The Islamic terrorist attack at the Berlin Christmas market on Dec. 19 may go down in history as the moment Europe experienced a seismic political shift away from a decades-long fling with multiculturalism.
The mainstream backlash against German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s migrant policies, which erupted last week in the wake of the horrific attack, shows no signs of slowing down. This is a marked difference from past terrorist attacks that were met with the usual canned expressions of “shock” and “sympathy” by Western leaders — before those same leaders went back to their usual business of promoting or accepting fresh waves of unrestrained migration from war-torn nations.
“Today almost no one doubts the connection between the migration wave and terrorist attacks.”
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“Today almost no one doubts the connection between the migration wave and terrorist attacks,” Czech President Milos Zeman said Monday during his annual Christmas speech.
The importance of a mainstream European leader uttering these words is unmistakable, given that only a few months ago many Western leaders were doing whatever they could to deny such a connection existed.
Zeman also lashed out against the E.U.’s quota system, which forces member countries to take in Muslim migrants regardless of their peoples’ wishes. The Czech Republic should not take in migrants on a “so-called volunteer basis,” he said.
The Czech leader said he was not opposed to aiding migrants “[in] their territory or [in] neighboring territories,” but that “placing Muslim, hardly compatible migrants [in] our territory would mean creating a breeding ground for potential terrorist attacks.”
Zeman’s words echo those of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who called for a complete reversal of the E.U.’s current migrant policy on Friday.
“It’s clear that, in the case of migration, nothing can remain the way it was before. Brussels needs to change, migrants who entered Europe illegally must be deported, the borders need to be protected and the inflow of migrants has to be eliminated,” Orban said in an interview with Hungarian online newspaper veol.hu.
Germany, hitherto the biggest cheerleader for mass Muslim migration into Europe, finally appears to be recognizing the true scale of the threat at hand. During an interview with Bild published Saturday, German Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière said that stricter border controls on the Austrian-Bavarian border that are set to expire soon would be extended.
“We adapt [the border controls] to the situation and take care of the economy, the tourists, and the small border traffic. But current … border controls are initially limited until mid-February,” de Maizeiére said. “I intend to continue the controls well beyond February.” When asked for how long those controls would be extended, Maizeiére replied, “for many months.”
Mainstream U.K. politicians have also continued to speak out against the E.U.’s handling of the Muslim migrant crisis. Tory MP Iain Duncan Smith said that Berlin revealed Britain needed to get on with Brexit “as soon as possible.”
“The sooner we get out, the stronger our ability to look after ourselves and our borders will be,” said Smith. “Where the European Union has been heading is towards this creation of a super state, within which there would be no borders, no controls, no checks. We are now beginning to see what a mistake that has been,” he continued.
“[The] Schengen [Treaty] poses a huge risk of terrorism, porous borders across mainland Europe are continuing to be exploited by ISIL,” Richard Walton, an expert on terrorism and former head of the Metropolitan Police’s counter-terrorism division, said Friday.
“They have a clear strategy and have set out to carry out attacks across mainland Europe. Europe’s weakness is our weakness,” he said. “We need European countries to get their act together. Sooner or later they are going to get across the Channel,” he added.
The shocking brutality and twisted symbolism of the Berlin attack also seems to have jolted awake even liberals in the United States. On Christmas Day, the liberal-leaning Miami Herald published an op-ed by conservative commentator Pat Buchanan titled “Liberalism has failed to keep the West safe.”
“In our time, there has taken place, is taking place, an Islamic awakening. Of 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide, hundreds of millions accept strict Sharia law about how to deal with apostasy and infidels. Millions in the Middle East wish to drive the West out of their world. Thousands are willing to depart and come to Europe to terrorize our societies. They see themselves at war with us, as their ancestors were at war with the Christian world for 1,000 years,” Buchanan wrote.
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“Only liberal ideology calls for America and Europe to bring into their home countries endless numbers of migrants, without being overly concerned about who they are, whence they come or what they believe,” he continued.