In Athens, a popular far-right party condemns Jews as a source of the country’s misfortune and recycles the ancient lie depicting them as “Christ killers.” In Hungary, the prime minister fails to disassociate himself convincingly from an anti-Semitic and increasingly powerful fascist group. Scenes from Europe in the 1930s? No. Both examples, sadly, of European politics today.
The Greek organization is Golden Dawn, now the third most popular party in the birthplace of democracy. The Hungarian party is Jobbik, which is rising in influence. Nearly 70 years after the defeat of Hitler, Mussolini, and European fascism in the Second World War, hateful, right-wing ideology has returned in nearly every European country. While none of these parties is strong enough to win power, they are often violent and aggressive. And they are intolerant of immigrants, Jews, and other minority groups that don’t fit their twisted definition of what Greeks, Hungarians, and other Europeans should look like.