The alarming rise of the new fascism

The world is becoming a very dark and dangerous place. It’s not only the continuing war in Ukraine and the destruction and death being wrought in the Middle East, but there is also the alarming rise of fascism in Western countries. In the USA the Republicans have turned into an overtly post-democratic party which has espoused a plan to turn America into a far right Christian nationalist presidential dictatorship. Project 2025 see

is a plan concocted by far right Republicans to greatly extend the powers of the president should Trump get re-elected next year. He would then use these powers to sack most of the civil service and military chiefs and replace them with right wing Trump loyalists. The Washington Post reported the plan includes immediately invoking the Insurrection Act to deploy the military for domestic law enforcement and directing the U.S. Department of Justice to pursue Trump adversaries. The plan also reportedly includes directing the Justice Department to pursue those Trump considers disloyal or political adversaries.

The plan urges urges the next conservative president to “maintain a biblically based, social science–reinforced definition of marriage and family.” This would see a national abortion ban, the repeal of equal marriage and laws protecting LGBT people from discrimination, and the implementation of policies aimed at promoting evangelical Christianity, and the observance of the sabbath, turning America into the United States of Gilead.

Meanwhile legislation would be passed to outlaw pornography, classifying any books, movies or TV with LGBT content as pornographic, which could see educators and librarians being registered as sex offenders, and the closing down of telecommunication and technology firms that facilitate the spread of LGBT content.

In the UK, the Conservatives might not share the same evangelical Christian fantasies as their American counterparts, but they are equally authoritarian and anti-democratic in their own way.

Suella Braverman, who remains the Home Secretary, at least for now, is indulging in the reckless and dangerous habit of stochastic terrorism. Stochastic terrorism is defined as the public demonisation of a person or group resulting in the incitement of a violent act, which is statistically probable but whose specifics cannot be predicted. Unlike the criminal offence of incitement, those engaging in stochastic terrorism typically make use of indirect, vague, or coded language that allows them to plausibly disclaim responsibility for any resulting violence.

The classic example of stochastic terrorism is the lies about election fraud deployed by Donald Trump after he lost the 2020 US presidential election which was combined with increasingly hysterical rhetoric demonising the Democrats and exhortations to “take the country back.” This culminated in the violent insurrection of January 6 2021 which saw the US Capitol building being invaded by a mob, whipped up to a frenzy by Trump and his supporters in the extreme right media, hell bent on finding Vice-President Mike Pence and lynching him because he had refused to facilitate Trump’s attempt at a coup d’état.

In recent weeks it has become clear that Home Secretary Suella Braverman is also engaging in stochastic terrorism with her increasingly extreme language demonising migrants, the homeless, and now protestors demonstrating in favour of an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, where the death toll now exceeds 11000, tens of thousands more have been injured, over a million have fled their homes, and the northern part of the territory lies in ruins. All this is before the full force of the Israeli ground assault has really been felt.

Just a couple of days after being widely criticised for describing homeless people sleeping rough as a “lifestyle choice” and characterising them as having “foreign accents” before going on to threaten to make it unlawful for charities to provide rough sleepers with tents, Braverman has ramped up her disgraceful rhetoric with an outrageous attack on both the police and those planning to march in London over the weekend, using language which could very easily result in far right groups or individuals physically attacking the demonstrators.

In an article in The Times, Braverman accused the police of “playing favourites” and of having “double standards,” favouring Black Lives Matter protestors over anti-lockdown protestors, she further complained that police do not crack down on violent and disruptive behaviour from “pro-Palestinian mobs” with the same vigour that they display when dealing with “right-wing and nationalist protesters who engage in aggression.” Note the difference, indeed double standards, in Braverman’s choice of words, those peacefully demonstrating for a ceasefire are “pro-Palestinian mobs” whereas actual violent fascist mobs are “right-wing and nationalist protesters engaging in aggression.”

She went on to accuse the demonstration of being a “hate march” which she claimed was not really about calling for a ceasefire in a terrible war but rather was “an assertion of primacy by certain groups — particularly Islamists — of the kind we are more used to seeing in Northern Ireland.” The marches which are most blatantly an assertion of primacy are those held by British nationalist sectarian bigots, groups with whom the Conservatives are typically on friendly terms.  Braverman went on to accuse some of the march organisers of having links to Islamist terror groups including Hamas.

Any right wing British nationalist violence which does occur over the weekend will be blamed by Braverman and her many allies in the Conservative party on the ‘provocations’ of the demonstrators and they will attempt to leverage it to introduce further crack downs on the right to protest.

We have already seen earlier this week that the Conservatives seek to broaden the definition of “extremism” so that it includes undermining the British state, its values and institutions, a definition which could potentially encompass independence supporters and pro independence political parties in Wales and Scotland and anti-monarchy groups.

Fascism will arrive proclaiming that it is upholding public order, defending Britain against what Braverman called an “invasion” of migrants, and saying it is protecting women and children from “LGBT perverts” and Asian grooming gangs, even as it ignores that most of the sexual and physical abuse suffered by women and children in the UK is perpetrated by white heterosexual men.

Suella Braverman will not be too upset if Rishi Sunak belatedly summons up the courage to sack her. She is far more interested in making a play for the Tory leadership after Sunak takes the party down to defeat at the next election. Should she succeed in that, it will signal the final conversion of the Conservatives into a far right wing authoritarian party in the mould of Trump’s Republicans or Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party in Hungary.

British fascism will be superficially polite and well spoken, like the Eton educated far right writer Douglas Murray who this week described Scottish First Minister Humza Yousaf as an “infiltrator”. Murray is a noted proponent of the far right racist conspiracy theory the so-called Great Replacement, which claims that ‘liberal elites’ are conspiring to promote immigration into European countries in order to replace white Christian populations with an ethnically diverse population much of which is Muslim in order to secure its control.

In his book “The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam.” Murray paints a lurid picture of a wave of migrants from Muslim-majority countries who are purportedly on a mission to conquer, violate, and insult the people of Europe. The book is the favourite reading of Viktor Orbán, Hungary’s deeply corrupt far right authoritarian leader.

It’s worth noting that although Orbán sees himself as a champion of “Christian Europe” who leads the charge in presenting Muslims as an alien presence in the continent, there has been a continuous and unbroken presence of Muslims in Europe since the Moorish invasion of Spain in the year 722, whereas Hungarians like Orbán are descendants of a pagan Siberian tribe from Asia which invaded Central Europe in the year 898, displacing and dispossessing the Christian Slavic and Late Latin speaking populations of the Pannonian Plain.

During an appearance on the right wing talk show The Rubin Report, Murray asserted that “people like Humza Yousaf have infiltrated our system.” He added: “He’s married to a Palestinian,”going on to describe the First Minister’s wife Nadia El-Nakla, the Dundee born daughter of a Palestinian father and a Scottish mother as a “nasty piece of work.”

It’s abundantly clear that Murray does not regard the First Minister or his wife as being Scottish, even though both Humza Yousaf and his wife were born and brought up in Scotland. Moreover Murray regards the First Minister as an “infiltrator,” someone with no right to hold the position that he does simply by virtue of his family background. That is blatantly and offensively racist, but it’s the kind of language and discourse that the right has been normalising in recent years, and the British media either facilitates it or turns a blind eye to it.

Only independence can save Scotland from the rise of British fascism.



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