Archive for the ‘Europe and Islamists’ category

The Worst Ideological Enemy of the US is Now Europe

July 20, 2017

The Worst Ideological Enemy of the US is Now Europe, Gatestone Institute, Drieu Godefridi, July 20, 2017

The vast majority of these European courts — whether the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) or the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) — in their attempt to be moral and just, have dismissed the sovereign laws of Italy as irrelevant, and trampled the rights of the Italian state and ordinary Italians to approve who enters their country.

In Europe, Amnesty International and the like are, it seems, a new source of law.

Those who gave the Statue of Liberty to America in 1886 “to commemorate the perseverance of freedom and democracy in the United States” are willingly trampling their own people’s liberties today through courts of appointed, unelected, unaccountable ideologues. The danger is that, with the help of many doubtless well-intentioned, international NGOs, the EU will not stop at its shores.

Europe is the worst enemy of the US? You cannot be serious. Islamism, Russia, illegal immigrants… whatever, but surely not Europe! Are we not still together in NATO? Do we not conduct huge amounts of trade every day? Do we not share the same cultural roots, the same civilization, the same vision of the future? Did France not give the US her famous Statue of Liberty – “Liberty Enlightening the World?

Not anymore. In a sense, Europe looks like a continent where American Democrats have been in power for 30 years, not only in the European states, but also at the level of the European Union.

In the US, the political spectrum still spans a vast range of views between Democrats and Republicans, globalists and nationalists, pro-lifers and pro-choicers, pro-government control and pro-individuals’ control, and pro-whatever. Even today with a president and a Supreme Court clearly on the political “Right” these divisions, and the all-important separation of powers, allow for and encourage vigorous debate. By contrast, in Europe, at the “official” level, such a spectrum of views no longer exists.

In Western Europe, politically speaking, in the press and in universities, either you are on the “Left,” or you are a pariah. If you are a pariah, you are most likely to be prosecuted for “Islamophobia”, “racism”, discrimination or some other “trumped up” charge.

There are several reasons for this imbalance. One is the difference in political maturity between Europeans and Americans. Whereas “ordinary” American voters (not just the “elites”) understand that their Supreme Court is key to ensuring that fundamental constitutional freedoms are maintained for all, the Europeans have done the opposite. In the US, the constitutional right to “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” is derived from the people — “from the consent of the governed.”

Consequently, when Justice Antonin Scalia of the US Supreme Court died, the US press wrote about him for weeks. “Ordinary citizens” in the US are deeply aware of judicial roles and their effect on judgements and legal precedents.

By contrast, in Europe, we now have two Supreme Courts: the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg, and the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in Luxembourg, in addition to national courts. There is, however, not one citizen in a million who can name a single judge of either the ECHR or the CJEU. The reason is that the nomination of those judges is mostly opaque, purely governmental and, in the instance of the ECHR, with no public debate. With the CJEU, appointments are also essentially governmental, with the sanction of the European Parliament, which is ideologically dominated by the Left.

In Europe, there are now two Supreme Courts: the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg, and the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in Luxembourg (pictured above), in addition to national courts. (Image source: Transparency International/Flickr)

The US has always welcomed immigrants, most of whom came to her shores via Ellis Island and went through a legal process for entry, led by the light of the torch of Lady Liberty. In recent years, especially since the advent of increased terrorism, the subject of illegal immigrants, migrant workers and the vetting of immigrants has become hotly debated.

By contrast, in Europe, the topic of “illegal” migrants is effectively forbidden. The continent has recently been invaded by millions of migrants — many apparently arriving under the false pretense of being refugees, even according to the United Nations.

One of the reasons is the open-door policy of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who allowed over a million mostly Muslim migrants to enter Germany, not only without extreme vetting, but with no vetting at all.

There is, however, another, more structural cause for the current situation. In 2012, the ECHR enacted the so-called “HIRSI” ruling, named after the court case of Hirsi Jamaa and Others v. Italy, which states that the European states have the legal obligation to rescue migrants wherever they find them in the Mediterranean Sea — even just 200 meters away from the Libyan coast — and ferry them to the European shores, so that these people can claim the status of refugee.

