The noted blogger Fjordman is filing this report via Gates of Vienna.
For a complete Fjordman blogography, see The Fjordman Files. There is also a multi-index listing here.
In 2008, after the center-right government of Silvio Berlusconi gained power in Italy, Spain’s vice-president Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega accused the Italians of racism. “The [Spanish] government rejects violence, racism and xenophobia, thus it does not agree with what is happening in Italy,” said Fernandez de la Vega. Human rights organizations such as Amnesty International warned that the new immigration restrictions were part of a worrying trend, and that Italian politicians were legitimizing the use of “racist language.” Later, the president of the city of Milan, Filippo Penati, proposed to fine Muslims who pray on the streets or sidewalks outside of the local mosque because they create obstacles for others.
“For some time Italy has been the gateway of the Mediterranean, but this door now needs to be slammed shut because we have a duty to defend our citizens and guarantee their safety” said Italy’s Minister for Community Policies, Andrea Ronchi. “We shall punish illegal immigrants, irregular stays by foreigners who commit crimes on our territory. And this is our full right as a nation.”
Is it? In the view of various “human rights” organizations, European countries do not have the right to defend our borders or citizens. That would violate the “human rights” of those who colonize our countries and harass our children in the streets of our cities. We have a duty to die, to dismantle our nations and applaud our own annihilation because we are white and thus have no legitimate reason to exist. We’re a big, fat and stupid cow to be milked by others.
According to a survey from April 2008 funded by the Facility for Euro-Mediterranean Investment and Partnership (FEMIP), the funds transferred from Europe to eight southern Mediterranean countries (Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia and Turkey) represent between 2% and 20% of the gross domestic product of these countries. The incomes received by immigrants and then sent to their countries of origin are a resource on which the governments in the Arab and Muslim world are becoming increasingly dependant. The European Union wants this trend to continue and expand, and Muslims will intimidate anybody who challenges these pro-Arab policies.
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In May 2008, Libya threatened “catastrophic repercussions to her relations with Italy” if Roberto Calderoli was once again appointed minister. The threat came from the son of leader Muammar Gheddafi, Saif El Islam, who thundered against the Northern League representative. As Minister of Reforms in 2006, reminded a note from the Rome office of the Libyan news agency, Calderoli in the course of a TV interview had showed a T-shirt “with offensive drawings against Islam” (one of the Danish Muhammad cartoons), a gesture which sparked protests with hundreds of angry demonstrators attacking the Italian consulate in the Libyan city of Bengasi. The final toll of the bitter clashes with the police forces which had been marshalled to protect the consulate was 11 dead and 35 wounded.
It is highly revealing how, whenever a Western country appears to be serious about restricting mass immigration, human rights organizations, various international NGOs, UN and EU agencies as well as some national governments will make common cause with Muslims and immigrant groups in exerting pressure on this country to abandon its defenses in the name of “human rights, international law, tolerance and anti-racism.”
I have my issues with Mr. Berlusconi, but whatever his other faults, he is not a dhimmi. His predecessor, the Socialist PM and former EUrocrat Romano Prodi, who was in the process of turning Italy into a leader of the Axis of Appeasement together with his Spanish Socialist colleague Zapatero, is a passionate cheerleader of Eurabia. Muslims see the distinction, too.
