The small Slavic nations of Eastern Europe throughout their history have been defined by various forms of nationalism promoted by either Germany or Russia in their political struggles with each other. The most balanced of these nations has been Poland, which is only so due to her history with the Catholic Church that has often (but not always) been able to channel the nationalistic sentiments of Poland into healthy instead of parasitic actions. Arguably all of the other nations, which extend down into the Balkan peninsula, are known for assuming “hard” positions on certain issues, and then putting nation against nation in the name of this power struggle, hence the term “Balkanization” to describe rigidity between parties over a difference in positions that leads to severe division and fighting.
When Hitler was rising to power, he used this strategy as well. One of the nations that he targeted, as Germany has done throughout her history, was Czechoslovakia, as the nation is a geopolitical crossing ground between east and west with the most German influence of all the Slavic nations. Rebellions throughout history start in that area, so it was no surprise that Hitler would follow this. In the name of “liberating” ethnic German minorities in the Czech lands, Hitler set up his occupation of the nation that would continue until the end of World War II.
In modern times, Germany is not so much “occupying” nations, as she is given support by either direct word or a lack of attention to various separatist movements throughout Europe. The largest of these has been the Catalonia rebellion in Spain. However, there are many other areas in which she has been silent, such as the rise of National Socialism and the seeming permission of people to express support for it while at the same time there is a rise in anti-immigration language and actions, something that is also associated with a rise in nationalism.
It is of interest now to note how an open National Socialist sympathizer, Marian Kotleba, who has been a minor figure in Slovakian politics since 2010, is set for a massive rise in power, as his party, the People’s Party Our Slovakia, is set to become the second most powerful party in the nation.
Slovakia is set to become the latest European country to come under the influence of the far right, with polls predicting major gains for neo-Nazis in next month’s election.
Kotlebovci-ĽSNS has been polling a solid second place since the start of December, up from fifth place in 2016 – with a general election scheduled for 29 February this year.
The party’s policies include establishing militias to fight against an imagined “gypsy terror”, the reintroduction of conscription, and the celebration of the Slovak Nazi client state established during the Second World War.
Party leader Marian Kotleba has said Jews living in Slovakia are “intrinsically bothered by everything that is Slovak” and that they “live on our territory solely by the mercy of the Slovak nation”.
The party’s programme pledges to close Slovakia’s borders to stop “hordes of Muslim immigrants”, says the country is committing “national suicide” with open frontiers, and that it is “no longer an independent and sovereign state” because of its membership of the EU.
Slovakia has a highly fragmented political landscape. The latest survey by pollster AKO conducted 7-9 January has the left-wing populist Smer party on 18 per cent, the neo-Nazi L’SNS on 12 per cent, and a liberal alliance on 9 per cent.
Pro-EU conservatives Ordinary People are in fourth place on 8 per cent with another right-wing populist party Sme Rodina also on 8 per cent. Libertarian party SaS is polling 7 per cent, while right-wing nationalist party SNS are polling 6 per cent. A centre-right Christian Democratic party is also polling 6 per cent.
Parties must win a least five per cent of the vote to win seats in parliament under the threshold system. The current government is expected to lose its majority in parliament, but it is unclear who will be able to form a new one. (source)
The People’s Party Our Slovakia not surprisingly claims to be “Pro-Christians” and likewise is against Islam, immigration, Muslims, Jews, and ‘foreigners’. His party symbol is a particular variant of the Slovak double cross that was used in the Second World War by Slovaks who supported National Socialism and National Socialist groups such as the Hlinka Guard, and while the party denies fascism or National Socialism, have a history of publicly supporting persons and groups tied to National Socialism, such as the band Kratky Proces as well the far-right Slovak Brotherhood, which has a history of attacking minorities such as Gypsies, and the European National Front tied Alliance for Peace and Freedom.
Kotleba also has ties to Russia according to the Poland’s Polish Internal Security Agency, and such has been suggested by opposing the Euromaidan in 2014 and has spoken against NATO activities in Latvia near the Russian border.
It is very interesting to see how Kotleba has risen to power in the past ten years.
Who funds him? The answer to this question is hidden, but it is critical to find out because this would tell much about his political activity.
For now, what we can say is that the growth of nationalism and National Socialism in the Czechoslovak lands taking place at a time when nationalism is growing in Germany along with a hatred of foreigners is a dangerous sign for the future. It is not one that exist in itself, but works in combination with the political, social, and historical trends of Europe.
The continent is going to be plunged into another major war in the not distant future. It is my prediction that in about ten years from now, probably around 2029, there will be an event that takes place which will go down in history as “the event” that historians will look back on an say that it was what started World War III. It will likely be a small event, but it will be at that point that nothing can be stopped.
These series of events in Slovakia are not that event. However, they are certainly on the way to that point, and one must pay attention to them because it is the sum of events that eventually add up to “that” main event which is remembered by history.