When the Italian Navy intercepted illegal migrants in the Mediterranean Sea and sent them back to their point of origin, Libya, not only did the ECHR condemn Italy for this “obvious” breach of human rights; the Italians had to pay 15,000 euros ($17,000 USD) to each of these illegal migrants in the name of “moral damage”. This kind of money is equivalent to more than 10 years of income in Somalia and Eritrea (the countries of origin of Mr. Hirsi Jamaa and his companions). In 2016, Somalia’s GDP per capita was an estimated $400 USD; Eritrea’s $1,300.

Everyone, of course, heard about the HIRSI ruling. In Africa, especially, many understood that if they could reach the Mediterranean, Europe’s navies would now be obliged to ferry them directly to Europe. Before the HIRSI ruling, when people tried to reach the shores of Europe, hundreds every year tragically died at sea. After HIRSI, the objective is now simply to be intercepted. Consequently, hundreds of thousands attempt this journey — often with the help of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) such as Médecins Sans Frontières, whose activists wait for boats to appear at sea, just off the Libyan coast. We therefore presently have 5,000 unintercepted people dying at sea every year.

While Italy is “drowning” in refugees, Austria has deployed armored vehicles close to its border with Italy, to stop more migrants from coming north.

The vast majority of these European courts — whether the ECHR or the CJEU — in their attempt to be moral and just, have dismissed the sovereign laws of Italy as irrelevant, and trampled the rights of the Italian state and ordinary Italians to approve who enters their country.

Americans would do well to read the HIRSI decision; it is rather short and a perfect summary of current European jurisprudence. They will find that the ECHR does not hesitate to accept NGOs as an authoritative part of the process; the ECHR even quotes their statements as if fact or law. In Europe, Amnesty International and the like are, it appears, a new source of law.

The European people, of course, still share the common values of Western civilization. The “Visegrad Group” of countries in Central Europe, for instance — the Czech RepublicHungaryPoland and Slovakia — do not accept the German diktat to relocate Muslim refugees. Parts of Western Europe, such as the northern Flemish-speaking part of Belgium, are also pretty tired of the whole European mess, and Merkel will not embody the leadership of Germany forever.

Americans, therefore, would do well to understand that for the time being the “Cultural Left” is so deeply entrenched in Western Europe and the EU, that their worst ideological enemy is not the Middle East or Russia: it is Europe.

Those who gave the Statue of Liberty to America in 1886 “to commemorate the perseverance of freedom and democracy in the United States” are willingly trampling their own people’s liberties today through courts of appointed, unelected, unaccountable ideologues. The danger is, with the help of many, doubtless well-intentioned, international NGOs, the EU will not stop at its shores.

Drieu Godefridi, a classical-liberal Belgian author, is the founder of the l’Institut Hayek in Brussels. He has a PhD in Philosophy from the Sorbonne in Paris and also heads investments in European companies.

Eastern Europe Chooses to Keep Western Civilization

July 7, 2017

Eastern Europe Chooses to Keep Western Civilization, Giulio Meotti, July 7, 2017

[I]t is critical that Eastern Europe continues to be a strong voice of dissent in the EU project. It might provide just the cultural confidence that European bureaucrats dramatically lack — at the peril of Europe itself.

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“The greatest difference is that in Europe, politics and religion have been separated from one another, but in the case of Islam it is religion that determines politics” — Zoltan Balog, Hungary’s Minister for Human Resources.

It is no coincidence that President Donald Trump chose Poland, a country that fought both Nazism and Communism, to call on the West to show a little willingness in its existential fight against the new totalitarianism: radical Islam.

“Possessing weapons is one thing, and possessing the will to use them is another thing altogether”. — Professor William Kilpatrick, Boston College.

In a historic speech to an enthusiastic Polish crowd before the meeting of the G20 Summit leaders, US President Donald Trump described the West’s battle against “radical Islamic terrorism” as the way to protect “our civilization and our way of life”. Trump asked if the West had the will to survive:

“Do we have the confidence in our values to defend them at any cost? Do we have enough respect for our citizens to protect our borders? Do we have the desire and the courage to preserve our civilization in the face of those who would subvert and destroy it?”