In June 2008, Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and prominent Italian journalist Magdi Allam, an Egyptian-born former Muslim who converted to Christianity in April 2008, were the targets of death threats posted on a popular Islamic website, said to be close to the Jihadist organization al-Qaeda. In an article in the Corriere della Sera, Allam stated that we cannot allow reality to be determined by the negators of Jihad, the deniers of Israel or the apologists for Palestinian terrorism. He warned against granting legitimacy to Al-Azhar in Egypt, the most prestigious institution for sharia and religious matters in the Sunni Islamic world:
Let it be clearly understood, once and for all, that Al Azhar is a fortress of Muslim extremism and of Muslim terrorism. Let the Minister of the Interior send back to their countries of origin those Imams who are submissive adherents of this ideology. Let the Minister of Foreign Affairs clearly denounce the agreement of cooperation signed on June 15, 2005, between Al Azhar and five Italian universities, signed by Ambassador Antonio Badini with the rector of Al Azhar, Sheikh Ahmad al Tayyeb, who on April 4, 2002 said: ‘The solution to Israeli terror can be found in suicide attacks that will sow terror in the hearts of the enemies of Islam.’ Let everyone stop legitimizing the ideologues of the Muslim Brotherhood, beginning with Tariq Ramadan. Let the state, and local institutions, stop handing over the mosques to UCOII. The lesson we must all learn from the latest scandal emanating from the Grand Mosque of Rome, is that before accrediting any Muslim as an official interlocutor, it is necessary to make him subscribe to a declaration in which he publicly recognizes the right of Israel to exist and condemns unequivocally Palestinian terrorism.
There are thus some encouraging signs of resistance in Italy. What is so special about this country? I have heard suggestions that political correctness and self-loathing is a “Protestant disease” and that Catholic countries are less prone to contracting it. I am willing to consider that possibility, but I haven’t seen any convincing evidence for it so far.
In central Europe, there is growing (but still insufficient) popular resistance to Islamization in predominantly Catholic Austria, but more so in traditionally Protestant Switzerland, which has a history of decentralized power and an armed citizenry. I am not convinced that Catholic Belgium is healthier than Calvinist the Netherlands. Yes, the Dutch have until recently been notoriously politically correct and ardent supporters of Multiculturalism, but they have also produced individuals such as Theo van Gogh, Geert Wilders and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Dutch political elites are for the most part spineless appeasers or active collaborators, but the Belgian political elites are among the worst in the Western world.
My impression of Poles, Hungarians, Czechs, Croats and others is more favorable, but this is shared with their Orthodox cousins in the eastern half of Europe, who have become more resistant to Multiculturalism and cultural Marxism by living for so long under Communist rule. The former subjects of the Ottoman Empire in southeast Europe, the Serbs, the Greeks, the Bulgarians and for some time the Hungarians and the Romanians still have real memories of the horrors of Islam and have no intention of returning to it.
In northern Europe, I cannot give a good explanation as to why Lutheran Denmark is significantly stronger than Lutheran Norway, Finland, and Sweden, culturally speaking closely related nations. I’ve even heard suggestions that Scandinavians are “genetically weak” and thus receptive to ideological nonsense. This suggestion fails to explain why the Norse people, genetically speaking almost identical to modern Scandinavians, were not particularly known for their meekness or self-loathing during the Viking Age, and again, it fails to explain the sometimes considerable differences among the Nordic nations today. I suspect one of the causes is that Denmark has enjoyed a healthier culture of debate and tolerance for public dissent than have Norway or Finland, with Sweden being a particularly nasty example of the long-term effects of ideological indoctrination and suppression of dissent.
Although very far from being a paradise, tiny Denmark has a genuine debate about immigration that would be respectable for a much larger country. Britain is more than ten times as large, yet is currently one of the most pathetic nations of the Western world. Exactly why, I don’t know. Perhaps the Catholic Irish are more resistant than the British, but there are many reasons for this. It is possible that Britain has particularly treasonous political elites, but I do suspect that the British, the source of the first truly global lingua franca, suffer from a post-Imperial Stress Syndrome. I hope the Germans will wake up and smell the coffee; they have no obligation to surrender their country to alien and inferior cultures, but they may be too weighed down by their history to play a leading role in the European resistance just yet.
Possibly the worst country in Europe, demographically and ideologically, is France, but this has more to do with the destruction of its traditional, Catholic identity than with anything else. The French Revolution made France into a culturally wounded nation, and the legacy of French rule in North Africa and Syria has left the French with the illusion that they “understand” Arabs and Muslims, and now want to use them as a tool to prevent France’s long-term decline into irrelevance as a Great Power. Sadly, the French also try to export their self-destructive ideological stupidity to other countries through the European Union.
