12/12/2016 Newsnight


In-depth investigation and analysis of the stories behind the day's headlines with Emily Maitlis.

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How much ground do they share with the nationalists of the 1930s?


Because a lot of Europeans, you know, are conditioned, in a way,


like border, like identity, of being proud of oneself -


immediately a reflex kicks


We ask if they represent fringe interests, or a real threat


to the old order of Europe's liberal democracies.


Newsnight learns the committee with oversight into


Where does that leave questions of ethics and foreign policy?


And the British farmers that are filling the post-Brexit gap left


Clearly we haven't got enough UK workers, so we need to look to


Not because we're taking jobs away, but


Tonight, we look at the rise of the so-called


They call themselves Identitarians - groups that are unafraid to talk


about the need for national borders and cultural difference,


who fear Islamisation in their countries and call


They are patriots - wary of being seen as fascist,


and reject the idea that this is a return to the


So this evening, we ask how we should view the rise


Or the beginning of the end of Europe's liberal democracies?


This is the first in our series of films this week asking


if populism is fomenting a revolution.


Gabriel Gatehouse starts us off in Vienna.


Governments falling to populist revolt, old certainties


A union based on half a century of stability


This has been a year of centrifugal forces.


Of mainstream politics moving towards the fringes and of fringe


groups battling to lay claim to a new centre.


Today, Austria is on the periphery of world events.


But we're here to meet some people who want to make


They call themselves the Identitarian movement


and they hold views that many would consider beyond


You don't want us to film the way in?


I'll tell him when he can start to film.


But the parameters of public discourse are shifting.


This is a group that is in the process of coming


Fortunately we have now some younger members who are very


affiliated with the media, cutting videos, internet and so on.


At the moment, we are even on the way to developing an app.


It's an app for patriots where you can find the other guys


That's really something that happens.


The Identitarians are in some ways different


They disavow violence, they are articulate and tech savvy.


They've got their own TV studio here.


They broadcast live with fellow travellers in other European


countries and put together videos of their publicity stunts.


Earlier this month they scaled the statue of the Habsburg Empire's


Maria Theresa and dressed her up in a giant burqa.


No prizes then for guessing their views on Islam and immigration.


Those people who came here illegally


especially in the refugee crisis, they need to be sent back home.


You would be sending them into a war zone.


A lot of them didn't come from Syria to begin


with and the others, for the others, I think


we should create zones, and areas around Europe.


You know that's got like really scary overtones, especially


Zones and areas where you put people.


The United Nations plan to create safe zones.


You're automatically making the association is also shoving


part of the problem, because a lot of Europeans


are conditioned, when they hear some words, like people,


like culture, like border, like identity, of being proud


of oneself - immediately, kind of a reflex kicks in.


And creates this Nazi reflex, you know?


And people are really fed up with that.


We left their TV studio and moved on to a local cafe.


If they are not Nazis, I wondered, then what are they?


I ran them through a check list of typical far right issues.


How do you feel about people from different ethnic backgrounds


Do you think that's odd that you don't have any gay friends?


But do you think it's odd that you don't have any?


You don't think Jews are running the world in a secret conspiracy?


Ironically, it is the Jews who are most worried about


We have a huge exodus from France, for instance.


Jews are fleeing Europe because of Islamisation.


And so the conversation turns back to Muslim immigration.


Islamophobia is the new anti-Semitism, and the Identitarians


see themselves as part of a broader cultural insurgency.


We are a European movement, we exist in forms...


We exist in Slovenia, we exist in the Czech Republic.


We are overcoming old-style nationalism, chauvinistic


nationalism, which are attacking other European countries.


We think we have a European culture and today, in the 21st century,


We want a Europe that maintains the national differences that


secures our borders, that is strong in the outside but


Would you like Austria to leave the European Union?


I don't think at the moment we need to talk about it because Austria


I think we can take over this whole system and turn


Austria's Identitarian movement has only a few hundred activists.


In last week's presidential election, voters rejected


the candidate from the far right Freedom Party, albeit


Across Europe, right-wing populist parties are challenging


the old duopoly of the centre-right and the centre-left.


Nowhere is that challenge more stark than in France,


where the ideas of the Identitarian movement are supported by a growing


number of influential public intellectuals.