Trump’s question might find an answer in Eastern Europe, where he chose to deliver his powerful speech.

President Donald Trump gives a speech in Warsaw, Poland, in front of the monument commemorating the 1944 Warsaw Uprising against the Germans, on July 6, 2017. (Image source: The White House)

After an Islamist suicide-bomber murdered 22 concert-goers in Manchester, including two Poles, Poland’s prime minister, Beata Szydło, said that Poland would not be “blackmailed” into accepting thousands of refugees under the European Union’s quota system. She urged Polish lawmakers to safeguard the country and Europe from the scourges of Islamist terrorism and cultural suicide:

“Where are you headed, Europe? Rise from your knees and from your lethargy, or you will be crying over your children every day”.

A few days later, the European Union announced that it would begin proceedings to punish Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic for their refusal to accept migrants as the European Commission had decided under a 2015 scheme it created.

After Szydło’s speech, Zoltan Balog, Hungary’s Minister for Human Resources, declared:

“Islam is a major culture and religion, which we must respect, but Europe has a different identity, and it is clear that these two cultures are incapable of coexisting without conflict… The greatest difference is that in Europe, politics and religion have been separated from one another, but in the case of Islam it is religion that determines politics”.

That is why Viktor Orban has been labelled as “Europe’s enemy within” — because he spelled out what the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, will never do: “Keeping Europe Christian“.

These speeches from Visegrad officials — the European group made up of the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia — are just two examples of deep ideological divisions between Western European countries and those in Central- and Eastern Europe.

There has been a growing tendency of Visegrad leaders to depict Islam as a civilizational threat to Christian Europe. If, in Western Europe, Christianity has been dramatically cast aside by public opinion and severely restricted by EU official rules, in Eastern Europe new polls reveal that Christianity is as robust and patriotic as ever. That is why Trump called Poland “the faithful nation“. That is why US Catholic magazines are openly asking if there is a “Christian reawakening” in Eastern Europe. Slovakia approved a law to prevent Islam from becoming an official state religion.

These Central- and Eastern European countries know that Western Europe’s multiculturalism has been a recipe for terror attacks, for a start. As Ed West of The Spectator noted:

“Not all of Europe, of course. Central Europe, chiefly Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic, remain largely safe from the terror threat, despite the former in particular being a Nato player in the Middle East. It is precisely because the reasons for this are so obvious that they cannot be mentioned. Poland is 0.1 percent Muslim, most of whom are from a long-settled Tartar community, Britain is 5 percent, France 9 percent and Brussels 25 percent, and those numbers are growing”.

What is presumably “obvious” here is that Poland and Hungary are not hit by Islamic terror attacks because they have very few Muslims, while Belgium and UK it is the reverse. Europe would probably have been safer if it had followed Eastern Europe’s example.

Eastern Europe not only shows a greater understanding of Western culture than Western Europe does; these Eastern countries have also been far more generous to NATO, the bulwark of their independence and security. Culture and security go hand-in-hand: if you take your own culture and civilization seriously, you will be ready to defend them.

A brief look at the NATO’s members’ military spending as a percentage of GDP shows that Poland meets the 2% target, unlike all the Western European countries. Only five of NATO’s 28 members — the U.S., Greece, Poland, Estonia and the U.K. — meet the 2% target. Where is France? And Belgium? And Germany? And The Netherlands?

“Unlike most of its NATO and European peers,” Agnia Grigas, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, explained, “Poland has for the past two decades consistently viewed defense as a priority issue, and as a result, has been slowly but steadily emerging as the bedrock of European security”. Poland — unlike Belgium, Italy and other European countries — is not a “free rider” but a trustworthy partner to its US ally. Poland showed loyal support to the United States both in Afghanistan and Iraq, where its troops fought the Taliban and helped to topple Saddam Hussein.

