In a Townhall article today, David Stokes comments on a Time magazine cover story titled “The Child Free Life: When Having It All Means Not Having Children.” The theme is interesting to us – the scarcity of children in most of the First World, particularly in Europe.
The author recalls a speech President Theodore Roosevelt gave in France:
Finally, even more important than ability to work, even more important than ability to fight at need, is it to remember that chief of blessings for any nations is that it shall leave its seed to inherit the land. It was the crown of blessings in Biblical times and it is the crown of blessings now. The greatest of all curses is the curse of sterility, and the severest of all condemnations should be that visited upon willful sterility. The first essential in any civilization is that the man and women shall be father and mother of healthy children so that the [human] race shall increase and not decrease. If that is not so, if through no fault of the society there is failure to increase, it is a great misfortune. If the failure is due to the deliberate and willful fault, then it is not merely a misfortune, it is one of those crimes of ease and self-indulgence, of shrinking from pain and effort and risk, which in the long run Nature punishes more heavily than any other. If we of the great republics, if we, the free people who claim to have emancipated ourselves from the thralldom of wrong and error, bring down on our heads the curse that comes upon the willfully barren, then it will be an idle waste of breath to prattle of our achievements, to boast of all that we have done.
That’s right. Theodore Roosevelt told the French that they needed to keep having babies.
At the time of Roosevelt’s speech, France was a major world power. Today—not so much.
And he ascribes a reason for the numerical decline of the French nation:
There is enough blame for such decline in global influence to go around, but the increased secularism of Europe, with its penchant for socialized everything, has certainly played a role.
By “secularism” David Stokes clearly means the increasing absence of religious belief in states that have long – if not always – been secular. It is the absence or fading of religious belief that he blames (at least in part) for the dying out of Western nations.
Now more than 100 years later, there is an even greater threat to their cherished way of life. If only the French today would rediscover Teddy’s advice and reverse the birthrate trend—they might have a fighting chance. But such is the mindset of secularism, it is all about self and “fulfillment.” Issues of family, not to mention progeny are secondary, if thought about at all. Marriage is deferred—even eschewed. Children are planned—or better, planned around. And over time the birth rate in Europe has fallen far short of what is needed to keep up with the various demands of the future. In other words, the nations are aging. There are fewer children, yet more grandparents—a trend that will continue and accelerate.
All he says about the trend is true, but is he right about the cause?
He goes on, factually correct:
It takes a fertility rate of 2.1 births per woman to keep a nation’s population stable. The United States is drifting away from that. Canada has a rate of 1.48 and Europe as a whole weighs in at 1.38. What this means is that the money will run out, with not enough wage-earners at the bottom to support an older generation’s “entitlements.”
But even beyond that, the situation in France also reminds us of the opportunistic threat of Islamism. It is just a matter of time before critical mass is reached and formerly great bastions of democratic republicanism morph into caliphates. In the United Kingdom the Muslim population is growing 10 times faster than the rest of society. In fact, all across Western Europe it’s the same. The cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam are on track to have Muslim majority populations in a decade or two. A T-shirt that can be seen on occasion in Stockholm reads: “2030—Then We Take Over.”
And he concludes:
A few years ago, Britain’s chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, decried Europe’s falling birthrate, blaming it on “a culture of consumerism and instant gratification”.
“Europe is dying,” he said, “we are undergoing the moral equivalent of climate change and no one is talking about it.”
The Rabbi was right, and so was Teddy.
Was the Rabbi right?
Why are the indigenous peoples of Europe and other parts of the First World dying out?
Why are the Europeans willing to let the Muslims take over their countries?
Is it because of socialism?
On the one hand it can be argued that socialism discourages you from having children because the state – you believe - will look after you in your old age. It will care for you if you fall ill. It will make it easy for you to house and feed yourself because, if you don’t want to work, it will give you money. No need for more wage-earners in the family.
And there is a strong streak of anti-human life in the ideology of the far left. Among environmentalists in particular. They say that there are too many people on the planet - and angrily deny that the numbers are declining. Some even want there to be no people on the earth at all. They maintain that the absence of human beings would be better for shrimps and reptiles.
On the other hand, the socialist welfare state pays people to have children. In America, for instance, millions of women can have children without having a husband or wage-earner to help keep them because with every baby they get more money from the state. And the state also pays for the children’s education.
But then again, socialist economics don’t work. Sooner or later socialism brings an economy to disaster. Is it anticipation of dire poverty that keeps people from breeding? About half the voters in most western countries regularly vote for socialism, so that can’t be a compelling reason.
All this considered, the argument that socialism is to blame for the suicide of the West is not convincing. It may account for an eventual death by inanition, but not for the slow suicide.
Is it because of “consumerism”?
Perhaps. But what proof is there? Do anecdotes about individuals and couples saying they prefer to use their money for a high standard of living – cars, travel and so on – rather than on raising children, prove the case? Not unless they reflect the decisions of a majority, and who has collected and counted them?
By “consumerism” (the preferred term now for what they used to call “materialism” or “conspicuous consumption”) its critics mean comfortable living, good cars, travel and so on. In other words, they ascribe the fall in the birth-rate to prosperity.
Did prosperous people in past times not have children, or choose to have only a few? Not as far as we know. In Victorian times most families, rich as well as poor, were large. And since those who owned much had much to pass on and keep in the family, wealth may have positively stimulated reproduction.
But of course in the days when wealthy families were large, parents had servants to look after their children. Most people now, even if they can afford live-in servants, do not have them. So perhaps it’s not so much the desire for more luxurious living but the desire not to be “tied down” by children. Having to stay in with them at night. Not being able to go on holiday when you choose because of their school schedule. Not being able easily to part from their other parent when you’re sick of him or her.
