It may seem ironic to some that while the mainstream political Left in America has made monumental gains, the elections this week for the European Parliament produced significant gains for center-right parties.
Far-right and anti immigration parties also made notable gains. Results from The Netherlands put the Freedom Party of the controversial politician, Geert Wilders, in second place with 17%, winning four seats in the parliament. The two main parties in the Dutch government, the Christian Democrats and the Labour Party, suffered a marked decline in support, finishing with 19.9% and 12.1%.
In Britain, the BNP (British National Party) won its first MEP, after gaining more than 120,000 votes in the Yorkshire and Humber region.
In Austria the far-right Freedom Party doubled its share of the vote. There were also gains for the right in Hungary and Finland.
It seems apparent that the rise in popularity of such parties may have much to do with growing concern in Europe over the continued spread of Islamism, and specifically it’s infiltration into mainstream representative bodies. In the case of the Netherlands this is certainly the case as the Freedom party specifically campaigns on an anti Islamic platform.
The rise of the BNP in Britain is a cause for concern for many Jews as the BNP has historically been overtly anti-Semitic; however, under the current leadership of Nick Griffin, the BNP has focused on criticism of Islam. The party has said that it does not consider the Jewish, Hindu or Sikh religions to have a significantly detrimental or threatening effect. The party does have members with Jewish ancestry and has actively tried to win Jewish votes.
When proud British, Dutch or Austrian nationals hear calls from their own leaders to implement Islamist Sharia law, or watch crowds at rallies burning their flags and calling for death to the very countries they live in, they feel as though their national identity is under threat. With many of these countries having experienced the horror of terror attacks there is also an ongoing fear for personal safety, and national security.
Citizens of Europe watched in horror in 2005 after twelve editorial cartoons, most of which depicted the Islamic prophet Muhammad, were published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten. Islamist riots broke out on the streets of cities across the globe, death threats were issued and European embassies throughout the Arab world were desecrated.
Islamic representative organizations in England such as the influential Muslim Association of Britain have expressed support for terror organization Hamas. Another organization, the Muslim Council of Britain held a memorial service for former Hamas spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin at a Regents Park mosque paying tribute to the terrorist ideologue by describing him as a “noted Islamic scholar.”
Recent popular books that highlight the extent of this growing concern include America Stands Alone by Mark Steyn, Londonistan by Melanie Philips and Celsius 7/7 by British MP Michael Gove.
So if the leaders of Europe’s mainstream parties wish to hold on to their seats they would do well to heed the call of the electorate and focus on halting the spread of Islamist influence in Europe, thus protecting the national integrity of the populace, the personal security of European citizens and ensure that extreme right wing parties that may have other minorities in their crosshairs stay out of power.