You can see his new essay in the Brussels Journal.
One thousand years ago Scandinavians were the barbarians of Europe, spreading fear and extracting “Danegeld” from their more civilized neighbors. In the 21st century Scandinavians are peaceful and soft-spoken, and the roles seem to have been reversed with certain newly arrived immigrants. There are claims that immigration costs Sweden 40 to 50 billion Swedish kroner every year, perhaps even several hundred billions, and has greatly contributed to bringing the Swedish welfare state to the brink of bankruptcy.
In Denmark right-wing politicians are already debating the threat of immigrant “welfare tourists,” should the Swedish system collapse. In Norway almost half of all children with a non-Western background claim social security benefits. This is ten times the rate of the native population. A Danish commission concluded that Denmark could save 50 billion kroner every year by 2040 if it shut the door to third world immigration. At the same time, statistics indicate that Scandinavians will become a minority in their own countries within a couple of generations, if the current trends continue. While their political elites insist that immigration is “good for the economy,” Scandinavians are in reality funding their own colonization.
Although the cost of welfare is significant, it pales in comparison to the price paid through rapidly declining social harmony and increasing insecurity caused by Muslim immigration. Some of the increase in insecurity is due to the rise of mafia groups and organized crime, but most is mainly due to terror threats and intimidation of critics of Islam and Muslim immigration.
It is true that the Scandinavian countries have much in common, but the differences that do exist should not be underestimated. It was no coincidence that the issue with the Muhammad cartoons started in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten, as Denmark is probably the one Western nation where the debate surrounding Muslim immigration is most mainstream and open. Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen’s centre-right government has imposed some of the toughest regulations in the EU on asylum seekers.
Unfortunately, this does not mean that Denmark’s problems are over. In 2005 attackers set fire to the immigration minister’s car. A leftist group calling itself “Beatte Without Borders” said it carried out the attack, condemning the government’s “racist immigration policies.” Muslim extremists have declared that the Danish PM and Defense Minister are legitimate terror targets because of Denmark’s participation in Iraq. Members of Denmark’s moderate Muslim community say they are reluctant to speak out with critical observations of their religion, fearing social isolation, threats and violence, and a Danish Jew was even attacked for reading from the Koran.
Imam Abu Laban was one of the prime movers in making the cartoons a major international issue: “We want to internationalize this issue so that the Danish government will realize that the cartoons were insulting, not only to Muslims in Denmark, but also to Muslims worldwide,” Abu Laban said. He has earlier tried to implement sharia practices in Denmark. In one prominent case, two men were killed in a row involving a group of second generation immigrants in Copenhagen. According to Imam Abu Laban the thirst for revenge could be cooled if 200,000 kroner in “blood money” were paid to the victims’ families. The 200,000 Danish kroner is approximately the value of 100 camels, the stipulated sharia price for a Muslim man’s life.
Meanwhile, there is growing fear amongst politicians that the immigrant environment in the Nørrebro area in Copenhagen, which has been unofficially declared an “Islamic state” by some of its residents, is developing into a parallel society where ancient traditions threaten Danish law. Professor of Islamic studies Mehdi Mozaffari tells of how he and thousands of others have fled burkas, sharia, blood money, muftis and Islamism in the Middle East, only to witness the same beast rear its ugly head in Europe. And he warns of the consequences: “Historical experience has shown that those whom people fear will win, eventually. We saw this in Nazi Germany. There were too many Nazis, and people were scared. I fear that this is where we are heading, once more.”
The most immediate victims of this climate of fear are Muslim women. A Pakistani man in Denmark recently murdered his sister in the street outside a train station because she had married a man against her family’s orders. Meanwhile, Muslims in Denmark do not hesitate to exercise their right to free speech. In 2004 a leading Danish mufti said that Danish women not wearing the veil “were asking for rape,” a comment seemingly less offensive to the Muslim community than a few cartoons. The twelve Muhammad cartoonists now live underground and with police protection.
In Norway Bruce Bawer, the author of the recent book While Europe Slept, tells on his website of the capitulation of Velbjørn Selbekk, the editor of the tiny Christian periodical Magazinet – the first publication to reprint the now famous Muhammed cartoons. He had firmly resisted pressure by Muslim extremists (who made death threats) and by the Norwegian establishment. But then Norway’s Minister of Labor and Social Inclusion hastily called a press conference at a major government office building in Oslo. There Selbekk issued an abject apology for reprinting the cartoons. At his side, accepting his act of contrition on behalf of 46 Muslim organizations and asking that all threats now be withdrawn, was Mohammed Hamdan, head of Norway’s Islamic Council. In attendance were members of the Norwegian cabinet and the largest assemblage of imams in Norway’s history. It was a picture right out of a sharia courtroom, with the Muslim leader declaring Selbekk to be henceforth under his protection.
