A PART OF THE WESTERN WORLD, Europe, however, has been very selective about alien cultures and civilizations; not a “melting pot” American style, it is paying dearly for this function imposed on it. The disagreements on the migration issues in the European corridors of power threaten the cohesion of the European Unity. Frau Merkel who demonstrated a no mean determination to meet a new wave of migrants with maximal openness and tolerance had already accepted the failure of multiculturalism. This means that Berlin has no answer to the question about how to cope with the migrants who have arrived in thousands and millions to Europe to stay.
Brussels that at better times tried, and failed, to arrive at a unified approach to the problem of migration, has wisely “excused itself since any prescription will raise a wave of indignation. In the past, Germany and many of its West European neighbors opted for the “Three A’s” ideology when dealing with the Third World migrants. It was believed that the Muslim migrants should, first, adapt themselves to the new conditions; second, to become assimilated and, third, absorbed (to become an integral part of the new socium). This did not happen for many reasons. Suffice it to say that one out of four members of the Turkish community in Germany does not know German; one out of two never communicates with Germans.
The EU directive on the right to family reunification buried the hopes pinned on mixed marriages: Men prefer brides from their native countries.
The official permission to build mosques led to the emergence of monoethnic and monoconfessional communities (enclaves). Saudi Arabia poured a lot of money into mosque building across Europe. Prof. Starchenkov of the Institute of Oriental Studies, RAS has written in one of his analytical papers: “The mosques have developed into the centers of alienation of the Muslims from the West European socium, the process unfolding within the frames of rights and liberties envisaged by the democratic constitutions of the West European countries.”1 Education of the youth, Koranic studies, disagreements among the Muslims or between guest workers and their employers, between the community members and official structures were resolved within the enclave, in which the final say belonged to the imam. Sharia courts were established practically everywhere in Western Europe; “having pushed aside the state courts” they “dominate the Muslim diaspora. Qatar is the main donor of the Sharia courts in Europe.”2 The new realities were put in a nutshell as an “atomized caliphate.”
The efforts to dissolve the Muslim migrants or “Westernize” them have failed: “It was in the zero years that the third or even the fourth generation of guest workers was born in Western Europe. The EU powers have expected that they would be completely integrated. The descendants of the Muslim migrants who enjoyed numerous benefits and privileges offered by the recipient states refuse to study the local tongues and accept European culture. Instead, they demonstrate their loyalty to the Koran and the Muslim ummah.”3
European efforts to dissolve the Muslim migrants or “Westernize” them have failed.
In the first post-World War Two years, Western Europe accepted 60 to 70 thousand mainly Muslim migrants every year; by the end of the twentieth century, the figure swelled to 700 thousand or even 1 million. By 2000, the share of the newcomers in the total population had risen to 10.3%; by 2013, it rose to nearly 13%, while today, after the well-known events, it may become even higher. No wonder, several EU members deemed it necessary to draw the line.
Prime Minister of Slovakia Robert Fico said in a recent interview: “If we agreed to let in several thousand people under the quotas the local people would have never accepted them. This means that they will live in special centers in the world of their own complete with crimes, lawlessness, and unemployment.”4 He further said that uncontrolled migration was fraught with terrorist threats; the German special services warned that the terrorist threat was higher than in 2001 when the Twin Towers in New York had been attacked.
The attacks in Cologne indicate that migrants behave irrationally, Mr. Fico said, and that it is necessary “to prevent the creation of a compact Muslim community.” Having pointed out that “the Muslim community as a whole is a serious threat to the European lifestyle” the prime minister of Slovakia concluded: “We cannot allow several thousands of North African and Middle Eastern migrants to settle in Slovakia. We have learned the lesson of other European countries: The migrants cannot be integrated, it’s simply impossible.”
By calling a spade a spade the prime minister was taking risks. One of my German colleagues said recently: “In Germany, those who do not share the views of Frau Merkel on migrants are branded, fascists.”
Young men between 25 and 35 constitute up to 80% of the migrant crowds. Robert Fico specified: “Normally, they are well-dressed people with credit cards. They have little in common with migrants who flee from hunger and thirst. There are people among them who need help; we are ready to help the Syrian Christians, in particular, whose lives were threatened.”
Indeed, many countries in Europe are much better disposed to the Christians from the Middle East who lived through a much greater catastrophe than their Muslim neighbors. The Christian communities were cruelly persecuted for their religious affiliation. Christian refugees will create fewer confessional problems in Europe. More than that, there is hope that the refugees persecuted for their faith, even if failing to revive it, will remind the secular continent and the Europeans about their civilizational roots.
So far, the relations between confessions cannot be described as adequate, to say the least. In Germany, 500 thousand ethnic Germans adopted Islam; in France, 300 thousand French did the same. The expert community is convinced: “European Christianity (mainly Catholicism and Protestantism) is retreating.” In his time, Libya’s leader Muammar Qaddafi called on the Italians to embrace Islam.
Today, the most optimistic among the experts remain convinced that Europe is still strong and rich and, therefore, capable of “coping” with the masses of alien refugees. History, however, has offered us different examples: the strongest is not always the victor.
“At the turn of the year, the army of Aram marched against Joash; it invaded Judah and Jerusalem and killed all the leaders of the people. They sent all the plunder to their king in Damascus. Although the Aramean army had come with only a few men, the Lord delivered into their hands a much larger army. Because Judah had forsaken the Lord, the God of their ancestors, judgment was executed on Joash” (2 Chronicles 24:23).
4 Hospodárske noviny. 11.01.2016.