Implied by the word “consumerism” is another word: “capitalism”. Though not all who condemn consumerism may be aware that the one word is haunted by the other. As David Stokes’s column appears at Townhall, we may reasonably assume that he’s a conservative. American conservatives are not consciously against capitalism; they are against socialism, as we are. But too many of them are religious. Too many of them are Christians. It is Christian puritanism that inspires the strange prejudice - if not against prosperity as such, against the signs of it: high living standards, costly cars, expensive travel and so on. Only in theory, we observe. We confidently expect that most religious critics of “consumerism” have – or aspire to have – a high standard of living for themselves, own costly cars, and jet to their summer vacation on a cruise-ship or a multi-starred hotel. They are seldom in fact less materialistic or less self-indulgent than the “secularists” they scorn. And they are not against having children. The American fertility-rate – which is the measure of population stability, or increase, or decrease – has until very recently been stable while Europe’s declined.
But what of religion? Is its absence the cause we are looking for?
Is it because of “secularism”?
By “secularism” David Stokes clearly means the fading of religious belief in states that have long – if not always – been secular. And it is the absence or fading of religious belief that he blames for the dying out of Western nations.
Such is the mindset of secularism, it is all about self and “fulfillment.”
Is there no self-fulfillment in having children? Don’t many feel that having a child is more self-fulfilling than anything else?
It does seem to be the case that fewer people are religious, or most people are less religious in Europe now. How did religion formerly keep the birth-rate up?
The mainly Catholic countries used to have bigger families because birth control was forbidden by their Church. So perhaps now that the Roman Church has lost much of its power, more Catholics use contraception. But that explanation doesn’t affect the traditionally Protestant countries of northern Europe, and there too the indigenous populations are shrinking. (And one thing Christians who bemoan the dearth of children seem to forget is that St Paul recommended celibacy. Marry if you must, he taught, but it is better to remain unmarried and chaste like him and Jesus Christ. Not a formula for re-populating Europe.)
The bible states that Jehovah enjoins the Jews to be fruitful, to multiply. And Israel is one of the few Western countries where the population is increasing – although Israel is a secular state. Perhaps the old religious injunction continues to have a subliminal effect.
So if socialism is not the reason why the people of the West are ever more unwilling to have children, nor “consumerism”, nor “secularism” – what is?
We don’t know. Nobody does.
But if the suicide of the West means the loss of our civilization – which it very well may – it will be a great tragedy. One of the greatest tragedies of history.
Why is the liberal-democratic system of the West proving so weak, so easily undermined by the backward customs of Islam? Why are the leaders and intellectuals of the West willing to let the values and standards of their culture be compromised and even replaced by the savage dogma of a superstitious cult unchanged since its inception in the dark ages?
Questions hard to answer. But examples of the weakness, the compromise, the replacement are not hard to find.
Students threatening teachers. Teachers threatening students. Corruption in the classrooms, the hallways, and, eventually, becoming a national scandal – all part of daily life at an Islamic high school in Rotterdam. There, according to a recent article in Dutch daily NRC Handelsblad, non-Muslim teachers are pressured to pass failing Muslim students, while Muslim teachers hold secretive classes instructing their pupils on the evils of European culture. And that’s only part of the story.
We quote these passages from an article at The Investigative Project on Terrorism, by Abigail R. Esman:
The Ibn Ghaldoun school has a long history of controversy, but returned recently to the spotlight after it was discovered that a group of its students had stolen copies of the national final exam, administered to all Dutch students, and were selling it over the Internet. Dozens were found to have cheated, including at least one young woman who, having researched the answers, spoke them into her smartphone and played the recording during test-taking, hiding the headphones under her hijab. The result: the tests had to be repeated, even by those who had not seen them in advance …
Investigations into the theft have revealed deep-rooted corruption and revisited previous dirty dealings at the Islamic school, the only Islamic secondary school in the country. In 2007, for instance, Ibn Ghaldoun’s directors were found to have used over €200,000 in government subsidies earmarked for books and local educational school outings to take 200 students and their families … to Mecca. To make matters worse, school administrators then created false receipts and invoices to cover up the misallocation of funds.
Other money also appears to have been paid that same year to local imams not officially affiliated with the school, including the radical Khalil El Moumni, known, among other things, for regularly characterizing homosexuals as being “worse than pigs.”
In this latest scandal, the school has come under its most intense scrutiny yet. And the findings suggest that problems with Holland’s Muslim population are far more complex – and potentially serious – than has been recognized to date.
It isn’t only that several hundred of Rotterdam’s Muslim youth attend a school where lying and stealing is evidently the norm for the administration, creating an environment in which the basic values and principles of Western law and social values are dismissed and disregarded; and it isn’t only that the role model this establishes for these children is one that not only ignores Dutch law, but defies it. What is worse is that such lessons, according to the NRC Handelsblad, are actually taught directly: in a discussion with seven non-Muslim teachers from the school (all of whom claim to have taken jobs there in the hope of improving chances for underprivileged Muslim youth), reporter Andreas Kouwenhoven discovered that after-school “study groups” prove not to be study groups at all. Rather, one Ibn Ghaldoun teacher told him, “they were classes aimed at indoctrinating the children. The lessons were directed against Dutch culture: Girls should never marry a Dutch boy or a non-believer [non-Muslim].”
Others told the NRC that parents frequently participated in the culture of lies prevalent at the school, regularly pressuring them to raise a child’s grade or even to pass a failing student. Equally distressing, however, is the fact that some teachers actually capitulated. Some cited threats (one claimed his car was vandalized when he refused to raise one student’s grade). Others who admitted inflating grades and secretly giving pupils second- and third chances felt that Dutch-Muslim children experience particular difficulty navigating Dutch society and so, deserve some latitude – this even when many Ibn Ghaldoun’s students were born and raised in the Netherlands. Not only have students who should have failed been allowed to pass, but even those who rightfully should have flunked out completely have received diplomas. (Ibn Ghaldoum’s director, Ayhan Tonca, did not respond to requests for comment for this column.)
