Far-Right International: The European New Right Media-sphere

The “alt-right” in the United States receives large amounts of media attention because of their controversial goals and members. Outside the United States, one inspiration for America’s alt-right movement has recently been subject to increasing media attention.

The European New Right is a disparate labeling of many far-right European groups such as GRECE, founded and run by Alain De Benoist, a far-right philosopher with European nationalist and Traditionalist leanings. Benoist’s think tank is one of the oldest New Right organizations.

Beyond Alain De Benoist and GRECE, there are many other New Right movements that have created their own media-spheres.

One of the most successful New Right movements is Generation Identitaire, a primarily French far-right group with branches in other European countries. Generation Identitaire was originally the youth bloc of Bloc Identitaire, but has since overtaken its parent organization. According to the organization, its main purpose is fighting against immigration into Europe, especially Muslim immigration, due to its fears of Islamification in Europe.

Additionally, the French movement National Front (Front National), formerly run by Jean-Marie Le Pen and currently run by his daughter Marine Le Pen, has ties to Generation Identitaire.

According to Le Monde, while National Front and Generation Identitaire have some ideological differences, they work together in practice.

Generation Identity has branches all over Europe, from Spain, England, Scotland and Ireland to Germany and Austria. The organization has even founded a Canadian branch, making it the first official branch outside of Europe.  

Beyond France, the Austrian branch of Generation Identity has also garnered some attention due to its leader, Martin Sellner.

Martin Sellner is also the founder of Defend Europe, an effort by European nationalists to prevent refugees from entering Europe by physically stopping refugee boats and turning them back to Libya.

Along with his failed effort Defend Europe, he also founded Patriot Peer, a augmented reality social network that includes gamification to increase participation in right-wing events.

The curated videos, Facebook pages, and websites of Generation Identity and other members of the European New Right show a movement that knows how to effectively market their ideas.

Additionally, these movements have leaders such as Martin Sellner that know how to create and market these organizations.

According to the IBT,  Daniel Freiberg–a Swedish mining executive–funds, influences and even founded a variety of far-right organizations, from think tanks to publishing houses, that provide a slick façade to the ideas of the European New Right.

https://twitter.com/Daniel_Friberg/status/925012406308306944

Examples of these organizations include Arktos, a publishing house founded by Freiberg that focused on publishing books with far-right and/or Traditionalist leanings such as The Rise of the Fourth Political Theory by Alexander Dugin, a known member of the far-right.  

The Nordic branch of the New European Right also includes groups like the far-right think tank Motpol, founded by Freiberg himself, and extremist news service Red Ice TV.

Both organizations provide in different forms a refined way to produce viral content show casing the ideas of the European New Right.

Motpol creates think tank pieces on controversial topics like “cultural Marxism” and fears of the Islamification of Sweden. The think-tank style of these pieces grants them an aura of respectability.

Red Ice TV creates viral content on current events such as the Mueller investigation or alleged refugee crimes in Europe with a far-right spin, disguising views of white nationalism and anti-Semitism with polished graphics and clever video editing.

The rise of the alternative right in Sweden is understandable within the current political environment. According to Buzzfeed, one in five Swedes don’t trust mainstream media in Sweden, and according to the study cited, 50 percent of Swedes are not attracted to mainstream media.

This statistic reflects a larger trend of distrust in mainstream news media that is prominent even in the United States.

As these examples show, these organizations know that a strong media presence is necessary and have focused on alternative news media to spread their influence.

University of Colorado professor Benjamin Teitelbaum, who charts the modern history of Swedish nationalism, told Buzzfeed, “Media organizations are the new structure of the [nationalist] scene — it’s not political parties, and it’s not record labels, and it’s not music magazines.”

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