The rise of populism in the world

Another attack on freedom, another transmission of fear, extremism hit both Berlin and Ankara yesterday.Policemen investigate the scene where a truck ploughed into a crowded Christmas market in the German capital last night in Berlin


The word populism is widely used in media but not often defined. Populism derives from the Latin word populus meaning people. Ideologically it is ultimately defined on the society being divided into two separate and antagonistic groups: the free people and the corrupt elite.

Populism is often linked to the radical right political parties. Empowered by the election of Donald Trump, Brexit and not to mention the recent terror attacks in Europe, populist parties are moving across Europe spreading nationalistic and euroskeptic opinions with great impact on the upcoming European elections.

These far-right groups including The National front in France, The alternative for Germany, The Party for Freedom in the Netherlands and the Sweden Democrats Party are increasingly popular among voters.They are all using words like freedom and democracy to attract voters but the message is quite the opposite and intentions are clear; to build walls, to keep to themselves, to act without compassion and responsibility for the worlds future. In effect they are doing exactly what the extremists are asking for. Owen Jones at the Guardian put it well: “If, in a century’s time, historians ask why the west fell into a spiral of decline, the answer will not be that we were overrun by fanatics, but that we succumbed to their wishes.”

A placard reading "Why?" is placed at the Christmas market in Berlin

Images source: Reuters

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