The consequences of all this are significant. The unemployment rate among the Dutch Muslim population, particularly among Moroccans, is 15 percent, versus 8 percent of non-Muslims. Far more live in poverty. These facts are frequently cited as reasons for the high rate of criminality in the Muslim (and especially Moroccan) community, and as proof that Muslims are discriminated against by non-Muslim employers. But the situation at the school suggests that the problems lie deeper, in a systemic, cultural approach to maneuvering through life and handling an adverse situation: the lying, the cheating, the threats. …
Failure to assimilate appears to come, then, not from discrimination or difficulties in adapting per se, but as a deliberate strategy promoted not just by radical imams in the mosques, but by the schools.
Granted, Ibn Ghaldoun is but one of many Islamic schools in the country (though it is, significantly, the only Islamic high school). But it is not the only one that expressly teaches students to oppose Dutch norms or resist Westernization; in fact … recent government reports have shown that 30 percent of Islamic schools in the Netherlands have ties to Hamas and/or the Muslim Brotherhood.
We frequently post articles to demonstrate that religion as such is a profound evil, corrupting common sense, reason, and morality.
Today, a story.
It comes from John Lothrop Motley’s magnificent history, The Rise of the Dutch Republic.
Peter Titelmann was an officer of the atrociously cruel Spanish Inquisition when Phillip II was King of Spain (1554-1517).
The inquisitor Titelmann certainly deserved his terrible reputation. Men called him Saul the Persecutor, and it was well known that he had been originally tainted with the heresy which he had for many years been furiously chastising.
The heresy was Protestantism. (For a story of Protestant cruelty see our post Calvin: a chapter in the terrible history of Christianity, April 25, 2010.)
He executed his infamous functions throughout Flanders, Donay, and Tournay, the most thriving and populous portions of the Netherlands, with a swiftness, precision, and even with a jocularity which hardly seemed human. There was a kind of grim humour about the man. Contemporary chronicles give a picture of him as of some grotesque yet terrible goblin, careering through the country by night or day, alone, on horseback, smiting the trembling peasants on the head with a great club, spreading dismay far and wide, dragging suspected persons from their firesides or their beds, and thrusting them into dungeons, arresting, torturing, strangling, burning, with hardly the shadow of warrant, information, or process.
The secular sheriff, familiarly called Red-Rod, from the colour of his wand of office, meeting this inquisitor Titelmann one day upon the high road, thus wonderingly addressed him: -
“How can you venture to go about alone, or at most with an attendant or two, arresting people on every side, while I dare not attempt to execute my office, except at the head of a strong force, armed in proof; and then only at the peril of my life?”
“Ah! Red-Rod,” answered Peter, jocosely, “you deal with bad people. I have nothing to fear, for I seize only the innocent and virtuous, who make no resistance, and let themselves be taken like lambs. ”
“Mighty well,” said the other; “but if you arrest all the good people and I all the bad, ’tis difficult to say who in the world is to escape chastisement.”
We are living through the self-extinction of the European civilization that shaped the age we live in.
So writes Giulio Meotti at Front Page. He goes on:
The inquisition against Europe’s “racist” and “Islamophobic” writers and journalists sheds a unique light on this demographic and religious revolution. Cartoonists, novelists, intellectuals, reporters, these are … the new reactionaries … Western intellectuals “guilty” of fighting the stereotypes of the Western elites: multiculturalism, the “droits de l’hommisme”(the human rights turned into a spoiled child), Islam and anti-Semitism. These new witches are demonized in the name of anti-racism, which the French philosopher Alain Finkielkraut called “the communism of XXI century.”
The latest victim of the leftist bien-pensants allied with the Islamic fanatics is Eric Zemmour, Jewish journalist and author of the bestseller “Mélancolie Française.” A few days ago, Zemmour has been dismissed from his radio show for having criticized the new French Minister of Justice, Christiane Taubira, “gentle and compassionate as a mother with her children, the poor children of the suburbs who steal, peddle, torture, rape, and sometimes kill.”
The late Italian writer Oriana Fallaci went to trial … in France and Italy … The Nobel Prize Laureate for Literature, Wole Soyinka, known as the “Nigerian Joyce,” has been demonized as a “racist” for having called the UK “a cesspit” [of] Islamists. Finkielkraut … has been tried, after he dared to comment on the French suburbs that “if the thugs were white everyone would have evoked fascism, when a school is burned down by an Arab then it’s ‘rebellion’”. …
The writer Michel Houellebecq was on trial for his best-selling novel “Platform” and interviews where he called Islam “the most stupid of all religions”, [and] V S Naipaul, another Nobel Prize Laureate, has been demonized as “racist” and “reactionary” by the liberal press.
In many cases, the journalists became refugees in their own countries. “My house is protected as a bunker with cameras,” Kurt Westergaard [told me], the Danish artist who created the cartoon of the Prophet wearing a bomb in his turban for the Jyllands Posten newspaper. Visiting his paper’s office is like entering a US embassy in an Arab country. The journal had erected a 2.5-metre high, one-kilometer long barbed-wire barrier, complete with electronic surveillance, around its headquarters in Visby. Mail is scanned and newspaper staff members need ID cards to enter the buildings. When Flemming Rose, the cultural editor who took the initiative of publishing the cartoons, attended a conference in Oxford, the British police had to set up “the same protection as for Michael Jackson.”
