Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Dark Dawn as neo-Nazis win seats in Athens

    Nikolaos Michaloliakos’s policies include putting landmines along Greece’s borders to deter immigrants
    Nikolaos Michaloliakos’s policies include putting landmines along Greece’s borders to deter immigrants

    The shocking election success of Greece's extreme right-wing party on Sunday has the local Jewish community deeply worried.

    The Golden Dawn party, with its anti-immigrant, anti-austerity platform and a symbol resembling the swastika, took about seven per cent of the vote, guaranteeing it 20 out of 300 seats in the Greek parliament.

    Pundits see their success as a vote of protest against severe austerity measures taken by mainstream parties to stave off a deeper economic crisis.

    But how any Greeks - angry as they are - could vote for Golden Dawn is beyond David Saltiel, president of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece.

    "This is a neo-Nazi party - they are crazy, completely out of their minds," said Mr Saltiel. "I don't believe that Greeks are neo-Nazis," he added, "but what is amazing is that even in cities where [during the Second World War] the Germans killed a lot of Greeks, you had between four and six per cent voting for the neo-Nazis on Sunday."

    "Of course this is troubling, and it is not unique to Greece," said Rabbi Andrew Baker, director of International Affairs for the American Jewish Committee and the personal representative of the OSCE chair on Combating Antisemitism.

    "Strong discontent over the economic crisis in Europe has led to support for some of these right-wing extreme xenophobic parties, some of which have antisemitism as a piece of their agenda. And certainly that is the case with the Golden Dawn party," said Rabbi Baker.

    Golden Dawn "plays on old antisemitic stereotypes of Jews controlling or manipulating economies, and in its campaign linked the economic crisis with Jewish interests," Rabbi Baker said. "There are good reasons to be concerned."

    However, Mr Saltiel said he had heard from politicians involved in forming the new coalition government that "they did not want to speak to the neo-Nazi party. So the parliament is isolating them."

    If current efforts by Greece's mainstream parties to form a coalition government fail, new elections will be held, probably next month.

    According to an Associated Press report, following last Sunday's vote, Golden Dawn leader Nikolaos Michaloliakos said he would "fight to free Greece from the global loan sharks, for a Greece of dignity and independence, and for a Greece that is not a social jungle with all these millions of illegal immigrants that were brought here".

World

It's Chanucah Song time!

Michael Moran

Thursday, December 1, 2016

It's Chanucah Song time!
World

Trump picks ex-Goldman Sachs banker as Treasury...

JC Reporter

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Trump picks ex-Goldman Sachs banker as Treasury...
World

Theresa May agrees to look into case of British...

Rosa Doherty

Theresa May agrees to look into case of British...
World

Will the Austrian election make Norbert Hofer E...

Sonia Zhuravlyova

Will the Austrian election make Norbert Hofer E...
World

'Neo-Nazi codes' appear in German supermarket a...

Toby Axelrod

Thursday, December 1, 2016

'Neo-Nazi codes' appear in German supermarket a...
World

"This is probably the last election for me" Hol...

Michael Moran

"This is probably the last election for me" Hol...
World

Australian abuse report

Henry Benjamin

Australian abuse report
World

Fire-ravaged Israelis ‘may no longer be married...

Michael Moran

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Fire-ravaged Israelis ‘may no longer be married...
World

Tatiana Navka, wife of Putin’s press secretary,...

Michael Moran

Tatiana Navka, wife of Putin’s press secretary,...