It is no coincidence that President Trump selected Poland, a country that fought both Nazism and Communism, to call on the West to show a little willingness in its existential fight against the new totalitarianism: radical Islam.

“The West will continue to have the military edge for a good time to come, but possessing weapons is one thing, and possessing the will to use them is another thing altogether”, wrote William Kilpatrick, a professor at Boston College. “The West is strong militarily, but weak ideologically. It lacks civilizational confidence”.

That is why it is critical that Eastern Europe continues to be a strong voice of dissent in the EU project. It might provide just the cultural confidence that European bureaucrats dramatically lack — at the peril of Europe itself.

Giulio Meotti, Cultural Editor for Il Foglio, is an Italian journalist and author.

Europe Surrenders to Radical Islam

June 24, 2017

Europe Surrenders to Radical Islam, Gatestone Institute, Guy Millière, June 24, 2017

(The suicide watch can be canceled. Formerly Great Britain and Much of Europe appear to be dead. — DM

Britain — in spite of the Brexit referendum and even though it is more undermined by Islamization than most other European countries — is fully imbued with a European, defeatist state of mind that corrodes its existence and is present throughout Europe.

British political commentator Douglas Murray writes in his important new book, The Strange Death of Europe: “Europe is committing suicide. Or at least its leaders have decided to commit suicide”. He then wonders if the Europeans will agree to go along with what is happening. For the moment, it seems, the answer is yes.

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In spite of three attacks in three months, Britain does not seem to be choosing the path of vigilance and determination. June is not even over but the media barely talk about terrorism any more.

Then, in the early hours of June 19, a man who acted alone drove a van into a crowd of Muslims leaving Finsbury Park Mosque in London: the main “threat” to the British right now was soon presented in several newspapers as “Islamophobia”.

Decolonization added the idea that the Europeans had oppressed other peoples and were guilty of crimes they now had to redeem. There was no mention of how, throughout history, recruits to Islam had colonized the great Christian Byzantine Empire, Greece, Sicily, Corsica, North Africa and the Middle East, most of the Balkans and eastern Europe, Hungary, northern Cyprus and Spain.

While most jihadist movements were banned by the British government, more discreet organizations have emerged and demurely sent the same message. The Islamic Forum for Europe, for example, depicts itself as “peaceful”, but many of those it invites to speak are anything but that. The Islamic Human Rights Commission uses the language of defending human rights to disseminate violent statements against the Jews and the West.

London, June 5, 2017. A minute of silence is held at Potters Field Park, next to the City Hall, to pay tribute to the victims of the London Bridge jihadist attack three days before. Those who came have brought flowers, candles and signs bearing the usual words: “unity”, “peace” and “love”. Faces are sad but no trace of anger is visible. The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, a Muslim, gives a speech emphasizing against all evidence that the killers’ ideas have nothing to do with Islam.

A few hours after the attack, Britain’s Prime Minister Theresa May also refuses to incriminate Islam, but dares to speak of “Islamic extremism”. She was immediately accused of “dividing” the country. On election day, June 8, her Conservative party lost the majority in the House of Commons. Jeremy Corbyn, a pro-terrorist, “democratic socialist”, who demands the end of British participation in the campaign against the Islamic State (ISIS), led the Labour party to thirty more seats than it had earlier. In spite of three attacks in three months, Britain does not seem to choose the path of vigilance and determination. June is not even over but the media barely talk about terrorism any more. A devastating fire destroyed a building in North Kensington, killing scores of residents. Mourning the victims seems to have completely erased all memory of those killed in the terrorist attacks.

Then, in the early hours of June 19, a man who acted alone drove a van into a crowd of Muslims leaving Finsbury Park Mosque in London: the main “threat” to the British right now was soon presented in several newspapers as “Islamophobia”.

The United Kingdom is not the main Muslim country in Europe, but it is the country where, for decades, Islamists could comfortably call for jihad and murder. Although most jihadist movements were banned by the British government, more discreet organizations have emerged and demurely spread the same message. The Islamic Forum for Europe, for example, depicts itself as “peaceful”, but many of those it invites to speak are anything but that. One was Anwar al-Awlaki, who for years planned al-Qaeda operations until he was killed in Yemen in 2011 in an American drone strike. The Islamic Human Rights Commission uses the language of defending human rights to disseminate violent statements against Jews and the West.