In the Netherlands, where filmmaker Theo van Gogh was killed by a Muslim for his criticism of Islam and the biggest mosques of Europe frame the luxuriant, wooded, watery countryside, cartoonist Gregorious Nekshot uses… a pseudonym to protect his own identity. At the University of Leiden, Rembrandt’s city, the office of Law Professor Afshin Ellian, who escaped the Iranian religious dictatorship, is protected by bulletproof walls and policemen. …
I recently spoke with Robert Redeker, the philosopher and columnist condemned to death for an article in Le Figaro newspaper. His piece, a response to the controversy over remarks about Islam made a week earlier by Pope Benedict XVI, was titled “What should the free world do in the face of Islamist intimidation?” Redeker was sentenced to death in a posting that, in order to facilitate a potential assassin’s task, provided his address, telephone and a photograph of his home. “I went to Austria for a conference and even there the bodyguards were always with me,” Redeker said. The police did not even allow him to announce his father’s death, because someone could have noted the surname. “I had to bury my father like a criminal,” he said. The marriage of his daughter was also attended by the police. Redeker had to sell his house and buy another one in a secret location. “I cannot go out to buy bread or newspapers or for a glass of wine. I cannot walk in the streets. I cannot take the train, bus or subway. I cannot answer the question of what I can expect from the future. … ”
A few days ago I received another email of threat, saying: “Dear feces eating insect, continue to scratch around the Zionist dung as it’s natural for you, the Israelis will give you thirty coins.” To quote from Walter Laqueur’s masterpiece, these really look like the last days of Europe.
Other honorable names that must be added to the list of Europeans who have spoken out against the advancing conquest of Europe by Islam are: Geert Wilders, Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff, and Lars Hedegaard. See our posts: The West on trial (December 16, 2009); Freedom versus Islam (January 20, 2010); Civilization on trial (October 11, 2010); An honest confession of hypocrisy (October 23, 2010); The new heresy (January 11, 2011); Darkness descending – again (February 7, 2011); Sharia is the law in Austria (December 25, 2011); Only the gagged may speak freely (December 26, 2011); Darkness imminent (January 8, 2012); The most important struggle of our time (April16, 2012); Marked for death (May 10, 2012).
What will Islamic Europe be called by its conquerors? Al-Andalus, perhaps?
Will European civilization live on in America?
Note added June 11, 2012:
Finland’s Supreme Court has found a prominent politician guilty of defaming Islam for “Islamophobic” comments he made on his personal blog. The ruling represents a major setback for free speech in a Europe that is becoming increasingly stifled by politically correct restricions on free speech, particularly on issues related to Islam and Muslim immigration.
Here is part of a Washington Times article by Geert Wilders, leader and hero of the contemporary Dutch Resistance against Islam and its craven apologists:
As I write these lines, there are police bodyguards at the door. No visitor can enter my office without passing through several security checks and metal detectors. I have been marked for death. I am forced to live in a heavily protected safe house. Every morning, I am driven to my office in the Dutch Parliament building in an armored car with sirens and flashing blue lights. When I go out, I am surrounded, as I have been for the past seven years, by plainclothes police officers. When I speak in public, I wear a bulletproof jacket.
Who am I? I am neither a king nor a president, nor even a government minister; I am just a simple politician in the Netherlands. But because I speak out against expanding Islamic influence in Europe, I have been marked for death. If you criticize Islam, this is the risk you run. That is why so few politicians dare to tell the truth about the greatest threat to our liberties today. The Islamic threat to the West is worse than the communist threat ever was. Think of it this way: Politicians who warned against the Soviet threat weren’t forced into hiding, as we who speak out against Islam are.
I received my first death threats in September 2003 after I asked the Dutch government to investigate a radical mosque. When the death threats became more frequent, the Dutch authorities assigned me a team of police bodyguards. In November 2004, after a Muslim fanatic murdered Dutch filmmaker Theo van Gogh for making a movie about the abuse of women under Islam, policemen armed with machine guns came to my house, pushed me into an armored car, and drove me off into the night. That was the last time I was in my house. Since then, I have lived in an army barracks, a prison cell and now a government-owned safe house.
I have grown accustomed to this situation. After more than seven years, the security detail has become part of my daily routine, but in a free society, no politician should have to fear for his life because he addresses issues voters care about.
Nor should special-interest groups be allowed to trump our Western rights of free speech, as Islamic and leftist organizations tried to do by dragging me to court on accusations of “hate speech.” After an almost three-year legal ordeal, I was acquitted of all charges.
I used to travel widely and frequently in the Islamic world, but now it’s no longer safe. I have read the Koran and studied the life of Muhammad. It made me realize that Islam is primarily a totalitarian ideology rather than a religion. I feel sorry for the Arab, Persian, Indian and Indonesian peoples who have to live under the yoke of Islam. … Without freedom, there can be no prosperity and no pursuit of happiness. More Islam means less life, less liberty and less happiness.
That is why I consider it my duty to sound the alarm about the relentless expansion of Islam. … Islam [wages] jihad – holy war – against the West … from within our borders.
Fifty-seven percent of the Dutch people say that mass immigration was the biggest single mistake in Dutch history. Many politicians, however, downplay the most dramatic sociological change of their lifetime. They ignore the worries of the people out of political correctness and cultural relativism, which insist that all cultures are equal; hence, immigrants do not need to assimilate: Islamic values are just as good as Dutch, British or American values.
If we do not oppose Islamization, we will lose everything: our freedom, our identity, our democracy, our rule of law. To preserve Western civilization, we must do four things: Defend freedom of speech, reject cultural relativism, counter Islamization, and cherish our Western national identities …
Of all our liberties, freedom of speech is the most important. Free speech is the cornerstone of a free society. So long as we are free to speak, we can make people realize what is at stake. In Western democracies, we do not settle our disagreements with violence, but through spoken and written arguments. In the search for the truth, we allow everyone to express his or her honestly held views. That is how we outgrew barbarism and became a free and prosperous society. We must pass it on to our children.
I have written a book in defense of liberty and freedom of expression, titled “Marked for Death”. It explains the many ways in which Islam has marked for death not only me, but all of Western civilization. The book warns Americans about the danger of turning a blind eye to the true nature of Islam.
That Geert Wilders lives in fear of being murdered in his own country, while those who threaten him are protected by stupid laws against “hate speech”, should be intolerable to the conscience of all Europeans. Instead, European courts continue to prosecute those who defend freedom against the onslaught of intolerant Islam.