Two representatives from the Islamic Council for Norway and a senior pastor representing Oslo’s bishop then visited Qatar, where they were to meet the top Muslim leader Dr Yusuf Al Qaradawi. The trip, partially funded by the Norwegian authorities, was a public relations effort on the part of Norway, which had suddenly found itself the target of Muslim outrage because the cartoons that originated in Denmark were reprinted in a Norwegian publication. Qaradawi has supported suicide bombings, and has publicly bragged about how “Islam will conquer Europe.” The “moderate” Sheikh Qaradawi was not satisfied with the apology from the Norwegian editor who printed the Muhammad cartoons. He wanted to dictate that Norway adopt Islamic blasphemy laws. Qaradawi’s website IslamOnline later claimed that Norway agreed to do this, which is totally untrue. Local Muslims led by the lawyer Abid Q. Raja, however, have pushed for such an option: “The point is not to restrict freedom of speech but to give it direction so that weak groups do not feel insulted or mocked. If we do nothing the differences within Norwegian society will increase in the future.”
Mullah Krekar, the former leader of the Islamic terror group Ansar al-Islam, still lives in Norway, even though he has pretty much openly threatened the country with terror attacks and has called Osama bin Laden “the jewel of Islam.” At the same time, Krekar denies he is a threat to national security in Norway. “I only know five streets in Oslo,” he said. “How can I be a threat?” He has written a book about himself, which was published by a man called William Nygaard, who was shot at and almost killed in the early 90s for having published the Norwegian translation of Salman Rushdie’s book The Satanic Verses. A Norwegian NGO called the Freedom of Expression Fund supports the translation and publication of bin Laden’s speeches.
Meanwhile the Norwegian translation of Oriana Fallaci’s latest book remains unpublished in Norway, even though her two previous books about Islam and the West sold in large numbers. FOMI, a Norwegian anti-Islamic website, was recently charged with “racism and spreading Islamophobia” for translating an article from Frontpage Magazine, with comments, about a Muslim rape wave in the West. The number of rape charges in Sweden has quadrupled in just over twenty years, parallel with Muslim immigration.
In 2005 Stortinget, the Norwegian parliament, passed a new Discrimination Act. The act says in pretty clear words that in cases of suspected direct or indirect discrimination based on religion or ethnicity, native Norwegians are guilty until proven otherwise. The immigration spokesman for the right-wing Progress Party, Per Sandberg, feared that the law would jeopardize the rights of ordinary, law-abiding Norwegian citizens. Reverse burden of proof is combined with liability to pay compensation, which means that innocent persons risk having to pay huge sums for things they did not do. In 2005 the Norwegian police issued a mobile security alarm to Progress Party leader Carl I. Hagen. Hagen had criticized Islam, and could see no similarity with the concept of morality and justice found in Christianity. Hagen also said that if Israel loses in the Middle East, Europe will succumb to Islam next. He feels that Christians should support Israel and oppose Islamic inroads into Europe. In an unprecedented step, a group of Muslim ambassadors to Norway blasted Carl I. Hagen in a letter to the newspaper Aftenposten, claiming that he had offended 1.3 billion Muslims around the world. Other Norwegian politicians quickly caved in and condemned Hagen.
Unidentified assailants fired shots at an Oslo restaurant owned by the family of a Pakistani-born female comedienne who has achieved prominence for lampooning conservative Islam. The comedienne, Shabana Rehman, described the incident as “an appalling act of terror” and said it would not deter her from continuing her work. Samira Munir, a Norwegian politician of Pakistani origin, was found dead under suspicious circumstances at a train station outside Oslo in November 2005. She had received death threats many times from the Pakistani community in Norway because of her courageous fight for the rights of Muslim immigrant women, and for banning hijab, the Islamic veil. The leader of the Socialist Left party and now Norway’s Minister of Finance, Kristin Halvorsen, praised all the “blood, sweat and tears Pakistanis in Norway have spent on building the country” when she started the party’s election campaign in the Pakistani countryside in 2005.