I am on my way to meet one of these people who provides the intellectual


underpinnings for the Identitarians here in France.


He is a man who was once a senior adviser to former


Patrick Buisson sees the older European order of facing a revolt


by a younger generation who are beginning to reject the


And in this world view, Brexit was a tipping point.


Scarred by recent terrorist attacks, France is increasingly preoccupied


by the existential question of what it means to be French.


In Lyon, as in other cities, people are leading


And as the dream of multiculturalism loses its shine, the politics


Generation Identitaire have their headquarters


in a bar down one of the city's medieval sidestreets.


They call themselves not activists but militants and claim to have 2000


fee-paying members in more than a dozen cities across France.


Twice a week they fan out across the city distributing hot


soup and winter clothes to the homeless, or the European


In the summers, they organise youth camps, where they train and exchange


ideas with other like-minded people from across Europe,


including Martin Sellner, the Austrian we met earlier.


Generation Identitaire are not directly affiliated


But they are emboldened by the prospect of a Le Pen presidency.


And their rejection of multiculturalism goes


further than a proposal to simply limit immigration.


What they are proposing is, in effect, ethnic cleansing.


They are French, they are as French as you are, they were born here.


The more extreme views of the Identitarians are not echoed -


officially, at least - even by the kaleidoscope of far


right parties now vying for the centre ground.


In France, the Netherlands, in Belgium, in Italy, and Austria.


Martin Sellner and his friends are a small minority.


We see ourselves as a patriotic avant-garde, who is pushing...


Of what you can say and what you can think.


Little by little, these ideas are being fed


Not new ideas, but old ones, ideas that many thought had been


Joining me now from Hungary is the sociologist and commentator


journalist and researcher for the Quilliam Foundation.


It is nice to hear from you both. These are not new ideas, but old


ones. Do you think this is a new movement or something you have seen


before? It's a renaissance of some former, but there is a new


dimension. Increasingly we have educated people across all classes


and all social backgrounds joining far right movements, populist


movements and the more militant ones. What we are seeing is


effectively a full-blown far right renaissance across Europe, or across


the world. Is that something that scares you? Definitely. I do see a


clear connection between the populist far right spreading hateful


ideologies and the more militant far right, increasing the attacks are


happening across Europe, far right terrorism is becoming a bigger


threat at the moment than jihadist terrorism and we have seen attacks


across the entire continent. Is that overblown? That is a hysterical


reaction. We are continuing to talk about it is just like Hitler, the


1930s, and we are confusing a small number of young right-wing activists


with the broader populist impulse that is enveloping Europe which has


got positive aspects and negative aspects. But there is a danger that


we seem to... INAUDIBLE In many respects these people are


the mirror image... INAUDIBLE We have terrible sound problems. We


will try to get back to you. Identitarians, or what you want to


call them, they claim they have been forced to accept an erosion of their


culture and laws, and boundaries. No matter what you call this, you prove


their point, you take things, this liberal society has decreed taboo


and you do not let anyone express their fears. The problem about this


becoming to do with anti-Muslim resentments, for example,


effectively it has spread into both the militant far right movements and


exactly the narratives that Islamist extremists are spreading, that the


West is at war with Islam. We are seeing this cultural war. Terrorists


who killed 70 people on the island in 2011, and the narratives of... We


are seeing this turning into a self-fulfilling prophecy into a


global civil war between Muslims and non-Muslims. I'm going to try and go


to Frank. The concern is, Frank, that you are missing what is


essentially the return of fascism, that this is near Nazism by any


other name. -- Neo. When you think of what the 1930s and the Fascists


represented and you compare that to INAUDIBLE


... The uncertainty. There's a real danger. A real danger drywall. -- a


real danger of crying wolf. I'm sorry, we are not getting a good


enough line. Frank has broken about the promiscuous populism which


allows the elite who have been guilty of crop politicians or


undemocratic institutions, or badly bodies who have had too much power


-- corrupt politicians. There is something in that? Definitely, but


finger-pointing and Scepovic -- scapegoating is the wrong approach.


