Bergen op Zoom Lijsttrekker Ton Linssen (1952) van zijn partij Lijst Linssen heeft zich vaak verdedigt. Hij stelt dat zijn partij helemaal niet extreemrechts of racistisch is. Als wethouder werkt Linssen in Bergen op Zoom samen met een brede coalitie met VVD en PvdA. Bij de Lijst Linssen zijn zowel afvallige SP’ers als Wildersfans welkom,… Lees verder
Issues of immigration and the integration of foreigners have become topics of heated debate in the public and political arena in modern European democracies. According to Koopmans and colleagues (2005: 3) ‘immigration and ethnic relations (…) constitute since the early 1990s the most prominent and controversial fields of political contention in West European polities’. Parallel to this development, support for anti-immigration parties has increased in several Western European countries. Examples are the French National Front, the Austrian Freedom Party and the Flemish Bloc (since 2004 Flemish Interest) in Belgium. The Netherlands is an interesting case in the European context, because the right-wing populist challenge was rather ‘slow in coming’ (Kriesi et al. 2006: 163). A significant electoral performance of the far-right did not take place until 2002 and it had also failed to make any significant impact on the public debate until relatively recently. The Netherlands was therefore for long considered a ‘deviant case’ (Rydgren and Van Holsteyn 2004), just like for example Sweden, as the country met most conditions that according to established theories explain the emergence of far-right parties elsewhere, but these parties still remained relatively unsuccessful.
With extreme right parties in government in Austria and Italy, and Jean-Marie Le Pen contesting the run-off in the 2002 presidential elections in France, few people will dispute their continuing relevance in the politics of Western Europe. Indeed, ever since the first small electoral successes of parties like the Centrumpartij in the Netherlands or the Front National in France in the early 1980s, the extreme right has been the most discussed group of parties both in and outside of the scholarly community. Thousands of newspaper articles and hundreds of pieces of scholarly work have been devoted to extreme right parties, predominantly describing their history, leaders or electoral successes, as well as proclaiming their danger. Remarkably little serious attention has been devoted to their ideology, however. This aspect of the extreme right has been considered to be known to everyone. The few scholars that did devote attention to the ideology of the contemporary extreme right parties have primarily been concerned with pointing out similarities with the fascist and National Socialist ideologies of the pre-war period. If the similarities were not found, this was often taken as ‘proof ’ that the extreme right hides its (true) ideologies, rather than as a motivation to look in a different direction.