Monday, December 15, 2014

The Extreme Right and "Entrisme"

"Entrisme," or "entryism" in English, is a political strategy in which an organization encourages its members to join another organization in order to influence its actions and gain power. In the French context, the term usually calls to mind Trotskyists or Lambertists making their way among the Socialists (older heads will remember the flap around Lambertist entrisme when Lionel Jospin, an alleged entriste, was prime minister). But suddenly entrisme is in vogue on the extreme right. Not only do we see the head of a prominent gay organization joining the FN (see previous post). We also learn that the extreme nationalist group SIEL has placed one of its members, Fatima Allaoui, in a high position in the UMP (the story was broken by Libération). And the FN itself has been attempting entrisme with the union Force Ouvrière. Actually, there's nothing new about FN entrisme, but with the party's fortunes on the rise, there's more reason to take notice.

FN, LGBT, même combat?

The "pinkwashing" (h/t Karim Batar) of the FN was the talk of the town last week, but I wonder if this article is for real or just lazy journalism. Didier Lestrade takes the outing of Florian Philippot, Marine Le Pen's strategist, and the rallying of GayLib founder Sébastien Chenu as evidence that gays in general are turning to the FN out of frustration and disappointment with both the PS and the UMP, the latter because it supported the anti-gay Manif pour Tous and the former because its response was muted. Is there any substance to this? I find it hard if not impossible to credit.

Immigration in France

Le Monde publishes the hard facts about immigration in France in advance of François Hollande's speech on the subject today. The numbers are interesting even to one aware that the hysteria that often surrounds the subject has no basis in reality. For example, in 30 years, the percentage of immigrants in the population has risen from 7.2 to just 8.4. Hardly a "flood" or a "deliberate and strategic replacement of the native population." And France is not more affected by immigration than other, comparable countries: Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK all receive more immigrants annually.