The Muslims who pursue him do not seem to realize that they are doing more to condemn Islam in Western eyes than anything Geert Wilders has said. But if no one will say so, the lesson will be lost.
Islam should be marked by the West for extinction. Instead it is protected by two shields gifted to it by the West. Two shibboleths.
The shield of religion. Islam calls itself a religion, and the West upholds religious tolerance. But Islam needs to be recognized as the totalitarian ideology that it is. In any case, religious ideas should not be immune from criticism. On the contrary – being irrational, they deserve to be accorded less, not more, respect; and criticized all the more relentlessly.
The shield of (faux) victimhood. Islam is an ideology of backward peoples, and backward peoples are needed by the Left as its cause and pretext, since its first choice, the Western proletariat, disappeared into the middle class.
Neither shield is impregnable. Islam must be fought on all fronts, and words are the most powerful weapons against it.
Let’s use words against Islam in America. Let’s criticize it, ridicule it, rage against it. Doing so is forbidden in Europe, and that makes it even more vital for us to do it here.
It is our contention that Christianity brought a thousand years of darkness down on Europe. It extinguished the bright light of classical culture, of which Socratean doubt, the need to examine all ideas critically, was the enlightening principle. Christianity claimed a monopoly of truth, and the totalitarian-minded Catholic Church did its utmost to suppress dissent by the cruelest means imaginable. So did Protestant churches as far as they could reach. Like Communism and all ideological orthodoxies, Christianity feared open criticism, recognizing that it’s power could not survive argument. The Enlightenment proved that to be the case; a great upwelling of doubt, criticism, exploration and discovery, it loosened the grip of theocratic tyranny, dispersed the darkness of superstition, and let Europe flower again after a long and terrible night. Science flourished once more, achieving an immense extension of knowledge and giving birth to new technologies. The might of the West is rooted in the Greco-Roman culture revived in the Enlightenment, not in a “Judeo-Christian tradition”.
Now darkness is descending again on the West. Islam, a tyranny of the mind as cruel as Christianity and even more intolerant, an ideology from the Dark Ages that forbids criticism and kills critics, is spreading rapidly through Europe and America, zealously assisted by Western governments and passionately defended by the intelligentsia of the political left – which on principle favors ideological conformity and its totalitarian enforcement.
This is from the Stonegate Institute, by Soeren Kern:
The European Union has offered to host the next meeting of the so-called Istanbul Process, an aggressive effort by Muslim countries to make it an international crime to criticize Islam.
The announcement comes less than one month after the United States hosted its own Istanbul Process conference in Washington, DC.
The Istanbul Process – its explicit aim is to enshrine in international law a global ban on all critical scrutiny of Islam and/or Islamic Sharia law – is being spearheaded by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), a bloc of 57 Muslim countries.
Based in Saudi Arabia, the OIC has long pressed the European Union and the United States to impose limits on free speech and expression about Islam.
But the OIC has now redoubled its efforts and is engaged in a determined diplomatic offensive to persuade Western democracies to implement United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution 16/18, which calls on all countries to combat “intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of … religion and belief.” (Analysis of the OIC’s war on free speech can be found here and here.)
Resolution 16/18, which was adopted at HRC headquarters in Geneva in March 2011, is widely viewed as a significant step forward in OIC efforts to advance the international legal concept of defaming Islam.
However, the HRC resolution – as well as the OIC-sponsored Resolution 66/167, which was quietly approved by the 193-member UN General Assembly on December 19, 2011 – remains ineffectual as long as it lacks strong support in the West.
The OIC therefore scored a diplomatic coup when the Obama Administration agreed to host a three-day Istanbul Process conference in Washington, DC on December 12-14, 2011. In doing so, the United States gave the OIC the political legitimacy it has been seeking to globalize its initiative to ban criticism of Islam.
Following the Obama Administration’s lead, the European Union now wants to get in on the action by hosting the next Istanbul Process summit, tentatively scheduled for July 2012.
Up until now, the European Union has kept the OIC initiative at arms-length. But Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, Secretary-General of the OIC, says the EU’s offer to host the meeting represents a “qualitative shift in action against the phenomenon of Islamophobia,” according to the International Islamic News Agency (IINA), the OIC’s official news/propaganda organ.
According to the IINA, “The phenomenon of Islamophobia is found in the West in general, but is growing in European countries in particular and in a manner different than that in the US, which had contributed to drafting Resolution 16/18. The new European position represents the beginning of the shift from their previous reserve over the years over the attempts by the OIC to counter ‘defamation of religions’ in the Human Rights Council and the General Assembly of the United Nations. …
Europe is retreating from the Enlightenment. But not without protest.
The OIC is especially angry over its inability to silence a growing number of democratically elected politicians in Europe who have voiced concerns over the refusal of Muslim immigrants to integrate into their host countries and the consequent establishment of parallel Islamic societies in many parts of Europe.
According to the IINA, “Ihsanoglu said that the growing role of the extreme right in politics in several European countries has become stronger than the capacity of the Organization [OIC], explaining that the extreme right, who [sic] hates Muslims, became leverage in the hands of politicians. He added that the rise of the extreme right through elections has become an issue that cannot be countered, considering the democratic way in which these extremists reach their positions. He pointed out to the referendum held in Switzerland, as an example, which resulted in suspending the construction of minarets there following a vote by the Swiss people.”
In other words, the OIC is now seeking the support of non-elected bureaucrats at the headquarters of the European Union in Brussels to enact pan-European hate speech legislation to limit by fiat what 500 million European citizens – including democratically elected politicians – can and cannot say about Islam.
To be sure, many individual European countries that lack First Amendment protections like those in the United States have already enacted hate speech laws that effectively serve as proxies for the all-encompassing blasphemy legislation the OIC is seeking to impose on the European Union as a whole.
