Last week, in the article "Sweden: From 'Humanitarian Superpower' to Failed State," we promised to address the question of what motivates those who are opening the gates for the current massive influx of Muslims and other hard-to-integrate newcomers to Europe. There is no one simple answer but there are partial answers, which combined may shed some light onto "Who benefits?".
As a point of departure, let us revisit UK Prime Minister David Cameron's and U.S. President Barack Obama's recent joint press conference in the White House. Despite an impressive amount of huffing and puffing, they once again demonstrated that their understanding of Islam leaves much to be desired. A more sinister explanation is that they understand more than they are willing to say for fear of offending "1.6 billion Muslims."
"We are representing values that the vast majority of Muslims believe in," said President Obama. This is a highly dubious claim, but if it were true, it wouldn't matter in the real world, as Brigitte Gabriel has so eloquently explained. In brief, she said that whether or not the majority of Muslims are peace-loving, tolerant and democratic is of no consequence, so long as the violent, radical and undemocratic minority calls the shots. Just as it mattered not a bit that most Germans, Russians and Chinese were probably opposed to the excesses of Nazism, Stalinism and Maoism. Hitler, Stalin and Mao, between them, still managed to kill more than a hundred million people.
Cameron did not acquit himself much better than Obama. He talked about Muslims being "seduced" by a "poisonous narrative that is perverting Islam," despite the fact that many might say what Islam's Prophet left behind is perverse enough.
Fortunately, many Muslims are unwilling to implement Muhammad's bloodthirsty program of intimidation, enslavement and murder. It is no help to them or to the rest of us that our Western leaders keep portraying Islam as something that might have been concocted by the Salvation Army. In fact, one might even say that the "narrative" of many politicians is the true perversion of a message that is as clear as it could be.
Obama's soft approach
President Obama even took it upon himself to lecture Europeans on how to tackle their huge immigrant populations. It is not enough to "respond with a hammer and law enforcement and military approaches" to counter threats, he said. It is important for the Europeans to "reach out and work with" these communities -- in other words, use a soft approach.
If there ever were a place where a welcoming, tolerant and inclusive approach to Muslims should have worked, it is Scandinavia. Basically, all immigrants, regardless of origin, religion or culture, have been received with open arms.
Let us consider Denmark's example.
As soon as newcomers arrive and have been granted residence (and to some extent even before), they receive every benefit our welfare state has to offer: Free medical care, free education through university, housing that is often better than what poor natives have to make do with, integration allowances, free language education, disability pensions, old age pensions, equal rights under the law etc. Cannot pay for yourself, your wife (or wives) and your numerous children because you are not qualified for a job or would rather not work? No problem. The taxpayers will provide you with everything you need. Want to go and fight in Syria for the Islamic State and leave your dependents behind? That's fine. The state will pay for them while you hone your skills as a holy warrior. Want to come back to Denmark if you get tired of slitting throats and burying people alive in Syria? You are welcome, and you will enjoy all the transfer payments you had before your exotic venture.
How much softer can it get?
Yet you will hardly ever hear a Muslim -- whether first, second or third generation -- express the slightest gratitude for all that hard-working Danish taxpayers have given them. Quite the contrary. When Muslims sound off in the media, it is usually in order to complain about the horrible way they are being treated. They are being harassed, excluded, mocked and offended by the natives. The original inhabitants turn their backs on them. That is often true, but is at least partly explained by the fact that Muslims prefer to live in confined areas (in Denmark they are known as ghettoes) with each other, where they can practice sharia law, keep control of their women and where outsiders are not welcome.
Tiny Denmark, covering 16,621 square miles, with 5.5 million people -- of which close to 300,000 are Muslims -- already has 33 or 40 (depending on what definition you use) Muslim areas. Some of them have turned into no-go zones, where the police and the fire brigade hesitate to enter for fear of being physically attacked. Among the most well known are Inner Nørrebro and Tingbjerg in Copenhagen, Vollsmose in Odense and Gellerup just outside Aarhus.
Billions upon billions of kroner have been spent in an attempt to upgrade, renovate and beautify these areas, on the assumption that the crime and anti-social behavior emanating from these areas are due to poor living conditions and poverty. Nothing has helped, and the reason is simple: Imams and other holy men maintain a firm grip on the Muslim diaspora (for instance, by convincing heads of families that their women must be veiled and constantly be under male supervision). This ensures that no integration takes place.
Members of the Islamist organization Hizb ut-Tahrir demonstrate in Copenhagen, Denmark, demanding a worldwide Islamic Caliphate, in 2006. (Image source: Wikimedia Commons/Epo)
The imams are schooled that it is their job to heed Muhammad's command to fight in the way of Allah until the entire world bends to his will. That cannot be achieved if the believers start integrating with infidels or emulating their culture. Their true adherence should be to the global Muslim umma (community). And, of course, it helps a lot if there is a steady influx of Muslim newcomers from afar.
So that is one basic explanation why integration has failed not only in Denmark but wherever imams are in control. Had there been no local whips, and no chain of command or conduit of financing from Middle Eastern potentates and missionary organizations, integration might have succeeded at least in part.
That was the opinion of one Danish Lutheran priest who had helped to integrate the first Muslims that came to Denmark back in the 1970s. It was going well until the day the imams arrived, and started warning local Muslims that they were committing a mortal sin by becoming too westernized.
