Breitbart eyes expansion into EuropeDec. 4, 201603:08
Breitbart’s Stephen Bannon has shown how big right-wing media can dream.
Now, with populists candidates showing increased strength at ballot boxes across Europe, the company he led before joining the Trump campaign is taking its show on the road with plans to expand to Germany and France.
According to Breitbart editor-in-chief, Alexander Marlow, the site has a voice and perspective that people want to hear.
“I think that our brand is unique in America and I think when we expand abroad that we’ll prove its unique there as well,” Marlow told NBC News.
Last month Bannon praised France’s Marion Maréchal-Le Pen, the 26-year-old granddaughter of Jean-Marie Le Pen, who founded the far-right National Front Party, and niece of Marine Le Pen, it’s current leader who will contend for the French presidency in 2017. After Trump's election, Bannon was tapped to become the president-elect's chief strategist in the White House.
Marion Maréchal-Le Pen tweeted that she wanted to work with Breitbart and told NBC that the internet has given a voice to right-wing activists like herself.
According to Daily Beast foreign editor, Christopher Dickey, Breitbart can get an audience in places like France given there is an appetite for “alternative news” there.
“This is a time that everybody is questioning the conventional wisdom and if a publication can come in and tap into the questioning, then it can find a following,” Dickey said.
But he points out that it won’t be alone as there are already sites in France providing the type of content Breitbart has become known for in the U.S.
Across the English Channel, Breitbart has been operating in London since 2014.
Among those it has featured extensively over this time is Tommy Robinson, founder of the far-right English Defence League.
Robinson has appeared on numerous news platforms in England over recent years and feels he and his views have been treated less than fairly.
“I’ve been called a Nazi. Media have called me a Nazi. I despise Nazis. I hate racism.”
Robinson was so suspicious of NBC News that he recorded his own live broadcast of our conversation for his social media followers on Periscope.
When asked why, he said: “I don’t trust your media, that’s the truth. I don’t trust any mainstream media.”
Robinson is not alone in his skepticism of the traditional press.
The London editor for Infowars, a more conspiratorial right-wing website didn’t respond to NBC’s interview requests.
Instead, its editor tweeted our email saying he wouldn’t speak to “fake news outlets.”
Breitbart sees this hostility to traditional media as an opportunity.
And for Robinson, this is a new media voice that’s very much welcome.
When asked why he thinks Britain needs a news source such as Breitbart, he is quickly to the point.
“To tell the truth ... that’s all people want is the truth. Just the truth.”