The politics of ‘them’ versus ‘us’. A story of competing nationalisms in Northern Ireland during the troubles (1968-1998)

In a meeting with an IRA gun smuggler the historian Richard English noted how easily the Republican could explain Irish history: “the Brits – they’re the problem, and will be. They have been since 1169, and will be until such time as they leave”.[1] Perhaps a counter factual history of Ireland about what may have been had Richard de Clare, 2nd Earl of Pembroke not led the Norman invasion of Gaelic Ireland in 1169, maybe in order. But then off course, one might posit, had the Protestant reformation suceeded in Ireland in the sixteenth century, the history of Irish nationalism may have taken a decidely different path.

Why are Russian nationalists dying in Syria?

The recent death of over 200 Russian mercenaries in Syria has exposed the use of private military contractors in Russia’s wars, an affair that lay dormant after the Ukrainian conflict. Crucially, it has highlighted the use of nationalism as a rallying point for recruits and the creation of a discourse of duty to fight for the country.

Fearing Immigrants: “Don’t Let Soros Have the Last Laugh”

With the influx of immigrants around 2014, migration is increasingly becoming the focus of foreign and defense policies, making it one of the most salient and controversial political issues in Europe. In Hungary, anti-immigration rhetoric has evolved over the last few years, with the actual campaign targeted at the 87 year-old Hungarian-born American financier and philanthropist George Soros.

No Palace was Built in a Day: Xi Jinping’s Pillars of Power

Was anyone surprised on 25th February, when China’s constitutional amendment package revealed that President Xi Jinping can now potentially keep his power for a limitless amount of time? Xinhua News Agency announced the amendment that simply proposed removing the line, ‘China’s President and Vice President shall serve no more than two consecutive terms.’ Referred to as the ‘core’ of the party leadership and increasingly simply as the ‘leader,’ a title only dedicated to Mao in the past, Xi Jinping can now stay for a third term beyond 2023, or even pursue a life-long rule.

Silencing The Past: Moulding Our Holocaust Narratives

On the 26th of January 2018, the day before Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Polish parliament legislated a law that would ban any discussion of Polish crimes against humanity during the Holocaust. The bill, as stated, aims to “eliminate public misattribution to the Polish nation or the Polish state of responsibility or co-responsibility for Nazi crimes committed by the German Third Reich,”[1] including a strict ban on discourse such as using the expression “Polish death camps.” Its outrageous dismissal of basic human expression and right to discourse aside, the legislation should remind us of a deeper underlying issue, that is, how we, as the world, have decided to remember the Holocaust.

“Their colour is not the problem. The problem is that they will outnumber and completely take over us.” K-ĽSNS and Racism on the Edge of Legality

The author of the quote above is Milan Mazurek, Vice Chairman of the nationalist Kotleba – Peoples’ Party Our Slovakia (K-ĽSNS). This piece will provide an analysis of a speech that Mazurek gave during a protest against “Gypsy terror” in the city of Krompachy. What warrants my attention to this particular speech is the way in which Mazurek discursively constructs the body and mind of Slovaks and that of Roma in a binary opposition to each other, and how he is able to maintain a non-racist stance even though racism and racial stereotypes clearly manifest themselves throughout the speech.

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