A Brief Look into Ethno-nationalism
There has been a dramatic increase in the rate of ethnonationalism across the globe over the last five years. Some of the far-right political parties employ direct violence while others propagate radical message through their popularity. The Alternative for Germany (AfD) party is an example of an ethnonationalist movement that uses politics to welcome anti-migrant policies in Germany. The Syrian war led to the mass migration of refugees into Germany in 2015. Angela Merkel welcomed the Syrian refugees into the country due to her humanitarian commitments. The welcoming response did not rub well with AfD, which is conservative of European purity. The group primarily promotes anti-migrant and anti-Muslim policies in the preservation of the German status-quo. AfD is calling for the closing of European borders to refugees from the Arab world, the re-evaluation of current refugees and immediate deportation of immigrants that commit crimes. AfD fears that negative immigration is ‘Islamifying’ a traditionally Christian country. Germany’s Green party represents the left-wing group. The environmentalist party challenges the conservative approaches of AfD.
No terrorist faction has justification over carrying out attacks in promotion of their ideology. However, it is essential to note that politically driven ethnonationalist groups do not carry out the same violent attacks as religious factions. Both AfD and Greens function within German law. Nevertheless, when democracy fails, the remaining alternative is never terror. The nationalist factions can establish new political institutions that are independent but coexist within the primary nation-state political structure. Violence does not provide any checks to power, either current or future. History teaches that the use of force only prompts the emergence of stronger physical power as a response. Ethno-nationalist groups are reminders that power must be in the hands of empathetic and accountable individuals.