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Home / Revista de prensa / Archivo / Revista de prensa | 07/12/2015



Front National wins regional polls


The far-right Front National won the first round of France's regional elections on Sunday, with both the conservatives and the Socialists trailing behind. The Front National's success is a result of the terrorist attacks in Paris, some commentators conclude. Others stress that the rise of the Front National must be seen in a historical context.

La Repubblica - Italia

Voters dominated by a fear of terror

The election result was determined solely by the terror, complains the centre-left daily La Repubblica: "It was the emotions triggered by the bloodbath on November 13 that made the Front National France's strongest party yesterday. The 130 victims of that Friday night translated into that 28.64 percent of the vote at the ballot that gave Europe's biggest xenophobic party a leading position in one of the West's most important political societies. The elections, which are normally influenced by employment figures, the economy and other classic social issues were instead determined solely by security: or in other words, the fear of terrorism and the Islamist threat. This is clearly the reason why a third of those entitled to vote backed the Front National. The party is the one that most embodies the anger, resentment, hatred and fear that terrorism provokes." (07/12/2015)

The Guardian - Gran Bretaña

Far right has a long tradition in France

The appeal that far-right ideas exert on large sections of the French population dates back to the late 19th century, comments the centre-left daily The Guardian: "The FN is capitalising on a shrewd strategy of appealing beyond the disfranchised middle class and workers' families hit by the economic crisis to a wider constituency of people who feel the republican model of laïcité, France's brand of secularism, has come under threat from the growth of Islamic radicalism. But the ascendancy of the FN must also be seen in the larger historical context of France's resilient far right, from the 19th-century Boulanger movement to second world war Vichyism and, later, the Algerian colonial war." (06/12/2015)

L'Opinion - Francia

Revolution in the party landscape

If the Socialist want to prevent the Front National from winning they will have to withdraw their own candidates from the second round in certain regions to give the conservatives better chances, the liberal business paper L'Opinion believes: "Such a situation is extremely rare, because generally the haggling between the two rounds has been confined to negotiations within the respective political camps. ... The new situation is a result of the huge pressure exerted by the rise of the far right and the enduring presence in the French electoral landscape of a third political force - which has now become the first in order of importance. ... This new situation shatters all the conventions of past election nights. It leaves the losers - on the left and on the right - without a strategy. And without a voice." (06/12/2015)

La Vanguardia - España

Bombs haven't helped Hollande

Neither the state of emergency in France nor the bombs in Syria can prevent a debacle for the ruling Socialists in the regional elections, comments the conservative daily La Vanguardia: "The fierce reaction to the terrorist attacks, the declaration of a state of emergency the likes of which we haven't seen since the Algerian War, and the bombing of the IS militants' positions have done little to help the Holande-Valls tandem in the elections. Scenes of bombardments in Syria thousands of kilometres away in which civilians are also being killed do nothing to counter the alarming conviction that there will be more attacks because the threat emanates from French suburbs and Belgian cities. The Socialists were able to slightly improve their catastrophic poll ratings but it wasn't enough to get their way in the elections." (07/12/2015)


Trouw - Holanda

No rash decisions on Dutch Syria mission

At the request of the US the Dutch government is considering joining the international coalition in the fight against the IS in Syria. While the conservative liberal ruling party VVD backs the idea its social democratic junior partner in government rejects intervention. The Christian-social daily Trouw warns against premature decisions: "The US, Russia, Turkey, Iran, the EU and the Arab countries have no choice but to jointly seek a political solution for Syria. Any peace agreement will doubtless entail a compromise with unpleasant elements. And only once such an agreement is on the table does it make sense for the Netherlands to consider providing military support. … The lessons to be learned from the interventions in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya are clear: military intervention without political prospects leads to a dead end." (07/12/2015)

Dilema Veche - Rumania

Renzi's culture offensive against terror is right

In reaction to the terrorist attacks in Paris Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi announced at the end of November that the budgets for security and culture would each be boosted by a billion euros. Renzi is using the right weapons in the fight against terror, the Romanian weekly Dilema Veche comments: "The measures announced by the Italian leader are ambitious in two respects. First of all this is a first attempt to fight terrorism using 'soft power'. Secondly, Italy is in a recession. So this is the first time a country with such a large deficit has expanded its cultural budget so dramatically. … These weapons have a larger range than missiles and strike precisely those areas where terrorism has the potential to develop - the isolated, impoverished suburbs on the fringes of the cities. The social and cultural integration of those who live in these areas without any prospects for the future is one of the goals in the fight against terror." (06/12/2015)

Delo - Eslovenia

Too many players profit from IS's rise

All the players in Syria right now have benefited from the creation and expansion of the IS organisation, the centre-left daily Delo is convinced: "The Syrian regime helped create the IS by releasing a large number of extremists from prison. … As the IS grew stronger it kept other rebel groups in check. The IS, a direct legacy of the US occupation of Iraq and of the ensuing chaos in the region, was for a long time the executor of US, Turkish and Qatari foreign policy. The UK also belongs to this group. And nor should we forget how big an arms dealer France is." (05/12/2015)

Der Standard - Austria

Exodus to Europe: EU as helpless as in the euro crisis

The refugees crisis is once again exposing the weaknesses of the European Union, the centre-left daily Der Standard writes, urging patience and a cool-headed approach: "The EU member states and their joint EU institutions have made glaring mistakes in the formulation and execution of migration and refugee policy, the opening of the internal borders under Schengen and the protection of external borders. The rules were - as with the situation when the euro crisis broke out in May 2010 - completely inadequate. Europe is permitting itself the 'luxury' of having neither a common foreign policy nor a joint security policy. These deficits must now be tackled one by one. And as with the euro crisis, this will take years." (07/12/2015)

