It is quite interesting to see which groups, political parties and governments are supporting Putin and his policy: in Western Europe far right-wingers and far left-wingers have found each other in common praise of Putin:
- Hungary: the semi-nazi “Jobbik” party gets funding from Kremlin
- France: Marie Le Pen’s “Front National” has become an active lobbyist for Putin’s interests in EU, and is also a grateful receiver of money from Russia
- Austria: the Freedom Party was an observer during the mock referendum in Crimea in March, as were also:
- Belgium: Vlaams Belang party, far right (also observers in Crimea)
- Italy’s Forza Italia and Lega Nord (observers in Crimea)
- Poland’s Self-Defense, left wing populists (observers in Crimea)
- Germany’s far left Die Linke (Germany’s fourth largest party with 64 seats in the 650 seats Bundestag)
- British National Party and UKIP’s Nigel Farage, who is an outspoken fan of VVP
- Bulgaria: the far right (or left, sometimes it’s hard to say which) “Ataka”
- Greek’s new far left government and the fascist party “Golden Dawn”
As everyone knows (or should know) there is a very thin line between communism and fascism. These groups are all collectivists and follow the same goal by using mainly the same methods.
For Kremlin and its main architect Vladislav Surkov it is very useful to have such broad support in Europe, and the financial rewards are often quite ample.
The unifying factor
The one main factor unifying all these extreme groups in their support of Putin is a common hate towards USA and all that is American. Putin represents for them the only reliable counterbalance to US world dominance. They also are anti-EU and anti-democratic, but don’t see anything wrong in using and abusing democratic institutions to promote their extreme views and increasing their power.
Supporters in Norway
When reading the comments in Norwegian online news channels, one can often see a majority of supporters of Putin’s policy, and it all boils down to a hatred towards the USA. Many Norwegian journalists are politically oriented to the left, and try to “balance” the picture when describing the Russo-Ukrainian war (like NRK – the state owned broadcasting company). They consequently use phrases like “separatists” and “pro-Russian forces”, and are searching thoroughly for elements which can justify Russia’s motives and actions in the “civil conflict”.
As the war in Ukraine so far has been very poorly covered, the Norwegian public doesn’t have strong opinions in this matter, but as the war escalates even people here in this isolated corner of wealth and calmness must open their eyes to a very potential threat from the East.
Luke Harding’s article in The Guardian from Dec 8, 2014: http://gu.com/p/4423p/stw