Home GEAB 135

GEAB 135

The monthly bulletin of LEAP (European Laboratory of Political Anticipation) - 15 May 2019
Free excerpt

There’s no need to wait for the results of the election to anticipate some of the major features of the new Europe that will be established after June 2019. Certainly, on the surface, there will be no revolution: The sovereignist right-wing parties (ENF[1]+Brexit[2]+AEPN[3]+CRE) won’t accumulate more than 20 or 25% maximum of parliamentary seats (around 170) and the trans-European parties won’t make any world-shattering entries either (Diem25 has become invisible, diluted due to its transnational alliances under the new “European Spring” label, and Volt has united 8 countries under the same name, but the national media don’t talk about it much). Hence the big alliances of national parties like the EPP, PES and ALDE will still appear to dominate the European Hemicycle.

Figure 1 – Distribution projection for the next European Parliament, as of May 13, 2019. Source: Politico.


Yet, in reality, everything will have changed: this election, we reiterate, is about to usher in a new era for Europe. Here we present the reasons why and the main consequences of this “revolution”.

The European Parliament takes control of Europe

As we have already said, this European election is the most European and the most democratic in history.[4] But this “last-minute” democratisation is being carried by the so-called populist parties, particularly those of the sovereignist right wing, on the basis of simple but harsh agendas: regaining control of borders; reaffirming “protective” principles (as a nuance to pure protectionism); prioritising European identity; tightening internal and external migration policies; recovering birth rates; etc …

As it makes its entry into the European Parliament, the effectiveness of this agenda, now shared by a new category of radical right parties (Le Pen in France, Baudet in the Netherlands,[5] Vox in Spain, AfD in Germany, Strache in Austria, Salvini in Italy, Farage in the UK…) that are now strategically and ideologically united at the European level, will be linked to its coherence – contrary to what the media are trying to make us believe. Facing them will be: on the one hand, the famous “pro-European” centrist parties, the official holders of the European “democratic” system, who will appear for what they are – infinitely more national and as such divided and more inefficient than the former; on the other hand, an extreme left, itself in the process of Europeanisation (via the European Spring/Diem25 movement), but at a less advanced stage because of the greater complexity of their message and a complete lack of financial support.

The radical right will therefore take control of the political rhetoric in the Hemicycle – and the more so because they have carved out an irresistible discourse: on the migrants issue, theoretically the most polarising, almost no party dares to produce a counter-discourse; on protectionism, European prioritisation, European borders, defence and other similar issues… all are in agreement. As we said last month, in all these areas, it is the so-called centrist governments that have already initiated harsh policies.[6] Yet, in fact, ideologically, this type of programme belongs to the far right which, in a way, is claiming its due: “You admit we are right. You are now employing our solutions. But you also need us to make it known and calm the people!” QED!

This state of things explains the calm, the assurance, the serenity with which the representatives of those parties speak out. 10 years of a poorly managed crisis (in the sense of “managed non-politically; detached from society”) have built the victory of the far right’s solutions, which are about to win through lack of competition: an inept centre and a far left inevitably muzzled[7] by an “establishment” that (of course) favours a far right with which it can cooperate.[8] We are now experiencing an anticipation we made more than two years ago: “The 2019 campaign will be more European than ever, with trans-European political movements for the first time, but organisationally, the national media will not be able to hear trans-European forces other than those of the far right, the only ones to be both European and rooted in the national level.” [9]

Figure 2 – Poll by countries: Is being European as important to you as your nationality? April 2019. Source: ECFR.

As a consequence of all this, it won’t be long before we see a huge ripple effect from the discourse of the sovereignist groups in Parliament, whose arguments will be taken up more and more by the other parties, with the notable exception of the extreme left minority, who will take advantage of this to carve out their own counter-discourse. The “Orban crisis” that the EPP is experiencing is emblematic of this phenomenon: this European political family is rife with political currents very close to those of the sovereignist rights that have in fact refocused, abandoning their anti-Semitic component to ultra-minority “neo-Nazi” political parties that now represent the “new far right”. The presence of Orban’s party, of the neo-Franco forces of the Spanish PP that have not yet joined the right-wing party, Vox… and all the right-wing fringes of the traditional right-wing parties, together guarantee the EPP’s gradual adoption of the same discourse…


To leave a comment sign up now

The new face of tomorrow's Europe matches the faces of tomorrow's Europeans. Among the latter is one we wish to present to you: Manfred Weber, the very petulant 46-year-old German [...]

We would like to remind you that one of the main guiding principles for analysing North American foreign policy and current events in and around the Middle East is the [...]

To be able to advance in a complex world that is in full transition, it is helpful to have a GPS system. This calendar of future events, produced every four [...]

Silver has always stood the test of time, coming back as a winner, whether as an essential commodity or as a valuable investment. Since ancient times it has been the [...]

- Air transport in Europe: Don’t bet your shirt on this - Yuan: Quick!!  - Dollar: Discount on US staff! - Gold: Back to the standard _____________________________ Air transport in [...]

Related articles
15 Jun 2024

Investments, trends and recommendations (Jun)

#ECB #gold #investment #oil

Gold in equities We always write about gold as a metal resource to invest in. But gold stocks also include shares in mining groups. Their margins, which are far from [...]

15 Jun 2024

2030: European strategic assets swallowed by Saudi investments

#geopolitics #investment #saudiarabia #world

Investments in Europe are on the verge of becoming one of the pillars of Saudi Arabia's strategy to wean itself off oil revenue. Behind high-profile projects like The Line, we [...]

15 Jun 2024

2025-2029: The dollar takes over from a weakened euro

#dollar #economy #EU #euro #finance #world

The economic outlook for Western countries looks bleak, judging by a number of indicators. After the decision to cut interest rates slightly, and with the two leading countries in difficulty, [...]