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How Le Pen, Baudet and many more in Europe look away from Trump

BRUSHELS – For European populism, President Trump’s electoral defeat, a symbol of success and strong supporters, is not good enough. But his refusal to admit defeat and the violence that followed seemed to destroy the prospect of like-minded leaders across the continent.

“What happened in the city hall after Donald Trump’s defeat was a bad omen for populism,” said Dominic Mois, senior analyst at Institut Montaigne in Paris. “It said two things: If you choose them, they won’t give up easily, and if you choose them, see what they can do to call out popular anger. ”

A long day of riots, violence and death as Trump’s supporters raid the City Hall, it has offered strong warnings to countries such as France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Poland about assessing power. Of anger, underpopulation populism and the prevalence of conspiracy theories. At the democratic government

Heather Grabbe, director of the Open Society European Policy Institute in Brussels, said the unrest shows how the populist playbook was formed from “we and them and it leads to violence”.

“But it’s very important to show where populism leads and how it plays with fire,” she adds. “When you motivate your supporters with political arguments about us and them, they’re not. Opponent It is an enemy that must be fought in every way, and both lead to violence and make it impossible to lose power. ”

How threatening European populism finds that the events in the United States can be seen by their reactions one by one, they either distanced themselves from the uprising or became silent.

In France, Marine Le Pen, head of the far-right national assembly, is expected to challenge President Emmanuel Macron again in the 2022 election.She is steadfast in her support for Trump praising the election. And his Brexit as a leading figure to French populist success and echoed his insistence that America’s elections are rigorous and fraudulent. But after the violence, which she said had “shocked” her, Lepin withdrew, condemning “any acts of violence aimed at destroying the democratic process”.

Like Ms. Le Pan Matteo Salvini, populist leader of the Italian anti-immigrant League, said: “Violence is never a solution” in the Netherlands, chief right-wing party leader Geert Wilders criticized the attack on the American legislature. When elections in his country were held in March, Wilders wrote on Twitter, “Always respect the outcome of democratic elections, whether you win or lose.”

Another high-profile Dutch populist, Thierry Baudet, has aligned himself with Mr Trump and the anti-vaccination movement and in the past has called for judicial independence and a “fake parliament”. Be an issue

But with the difficulty of reporting anti-Semitic remarks and schism in his party, the Forum for Democracy Mr Baudet was rarely mentioned.

Rem Korteweg, an analyst at the Clingendael Institute in the Netherlands, said Wilders’ Forum for Democracy and Freedom Party were likely to receive about 20 percent of the vote in the Dutch election.

Although populist leaders have been shaken by the Washington events and worried about further violence in their January 20 inauguration, there is still great concern among mainstream politicians about their resistance to the elite. Politics against governments in Europe, especially amid confusion and anxiety Produced by the coronavirus outbreak

Janis A.Emmanouilidis The education director of the European Policy Center in Brussels said there was no similar European populism. The movements are characterized by different countries and external events are the only factors that contribute to their different popularity.

“Right now, the most pressing issue is Covid-19, but it is not clear how politics will affect after the epidemic,” he said, “but,” he added, “the worst fears help avoid the worst.”

“The remarkable polarization of society” and the violence in Washington “created a huge disruption in other societies,” said Emmanuelilidis. “We saw where that led to us. sheer But we realize that we too can get there, and things may escalate. ”

If the tank economy and populism come to power in France or Italy, he said, “God forbid when Europe faces the next crisis,” the concern – when keeping an eye on the 2022 elections – seems partly the reason for the prime minister. Angela Merkel of Germany calls on France and Macron’s demands.

In Poland, the government was a huge supporter of Trump and public television did not accept his election defeat until Trump himself, Radoslaw Sikorski, the former Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and Defense, now chair of the delegation. Representing the European Parliament on relations with the United States.

“With Trump’s defeat, there has been a lot of disappointment from populism in Central Europe,” said Sikorsky. “For them, the world will be a lonely place.”

Poland’s President Andrei Sage Duda, who met with Trump in Washington in June, simply called the congressional uprising as an internal affair. “Poland believes in the power of American democracy,” he added.

Likewise, Hungarian Prime Minister Victor Orban, a supporter of Mr Trump, declined to comment on the riots. “We should not interfere with what is happening in America – America’s business. Exterminate for them and we are convinced they will manage their own solutions, ”he told state radio.

Sikorski, a former Polish minister, is a political contender for the current government in his country. He said Europe needed to “wake up to the dangers of correct violence” and conspiracy theories “there was more valid violence than Jihadi violence,” he said. This is gone because they have their own facts. We need to take off our gloves – free democracy must protect ourselves. “

Enrico Letta, Italy’s former prime minister, now dean of the Paris School of International Affairs at Sciences Po, said Trump “gives credence to the disruptive attitudes and approach of European populist leaders, so having him leave is. Big problem for them. ”Then there was a rebellion, he said,” which I think changed the map entirely. “

Now, like Ms. Le Pan, the populist leaders of Italy feel that “there is a need to cut ties with some form of radicalism,” said Letta. “They have lost the ability to maintain this ambiguity about how radicalism exists. Their relationship with marginalized extremists, ”he added.

He said Trump’s defeat and the harsh retaliation had a huge impact on populism in Europe. He added that the coronavirus disaster alone represented “vengeance of scientific capacity and means” against anti-populism and anti-elite, noting that the problems surrounding Brexit were also affected. together

“We started to think that Brexit was good for the rest of Europe, allowing it to launch again,” Letta said. “Nobody followed England out and now Trump is down.”

But Moïsi, an analyst at Institut Montaigne, took a darker note. Having written about the geopolitical mood, he saw a dangerous analogy of what happened at City Hall, noting that the incident could turn out to be a heroic event among many Mr Trump supporters.

The uprising reminded him of the failed Beer Hall Putsch by Adolf Hitler and the early Nazis in Munich in 1923.

Attempts to overthrow the Bavarian government have had elements of far-reaching humor and ridicule. But it became “a fundamental legend of the Nazi regime,” Mosi said. Hitler was sentenced to prison in which he was sent off after the violence wrote “Mein Kampf”.

Mr Moïsi is referring to the death of Ashli ​​Babbitt, a veteran who was shot by a Capitol police officer, “if something dire in America,” he said, “the woman could be the first martyr.”

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