For many Americans, the European migrant crisis is fading, out of sight and out of mind. That’s too bad, since uninvited asylum seekers from the Near and Middle East are pouring into Europe at a rising rate. The exact number is staggering, uncertain, and disputed. Perhaps 250,000 arrived in September alone.
One might not blame these opportunistic newcomers. At the same time, Europe cannot rationally stand by and pursue the policies it has. The continent faces its greatest existential crisis in decades.
On October 5 Germany’s top-selling newspaper Bild reported — based on leaked government forecasts — that an astonishing 1.5 million migrants could enter Germany this year. This is nearly double the previous official figure of 800,000 and five times the size of the government’s March estimate.
This summer, Germans greeted chancellor Angela Merkel’s moves enthusiastically. The mood is quickly changing. Fifty-one percent of Germans now believe the country can’t cope with the flood of migrants, up from 40 percent two weeks ago.
Merkel is on the defensive, facing opposition among her political allies and widespread fears of new taxes to fund migrant costs. Come on in, boys, is no longer working. Her months-long refrain, “wir schaffen das schon” (“we can do it”), rings hollow. Still, Merkel rules out any freeze. “We cannot close the borders,” Merkel said on German television last week. “If you build a fence, people will find other ways. There is no such thing as putting a stop to it.”
Germany has registered almost 600,000 asylum seekers this year. Possibly another 250,000 migrants whose whereabouts are unknown remain in the country unregistered. Other nations face similar situations.
How many of these illegal immigrants are Syrian or actual refugees is unclear. Tough talk from European Union mandarins about deportations and returns of failed asylees seems calculated and empty. Growing numbers of Europeans — less transnational in outlook than the ruling classes — are alarmed.
Some 450,000 migrants have come into Greece in 2015, according to the International Organization for Migration. About 7,000 more are arriving weekly, a sharp increase since the summer months and before the winter weather. Smuggling enterprises and an invasion business have blossomed in Izmir and along the western Turkish coast.
A few miles from Turkey, on Lesbos and other Greek islands, dozens of inflatable rubber boats daily unload their human cargo. As they land, young men wearing orange life vests flash V-signs for news cameras. They act more like conquerors than refugees. These invaders do not carry guns. They don’t need to. They have found Europe’s Achilles’ heel.
For close to a year, Americans and Europeans have been on the receiving end of an unprecedented propaganda campaign. As migrants recount their misfortunes to news reporters, all resistance evaporates. Men push children and sad-eyed women to the front for the cameras. Poor Aylan, washed up and dead on the Turkish beach, electrifies and drives public opinion.
The New York Review of Books writes elegantly of a beleaguered Syrian urban class and its trials. It questions whether the incursions into Europe are illegal. New York Times editorialists behold demographic rejuvenation and rising economic talent. The West may be complicit in a Holocaust-like genocide, some opinion writers hint darkly. The U.S. and Europe have pursued imperial policies in the Middle East for more than a century, others say. We are getting the inevitable blowback. Neoconservatives talk of failed nation building. No one wants to talk much about Israel or oil supplies.
Reports rarely draw pictures of unskilled, defiant young men in Germany and elsewhere committed to alien systems of thought. Some are draft dodgers and army deserters, possibly jihadists. Their respect for secular authority is limited. Credible reports from Germany suggest official suppression of mounting conflicts with police, when demands go unmet. Language barriers compound failures of communication.
The African migration is relatively dormant. But millions of Africans also seek relief from failed states and economies. They may have no electricity or plumbing, but they know where to find them. Thousands living in Calais shantytowns and trying to force their way into the U.K. make the eastern migrants seem decorous by comparison.
In all of this, Europe operates at a profound spiritual — or call it a psychological — disadvantage. A French woman recently said to me: “There are churches in every village but they are empty.” Islam has Allah. The West has diversity and universalism.
The West idealizes “what is variously known as multiculturalism and political correctness,” the historian Bernard Lewis said in 2007. “In the Muslim world there are no such inhibitions. They are very conscious of their identity. They know who they are and what they are and what they want, a quality which we seem to have lost to a very large extent. This is a source of strength in the one, of weakness in the other.”
The Muslim incursion does not have an explicit religious motive. But de facto hijra is on course to change Europe permanently. Europe’s abject failure of will portends catastrophe and ruin.
Increasingly, it appears that Russia, Israel, and East Asia — all of them have fewer inhibitions about self-preservation and protecting national integrity than the West — will decide the future of Dar-al-Harb.
Imprisoned by globalist and humanitarian belief systems, Europe and the Anglosphere are allowing Dar-al-Islam to use Western ideology in its interests. The brash intruders behaving like victors on the beaches of Lesbos are acting exactly as we should expect.
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