I like big arguments!
In 2012 Paris, I'd think the skinheads are the ones who should worry about wandering near dark alleys. ;)
Only because they probably control only a small number of alleys, and by the very nature of things, their "natural foes" will always outnumber them (which is also one of the driving forces behind such movements to begin with).
The situation in Greece right now is not unlike that of post-WW1 Germany. Perhaps something for Merkel to consider.
Yes and no. Post WW I Germany, first of all, had a large number of war-hardened veterans organizing armed Freikorps (freelance corps) organized more or less like actual military units, representing the full spectrum of ideologies from left to right.
In Greece, this does not occur. Only Golden Dawn tries to appear militarily organized, their "equivalent" left-wing "foes" would be a rag-tag assortment of anarchists, extraparliamentary leftists, illegal immigrants etc. so it's a mockery of Weimar, at best. Plus those groups do not battle one another directly: they increase their influence through either self-organized policing operations, pogroms vs undersirable immigrants and even organizing charities (Golden Dawn), or through syndicate/radical activism (leftists).
Second, Weimar Germany was more or less on a (frail) recovery path and Germany was flourishing through the 1920s. Freikorps and the such, as well as the Nazi party, were still regarded as emarginated/extreme minority groups, but the stock market crash in the USA and the Great Depression totally obliterated any progress, gained massive popular support for Hitler and let all hell loose in the 1930s.
Greece OTOH is still on a downwards spiral, always weeks away from bankruptcy (just yesterday 16 Nov 2012, a 5 bln bond had to be repaid...with emergency loans expiring in 1 and 3 months, and three more bonds for a total of 12 bln looming this very December). There's also no clear popular support for one powerful enough party or group, yet, and society is divided between people who thing that staying in the EU, even as a non-equal member is paramount, those who advocate finding our own ways, some who wish for the "status quo antem", and some who wish for extreme fascist measures. Plus several who don't know who to follow. The current government clearly belongs in the first category, even though they don't mention the "non equal" part.
Last edited by Maes on 11-16-12 at 22:30