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American 'interference' in European politics

(22 Posts)
MamaCaz Sat 28-Jul-18 08:34:15

The article is about Trump advisor Steve Bannon.
There are several claims in the article that I find very worrying, if they are true. Below is just a selection to give you the general idea,:

" Mr Bannon, a former chairman of the right-wing website and an architect of Trump's 2016 election win, has launched a project to coordinate and bolster the anti-EU vote across the European Union. "

" The former Trump advisor said he had been in direct contact with three key Brexiteers including Boris Johnson and two other potential challengers to Mrs May including Michael Gove and Jacob Rees-Mogg. "

" Mr Bannon plans to travel to Europe again soon and in an interview on Thursday said he would use his organisation to campaign aggressively to install a large, anti-European Union faction in the European Parliament in elections next May. "

Am I alone in finding it very very worrying that one of the world's major powers might be seeking to destabilise Europe, or indeed any other major trading block, in this way? And if they are, they are certainly not doing it for the good of anyone other than themselves, and we seem to be being made a pawn in their game!

I know I will be accused of scare-mongering by some Gransnetters, but I equate political and economic stability with peace, and any attempts to deliberately undermine that stability as a huge threat to that peace.

What do others think?

(P.S.. This isn't intended as another Brexit / anti-Brexit thread)

varian Sat 28-Jul-18 10:01:39

Bannon was an executive at Breitbart News, an activist-editor-gadfly known mostly on the far right, and the “Brexit” campaign was something of a pet project.

I realise you don't want to start another brexit thread but Bannon has always seen brexit as an integral part of the destabalisation of Europe and ultimately the destruction of Western liberal democracy.

Look for the Russian connection.

starbird Sat 28-Jul-18 11:23:03

If you watched the programs about the American Embassy you will lnow that Americans think of and treat us in much the same way as we treated our colonies! and we let them!

Diana54 Sat 28-Jul-18 12:18:18

It all goes back to WW2 when the US fought alongside us defeated and occupied Germany until the Cold War ended around 30 years ago. We could not have withstood the pressure of the Soviet Union without the USA at our side, although the cynics at the time said the US was quite happy to fight WW3 in Europe.
Today Europe is more prosperous and secure than at any time in history, there is no likelihood of any kind of armed conflict. Some Ukrainians would disagree with that but if you pull the Tigers tail you will get bitten, we all huffed and puffed and applied sanctions, at the end of the day nobody is going to start a shooting war with Russia. To mitigate sanctions Russians signed a whole load of trade deals with China, big own goal for us.
A great many Britons just don't know the continental mindset, we were never occupied, never feared the knock on the door in the middle of the night. Many millions died, a recent reminder again in Bosnia and Kosovo order was lost and many died, it is these memories that unite Europe. Despite petty squabbles Europe will remain united because nobody wants a rouge state to do what Germany did in the 30s or Serbia in the 90s.
Trump has one fair point, Europe does not spend enough on its own defense, the U.K. does spend over 2 % of GDP all others spend far less, the US spends a massive 3.5%, we are not all going to agree that is good but if the US turns inward and lets other global powers have free reign peace would not last long.

petra Sat 28-Jul-18 14:46:44

It's already up and running. It's called The Movement. The purpose is to contest seats in the eu parliament 2019.
I think he will get a lot of support. There's a lot of angry people in Europe.

MamaCaz Sat 28-Jul-18 16:08:51

But what is in it for America (or Trump ), Petra? Why are they deliberately stoking the fire?

MaizieD Sat 28-Jul-18 16:36:40

I'd also ask what is in it for the 'angry people in Europe'?

MamaCaz Sat 28-Jul-18 16:47:31

Well yes, MaizieD, there is that too, but I can understand that slightly better than I can understand the American role in what is happening.

varian Sat 28-Jul-18 18:33:48

If by America MamaCaz, you mean Trump, then what is in it for him is that he will be doing Putin's bidding, as he seems to be obliged to do in return for help in getting him elected, and possibly for other murky reasons which may eventually see the light of day.

MamaCaz Sat 28-Jul-18 18:53:05

Maybe, varian. Unfortunately, only time will tell.