The most flamboyant radical preachers have all but disappeared. The most famous among them, Anjem Choudary, was recently sentenced to five years and six months in prison for his open support of the Islamic State, but hundreds of imams throughout the country continue similar work. No-go zones, forbidden to the “infidels”, continue to grow in big cities, and sharia courts continue to dispense a form of justice parallel to, but different from, the national one. Khuram Shazad Butt, one of the three London Bridge terrorists, could raise the Islamic State flag in front of cameras, be the main character of a documentary on jihad in Britain and still be considered “low priority” by the police. Salman Abedi, the Manchester killer, travelled to Libya and Syria for training before he decided to act; he could easily cross borders without being stopped.

The most famous of Britain’s radical Islamic preachers, Anjem Choudary (pictured holding the microphone), was recently sentenced to five years and six months in prison for his open support of the Islamic State, but hundreds of imams throughout the country continue similar work. (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

Attempts to sound an alarm are rare, and quickly dismissed. Left-wing British politicians long ago chose to look the other way and indulge in complicity. Conservatives did not do much to help, either: after the uproar sparked by Enoch Powell’s “Rivers of Blood” speech in 1968, British conservatives avoided the subject and became almost as complacent as their political opponents. In 2002, while portraying Islamism as the “new Bolshevism”, Margaret Thatcher noted that “most Muslims deplore” terrorism. She described the “jihadist danger” without saying a single word on radical Muslims spreading Islamism in her own country.

In 2015, David Cameron said, “We need far more Muslim men and women at the head of British companies, more Muslim soldiers at the highest command posts, more Muslims in parliament, Muslims in a position of leadership and authority”. He did not mention those who were joining jihad in London even as he was speaking.

When he was at the head of Britain’s UKIP party, Nigel Farage said that there is a Muslim “fifth column” in the country. He was ferociously criticized for these words. Paul Weston, chairman of the GB Liberty party, was arrested by the police in 2014 for reading in public a text on Islam written by Winston Churchill. One wonders how Churchill would be regarded today.

Britain — in spite of the Brexit referendum and even though it is more undermined by Islamization than most other European countries — is fully imbued with a European, defeatist state of mind that corrodes its existence and is present throughout Europe.

At the end of World War II, Europe was exhausted and largely destroyed. The idea that prevailed among politicians was that it was necessary to make a clean sweep of the past. Nazism was described as the rotten fruit of nationalism and military power, and the only war that seemed to have to be waged was a war against war itself. Decolonization added the idea that the Europeans had oppressed other peoples and were guilty of crimes they now had to redeem. There was no mention of how, throughout history, recruits to Islam had colonized the great Christian Byzantine Empire, Greece, Sicily, Corsica, North Africa and the Middle East, most of the Balkans and eastern Europe, Hungary, northern Cyprus and Spain. Cultural relativism gained ground. The anti-Western revision of history gradually gained ground in media, culture, politics and education.

Immigrants from the Muslim world arrived in increasing numbers. They were not encouraged to integrate or respect the countries to which they came. In school, their children were told that European powers had misbehaved towards the Muslim world and that Muslim culture was at least as respectable as the Western one, maybe even more

Muslim districts emerged. Radical Islam spread. Whole neighborhoods came under the control of gangs and imams.

When violence erupted and riots took place, European politicians chose to placate them. European populations sometimes tried to resist, but they were constantly told that criticism of immigration and Islam is “racist”. They were intimidated, pushed to shut up.

What is happening now in the United Kingdom and elsewhere in Europe is merely a continuation.

European political leaders all know that radical Islam has swept throughout the continent, that hundreds of Muslim areas are under Islamic control, that thousands of potential jihadists are there, hidden among the immigrants and ready to murder, and that the police are overwhelmed.

