Just when it looked like Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the 2016 French presidential elections over Marine Le Pen turned back the surge, nationalism is back and a big way in 2018.
Macron’s victory was used by globalists to proclaim nationalism’s demise. However, Sebastian Kurz’s ascension as Austria’s Chancellor and the entry of the country’s nationalist party into parliament proved that reports of its demise were unfounded and premature at best.
Kurz ran on an anti- immigration campaign platform. His center-Right People’s Party (OVP) formed an alliance with another nationalist group, the far- Right Freedom Party (FPO).
2018 is shaping up to be the year nationalism goes to the forefront of global politics.
In January, nationalist candidate Milos Zeman won the presidency of the Czech Republic beating out globalist and pro- immigration stalwart Jiri Drahos. Similar to Kuz, Zeman’s campaign platform was built on anti- mass migration.
During the contentious campaign, Zeman’s supporters put up billboards with the slogan, “Stop Migrants and Drahos”.
Viktor Orban’s win as Hungarian Prime Minister was proof of the rising tide of nationalism. Orban’s campaign rode the wave of growing dissent against immigration; a central component of the globalist platform. Orban’s Fidesz party took the super-majority vote in parliament.
Recently, the leading defenders of globalism, French President Macron and German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, made state visits to the United States. Both world leaders sought to build strong alliances with U.S. President Donald Trump whose views reflect the nationalist movement.
Trump won the 2016 U.S. presidential election over Hillary Clinton with a campaign predicated on his advocacy to “Make America Great Again”.
President Macron used the visit as a forum to attack the nationalist movement calling it a “temporary remedy to our fears” and an “illusion”:
“We will not let the rampaging work of extreme nationalism shake a world full of hopes for greater prosperity.”
However, there are people in Europe who believe President Macron, Chancellor Merkel, and other champions of globalism may be grasping at straws. One of them is Independence Party Leader from the United Kingdom, Nigel Farage:
“I strongly predict the (nationalist) movement will keep rolling. The Macron agenda; more money, more taxation, more military power, foreign policy without national veto, everything Macron is talking about runs into a headlong collision with the way peoples of Europe are feeling.”