If the reaction of the Norwegian authorities to the cartoon case has been weak, that of the Swedish government has been downright appalling. The ruling Social Democratic party went to the drastic length of closing down the website of a competing political party that featured a Muhammad cartoon online. Sweden, an extremely authoritarian country, has national elections this year. Probably no other Western nation has more problems with, yet less debate about Muslim immigration than Sweden, and the only thing the elites are doing about this is demonizing neighboring Denmark for “xenophobia.” The Swedish security services (Säpo), in collusion with Foreign Minister Leila Freivalds, forced the website SD-Kuriren offline for publishing the Jyllands-Posten cartoons. SD-Kuriren is the house publication of the hard-right Swedish Democrats. Freivalds stated that “it is terrible that a small group of extremists are exposing Swedes to danger [by reprinting the cartoons].” The party’s secretary, Björn Söder, says the site has been reopened by moving it to another server, although the pictures of Muhammad have been removed. The Sweden Democrats and SD-Kuriren received threats after the publication of the pictures. Violent assaults and life threatening attacks against members of the Swedish Democrats, by Muslims or “anti-Fascists,” have taken place many times, but are rarely mentioned in the media. No dissent is tolerated in Sweden.
Jonathan Friedman is a New York Jew, now living with his Swedish wife in the southern Swedish city of Malmö where he teaches socio-anthropology. According to him, “no debate about immigration policies is possible, the subject is simply avoided. Sweden has such a close connection between the various powerful groups, politicians, journalists, etc. The political class is closed, isolated.” Friedman thinks circumstances in Sweden are special also because Sweden has a long tradition of maintaining a correct surface. Two Swedish girls were sent home from school for wearing sweaters showing a tiny Swedish flag. The headmaster was concerned that this might be deemed offensive by some immigrants. Helle Klein, political editor of the newspaper Aftonbladet, boasts: “If the debate is going to be about whether there are problems with immigrants, we don’t want it.” Hans Bergström, former editor-in-chief of the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter, worries that Sweden has become “a one-party state.”
In a sermon at Filadelfia church in Stockholm in March 2005 the Norwegian celebrity evangelist preacher Runar Søgaard, repeated his declaration that Muhammad was “a confused pedophile” since his wives included a girl aged nine years old. Søgaard was placed under police protection after receiving death threats. The sermon triggered fears of a religious war in Sweden. Muslim radicals posted a very explicit threat to launch a wave of terrorist attacks against Sweden for the “insult.” In February 2005 a Swedish museum removed an erotic painting plastered with verses from the Koran from an exhibition about AIDS. Some vocal members of the Muslim community launched a letter-writing campaign that resulted in hundreds of e-mails, among them messages along the lines of “remember what happened in Holland.” The museum, however, insisted that the “threats” it received had nothing to do with the removal of the work. At the same time, the Swedish historian of religion Matthias Gardell claims that Islamophobia is perhaps the greatest threat to democracy in the Western world today. The Swedish writer and leftist intellectual Jan Guillou has stated that the rhetoric employed by the Nazis against Jews is now used to target Muslims. In Sweden an anti-Semitic crime is reported to the police once every three days. The Jewish congregations in the major cities of Stockholm, Göteborg and Malmö are forced to spend up to 25 percent of their membership fees on security and hired guards. Most of these hate crimes are perpetrated by Muslims.
Just as the country is in the midst of the worst crime wave in modern history, with a desperately underfunded police force, the Swedish Social Democrats have announced that cheaper public dental care would be a major issue in this year’s election campaigns. There could hardly be a better symbol of Europe’s love affair with the welfare state and “social security” in an age where physical security is rapidly disappearing through runaway Muslim immigration. “Eurabia: You may get your teeth kicked in, but at least you have cheap dental care” could become the slogan for the entire continent.
Scandinavians, too, were once involved in blood feuds and fanaticism. That time is called the Viking Age, and we left it behind a thousand years ago, as Muslims should have done. We have no particular urge to return to being a primitive tribal society. Yet too many of our “new countrymen” seem to insist on bringing one into our living room. They might get their way. Perhaps, in reaction to the pressures from Muslims, native Scandinavians will “rediscover their inner barbarian” and history will go full circle: from tribalism to cappuccino and back again. Who knows, if Arnold Schwarzenegger fails to get re-elected as Governor of California he may like to do a sequel to “Conan the Barbarian?” He could shoot it in Malmö, Sweden, which is set to become the first major Scandinavian city with a Muslim majority. Chances are he’d be surprised at how well he fits in.