They know that radical Islam has declared war on the Western world and that it is a real war. They see that they are prisoners of a situation they no longer control and that reversing the course of events would involve drastic actions they are not ready to take, such as closing thousands of mosques, taking back lost territories by force, arresting thousands of suspects, and deporting foreign jihadists.

They are aware that an apparently unstoppable replacement of population is underway in Europe and that there will be more attacks. They speak as if to limit the damage, not prevent it.

European populations also see what is happening. They watch as entire areas of European cities become foreign zones on European soil; they view the attacks, the wounded, the corpses. It seems as if they have simply lost the will to fight. They seem to have chosen preemptive surrender.

British political commentator Douglas Murray writes in his important new book, The Strange Death of Europe: “Europe is committing suicide. Or at least its leaders have decided to commit suicide”. He then wonders if the Europeans will agree to go along with what is happening. For the moment, it seems, the answer is yes.

Dr. Guy Millière, a professor at the University of Paris, is the author of 27 books on France and Europe.

The Identity Crisis Fueling European Muslim Radicalization

June 7, 2017

The Identity Crisis Fueling European Muslim Radicalization, Investigative Project on Terrorism, Abigail R. Esman, June 7, 2017

When tanks entered the streets of Istanbul and Ankara last summer in an attempt to overthrow the Turkish government, people swarmed the streets to fight them off. At the urging of their president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, they pushed back against the coup, some waving Turkish flags, others waving guns. “What else would you do?” A friend in Istanbul asked me some months later. “When your government and your country are attacked, you fight back. It’s to be expected.”

Less expected, however, were the crowds of Turkish-Europeans who also took to the streets in cities like Rotterdam, where dozens demonstrated on the city’s Erasmus Bridge, waving Turkish flags and, in some cases, crying out “Allahu Akbar.” For many non-Turkish Europeans, the action felt almost threatening: Were these people Turkish or European? Could they reasonably be both? Or did they represent a fifth column, aiming to overtake Europe from within?

In Holland, members of Leefbaar Rotterdam (Livable Rotterdam), the populist political party founded by the late Pim Fortuyn, determined to address the issue head-on. They held a public panel discussion last week to debate the question of who these demonstrators were: traitors? Dual citizens with torn allegiances? Could they be true to both their Turkish heritage and to the Dutch culture in which they were born and raised?

Left unspoken were the more pressing questions, the ones the non-Turks really meant: do Dutch Turks identify more with the Islamist policies and values of Erdogan and his regime, or with the secular Enlightenment, the democratic culture of the West? What, after all, to think of the fact that the vast majority of European Turks voted for Erdogan in the November 2015 elections, and again voted against democracy in Turkey’s April 16 referendum, which gave him virtually limitless powers until 2029?

While this particular debate took place in Rotterdam, once the home of the Renaissance humanist Erasmus, these questions have hovered over all of Europe since the 2004 terrorist attacks in Madrid and, even more, the 2005 attacks in London – and not only about the Turks, but about Muslim immigrants in general.

With Europe facing a near-continual onslaught of Islamist terrorist attacks often perpetrated by homegrown extremists, those questions feel more urgent than ever.

But both the issue and its urgency are far more complex than a matter of allegiance. For many second- and third-generation immigrant youth, especially those from Turkey and Morocco, it is also a matter of identity. As dark-skinned immigrants with names like Fatima and Mohammed, they are often discriminated against in their home countries. The values of their families and their religious leaders do not always mesh with the values of their communities and governments. But when they visit their cousins and grandparents in Anatolia and rural Morocco, they find they don’t fit in there, either.

Many counterterrorism experts maintain that this situation makes Muslim European youth especially vulnerable to radicalization and recruitment by terror groups. As Belgian-Palestinian jihad expert Montasser AIDe’emeh has noted of Belgian Moroccan extremists such as the Paris and Brussels attackers, “The Islamic State is giving them what the Belgian government can’t give them – identity, structure. They don’t feel Moroccan or Belgian. They don’t feel part of either society.” And speaking to PBS’s Judy Woodruff, Peter Neumann, director of the International Center for the Study of Radicalization, observed that “the cause [of radicalization] is ultimately a conflict of identity. It is about second- or third-generation descendants of Muslim immigrants no longer feeling at home in their parents’ or grandparents’ culture, at the same time not being accepted into European societies.”

