2018 Human Dimension Implementation Meeting
Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
Thursday, 13 September 2018
Session 9: Using Democracy to Prevent Aggressive Nationalism
Intervention read by Henrik Clausen, representing Wiener Akademikerbund
Many thanks to Vlad Tepes for uploading this video:
Below is the prepared text for Mr. Clausen’s intervention:
Distinguished delegates, ladies and gentlemen. I am Henrik Clausen, representing Wiener Akademikerbund. In accordance with the agenda for this session, let me talk about preventing aggressive nationalism.
Aggressive nationalism is a dangerous situation where the Rule of Law is challenged, and constitutes a threat to democracy itself. This also has scary historical connotations. Fortunately, the best solution is simple: More democracy. We see positive developments on this East of Vienna, in the Visegrad countries and in Russia.
Aggressive nationalism appears precisely when the government and the established elite disregard the concerns of the citizens, thus violating the principles of democracy. Democracy means “Rule by the people”. And implicitly, for the people.
Concerns of the citizens are simple: They are about rising crime rates, our cars and schools being burned down, about rape rates doubling and tripling. About the financial burdens of immigration. About the nuts and bolts of daily life.
Aggressive nationalism has appeal only when our representatives ignore such simple, reasonable concerns, or even try to silence them, as we have seen in some cases. Such neglect damages the confidence in our democratic institutions, and must be avoided.
Problems related to immigration exist to various degrees in all countries West of Vienna. We have thousands of ghetto areas (in French: Zones Urbaines Sensibles) where our secular laws cannot be effectively upheld, and where parallel societies outside our secular law are developing. This is bad.
To prevent extreme nationalism, we need to take care of our nations. Integrate the immigrants into our society, uphold our laws, and avoid granting special rights to any groups. One Law For All is a principle that we cannot compromise on.
Thus, Wiener Akademikerbund recommends:
- That OSCE pS take concerns of their citizens seriously, even when roughly worded.
- That OSCE pS governments focus on protecting the interests of their own citizens.
- That governments ensure the effective upholding of national laws
For links to previous articles about the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, see the OSCE Archives.