The author lists a dozen examples of Europeans who have dared to raise their voices to criticize the barbarous ideology of Islam and defend their own culture, only to be prosecuted and punished for it under recently enacted, bad and stupid laws. Among them, Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff and Geert Wilders, whose cases we have discussed in our posts: The West on trial (December 16, 2009); Freedom versus Islam (January 20, 2010); Civilization on trial (October 11,2010); An honest confession of hypocrisy (October 23, 2010);The new heresy (January 11, 2011); Darkness descending – again (February 7, 2011); Sharia is the law in Austria (December 25, 2011); Only the gagged may speak freely (December 26/11).
Almost everywhere in Europe now, “speaking the truth about Islam is subject to swift and hefty legal penalties” as the author says.
Why should any religion be exempt from criticism? Religious ideas above all need to be criticized, being the most irrational and the most oppressive. And even more than other religions, Islam needs to be dragged into the sunlight. It is the only intolerant religion of our time – and it is asking to be protected from intolerance!
Right now, when Islam is intent on conquering the West by all possible means including terrorism, it is especially necessary to be Islamophobic.
Americans must resist the Obama administration’s efforts to help the OIC drive our world back into darkness. At least in the United States – the great product and political embodiment of the Enlightenment – the light of liberty must be kept burning.
An article by the Dutch investigative reporter, Emerson Vermaat, exposes how Islam’s Sharia law has become established in Germany, the Netherlands, and Britain:
“Their courtrooms are mosques, their law is the Sharia: Islamic peace judges undermine the rule of law,” the influential German weekly Der Spiegel reported last August. “The legal authorities do not know how to defend themselves against it.” …
So-called Islamic “peace judges” or arbiters are settling criminal cases, not just in Germany but in other European countries as well. Muslim immigrants prefer their own judges and do not trust secular Western legal systems. Thus, Islamic shadow justice systems are making inroads into Western societies. …
Journalist Joachim Wagner, author of a new German study on parallel justice, says that the world of the Islamic shadow justice system is “very foreign, and for a German lawyer completely incomprehensible. It follows its own rules. The Islamic arbitrators aren’t interested in evidence when they deliver a judgment, and unlike in German criminal law, the question of who is at fault doesn’t play much of a role.” The arbitrators “talk with the perpetrator’s family who are generally the ones who have called the arbitrator, and with the victim’s family,” Wagner says. “They ask: Why did this happen? How bad is the damage? How serious is the injury? But for them, a solution of the conflict, a compromise, is the most important thing.”
“The problem starts when the arbitrators force the justice system out of the picture, especially in the case of criminal offenses,” Wagner says. “At that point they undermine the state monopoly on violence. Islamic conflict resolution in particular, as I’ve experienced it, is often achieved through violence and threats. It’s often a dictate of power on the part of the stronger family. These arbitrators try to resolve conflicts according to Islamic law and to sideline German criminal law. We see witness testimony withdrawn (from German courts) and accusations trivialized to the point where an entire case runs aground. The justice system is ‘powerless,’ partly because it hasn’t tackled the problem vigorously enough.”
Judges and prosecutors “are overwhelmed, because they don’t know how to react,” Wagner claims “They are in the middle of a legal case, and suddenly there’s no evidence. Eighty-seven percent of the cases I researched either were dismissed or ended with an acquittal when Islamic arbitrators are involved. Decisions by Islamic arbitrators, so I noticed, are often implemented by force and making threats.”
“Certain defense lawyers,” Wagner says, “need to stop behaving as if they were mere servants to a parallel justice system. They allow themselves to be directed by their clients’ desires, regardless of truth and justice.” …
Judges and prosecutors complain that witnesses are subjected to systematic intimidation, and that even they, too, are intimated. Serious crimes committed by an increasing number of Muslim immigrants are no longer cleared up. A Munich Imam named Sheikh Abu Adam, dressed as a fundamentalist Muslim, told Der Spiegel: “My ruling is more just than the one proclaimed by the state. I tell my people, don’t go to the police. We solve these conflicts among ourselves.”
Islamic mediators also play an important role in “solving” cases of honor crimes and forced marriages. Der Spiegel reported last year that German courts apply Sharia law, especially concerning cases of family law and the law of inheritance. (Under Sharia law female heirs inherit half of what male heirs in a similar position would inherit.) Jordanian immigrants in Germany are married and divorced in accordance with Jordanian law. Even polygamous marriages are recognized. A Jordanian woman who enters into a polygamous marriage in her home country with a Jordanian immigrant in Germany is entitled to welfare in Germany. …
It was during a visit to Germany in February 2008 that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyib Erdogan called on the Turkish immigrant community not to assimilate into German society. …
In 676 cases, Dutch courts even applied primitive Somali law. Such are the blessings of “multiculturalism.” …
Polygamous marriages are recognized under Sharia law and it is even possible to recognize (“register”) such marriages under Dutch law. …
Islamic courts and fundamentalist Muslim clerics who introduce Sharia law to the Muslim community in Britain are having a greater impact on Britain’s 1.6 million strong Muslim community [an underestimation - JB] than is often assumed. …
In February 2008, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, an outspoken leftist, gave a lecture “that sparked controversy for advocating the adoption of parts of Sharia, or Islamic law, in Britain.” Quoting Muslim Brotherhood sympathizer Tariq Ramadan, Williams wanted to “dispel myths about Sharia.” …
Tariq Ramadan is not just a Muslim Brotherhood “sympathizer”, he is a member of it, a passionate devotee, and the grandson of its founder. The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, is a deliberate ignoramus, a fool, and a menace to Britain and civilization.
