EU Scream podcast explores extremism in Europe

EU Scream

A new podcast has launched that focuses on Europe and its political extremes.

EU Scream aims to examine “how populists and extremists are shaping a dark future for Europe”. Ominously, its website warns: “One day the victim of haters and imposters could include you.”

The podcast is co-produced and co-presented by journalist James Kanter and lobbyist and PR professional Tom Brookes. Kanter, who also edits the podcast, has worked for The New York Times and reported on climate change and EU integration. Brookes also used to be a journalist, he says, “but never for any outlets you would know”.

The pair claim to be “non-partisan”, but say they “worry about preserving peace, individual liberties and social justice”. They add that they “like Europe, but understand it needs to change with the times”.

So far there have been four episodes, the first of which went live on 26 October. In the most recent episode, titled Mad About France, Kanter and Brookes discuss French nationalist politician Marine Le Pen’s refusal to take a psychiatric test after a court ordered her to do so in a case relating to her having tweeted graphic photos of Isis violence. They interview David Ibsen, Executive Director of the non-profit Counter Extremism Project, about the rising generation of media-savvy nationalists.

Previous episode Migrating From the Truth discussed the foul-mouthed clash of words between Italy’s interior minister Matteo Salvini and Luxembourg’s foreign minister Jean Asselborne over their governments’ opposing views on migrants. It also sat down Save the Children migration adviser Karen Mets in front of a Youtube video made by the anti-immigration campaigner Lauren Southern and asked her for her thoughts.

EU Scream is a rare addition to the European politics podcast lineup. The reigning heavyweight champion of the field is Politico’s politics-focused EU Confidential, presented by journalist Ryan Heath, which now has more than 70 episodes online. Social Europe Podcast aims its microphone more towards academics, and has amassed 35 episodes.

Despite their weighty subject matter, Kanter and Brookes take a humorous approach to EU Scream. As their website says: “You’ve got to laugh. Else you’ll cry.”

Words: Craig Nicholson
Graphic: Helena Malikova, copyright EU Scream

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