I agree that much of this is rooted in a deep disappointment of the


establishment, not addressing the problems that the marginalised


majorities are facing. Is it too late? How do you see these


movements? Gabriel looked at the movements in Vienna and Paris. The


respondents at the moment, is this a niche interest or the beginning of a


revolution? -- small movements at the moment. We are seeing online


hate crimes and support for the Alt Right in the United States and in


France and Austria. We are seeing a sharp rise. This is becoming more


and more mainstream, something we need to address and I would say it


is like having two sides of the same coin. Islamist extremists and the


far right Kameni we don't address both of them they will both get rich


and rich -- and the far right, and if we don't address both of them


they will both get rich and rich. It is just a matter of time until we


tossed a coin. What will happen by the end of the decade? I hope that


this cultural war that both extremists and both identity


movements are speaking about is not turning into reality, but right now


I'm concerned by the developments on this side of the Atlantic and also


what is happening with Donald Trump. Thanks for joining us. Apologies for


not being able to get a clearer line from Budapest.


Britain's arms deals with Saudi Arabia have long been


a source of contention - many accuse the country


of using those weapons to commit war crimes in Yemen,


a country described by the DEC today as at breaking point.


Earlier in the year, we revealed that a report


by a parliamentary committee into Saudi arms sales was watered


down to be less critical of the Saudi regime.


Now, this programme has learned the committee with oversight


Who scrutinises the arms deals, then?


Our political editor Nicholas Watt has the story.


The vexed question of British arms exports has been brought into sharp


relief by the conflict in Yemen. Britain is continuing to supply arms


to Saudi Arabia which has been accused of violating international


human rights laws as it supports the Yemeni government infighting Shia


rebels. Over the autumn, details of a dispute about the arms sales


amongst senior MPs was late. -- was leaked. It was split down the


middle. You were party to material being improperly leaked out of the


committee proceedings which with a complex committee structure, made


the conduct of the committee and the trust of the committee to actually


be able to be a place where you can scratch out the issues at stake,


without them being relayed, out to the media, producing a very one eyed


view, on a single issue. Without the ability to consider the whole


situation and that make the -- made the work of the committee or most


impossible. One person called for the suspension of the arms deals.


The second set said it would be wrong to cancel supplies until


evidence had been at that. The row has now effectively killed off the


committee after the impasse meant they could not produce an agreed


report. The committee is of the view that with the machinery of


government off the hook, it makes sense of the new select committee on


international trade which oversees the Department for international


trade within which arms export licensing will set, that they should


oversee the exercise now. One member of Crispin Blunt's select committee


disagrees. I have the greatest respect for Crispin Blunt, but on


this issue I don't share his view. The arms control is a very


particular issue and it goes beyond just trade and we need to take into


is a consideration human rights and foreign policy and a range of issues


that need to be looked into for what is a very particular set of issues.


Members of other select committees also have concerns. We know there


are individuals who are not happy with the proposal to suspend arms to


Yemen and we have seen the government, despite the Foreign


Secretary's comments in recent days, rolling back on those and taking a


very pro-Saudi Arabian line. We still haven't got answers on those


allegations of atrocities against civilians. It seems to me that we


need a strong committee to hold the government's feet to the fire and


that requires the participation of all four constituency committees.