Neue Zürcher Zeitung - Suiza

PiS boss Kaczyński creating his own state

The Polish government has appointed four new constitutional judges from its own party ranks. It is working towards its vision of creating a new state order in Poland, the liberal-conservative daily Neue Zürcher Zeitung comments: "This radical approach is the result of [PiS leader] Kaczyński's desire to write a new Polish constitution tailored to a strong president. This is a cornerstone of the powerful state Kaczyński wants to build. The government has given other signals that this constitution will leave little leeway for free thinkers. Already in November the four directors of the intelligence services were replaced with new ones. Shortly afterwards the Minister of Culture tried to ban a supposedly 'pornographic' theatre performance, and a journalist who asked questions that were critical of the minister's actions was suspended from her job as a result of pressure from above." (07/12/2015)


Dagens Nyheter - Suecia

Exodus to Europe: Richard Swartz on the capitulation of morals in Sweden

Sweden tightened its asylum laws around two weeks ago. The country's romanticised self-image played a significant role in the failure of its "policy of open hearts", writes Richard Swartz in the liberal daily Dagens Nyheter: "Our project is to make the world a better place. ... What resembles classical nationalism in other European countries, we in Sweden have transformed into a super-modern social construct in which experiments go on around the clock and where national interests take a back seat to universal values. ... We see ourselves as a 'humanitarian superpower', and are convinced that sooner or later everyone else will follow suit. ... The task at hand isn't to save the world, however, but our own welfare state. ... Our government continues to blame the rest of Europe for the refugee crisis, arguing that it lacks solidarity. But we have still not realised what consequences this collapse will have on our society. It's true that Europe lacks solidarity. ... But perhaps it would have been better to face up to reality from the start instead of believing in a utopia." (05/12/2015)

The Irish Independent - Irlanda

Carol Hunt on racist multiculturalism

Scratch below the surface of multiculturalism and you'll find racism, writes columnist Carol Hunt in the conservative daily The Irish Independent: "I've often argued that the support some feminists and members of the Left have for regimes and cultures that discriminate against women and LGBT people, is contradictory, West-centred and, yes, racist. Seemingly if you're Christian, white, Western and from the settled community you're entitled to universal concepts like civil rights and equality. But if you are, for instance, a Muslim woman from Saudi Arabia who wants to drive a car, or a Traveller woman who wants a career instead of marriage, no one is going to fight your case for you. Instead, the cultures which perpetuate inequalities will be defended, in the name of tolerance and pluralism. But what about human rights? When did we decide that they weren't universal after all?" (06/12/2015)


Kas jauns - Letonia

A theatre director with an odd anti-refugee stance

The well-known theatre director Alvis Hermanis has cancelled a production scheduled to be performed in April 2016 at Hamburg's Thalia Theater in protest at the theatre's support for refugees. Theatre critic Silvija Ratzobe finds his position very odd considering his own status: "On the one hand we could congratulate Alvis Hermanis for not being afraid to express his views in public. On the other hand let's not forget: our theatre director works in Germany, the people there have been good enough to offer him a job, he enjoys popularity as a director, has a good name and earns a lot of money. And yet he's a foreigner, he's not a German national, and if he's there in the first place it's only because he was offered an interesting, well-paid job. In that light his current behaviour is strange indeed." (05/12/2015)


Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung - Alemania

Germany must naturalise Islam

German vice-chancellor Sigmar Gabriel on the weekend called for tough action against radical mosques in Germany, which he accused Saudi Arabia of funding. Rightly so, the conservative daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung comments: "Gabriel's initiative targets Saudi Arabia, but things can't stop there. The other path to integrating Islam must be embarked on by the German Muslims themselves. That's what the Green Party wants when its calls for Islam to be 'naturalised' in Germany. The slogan targets not only Saudi Arabia, but also the Turkish and Orthodox influence on German Muslim associations that have not yet managed to leave their parallel universe." (07/12/2015)

Gość Niedzielny - Polonia

Ban artificial insemination now

Poland's new national-conservative government wants to bring an artificial insemination programme introduced by the last government to a premature end by the middle of next year. Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today, urges Bogumił Łoziński in the Catholic portal Gość Niedzielny: "The programme can lead to the destruction of human egg cells. This is possible under the law in its current form. I've discussed the matter with members of the Sejm belonging to [right-wing party] Polska Razem, some of whom want to amend the law so that such killing will no longer be possible. But the method should be banned altogether. It's only artificial, and consequently does not guarantee children the same conception conditions as nature. The risks of complication and genetic diseases are higher. That's why the Church is also calling for a ban, even if the law is amended to rule out the killing of egg cells." (07/12/2015)

e-vestnik - Bulgaria

Bulgarian government ignoring old-age poverty

Many Bulgarians who have not paid enough into the pension system to receive more than the basic state pension of 80 euros per month will retire in the next 20 years. Bulgaria is facing a huge wave of old-age-poverty and the politicians are doing nothing to stop it, the anti-government online portal e-vestnik criticises: "Hundreds of thousands of Bulgarians between 50 and 65 have not paid sufficient contributions to secure a normal pension. This is a ticking social bomb that won't fail to go off in the not-too-distant future. Apparently, however, the government couldn't care less. Its only concern is to raise the retirement age and the number of contributing years. ... Even now, the average pension isn't enough to pay for food and heating - to say nothing of the basic state pension. Nevertheless the government has not initiated any sort of preparatory measures, or even a debate on how the impending misery is to be averted." (07/12/2015)

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