White coming out in the wash

A country which hosts the UN’s European Headquarters and a number of international organisations, including the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and which is a member of the United Nations itself, albeit since only fairly recently, is on the way to becoming a black sheep within the international community should the SVP (Swiss People’s Party) win the upcoming general elections this October. The party has been driving its campaign with a poster that has been described by the UN and others as “blatantly racist” and the BBC reports that “Recent polls have forecast the Swiss People’s Party to emerge as the largest vote-winner.”

I came to Switzerland in the early 70’s when the notorious Schwarzenbach referendum was in full swing and was later defeated. In 2002, Switzerland became a member of the United Nations. In 2007, going by the SVP poster, xenophobia would seem to reign in the European island of Switzerland.

No man is an island, yet nations pretend.