The current chairman of the committee on arms export controls,


whose draft report called for the suspension of arms to Saudi Arabia,


appears to be resigned to his fate. There needs to be scrutiny of arms


sales and exports and this was a good format for that to happen, and


in what ever Department that will fall under in the new parliament,


the new Department of structure, I think that we need to make sure that


some form of cake exists. Newsnight has learned that a new structure has


almost been agreed amongst MPs, the new international trade select


committee overseeing the work of Liam Fox's Department will take the


lead in overseeing arms export licences with members from other


select committees contributing, although in a less formal way. We


might have people succumbed to another committee and in a cake type


structure, from other committees, that will overview this or maybe


they will get seconded at moments when we are looking at international


arms sales in particular. The model is open at the moment, and we will


see what colleagues prefer and what the ideas are and inevitably we will


arrive at a conclusion at some point. Angus MacNeil says human


rights will Steve be one of the main concerns as he scrutinised is --


will still be one of the main concerns as he scrutinises it. I'm


an SNP MP and if there is any role of undermining and downplaying human


rights aspect, within the SNP and the SNP membership, my, will be felt


very strongly and so that will not be happening. Not least the voice of


Nicola Sturgeon who might be quite strong, as well. Boris Johnson, is


comments that Saudi Arabia have been fighting proxy wars in Yemen, but


Parliamentary oversight on arms export licences will soon be largely


in new hands -- his comments. America has an estimated


11 million immigrants living illegally in the US -


a number that has broadly stabilised For many, that number represents


a problem to be solved. But within America, the phenomenon


of "sanctuary cities" has grown up. They represent around three dozen


cities that have turned a blind eye to those there illegally -


and refuse to deploy their own immigration enforcement


officers to deport them. They offer, in other words,


a safe space to illegal immigrants. Donald Trump - who campaigned


robustly against illegal immigration on the campaign trail -


has made clear he intends to cancel all federal funding to these cities


in a bid to crack their policy We will end the sanctuary cities


that have resulted in Cities that refuse to cooperate


with federal authorities will not receive taxpayer dollars


and we will work with Congress to pass legislation to protect those


jurisdictions that do And can Donald Trump actually follow


through on his promise Michael Hancock is


the mayor of Denver, I know that Denver like New York,


San Francisco, DC and Chicago is a Sanctuary city. Explain how it


works. Thanks for having me. I want to make it clear Denver never


formally adopted a policy to be a sanctuary city. It is commonly known


in the US there is not a precise definition of what a sanctuary city


is. Some cities have adopted policies, Denver has never adopted a


policy to be a century city. We are an inclusive city, a city of


opportunity that is welcoming and will continue to enforce the laws we


have on our books, but we will not violate the constitutional rights of


individuals and hold them without a warrant to hold them. Let me clarify


this. Would Donald Trump stop you from getting what is it $175 million


of federal money for how he interprets your actions in the city?


We don't know what President-elect Trump macro will do. It is too early


to estimate what his immigration policy with the. Somebody who has


been elected, I know what it means to campaign on something and get


into office and have to govern and the realities may shift. Denver has


never formally adopted a sanctuary city position and we cooperate with


the central government as regards immigration laws. You do not think


his rhetoric on immigration will come true? It is important to


recognise those cities follow the law and Denver follows the law


regarding immigration. We will not do the job of the immigration


control enforcement division. And we will not... We do not have the


policing power or policing manpower to execute those laws so we have to


allow the federal authorities to do that, but we will cooperate with


federal government and enforce the laws as we can. For give me for


coming in but President-elect Trump had a strong mandate on this issue


of stopping illegal immigration. Do you have a duty to start enforcing


it when America has voted for that? It is not the city government's role


to enforce immigration laws. If we arrest someone for violation of our


city doors we will work with federal agencies. The moment we no longer


have a constitutional authority to hold that individual, that they have


satisfied their duty or violation with the city of Denver, we have to


release them and that is where the confusion occurs. Let's get to the


spirit of what you are doing, which is broadly you are a welcoming haven


for illegal immigrants under a President who has made it clear he


does not agree with illegal immigration. You are at odds with


the policy America has chosen. We are a city that is welcoming and


inclusive, we don't believe in separating families needlessly. We


believe in upholding family values and holding people accountable who


violate the law. Somebody working hard, pursuing the opportunity of


freedom and an opportunity of happiness in Denver, we encourage


them to seated legal status but we do not believe in needlessly


separating families and allowing people to remain in the inclusive


city. Would it matter if the money were stopped, if you do not receive


$170 million with the new administration? Along with other


mayors in the country we hope and believe it will not get to that. We


hope and we will work closely with the trumpet administration and


develop a comprehensive path to citizenship for all immigrants and


to allow these folks to be productive residents in our cities.


We know there are illegal immigrants. It is not practical to


think we will deport 11 million people, and to recognise that many


cities including Denver have thrived economically because of the hard


work and dedication of people including immigrants, in our city,


who have participated in the production of our great city. We


believe it is better to work closely with the Trump administration.