My own gut feeling on this is that if Trump relishes unrest in Europe, and Putin wants unrest in Europe, then the chances are that it is definitely not what is in the best interests of Europe!

varian Sat 28-Jul-18 19:10:48

You've hit it in the nail MamaCaz

petra Sat 28-Jul-18 19:34:23

what is in it for the angry people of Europe
You would have to ask the people of Austria, Italy, Hungary, Poland, and several Scandinavian countries that are leaning that way, and millions of Germans who put the Afd into the German parliament.
Whether they get what they want is debatable but it's obvious that 10s of millions of people are very angry.
Will the powers that be in Brussels listen, I very much doubt it. They knew which way the wind was blowing in Italy and Austria but didn't do anything to help.

paddyann Sat 28-Jul-18 19:36:02

Diana 54 I think you'll find Russia stood with us for the whole of WW11 and lost 25MILLION people in the process.America were late to enter the fray and took the credit for winning...but hey" history " is told differently in different places ..depends whose version you got .Frankly I'd trust Putin more than I'd trust Trump//at least he has all his marbles and doesn't open his mouth and utter nonsense regularly .

MamaCaz Sat 28-Jul-18 19:49:32

But Petra, it is very easy to make previously indifferent people angry if you want to. Just keep drip-feeding their news feeds with things that will gradually shape their thoughts.
The rapid and still relatively recent spread of social media means that this can be one by anyone, anywhere. What if that anger seen across Europe now is being whipped up by outside forces for their own purposes?
I will probably be made fun of for even suggesting such a thing, but if you think about it, it's such an obvious and easy thing to do that whether it's already happening or not, it's bound to happen sooner or later!

Diana54 Sun 29-Jul-18 12:02:47

Absolutely, the losses suffered by us, some 400,000 while tragic are minescule compared the Russian losses. All countries on the continent lost large numbers in WW2 most of all Germany who lost 7 million, Poland nearly as many, all because of one maniac whipping up nationalism.
As for trusting Putin, not sure about that but one thing certain the Russian voters love him - most of them!.
Trump I wouldnt trust an inch, let's hope he gets voted out before he does too much damage.

MaizieD Mon 30-Jul-18 10:19:18

I wouldn't trust Trump or Putin. American interference in other countries' affairs has a long history. Look at their history in South America for a start. They even invaded Grenada, for heaven's sake, a former British 'possession', when they felt its government was too left wing.

Another reason for staying close to Europe where we share more of a common culture and have less fear of anything even vaguely 'left wing'.

varian Mon 30-Jul-18 16:58:54

There is more and more evidence that, in spite of the USA's much greater prosperity, and the feeble performance of the Russian economy (smaller than Italy's), it is Putin, not Trump, who is in control of all this.

Now, more than ever, we need to be close to our fellow democratic European neighbours.

M0nica Mon 30-Jul-18 20:22:57

*Diana54 ^ there is no likelihood of any kind of armed conflict.^. You cannot ever say that. These matters can creep up on you, not directly, but domino by domino. The Syrian conflict has brought the West and Russia very close to conflict. As did the occupation of the Crimea.

Putin is thought of as being very clever. He isn't, like Trump, he is very stupid, Two stupid men, each running a major power are far more dangerous than two clever men running them. The problem is that Europe and the other great power, China are generally run by clever and intelligent people and they are completely unable to understand or work out how to deal with the two noddies with their fingers on the nuclear button and that is frightening.

Bannon is a loud mouthed bully. It is convenient for him to run with Boris, Jacob and the like for the time being, but he will drop them when they have served his purpose.

PECS Mon 30-Jul-18 21:20:49

Bannon is a proud racist and part of the liberal right as are BoJo and ReeSmog All three will use all tactics and liaisons to destabilise any development of co-operation between moderate nations or where more 'socialist' politics appear on the rise. They believe in making money, personal power and have very few morals on how they achieve these goals.

varian Mon 30-Jul-18 21:33:01

There is nothing liberal a out Bannon and people like him. They are neoliberals or libertarians.

Diana54 Wed 01-Aug-18 08:02:34

China is a communist state, there is no freedom, the Internet is heavily censored and dissent is stamped on heavily, there is no freedom unless the communist party approved.
Go there as a tourist, you cannot travel independantly you have to have an official guide, try to wander off the approved tourist trail and you will quickly be brought back.
You cannot trust anything, environmental standards and good labour practices are widely ignored, that is thereason Chinese goods are cheap.
China dominates Africa they have no ethical standards they will buy Diamonds, minerals, oil, ivory off any corrupt government or rebel group, no questions asked, paid in weapons, perpetuating conflict
They are probably the most socially divided country on the globe, the urban elite are fabulously rich the 90% rural poor are destitute.

PECS Wed 01-Aug-18 22:42:39

varian you are right..I meant neo liberal.
China is their ideal set up! Trump et al would be happy for all their countries to be run that way.