The Golden Dawn and the Mainstream Media: A Symbiotic Relationship

This article argues that there is a symbiotic relationship between the Golden Dawn, Greek neo-Nazi political party, and well-respected international media outlets. The sovereign debt crisis and the following events like the European refugee crisis and the 2015 Greek bailout referendum attracted unequalled and disproportionate media coverage, but among the most reported stories that emerged was the startling electoral results of the Golden Dawn. Mainstream media outlets focused their attention on the party because the topic appeals to people. This is the result of a content analysis that examined three major media outlets with international audiences. By focusing on the neo-Nazi party, this article attempts to answer questions concerning the impact of the foreign press on extremist political groups. However, in the case of the Golden Dawn, I believe that the international media has been able to sway social and political elites in Greece, who in turn, compelled the domestic media to increase its coverage. This coverage, even though it was generally negative, both in Greece and abroad, largely benefited the party. If the mainstream media did not communicate their ideas to voters, fringe political parties, and especially ultra-nationalists, would continue to be isolated and not be able to take advantage of extensive public dissatisfaction and capitalize on the political opportunities made available to them.

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