“Our law maintains the best virtues of our society,” writes Minette Marrin, an excellent British columnist, in The Sunday Times of Febuary 2, 2008. “Anybody who does not accept it does not belong here.” She is right. If Muslims want to force medieval Sharia law practices on our secular societies, which they hate so much, why don’t they go back to Pakistan or the Middle East? Why don’t all those women wearing Burqas or Niqabs just emigrate to Saudi Arabia, Iran or Afghanistan?” …
She accuses the Archbishop of Canterbury of seeking “to undermine our legal system and the values on which it rests.” That is an “unnecessary appeasement to an alien set of values. It is a betrayal of all those who struggled and died here, over the centuries, for freedom and equality under the rule of law and of their courage in the face of injustice and unreason.”
But the British nation, or a large part of it at least, has forgotten its history, and cares nothing for its future. The same can be said of most Europeans. They are committing a long slow suicide. The indigenous peoples are having too few children even to stabilize their numbers, while the Muslim populations are increasing by both birth and immigration. By the middle of the century, if the current trend continues – and it would take something as cataclysmic as civil war to change it - Europe will be a predominantly Muslim continent ruled entirely by Sharia law; and the Germans, the Dutch, the British et al will be oppressed minorities in the lands of their fathers.
While leftists and other “humanitarians” in the United States and Europe are in a perpetual state of moral outrage concerning Israel’s alleged mistreatment of Palestinians, the savagery of modern-day Arab enslavement of black Africans elicits almost no reaction.
So writes Stephen Brown at Front Page in an article on the Arabs’ African slaves, particularly in Mauritania:
The most recent case highlighting this leftist hypocrisy concerns four anti-slavery activists in Mauritania, who were sentenced last week to six months in jail for protesting the enslavement of a ten-year-old girl earlier in August in Nouakchott, the country’s capital. … The convicted men belong to the Initiative for the Resurgence of the Abolitionist Movement in Mauritania (IRA), an anti-slavery NGO. …
Yet under Mauritanian law the criminal was the slave-owner:
The IRA discovered the child slave in Nouakchott, and reported the matter to police. Owning a slave was made a crime in Mauritania in 2007. It calls for a penalty of up to ten years in prison and fines ranging from US $2,000 to $4,000. A prison term of up to two years is also mandated for anyone who “facilitates” slavery. …
The law was nodded at:
The ten-year-old slave girl’s mistress… was arrested and charged but only has to report to the police once a week.
The slave child is nowhere to be found:
The child, for whom the demonstrators braved the government’s “draconian response,” is reported as still missing.
Why are the authorities allowing this obvious miscarriage of justice?
A problem in abolishing slavery in Mauritania, says one former slave, now an anti-slavery activist with SOS Esclaves, is that “the authorities themselves keep slaves.” …
SOS Esclaves is another anti-slave group in the country, which -
estimates there are about 500,000 black African slaves among the country’s population of 3.1 million. Their masters are Arab and Berber Mauritanians, who share only the same Islamic religion with their chattel. Unlike in Sudan, where the Arabs get their African slaves from old-fashioned, brutal slave raids, the Mauritanian slaves are the product of a system that has kept them in a state of bondage for generations, going back, in some cases, several hundred years. …
Laws made against slavery in Arab countries are a matter of window-dressing for Western observers. They mean little because sharia, the law of Islam, promotes slavery:
Slavery in Mauritania and other Arab countries will be difficult to eradicate. Slavery is an ingrained, centuries-old institution in Islamic countries. It is also legal under Sharia law …
From the seventh century to the twentieth, it is estimated 14 million Africans were violently enslaved and transported under harsh conditions around the Islamic world.
Black Africans became synonymous in Arab eyes with inferiority and with even something less than human. And since the Islamic world experienced no abolition movement … the black slave … continued to remain sub-human in the Arab worldview.
Which goes a long way towards explaining why black Africans are being hunted down, imprisoned, tortured, or just summarily murdered in Libya by the Libyan rebels whom the US, Britain, France, NATO are actively supporting – while the attention of those multitudes of leftists and other “humanitarians” whom Stephen Brown so rightly scorns is otherwise engaged.
The plight of the Arabs’ black slaves will not be the subject of UNESCO’s “anti-racism” convention, Durban III, to be held in New York later this month.
No doubt, like Durban I and Durban II, it will be an international hate-fest against Israel and the Jews.
Last November these countries voted against the Durban III session: Australia, Bulgaria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, the Netherlands, Palau, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the United Kingdom and the United States. (Austria, Belgium, France, Greece, Hungary and Spain abstained.)
Governments (in addition to Israel’s) that have announced they will not be joining in the coven are those of: The Czech Republic, Canada, Australia, Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, and – reluctantly? – the US.
Europe has capitulated to Islam.
The Jews of Europe, what’s left of them, are being harried out, mostly by the Muslims, but also by the media (such as, and especially, the BBC and the Guardian newspaper), and lickspittle dhimmi politicians and judges who are keeping the seats of power warm for their incoming Muslim overlords.
From the American Thinker:
An ugly, uni-directional pattern of bigoted violence is once again clearly on display in Western Europe. European Muslims have attacked individual Jews, synagogues, and Jewish or Israeli institutions, in Sweden, Denmark, France, Belgium, Spain, Greece, and Britain. …
Scant attention (or none at all) is being paid to the unequivocal, virulent incitement for these Antisemitic attacks emanating from the Muslim world … Hamas, for example, on its official website (posted December 31, 2008 at the site hosted by Emirnet, United Arab Emirates) urged Muslims to attack Jews across the world … Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar … advocated the murder of Jewish children, globally, claiming Israel had “legitimized the killing of their people all over the world.” …
Murderous calls for indiscriminate anti-Jewish violence … are also expressed locally, by jihadists within Europe….
On a population percentage basis, Muslims in Europe accounted for roughly 24.0 to 32.3 times the number of Antisemitic incidents as their non-Muslim European counterparts.
