- Lifestyle & Sports
- 17 Dec 19
The Christchurch massacre in New Zealand last March, in which 51 people were killed and 49 injured, was yet another example of right-wing bursts of violence...
It’s a mark of how far things have gone when the UK police announce that the fastest-growing UK terrorist threat is from the far right, as they did in September. Their counter-terror police are now mobilising to thwart any rise in violence driven by extreme-right ideologies. And with good reason. Brexit has encouraged and enabled home-grown ultras.
The game has changed all over the world. There have been extreme right-wing outrages across the globe, the Christchurch massacre in New Zealand last March, in which 51 people were killed and 49 injured, being the most extreme example. The white supremacist attacker had strong links to the global ‘Identitarian’ movement. 22 people were killed and 24 injured in a mass shooting in El Paso, Texas in the US last August. A Hispanophobic massacre, it was a hate crime, committed by a white supremacist.
There are mass shootings every other day in the US. As of October 31 this year, 370 mass shootings had occurred. 1,466 people were injured and 441 died, a otal of 1,907 victims. But far right killings are quite specific. And they’re one-way traffic.
The far right thrives on social media and the toxic use of digital platforms. They also look to exploit the cracks in society, targeting millennials in particular. Shelters for asylum seekers are a target, in Ireland as elsewhere. And they link up, and where possible infiltrate, any angry group going. It is always with the same message. Home-grown racist thugs were behind the burning of Sinn Fein TD Martin Kenny’s car after he spoke out in support of a direct provision shelter. That, by the way, was in Ballinamore. Quinn country, where Kevin Lunney was brutally attacked.
Will the sickos of the far-right gain power? The tide had seemed to be rising, but in the European and local elections held in May 2019, while the vote increased and the centre parties were certainly rattled, there was no breakthrough. Indeed, the far-right lost ground in the Netherlands and Denmark (where the Social Democrats won), and – right across Europe – the biggest feature was the upsurge in support for Green parties. They can be beaten. But proper legislation on hate crimes, as well as proper regulation of social media are needed. Now.
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