Increasingly, the leaders of Western Europe are recognizing the failure of multiculturalism. Whether they will do anything about the problem remains to be seen.
How did Europe come to this pass? I speak as one born in the Balkans but raised in Canada, where I was, thankfully, assimilated to democratic, Anglophone culture. The issue in Europe has in part to do with the formation and expansion of the EU and whether, with the massive migration of worker Turks into Western Europe, Turkey should be admitted to the EU.
Admission of Turkey into the EU clearly would exacerbate an already critical illegal migrant situation. This particularly affects Germany, France, Austria, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and the UK (which also has a large population of Islamic Pakistanis). The drain on welfare resources and medical services to support these unassimilated populations has reached crisis proportions, to say nothing about the undermining of civil law in parts of Paris and London, the Midlands of England, Germany, and Austria.
In addition, Europe's problems have been worsened by American policies in the Balkans of the past 15 years. This is true in three important respects:
- Our mismanagement of Bosnia
- Our intervention in Kosovo
- Our policy of defaming our traditional Serb allies while ignoring the incredible mafia criminality and anti-Christian destructiveness of Albanian and Bosnian Islamic extremism
The extent of infiltration of Islamic organized crime from Albania and Bosnia into Europe is staggering. This is ignored or excused by the powerful Albanian lobby in America's Northeast and in Congress. To be fair, some in Congress, such as Congressman Dan Burton of Indiana, are alert to the situation, and a fresh look is being taken at our Balkan policy within the State Department.
The Bosnia Imbroglio
President Clinton imported Al Qaeda from Afghanistan into Bosnia to counter Slobodan Milosevic, a decision facilitated in part by Madeleine Albright's vitriolic, personal hatred of Serbs, which significantly skewed our foreign policy. We did not betray the Poles, Hungarians, Romanians, and Bulgarians, all of whom had more reactionary communist regimes than the former Yugoslavia. The irony is that Serbs rid themselves of Milosevic without Washington's help and turned him over to the Hague.
The attempt to combine the three major ethnic groups in Bosnia into one state has failed. Serbs have defensively created Republica Srpska. The Croats, who have tried accommodation with the radical Islamist leadership, have decided they have had enough. They recently asked Russia to intervene in the Security Council to stabilize their situation in the face of radical Islamist undermining of their status in the Bosnian federation.
I have carefully read the 700 pages of The Clinton Tapes by Taylor Branch. The book is based on 79 two-hour interviews, often late at night, as President Clinton sought over the years during his administration to freshly recount events of the day or of previous days.
It is remarkable how little understanding is reflected in these tapes about the history of the Balkans, especially of the strong Christian heritage in Bosnia and Kosovo and the attempts by the Ottoman Empire to restrict Christianity by forced conversions to Islam through the kidnapping of Serbian boys (who became the famed Janissaries), by brutality, and by discriminatory economic policies.
Nor was there even a hint of anxiety or regret at what his importing of Al Qaeda into Bosnia was causing as they settled down, married Bosnian women, and began the process of imposing Islamic radicalism on Bosnia, which had become significantly secular since the expulsion of the Ottomans from Europe after World War I.
From Bosnia and Kosovo we now have one of the largest and most virulent drug cartels in the world, the worst of white slavery and prostitution trafficking into Europe, and terrorist training compounds. (Several of the 9/11 hijackers spent time in Bosnia among their Al Qaeda compatriots.) It is fascinating that some, including Boutros Boutros-Ghali, former Secretary-General of the UN, wanted to re-establish Christianity as the dominant culture in the Balkans against the rising radical Islamic tide, a proposal that never got off the ground.
It is scarcely credible, but nevertheless true, that the Clinton Administration ignored the Islamic Declaration by Alija Izetbegović, former president of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in which he clearly urged Islamists in Bosnia and worldwide to take up jihad against the West. Instead they regarded him as "their boy," ignoring the proliferating terrorist cells in Bosnia.
The Devastation of Kosovo
The silence of the West about the expulsion of Serbs, Romanies and other non-Albanians from Kosovo, the terrorizing of the remaining Serbs, and the destruction and desecration of literally hundreds of churches, monasteries, cemeteries and other Christian landmarks, some of which are medieval treasures, is a tribute to the West's allowing some of the worst vandalism and repression of the Christian faith in modern times.
There are more churches, monasteries and other Christian landmarks per square kilometer in Kosovo than anywhere else on earth. Kosovo is to Serbian Orthodox Christians what Canterbury is to Anglicans and the Vatican to Roman Catholics. But Christian Orthodox populations are expendable in the political maneuvering of Western politicians.
The latest bombshell is the Council of Europe's recently adopted report from Dick Marty that Kosovo leaders, including Prime Minister Hashim Thaci, are complicit in crime, including organ trafficking. There is now a strenuous effort to sweep the body parts issue under the rug lest it torpedo efforts to legitimize the illegally mandated separation of Kosovo from Serbia. The data are horrific: Serbian captive youths were selected on the basis of genetic compatibility for killing in order to harvest saleable body parts.
The Marty report confirms allegations by prosecutor Carla del Ponte, of the Hague International War Crimes Tribunal, first published in 2008 (some say even earlier, in 2003). Human Rights Watch has called on the European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo to appoint a special prosecutor based outside Kosovo to investigate Marty's findings. But there is an insuperable obstacle to effective judicial proceedings: Kosovo is tiny, and it is almost impossible to shelter witnesses, should they come forward. Testifying would mean signing a death warrant against oneself and one's entire family.
Few in America recognize that in the Balkans we are reaping the whirlwind of recent policy errors. In Samuel Huntington's words, we are indeed witnessing the clash of civilizations. But our adversary is not an identifiable state enemy. The strategy is to insinuate a minority Islamist population into a culture and allege discrimination while practicing it. Once they gain status or power they turn on their hosts.
In America today one cannot even begin to discuss the issues. On April 25, 2008, at the Association for the Study of the Middle East and Africa, Bernard Lewis, professor emeritus of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University, warned that there is:
a degree of thought control and limitations of freedom of expression without parallel in the Western world since the 18th century ... Islam and Islamic values now have a level of immunity from comment and criticism in the Western world that Christianity has lost and Judaism has never had.
Samuel Mikolaski is a retired theology professor. His curriculum vitae and published work are on his website.