October 11, 2007

Although I am second to none in my admiration for Marcus Epstein as a critic of the Left and of the continuing neocon nuisance, I feel constrained as a Europeanist to point out a few of his misleading statements about the backgrounds of the Flemish separatists. To my knowledge, the Flemish people did not show any special affinity for Nazi Germany, although some of their young men foolishly agreed to be sent as “€œanti-Communist”€™ volunteers to fight on the Eastern Front. The most important Nazi collaborationist organization in wartime Belgium, the Rexists, was composed mostly of Walloons and spoke French. It is also incorrect to identify European anti-immigrationist parties and voters (including the Front National) with Nazi collaboration, except possibly for the National Democrats in Central Germany who occasionally talk up Hitler as a great statesman. The voting base and most of the political spokesmen of the European populist Right were born well after the Second World War (The average age for a member of the Vlaams Belang is about 30.)
Finally I am perplexed that Marcus would compare the remnants of pro-Nazi feelings on the current European Right with the pro-Communist sentiments of the current and triumphant European Left. Whereas the Nazi sentiments of the Right are either non-existent or vestigial, the post-Marxist Left, a subject to which I have dedicated a book, was almost without exception pro-Communist throughout the Cold War. The Party of the Left in Germany and even the SPD in Berlin are full of ex-Stasi agents and former East German Communist moles, who openly celebrate the former German Communist regime. The Left-Center in France is terrified to criticize Stalin and his Gulags lest it offend the Stalinists in its coalition. I also don”€™t buy the argument, one that the neocons ritualistically make, that the European Left consists of fascists in disguise. The Left in question is the radical Left, which for years hid among the stuffy cadres of Western and Central European Communist organizations.  Now these madmen and shrieking banshees are free to deliver a secularized, PC Europe to Muslim invaders.


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