Two very different women hold Europe’s future in their hands – and neither of them is Theresa May. The battle for Europe’s soul is being waged between Angela Merkel and Marine Le Pen. This is a clash of personalities and visions: Germany’s chancellor v the leader of France’s Front National, the largest far-right party in Europe.
…. It is only partly reassuring to say that Le Pen has little chance of becoming president next year (the French electoral system makes that difficult). The trouble is, in recent months, her brand of anti-Muslim, xenophobic and nationalistic politics has spread across the French mainstream right like wildfire.
Le Pen is fast capitalising on this summer’s burkini episode and on the national trauma left by jihadi terrorism. It’s hard to see which French politician or movement can find the authority and strength to push back against her ideas, or counter their appeal among the French suburban middle classes as well as in rural areas. [Natalie Nougayrède, 975 comments]
[TOP RATED COMMENT 569 votes] But surely the Left has helped drive the debate to extreme positions by its seeming inability to differentiate between white supremacist nutjob racists and the “Mrs Duffy’s” of this world and treating them as if they equalled the same thing?
[2ND 557] Well, Merkel’s obviously failed so lets see what Marine can do!
[3RD 503] Well, Merkel has certainly done her best to screw up Europe’s future.
Maybe Le Pen can reverse some of Merkel’s follies
[4TH 443] One of them has helped destroy Europe’s social fabric and caused divisions that will never be heeled
The other one is Marine Le Pen
[5TH 440] The pendulum of history swings from right to left – extreme swings create devastation on both sides.
What Merkel has failed to realize is that her recent decision to welcome the worlds’ Refugees / Migrants into Germany has created a deep groundswell of opinion that regards her as selling out the German nation for an Internationalist cultural ideal
[6TH 428] They’ll both shape the future – Angela is helping Marine get elected.
[7TH 354] Angela Merkel and Marine Le Pen: one of them will shape Europe’s future
One of them already has. Hideously. [Guardian Cif] Read more