Catholic Portugal and Spain have not yet emerged as the bulwarks against Islamization they probably should be, considering their history. I am particularly disappointed with the Spanish. Out of all the larger countries in Western Europe, Italy currently ranks as the healthiest one, if we ignore the appallingly low birth rates it shares with the rest of Europe. Why Italians are more resistant to colonization through mass immigration is uncertain, but they are. Maybe it’s the legacy of the great writer Oriana Fallaci, who during the final years of her life did more to wake people up to the Islamic threat than almost any other individual in the entire Western world. Or maybe it’s simply because the Italians, in contrast to so many other Westerners, still love and appreciate their own culture and have no intention of surrendering it to anybody.
It is inconceivable to write European history from the Roman Empire until today and leave out the massive Italian contributions. Those visiting Rome will be struck by the immense visual power of its buildings, paintings and cultural monuments, stretching back hundreds and in many cases thousands of years. The long-term survival of these invaluable monuments, a treasure that belongs to all of mankind, is directly threatened by Muslim immigration.
Hugh Fitzgerald of Jihad Watch likes to say that a single Italian city such as Venice or Florence contains more great works of art and architecture than has been produced in the entire Islamic world during almost 1400 years. Even their critics will not deny that Italians have a love for art and design, for food, wine, and sports and for enjoying life. After reading about the history of science and technology, my impression is that their contributions to commerce and science, too, are more important than we in northern Europe often give them credit for.
It has become custom to attribute the rebirth of Western science to the legacy of “Arabic and Islamic science,” whatever that is. Yet the Renaissance did not take place in Spain or Portugal, which certainly had access to Arab writings, but in northern Italy, which also had extensive contacts with the Byzantine Empire. Likewise, it is common to attribute the major breakthroughs in Western Europe to the surpluses generated by “colonialism.” However, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the Germans outperformed the French and often the British in technological ingenuity and industrial output, despite the fact that the latter ruled much of the world whereas the Germans had only marginal and insignificant colonies.
In southern Europe, Italians, in my view, outperformed the Spanish in science despite the fact that the latter held extensive colonies for centuries whereas the Italians did not. The commercial revolution which created the seeds for Western capitalism took place in the Italian city-states, not in the more centralized and bureaucratic Spanish state.
Both Italians and non-Italians often make jokes about Italian bureaucracy or lack of such. Italy is definitely a less “efficient,” in the meaning of “bureaucratically organized,” country than, say, Britain or Sweden, but these are hardly nations to emulate today. Contemporary Britain makes George Orwell’s 1984 look tame, and Sweden is a country where native girls get gang raped by immigrants on a regular basis, yet where the natives cannot criticize this or even talk about it because that might sound racist.
Throughout much of the Western world, the state-sponsored bureaucracy is no longer there to look after our individual or national interests; it is there to force us to surrender our countries to hostile aliens in the name of dangerous, utopian ideologies promoted by unaccountable transnational organs which do not have our interests in mind. In this situation, reluctance to allow faceless bureaucrats to run your life is a blessing, not a curse, and the ingrained Italian distrust of bureaucrats is probably one of the reasons why Italy is among the leading European nations in resisting unilateral cultural surrender.
Italy is by no means immune to the problems affecting everybody else in the Western world, but her odds are better than those of several other countries. Through contact with Italians, I get the impression of a country whose national heart is still beating, a people still in touch with their roots and believing that their cultural survival is desirable, which is no mean feat given the suicidal state of our civilization in this age. When observing Italy, I see sickness but also life; and where there is life, there is hope. Something tells me that the story of Italy as a vibrant heartland of European civilization still contains more chapters to be written. If we are lucky, her struggle for survival and rebirth can inspire others far beyond her borders.