of the far-right in Europe, including in Portugal, is the result of increased
transnational collaboration, mainly through the Internet and outside parties or
organizations, a European report concludes.
it is important to explore trends in traditional far-right organizations, such
as political parties, the modern far right is currently undergoing a broader
and more fundamental shift, namely the emergence of a transnational and
post-organizational threat,” write the authors of State of Hate: Far
Right Extremism in Europe. The activists working on this study
continue to be concerned with local or national issues, but seek to
contextualize them on an international level and collaborate on certain issues
that help propagate information.
Joe Mulhall, a researcher at Cambridge University and the anti-racism
organization HOPE not hate and one of those responsible for the
study, gave the collaboration of anti-Muslim movements as an example, and now,
he says, there is a new anti-Semitic radicalization on social media.
way people got involved in very extremist anti-Semitic politics, especially
holocaust deniers, was traditionally done through the far right (…) but now
you see new avenues [of conversion], pronounced in the last year, through other
conspiracies,” he said at a press conference.
Since the start of the covid-19 pandemic, the authors of the
study have identified an increase in people involved in conspiracy theories
such as the pro-Donald Trump QAnon movement, which links the Democratic Party
to child trafficking, cannibalism or satanic rituals, as well as,
anti-confinement and anti-vaccine groups. “We see people being radicalized into antisemitism through other
conspiracy theories, many of which are not originally anti-Semitic,” he
The 125-page study was prepared by anti-racist organizations
HOPE not hate (UK), Expo (Sweden) and the Amadeu Antonio Foundation (Germany)
to try to understand the areas of interest that radical and far-right groups
seek to exploit.
It includes a survey in five European countries (Sweden,
France, Germany, UK, Hungary, Poland and Italy) which found that 25% of
Europeans have negative feelings towards Muslims, almost 33% have hostile views
towards immigrants in general, and over 33% have negative views towards Roma.
The survey, of more than 12,000 people, also found a deep distrust of the
authorities that the authors believe could be an opportunity for populists and
extremists to promote conspiracy theories.
report has chapters on all European countries, including Portugal, where the
entry of the Chega! (Enough )
party into Parliament is a consequence, according to Mulhall, of the evolution
of the far right on the continent. “The exceptions will disappear over
time and in fact the risks of the European far right are ubiquitous and can
happen in any country if the right circumstances exist,” he warned.