If this is true, then what to make of the Turkish-European dual citizens choosing, as most have, to support Erdogan’s Islamist policies while living in the liberal West? Are they integrated, assimilated, into the cultures in which they live, as most insisted during the Rotterdam debate? Or are they rather true to the norms of a Turkey that is becoming increasingly religious, turning increasingly eastward, and to a president who is gradually unraveling the secular Western vision of the republic’s founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk?

At the same time, does waving the Turkish flag when the country is attacked mean they are not actually Dutch? Should Dutch Jews not fly the flag of Israel, or Dutch-Americans have left their stars and stripes at home after 9/11?

“It’s more than just flags,” Ebru Umar, a Dutch-Turkish journalist who moderated last week’s event, explained in an e-mail. “The flags symbolize who they are…. They claim to be soldiers of Erdogan.” Hence, she said, “the people [demonstrating] on the [Erasmus] bridge were and are seen as not integrated. Ask them and they’ll answer they are integrated. And [yet] they tell you of course they adore Erdogan.” Indeed, she noted, they even stated it at the debate: “‘You can’t ask a child whom they love more: mum or dad.'”

It is a false equivalency, however. This is not about loving one parent more than another, but about accepting one of two opposing sets of values: those of secular democracies, or those of Islamist theocracies. There is no combining the two. There is no compromise.

Which is what makes these questions so very critical right now – not just for the Dutch, but for all Europeans, as they confront a complex, existential dilemma. Should they continue to alienate the growing population of young Muslims, and should those same young Muslims continue to resist assimilation, they will together be laying out the welcome mat for recruiters for jihad. But should Europe instead accept the Islamist leanings of those same Muslim youth, it will soon discover there was a fifth column after all – a movement to Islamize the West. And it will have succeeded.

Murder in Manchester

May 24, 2017

Murder in Manchester, Bill Whittle Channel via YouTube, May 24, 2017

(Please see also, Manchester: Europe Still ‘Shocked, Shocked’. — DM)

Europe: Making Itself into the New Afghanistan?

April 21, 2017

Europe: Making Itself into the New Afghanistan? Gatestone Institute, Giulio Meotti, April 21, 2017

“Those (migrants) who come to seek freedom in France must participate in freedom. Migrants did not come to seek asylum in Saudi Arabia, but in Germany. Why? For security, freedom and prosperity. So they must not come to create a new Afghanistan,” said Algerian writer Kamel Daoud. Right. But it is the European mainstream that is letting them turn our cultural landscape into another Afghanistan.

The West used to be proud of being the land of the free. European museums, instead, are rapidly submitting to Islamic correctness. The exhibition “Passion for Freedom” at the Mall Gallery in London censored the light box tableaux of a family of toy animals living in an enchanted valley.

“The Louvre will be dedicating a new section to the artistic heritage of Eastern Christians”, then President Nicholas Sarkozy announced in 2010. But the project was scrapped by the museum’s new management, with the approval of President Hollande’s culture ministry. So today, the Louvre has a section dedicated to Islamic art, but nothing on Eastern Christianity.

Maastricht, in the Netherlands, is the picturesque city that gave its name to the famous treaty signed in 1992 by the twelve nations of the European Community at the time, and which paved the way for the foundation of today’s European Union and the single currency, the euro.

Maastricht, however, is also the home of “Tefaf”, the most important art and antiques fair in the world. The art work “Persepolis” by the Italian artist Luca Pignatelli was already scheduled when the commission ordered it removed. The work, built in 2016, combined a Persian Islamic rug and a female head. “We are all humbled and speechless”, Pignatelli declared, pointing out that his work had initially aroused the enthusiasm of the commission. The fair’s explanation was that Pignatelli’s work was “provocative“.