As schooled in Danish Lutheran thinking, the priest and his friends would hold to the famous dictum by the 19th century priest and poet, N.F.S. Grundtvig: Anyone, regardless of "race" or origin, can become part of the Danish people if he so wishes -- and "has for the mother tongue ear and for the fatherland fire."
The imams and their foreign backers are well aware of this open invitation and act accordingly.
This shows the futility of President Obama's and other Western leaders' exhortations that the authorities ought to engage with local faith communities (read: self-proclaimed spokesmen for Muslims). By doing so, Western leaders unwittingly confer on the imams a role as intermediaries between the state and sections of the population. The writ of the official law will only hold sway over Muslims to the extent that the imams allow it. Of course, that comes at a price in terms of cultural concessions, such as the right to wear the veil in public institutions, removal of pork in kindergartens, separate swimming for males and females in schools and public facilities, and the building of mega-mosques financed by Islamists in the Middle East.
Last year, former Danish imam Ahmed Akkari, who is of Lebanese extraction, published a book with the title Min afsked med islamismen (My Farewell to Islamism). Here he states in no uncertain terms that there is not a single "moderate" mosque in the country and that the imams routinely practice taqqiya (dissimulation): telling Danes what they like to hear but saying something entirely different to their flock. Akkari ought to know: He was the ringleader of the group of imams that went around the Middle East to stir up trouble against Denmark back in 2005/2006 in order to punish the country for the famous Muhammad cartoons that were published in the Jyllands-Posten newspaper.
Akkari has since apologized and begged forgiveness for the damage he caused, but he will find no clemency from the Muslim strongmen and has had to settle in far-away Greenland to escape harassment and threats from his former brothers-in-arms.
"The Immigration-Industrial Complex"
Another group with a vested interest in both further mass immigration and non-integration and is what may be labeled "The Immigration-Industrial Complex." We are talking about the vast number of public employees and officers of semi-private humanitarian organizations who make a living out of receiving, caring for and integrating foreigners. If they were to succeed, or if the stream of asylum seekers were to dry up, they would be out of a job.
As a prerequisite of its work, the Immigration-Industrial Complex strives to spread a sense of guilt. This endeavor is mightily supported by a great number of journalists and so-called "experts," who have made a career out of accusing their fellow Danes of racism, "Islamophobia" and xenophobia. We are so rich, they claim, and yet we will not take responsibility for the plight of billions of our persecuted and poverty-stricken fellow men around the world.
Exactly how Danes -- and other Europeans who have never hurt a fly -- have incurred this burden is never explained. Nor would this sort of self-flagellation carry weight anywhere outside the West. But here it works wonderfully.
As Amir Taheri, former chief editor of Tehran's biggest newspaper, explained at a conference in Copenhagen some years ago: If you want to integrate newcomers, you have to get rid of people who make a living out of integrating them.
The political interest
What about the politicians? Why do they continue importing Muslims in record numbers, while knowing full well that all attempts to integrate those who came before have failed?
To the political Left, that is the good thing about them. The Left in Denmark lost both the Cold War and the allegiance of the working class on which it had pinned its political hopes. By the early 1970s, it was eminently clear that workers had become quite satisfied with the welfare state they had helped create, and were in no mood to overthrow the capitalist economy and embark on socialist experiments.
The Left can never forgive the "proletariat" for turning its back on the socialist project and voting for center-right parties. It needs a new proletariat -- one that will never integrate into bourgeois society, and is as eager to overthrow it, as is the Left. And as long as the ideology of multiculturalism, post-nationalism, globalization and cultural relativism dominates the media (as is overwhelmingly the case in Denmark), few politicians will dare demand a halt to immigration.
So far, the going is great. A survey of immigrant voters from 2010 documented that if immigrants alone were to elect the Danish parliament, the Left would get 169 seats out of a total of 179.
It is hardly surprising that the Left views a further mass influx of people from the third world with equanimity, not to say enthusiasm. The problem is that this kind of immigration is bound to wreck the very welfare state the Left claims to defend, and that its demise is not far off.
However, what leftist politician would dare jump ship and admit that 30 years of the "Open Door" has been a mistake?
The real mystery is why the center-right, with the exception of the immigration-critical Danish People's Party (Dansk Folkeparti, or DF), has supported third-world mass immigration, especially as very few immigrants are likely to vote for them.
There appears to be no good explanation, except that there is no longer a conservative or nationally-oriented ideology to oppose the all-pervasive ideologies of post-nationalism, multiculturalism, globalization and cultural relativism.
Denmark is the European nation state with the longest continuous history within its present borders. Over time, Denmark lost vast areas to Sweden and Germany, but a core is intact. Yet hardly a politician outside the Danish People's Party will stand up and say that Denmark is the home of the Danes and has been so for more than a thousand years. Nor will they acknowledge that if Denmark is lost as a result of a crazed multicultural experiment, Danes will have no home and their language and culture will wither.
Recent signals from the center-right indicate that a shift may be under way. But it remains to be seen whether it is more than window dressing, intended to sway the voters before the parliamentary election later this year.
In any event, time is running out for the former democratic and cozy welfare state of Denmark.
While Gatestone Institute stands by the articles written for it to date by Ingrid Carlqvist, Gatestone is no longer affiliated with her in any way.