Did you follow what was being said by the politicians in the Dutch election this week?
Here is what one of the candidates said about the Jews. He said he wanted
- to close all synagogues
- to ban all Jewish religious books
- to “de-Jew” Holland
Actually I made that up - with the intention of shocking. That was Holland in 1940 not 2017.
However, the truth is no less shocking. This is what Geert Wilders, whose party came second in the Dutch election, said in reality. He said he wanted
- to close all mosques
- to ban the Koran
- to “de-Islamise” Holland
Wilders did not win (this time). The election was won by the centre-right Mark Rutte.
However, Wilders has already succeeded in dragging Rutte towards him. Rutte started his campaign with a letter calling on anyone who rejects Dutch values and “attacks gays, jeers at women in mini-skirts, and calls ordinary Dutch people racists” to leave the country. Many religious Christians and Jews oppose homosexuality and “immodest” women’s clothing - but it was clear it was not people like them that Rutte meant. It was Muslims.
Alongside Wilders’ and indeed Rutter’s words, physical and verbal attacks on Muslims have increased in Holland.
And yet. The BBC does not describe Wilders as a fascist but uses the weasel word “populist”. It links him with his “fellow populist” Marine Le Pen.
Meanwhile on LBC, Nigel Farage is interviewing the fascist Marine Le Pen and the radio station proudly advertises the interview describing Le Pen as a “controversial right winger”.
The parallels with the fascists of the 1930s and 1940s are plain to those who don’t look away.
Hate and fascism are being normalised.
Book a free ticket on Eventbrite for Kensal and Kilburn Better 2017 Event on 19 April in Queen’s Park, NW London, called “Our Media and Our Democracy” where you will hear brilliant speakers including
- Miqdaad Versi on Islamophobia in UK media
- Richard Wilson of Stop Funding Hate