Poland’s prime minister claims Jews took part in their own destruction in the Holocaust. His Hungarian counterpart declares that the “color” of Europeans should not mix with that of Africans and Arabs. And the Croatian president has thanked Argentina for welcoming notorious pro-Nazi war criminals after World War II.
Ever since WWII, such views were taboo in Europe, confined to the far-right fringes. Today they are openly expressed by mainstream political leaders in parts of Central and Eastern Europe, part of a global populist surge in the face of globalization and mass migration.
“There is something broader going on in the region which has produced a patriotic, nativist, conservative discourse through which far-right ideas managed to become mainstream,” said Tom Junes, a historian and a researcher with the Human and Social Studies Foundation in Sofia, Bulgaria.
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