Thanks. The Brexit vote has already


begun to affect the way Some are facing a 10% shortfall


in seasonal workers, according to the Farmers Union,


as foreign employees are showing a reluctance to come over


to the UK to find jobs. The industry is using the labour


crisis to rethink the way it works and has introduced automation


into the workplace in ways Here's our technology


editor David Grossman. The carrot business


is all about incentives. What this farm sees as the stick


of Brexit threatens to dry out the supply of EU migrant labour


that it relies on. And so they are turning


to technology to fill the gap. Clearly we haven't got enough UK


workers so we need to look But we haven't got


enough UK workers. If there were enough UK workers,


we wouldn't be having migrants. This is how this farm used


to sort their carrots. 18 migrant workers deciding what can


be Christmas dinner and what is only Now, cameras, lasers,


and computers sort the veg The good news for some firms


who have high levels of migration is that they are actually quite ripe


for new technology so, yes, it will cost some money


and needs upfront investment, but whether it is agriculture,


bits of manufacturing, already you can see that those


sectors are ready for new forms of technology and new forms


of robots, if you like, Much more difficult is those parts


of the economy that have high levels of migration but actually don't look


very ripe for technology. Cleaning, domestic services,


hotel work, for instance. And that is great news


for places like this. It exports farm machinery all over


the world and has never been busier The images from the camera are being


analysed on the on-board computer. Again, this is technology


that is only just ripe, using cameras and computers to do


what only humans were capable of only a couple of years ago,


in this case identifying and removing weeds in


rows of young crops. A typical small model of the in-row


weeder would do the same amount of work as a typical gang of say


30 manual labourers. And although not cheap,


a machine doesn't need It just sits in the shed


until you need it. Well, we seem to be sitting


in a nice place where There has been a trend in any case


over the last few years to go more and more into more technology


on farms, using this And I think it is simply


focusing the mind and Because there may well be


no other alternative. It's not just agriculture


that is looking at automation to get around


a post-Brexit shortage. The international president of UBS,


the parcel delivery firm, says they will now invest more


in robots in the UK than they had But some politicians and employers


are pressing for a return to something like the seasonal


agricultural workers scheme to allow I think there is a lot of interest


in sector-based schemes. They worked pretty well


in agriculture because there you had a large requirement for labour


at a particular point in time. Elsewhere, you need flexibility


in labour, but it is spread throughout the year,


so the idea of having someone, having a group of workers over


for a couple of months is not going to work for sectors like food


processing and hospitality. The British economy


is clearly heading for big However, some economists believe


that automating away our addiction to cheap EU labour could not only


help us survive this change, Anything that can encourage firms


to think more about investing both in new technology and also


in the skills of the existing If we can therefore start


to generate more output. All right, there has to be


an upfront investment cost, but generate more output


without having to rely on these business models,


which mean we have to bring That probably is a healthy place


for the economy to move. There's lots of other debates


about whether or not we should be thinking about changing the numbers


of migrants coming in each year. But purely from the economic


perspective, if we can boost productivity, then the Brexit vote


will actually have had some positive impact in terms


of kick-starting the process. In low-skilled, low-wage industries,


the robots are certainly coming. The questions are, how quickly


and how much will they cost? For big employers of migrant labour,


the technology, the economics And that still adds up to a whole


load of uncertainty. We can take you through the front


pages before we go. Distressing pictures on the front of the


Guardian newspaper, a final call to the world, to save Aleppo. President


Assad loyalist now controlling much of the city. The same sort of


picture in the Independent. We need more than two years to negotiate the


Brexit deal says the Chancellor, a story suggesting he is in favour of


a soft Brexit that could take up to four years. The Daily Telegraph,


Christmas post strike adding to rail misery. This looks at Southern rail


strikes that could find itself joined by a Christmas postal strike


and the Express. An Alzheimer's story.


Before we go tonight, we heard today the news that


weatherman Ian McCaskill, one of the BBC's most recognisable


faces in the '80s and '90s, had died.


He had the special talent of making even a dreary day seem bearable.


We'll leave you with a flavour of his work, the opening


of his Christmas Day forecast in 1987.


You've got to be really unlucky to pull your own cracker and


But at least we'll be lucky with the weather.


And Southport, an almost, but not quite,


incredible six and a half hours of sunshine.


Good evening, less than two weeks away from the big day and no sign of


snow. Plenty of rain on Tuesday the first thing. Spreading northwards


and eastwards and slices of sunshine in between. A


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