The “Great Replacement” Conspiracy Theory
From The Fringe Of White Supremacist Circles
To The Mainstream
The “Great Replacement” is one of the most dangerous white supremacist conspiracy theories out there. While it has floated around in racist echo chambers for quite some time, today — from Fox News to the mouths of politicians around the globe — it’s everywhere. And as far-right figures mainstream this dangerous, white supremacist theory, the mass casualty attacks inspired by it continue to mount.
What is “The Great Replacement” and why is it dangerous?
The Great Replacement conspiracy theory is a white supremacist, xenophobic, and anti-immigrant concept that posits white people are being replaced by immigrants, Muslims, and other people of color in their so-called “home” countries. The conspiracy often blames the “elite” and Jews for orchestrating these changing demographics. The Great Replacement was conceived of by a Frenchman, Renaud Camus, who popularized the idea in his 2011 book Le Grand Remplacement. The concept spread like wildfire in Europe, particularly through the sprawling transnational white supremacist group Generation Identity and its social media accounts.
Tony Abbot, Former Prime Minister
“Having fewer children in western countries will hardly make the climate better when so many children are being born elsewhere,” said Abbott, claiming that dying populations, not climate change, is the biggest threat to western civilization.
Heinz-Christian Strache, Former Vice Chancellor, Freedom Party
He told a reporter that his party was “consistently following the path for our Austrian homeland, the fight against population replacement, as people expect of us.” When the interviewer interjected to say “population replacement” was a term associated with rightwing extremists, Strache replied that it was “a term of reality,” adding: “We don’t want to become a minority in our own country. That’s legitimate and fair and deeply democratic.”
“Many citizens rightly say these are political decisions – the extent to which one wants to continue to allow immigration on a massive scale, the extent to which demographic development then leads to a situation where an ancestral population becomes a minority, and many do not want that.”
Martin Sellner, Leader of White Supremacist Identitarian Movement of Austria
“I think people need to be realistic and serious and understand that if the demographics continues like this we will become a minority in our own country and if the integration policies continue like this we will become Islamic or an Islamic-dominated country.”
Marine Le Pen, Presidential Candidate, National Rally
“How can we be OK with seeing our adversaries ruining the country economically and morally, with the organized replacement of our population?”
“Never in the history of mankind have we seen a society organizing an irreversible submersion of uncontrolled magnitude which, in the long term, will cause the disappearance, by dilution or substitution, of its culture and way of life.”
Marion Marechal, former MP, National Front
“We want our country back…France is in the process of passing from the eldest daughter of the Catholic Church to the little niece of Islam… this is not the France that our grandparents fought for…there is a youth ready for this fight in Europe today”.
Valerie Pecresse, Presidential Candidate, Les Republicains
Said that France was not doomed to the “great replacement” and called on her supporters “to rise up.” In the same speech, she drew a distinction between “French of the heart” and “French of papers” — an expression used by the extreme right to denigrate naturalized citizens as not rightful citizens.
Eric Zenmour, Presidential Candidate, Reconquete
“I think many French people were waiting for this message, that someone speaks to them about France, about how they feel: that the country is in danger of dying, subverted by an unprecedented wave of migration, that whole areas of the country have become enclaves of foreign Islamists.”
Alexander Gauland, Party Leader, AfD
“[Vote for AfD] to prevent the population replacement caused by the current migration policy, which is leading Germany to its demise.”
“From the refugees who came in and were not registered—nobody discussed if we should open the borders… We Germans are beginning to lose control of this country.”
Beatrix von Storch, Budenstaf Member, AfD
“The plans for a mass exchange of the population have long been written.”
Viktor Orban, Prime Minister, Fidesz
“If Europe is not going to be populated by Europeans in the future and we take this as given, then we are speaking about an exchange of populations, to replace the population of Europeans with others,” said Orbán. “There are political forces in Europe who want a replacement of population for ideological or other reasons.”
“I see the great European population exchange as a suicidal attempt to replace the lack of European, Christian children with adults from other civilizations – migrants.”
“Those who do not halt immigration at their borders are lost: slowly but surely they are consumed. External forces and international powers want to force all this upon us, with the help of their allies here in our country.”
Hermann Kelly, Leader Irish Freedom Party
“…Not a word about incentivising talented and skilled Irish diaspora to come home. According to this, looks as if those talking about a Great Replacement in Ireland have a point. Who is doing the discrimination now?”
Luca Castellini, Leader, Verona Chapter (also called Il Quadrato), Forza Nuova
“Cession of sovereignty ( #Ue ), economic impoverishment ( #COVID19 ), mass control ( #vaccino ) and ETHNIC SUBSTITUTION: who today does not understand that this list of weapons are in the hands of the same power and are all aimed at us is a blind man walking towards the social abyss.”
Roberto Fiore, party leader, Forza Nuova
A Forza Nueva ad, highlighting Fiore as a speaker asks “immigration or ethnic substitution?”
Matteo Salvani, party leader, Lega
“Italy today isn’t undergoing a phenomenon of immigration but a real and true substitution: Our young people are leaving and being replaced by foreigners.”
Has called for a Europe-wide alliance against “mass immigration,” linking the “defense of borders” with the “wellbeing of children.” Salvini has also complained that the Pope’s welcome to immigrants would “encourage and fund an unprecedented invasion.”
Emanuele Tesauro, president, Fortezza Europa
“Our biggest worry is the immigrational deluge with which somebody is trying to ethnically substitute Europeans.”
Geert Wilders, politician, Party for Freedom
“We are being replaced with mass immigration from non-western Islamic countries,” Wilders Tweeted, saying the solution was “close our borders and stop Islam, now”….“If we do not stop them we will… be colonised and Islamised. We will cease to exist.”
“Our population is being replaced. No more.”