of ideas is crucial to legitimizing the resistance for each group. We hope to help by compiling information on anti-Islamization policies, legislative drafts and public opinion. We can track the progress of legislation and of the political campaigns for local and national office. This is the long slow plodding work of change within a democracy.
We can coordinate and share ideas where possible — online or in person. Numerous meetings to counter Islamization have done exactly this — both before the Counterjihad Brussels 2007 summit and after it. We’re involved in the tiniest fraction of what goes on, because most efforts to resist Islamization are either above our pay grade or are local. A community will organize to stop the building of a mosque, or to stop beatings, car burnings, and rapes by organized gangs of Muslim immigrants, or to insist on the use of constitutional law, not shariah law, in local court cases.
Meanwhile, we continue to build out networks in the U.S. and Europe, and a little in Asia now.
We will research, interview, report on, and selectively coordinate with a wide range of groups and political parties who may contribute to the resistance against Islamization. Some of those parties we plan to cover may be rightwing, Euroskeptic, and support national sovereignty, and others may be more center-right (UMP comes to mind). Some may have members who are anti-Semitic, anti-Israel or problematic in some other way, and we will report on that as well. We have exhaustively noted that to the extent we “support” any groups, they must not only actively oppose anti-Semitism, but also support Israel’s right to self-determination as a Jewish state with defensible borders.
Some registered parties and other political groups are particularly interesting:
- Union Démocratique du Centre (Swiss)
- Dansk Folkeparti
- Vlaams Belang
and Suomen Kristillisdemokraatit
- The UK Independence Party
- Partij voor de Vrijheid
- Partido Popular (Spain)
- Christian People’s Alliance (United Kingdom)
Other Euroskeptic parties who are part of the Union for Europe for the Nations, such as:
- Forza Italia
- Alleanza Nationale
- Lega Nord
- The emerging Freedom Party
We intend to follow and report on any work they do to oppose Islamization, to oppose anti-Semitism, and to support Israel.
In Europe some parties may have members who may have associated in the distant or near past with: the Nazis, the Communists, Mussolini, Franco, Tito, Rakosi, Pieck and Ulbricht and Honecker, BNP, Le Pen and Megret and de Villiers and Maurras and the pro- and anti-Islamist factions in the UMP, Georgalas or the KKE, Zhivkov, Ceausescu, Salazar, various parties included in the “Tangentopoli,” Kekkonen, regional identity parties, and so on.
History happened in Europe. We intend to assess the influence of the past on the present on a case by case basis. Our assumption is that the threat of Islamofascism is greater than the threat of resurgent European fascism, and in this we differ from the two LGF sources in the left-wing “Standing Group on Extremism & Democracy.”
We guarantee that researchers will always find someone in any political party who at some time in the past was involved in something illegal or extremist or simply personally racist, sexist, or rude. We hope LGF and other blogosphere researchers will research and analyze all aspects of European political parties, and that this analysis will be comprehensive and professional and aspire to the standards listed above from the Society of Professional Journalists.