Hatred of Jews and recommendations that they should be killed are a large part of the religious teaching of Islam:
The ultimate “inspiration” for such rampant Muslim Jew-hatred within Europe’s Muslim communities can be traced to the sacralized bigotry of Islam’s foundational texts, disseminated by Muslim clerics such as Sheikh Feiz. As documented in a British television investigation broadcast January, 2007, the Jew-annihilationist eschatological theme from the canonical hadith quoted in the Hamas Covenant, article 7, The Prophet, ‘Allah’s prayer and peace be upon him, says: “The hour of judgment shall not come until the Muslims fight the Jews and kill them, so that the Jews hide behind trees and stones, and each tree and stone will say: ‘Oh Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him, except for the Gharqad tree, for it is the tree of the Jews.’ ” …
So where are the trials of Muslims charged with incitement to racial hatred and violence?
We’ve tried but failed to find them.
However, Europeans who make known such facts as the American Thinker does, are on trial for doing so.
Also from the American Thinker:
[In Brussels] the Vigilance Musulmane (Muslim Vigilance) advocacy group filed a complaint with the Centre for Equal Opportunities and the Fight Against Racism (CGKR) against professor of sociology Mark Elchardus for statements about Islamic Jew hatred. …
Professor Elchardus’ conclusions are based upon data from a 426 pp. report he co-authored entitled, “Young in Brussels: findings from the JOP monitor Brussels.” Chapter 8 of this study, “Anti-Semitism in Brussels,” devotes some thirty pages to highlighting the problem of rising Jew-hatred in Brussels, particularly amongst young Muslim students. Elchardus provided this overview of the alarming problem to De Morgen:
“Worrying is that half [only half?- JB] of Muslim students can be described as anti-Semitic … Worse, the anti-Jewish feelings have nothing to do with a low educational or social disadvantage, as is the case with racist natives. It is theologically inspired anti-Semitism… Islam’s canonical texts – Koran, hadith, and sira – are redolent with Islamic Jew-hatred …”
The impact of such sacralized, mainstream Islamic Jew hatred on Western Europe’s burgeoning Muslim community is equally apparent. During February of 2008, then European Commissioner for Justice, Freedom, and Security [bit of Orwellian Newspeak there! - JB], Franco Frattini, the European Union (EU) official responsible “for combating racism and Antisemitism in Europe,” revealed that Muslims were responsible for fully half (50%) of the documented Antisemitic incidents on the European continent. Demographic data from 2007 indicated that the total number of Europeans is 494.8 million; estimates of the number of Muslims in Europe range from 15-20 million, or some ~3.0-4.0% of the total European population. Thus, on a population percentage basis, Muslims in Europe already accounted for roughly 24.0 to 32.3 times the number of Antisemitic incidents as their non-Muslim European counterparts. …
Rather than being maliciously sued, the Professor should be commended by all decent people for his intellectual honesty and moral courage.
Other Europeans who, like Professor Elchardus, have spoken the truth about Islam and have famously been brought to trial are Elisabeth Sabaditsch–Wolffe (fined for the “denigration of religious teachings of a legally recognized religion in Austria”); Lars Hedegaard (found guilty of hate speech in Denmark), and Geert Wilders.
Today Geert Wilders made his final remarks to the court trying him for “inciting hatred” of Muslims. Here’s part of what he said:
I am obliged to speak. For the Netherlands is under threat of Islam. As I have argued many times, Islam is chiefly an ideology. An ideology of hatred, of destruction, of conquest. It is my strong conviction that Islam is a threat to Western values, to freedom of speech, to the equality of men and women, of heterosexuals and homosexuals, of believers and unbelievers.
All over the world we can see how freedom is fleeing from Islam. Day by day we see our freedoms dwindle.
Islam is opposed to freedom. Renowned scholars of Islam from all parts of the world agree on this. …
The statements for which I am being tried are statements which I made in my function as a politician participating in the public debate in our society. My statements were not aimed at individuals, but at Islam and the process of islamization. …
I am acting within a long tradition which I wish to honour. I am risking my life in defence of freedom in the Netherlands. Of all our achievements freedom is the most precious and the most vulnerable. Many have given their lives for freedom. …
I do not wish to betray the trust of the 1.5 million voters of my party. I do not wish to betray my country. Inspired by Johan van Oldenbarneveldt and Johan de Witt I wish to be a politician who serves the truth end hence defends the freedom of the Dutch provinces and of the Dutch people. I wish to be honest, I wish to act with honesty and that is why I wish to protect my native land against Islam. Silence is treason.
That is why I have spoken, why I speak and why I shall continue to speak. …
I pay the price every day. Day and night I have to be protected against people who want to kill me. I am not complaining about it; it has been my own decision to speak. However, those who threaten me and other critics of Islam are not being tried here today. I am being tried …
My right to a fair trial has been violated. The order of the Amsterdam Court to prosecute me was not just a decision but a condemning verdict by judges who condemned me even before the actual trial had begun.
Mister President, members of the Court, you must now decide whether freedom still has a home in the Netherlands.
Franz Kafka said: “One sees the sun slowly set, yet one is surprised when it suddenly becomes dark.”
Mister President, members of the Court, do not let the lights go out in the Netherlands. …
Acquit me. Political freedom requires that citizens and their elected representatives are allowed to voice opinions that are held in society.
Acquit me, for if I am convicted, you convict the freedom of opinion and expression of millions of Dutchmen.
Acquit me. I do not incite to hatred. I do not incite to discrimination. But I defend the character, the identity, the culture and the freedom of the Netherlands. That is the truth. That is why I am here. That is why I speak. …
Mister President, members of the Court, though I stand here alone, my voice is the voice of many. This trial is not about me. It is about something much greater. Freedom of expression is the life source of our Western civilisation. …
Mister President, members of the Court, you have a great responsibility. Do not cut freedom in the Netherlands from its roots, our freedom of expression. Acquit me. Choose freedom. …
We ardently hope Wilders will be acquitted. But whether he is or not, Europe has irreversibly condemned itself.