Candidates of the so-called “right” or even so-called “far right” are gaining support all over Europe. Because Europe’s political parties tend to be skewed somewhat to the left of ours, these terms don’t mean exactly what they would in this country, but the trend is clear.

Here’s how an article from Vox describes the gathering strength of these parties (although it insists on labeling them “xenophobic,” as though their attitude towards immigration is some sort of unjustified phobia):

Far-right parties like AfD are growing throughout Europe.

Der Spiegel has a nice map on this, showing the countries where far-right parties have a presence in parliament (yellow dots) or are actually part of the government (red dots). It turns out the xenophobic far right has surged in countries as diverse as Sweden, the UK, the Netherlands, and Hungary:

rightparties

These parties have, in most cases, ridden the European refugee and migrant crisis to power. While Europeans have for some time been skeptical of migration, the huge surge in migrants last year has dramatically inflamed these sentiments — leading to a rise in the far right’s poll numbers. Italy’s Northern League, for example, is polling at four times what it was in 2013.

The rise of Donald Trump appears to be part of this world-wide Western movement, whether you regard him in other policy respects as closer to the right, the left, or as a mixture.

Certain other trends of the past have also seemed to arise in various places at once, whether or not they otherwise resemble this present one—for example, a movement to a very different type of small-government conservatism in the 80s with Reagan and Thatcher in charge, or for that matter the rise of fascism during the 1930s.

Movements that transcend a single nation usually occur because the same or at least similar forces are working on all the countries involved. In this case we don’t have to look very far for the answer: the genesis is the dreadful record of so many Western and especially Western European countries in recognizing the cultural and demographic threat that too much immigration (illegal or even at times legal) can pose, and the unwillingness of recent leaders to defend or even listen to those who are alarmed by it.

Instead, those people crying out against illegal immigration and for the defense of their own borders and cultural traditions have been demonized. So they have become angry both at the authorities’ policies and also at the nature and vehemence of the criticism those authorities and the MSM have directed their way.

I predict that if those in charge remain largely unresponsive, this movement will grow and become more angry and more willing and even eager to use violence to get its way.

[Featured Image: Marine LePen]

[Neo-neocon is a writer with degrees in law and family therapy, who blogs at neo-neocon.]