The officials of fair presumably did not want to offend Islam and possible Muslim buyers with Pignatelli’s combination of the mat (used by Muslims for prayer) with the woman’s face. “We are shocked, this is the first time this has happened and I think it is legitimate to talk about it”, Pignatelli said. “If in Rome it can happen that you decide to veil art works to avoid offending foreign visitors, well, I do not agree”. The reference is at the Italian government decision to veil the antique Roman statues to avoid offending Iran’s visiting President Hassan Rouhani.

If Europe wants a future, it should be less ideological about Maastricht’s treaty and more against Maastricht’s capitulation to fear. The brave Algerian writer Kamel Daoud said:

“Those (migrants) who come to seek freedom in France must participate in freedom. Migrants did not come to seek asylum in Saudi Arabia, but in Germany. Why? For security, freedom and prosperity. So they must not come to create a new Afghanistan”.

Right. But it is the European mainstream that is letting them turn our cultural landscape into another Afghanistan. The Taliban have killed artists and destroyed art works. The West used to be proud of being the land of the free.

European museums, instead, are rapidly submitting to Islamic correctness. The exhibition “Passion for Freedom,” at the Mall Gallery in London, censored the light box tableaux of a family of toy animals living in an enchanted valley. Entitled, “ISIS Threaten Sylvania“, it was eliminated after the British police referred to its “inflammatory” content. Previously, the Tate Gallery in London banned a work by John Latham that displayed a Koran embedded in glass.

The brave work of the artist Mimsy, “ISIS Threaten Sylvania”, which satirized the brutality of ISIS, was removed from London’s Mall Galleries after the British police defined it “inflammatory.” (Image source: Mimsy)

Another British artist, Grayson Perry, admitted that he censored himself out of fear that he might end up like Theo van Gogh, the Dutch filmmaker slain by an extremist Muslim, Mohammed Bouyeri, for having made a film about women under Islam. “I have censored myself,” Perry said. “The reason I have not gone all out in attacking Islamism in my art is because I have real fear that someone will slit my throat”.

The Victoria and Albert Museum in London first showed, then withdrew, a portrait of the Prophet of Islam, a work of devotional art image of Muhammad. The photographer Syra Miah, a British native whose family came from Bangladesh, saw her work withdrawn from an Art Gallery in Birmingham after protests by a group of Muslims. The photo portrayed a half-naked woman, mentally ill, who lives under a bus stop in Bangladesh.

The Museum of Cultures of the World in Gothenburg, Sweden, opened with an exhibition entitled “AIDS in the Era of Globalization”. In it, the artist Louzla Darabi exhibited a work, “Scène d’amour”, that depicts a woman having sex with a man whose face cannot be seen. A verse from the Koran is written on it in Arabic. Less than three weeks after the inauguration of the exhibition, the museum removed the painting. The Hergé Museum in Louvain, Belgium, was planning an exhibition to pay tribute to Charlie Hebdo‘s cartoonists; that event, too, was cancelled.

French President François Hollande eliminated a section of the Louvre Museum dedicated to the Eastern Christians, who in the last two years have been decimated by the Islamic State. “The Louvre will be dedicating a new section to the artistic heritage of Eastern Christians”, then President Nicholas Sarkozy announced in 2010. But the project was scrapped by the museum’s new management, with the approval of Hollande’s culture ministry.

Marie-Hélène Rutschowscaya — former head of the Louvre’s Coptic section and one of the world’s leading scholars on Eastern Christianity — denounced the move. “The dramatic events we are currently seeing in the Middle East and Eastern Europe should instead spur us to do more to promote lasting cultural ties,” Rutschowscaya wrote in her letter to Hollande. So today, the Louvre has a section dedicated to Islamic art, but nothing on Eastern Christianity.

Perhaps the Iranian ayatollahs were right in asking the Capitoline Museums in Rome to veil the nude statues during President Rouhani’s visit. Perhaps the Islamic fundamentalists are wrong, the West is not as free as it claims. Perhaps we should apologize to the Taliban for criticizing their destruction of the great Buddhas of Afghanistan. According to the West’s new cultural sanctimony, today these statues might be considered “blasphemous” too.