Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Poll Analyses
Share on Facebook 4 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds   

The Call of the Nation

By       (Page 1 of 3 pages) (View How Many People Read This)   3 comments
Author 2267
Message Uri Avnery
Become a Fan
  (33 fans)

From Gush Shalom

From Nationalism is back | The Economist
From Nationalism is back | The Economist
(Image by Unknown Owner)
  Details   DMCA

A DARK wave is submerging democracies all over the Western world.

It started in Britain, a land we always saw as the mother of democracy, the homeland of a particularly sensible people. It voted in a plebiscite to leave the European Union, that landmark of human progress which arose out of the terrible ruins of World War II.

Why? No particular reason. Just for the heck of it.

Then came the US elections. The incredible happened: A nobody came from nowhere and was elected. A person devoid of any political experience, a bully, a habitual liar, an entertainer. Now he is the most powerful statesman on the planet, the "Leader of the free World."

And now it is happening all over Europe. The far-far-right is making gains almost everywhere and threatens to get voted into power. Moderate Presidents and Prime Ministers resign or get kicked out. With the notable exception of Germany and Austria, which seem to have learned their lesson, fascism and populism are gaining ground all around.

Why, for God's sake?

COUNTRIES ARE different from each other. Every local political scene is unique. So it is easy to find local reasons for the results of every local election and plebiscite.

But when the same thing is happening all over the place, in many countries and almost simultaneously, one is compelled to look for a common denominator, a reason that applies to all these diverse phenomena.

It is nationalism.

What we are witnessing now is a rebellion of nationalism against the trend towards a post-nationalist, regionalist and globalist world.

This trend has practical reasons. In most fields of human endeavor, larger and larger units are required.

Industries and financial institutions demand large units. The larger the unit, the more rational the economy. A country with a market of ten million cannot compete with a market of a billion people. Centuries ago, this trend compelled little regions like Bavaria or Catalonia to join national states like Germany and Spain.

Nowadays, the economic lives of billions is determined by anonymous, trans-national corporations, which reside nowhere and everywhere, far beyond the comprehension of ordinary people.

At the same time, the information revolution has created ever-larger communities of knowledge. Five hundred years ago, it was rare for a peasant in Europe to move beyond the next village. Travel was expensive, only aristocrats had horses, a carriage ride to the large town was out of reach for most people. For the same reason, it was impossible to move goods over long distances. People ate what could be grown locally. News traveled slowly, if at all.

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3

(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).


Rate It | View Ratings

Uri Avnery Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Uri Avnery is a longtime Israeli peace activist. Since 1948 has advocated the setting up of a Palestinian state alongside Israel. In 1974, Uri Avnery was the first Israeli to establish contact with PLO leadership. In 1982 he was the first Israeli ever to meet Yassir Arafat, after crossing the lines in besieged Beirut. He served three terms in the (more...)

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
   (Opens new browser window)

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

"Stupid and Mean and Brutal"

A Flash of Lightning

Israeli Idiocracy

Spitting In The Face of Obama

The Tone and the Music; Reaction to Obama's Cairo Speech

The Grand Default

To View Comments or Join the Conversation: