Brexit Politics UKIP

The Paradox of Nigel Farage

Urging young people to watch a film based on what led to the creation of the EU seems a tad ironic

Nigel Farage has proven himself on many occasions to be an ignorant idiot, to put it politely. Ironically enough, the man whose anti-immigration poster was reported to the police for inciting racial hatred has encouraged the British youth to watch the newly released war drama Dunkirk.

Christopher Nolan has brought a proud landmark in Britain’s national history to the big screen. Dunkirk depicts the evacuation of British forces from Northern France during the height of Nazi power in Europe. Historically, some of the troops evacuated from Dunkirk were rescued by civilian vessels; a very patriotic scene in the film.

The British forces who were evacuated from Dunkirk were fighting Nazi Germany, a regime built on right-wing extremism, racial entitlement and segregation. Sound familiar? I’m certainly not the first to draw worrying similarities between Farage’s rhetoric and Nazi propaganda.

In the run-up to the Brexit vote, Nigel Farage unveiled his anti-immigration poster, depicting a trail of Asian men with the caption “Breaking Point”. A poster which undoubtedly incited racial hatred, unfairly pointed the finger at one specific demographic and rightfully received much condemnation; not very dissimilar to the anti-Jewish posters which were plastered around Germany under Nazi rule.

So you can imagine the reaction Farage received when he tweeted to encourage the British youth to watch Dunkirk. Farage tweeted “I urge every youngster to go out and watch #Dunkirk”.

Screen-Shot-2017-08-15-at-16.07.10

 

As a Brit, I did feel incredibly patriotic when watching Dunkirk and I imagine British patriotism is the reason behind Farage’s promotion of the film. But, that patriotism must be contextualised.

The historical event which Dunkirk is based on happened during World War II- when Europe was divided. It was part of a war which is believed to have killed somewhere between 50 and 80 million people. The film demonstrates the devastation caused by a divided Europe.

The European Union, which Farage has worked so hard to destroy, was once the European Coal and Steel Community. The European Coal and Steel Community was established in 1952, and later evolved into the EU. Funnily enough, it was established in the aftermath of WWII to prevent any future conflict between European powers. The founding idea behind the EU was to create such strong ties in Europe that we would never dream of going to war with each other again.

Farage publicly promoted Dunkirk on twitter. Isn’t it funny that he did so? The man who fought tirelessly for Britain to leave the European Union and who stood up in the European Parliament to taunt the assembly after the Brexit vote. Nigel Farage has promoted a film about the devastation which ultimately led to the formation of the European Union; the institution which Farage has devoted his career to ripping apart.

I offer two possible explanations for Farage’s tweet:

  1. Nigel Farage knows very little about World War II, Nazi Germany, the Battle of Dunkirk and the formation of the European Union.
  2. Nigel Farage has had a sudden change of heart and regrets encouraging right-wing extremism.

Neither of these seem particularly plausible. But I’ll let you decide…

Advertisements

Leave a Reply