Once More Across Europe The Spectre Of Fascism Raises Its Shrouded Head—In Agony!

Once More Across Europe The Spectre Of Fascism Raises Its Shrouded Head—In Agony!

The Story

In Austria’s recent general election, nearly 30 per cent of voters backed extremist right-wing parties.

After the FPO’s election victory, Nick Griffin, leader of the British Nationalist Party (BNP), sent a personal message to Strache.
‘We in Britain are impressed to see that you have been able to combine principled nationalism with electoral success. We are sure that this gives you a good springboard for the European elections and we hope very much that we will be able to join you in a successful nationalist block in Brussels next year.’

Paging Norman Lowell, white courtesy telephone please.


The Advance of Islam and A “Moderate Muslim” Brags About the Muslim Conquest of Europe

The Advance of Islam

by Baron Bodissey

Muslim Conquest
The esteemed scholar, Arabist, and publicist Prof. Dr. Hans Jansen is a Professor in Leiden, the Netherlands, and a specialist in political Islam. He was Houtsma professor for Contemporary Islamic Thought in the Department of Arabic, Persian and Turkish at the University of Utrecht until his retirement in 2008.

The essay “De opmars van de islam” (“The advance of Islam”), was published in: Profetisch Perspectief, Volume 14, Spring 2009, Number 62, pp. 45-50; and on the Dutch website HoeiBoei, March 20, 2009.

The embedded links were added by the translator, our Flemish correspondent VH.

The Advance of Islam
“Islamic ideology is not resistant to the free word”

By the Arabist Hans Jansen

In less than four centuries Christianity was able to win the Roman Empire over to itself. This happened from the bottom up, without force or violence, without government intervention or support. On the contrary, the government of the Roman Empire, by persecuting Christians from time to time, hindered Christianization with force and violence.

During the period the Roman Empire was being Christianized, the process occurred more or less in what is now known as the Middle East, plus in Europe up to the Danube and the Rhine. That doesn’t mean to say that there were no Christians outside that area. By about 300-350, to the east of the Roman Empire in Persia, a fair number of Christians could be found (later known as the Nestorians). Also just outside the borders of the Roman Empire there lived the Armenians and Georgians, who by about 300 were not only majority Christian, but had adopted Christianity as a state religion. In the Roman Empire that happened shortly thereafter.

The Muslims managed to conquer roughly the same area as that of the ancient Roman Empire in about a century, with the exception of Western Europe, where they were stopped in France by Charles Martel (732), and with the exception of Turkey and the current Balkans, where the Muslims were stopped by the Eastern Roman Empire, the Byzantines, until the middle of the fifteenth century.

CairoNevertheless it was a tremendous military achievement for the Muslims to conquer in such a short time a territory that stretched from Toledo to Gibraltar, Tunis, Cairo, Damascus, Baghdad, Mecca, and beyond. According to Islamic tradition, Muhammad, who was the beginning of this wave of violence, died in 632. Exactly a century later, a temporary end came to the military expansion of Islam because of the defeat of the Muslims at Poitiers in central France.

There is not a single Muslim who is unaware of this century of conquests. The military successes of that time are generally perceived by Islamic theologians as proof of the truth of Islam and the correctness of the statements made by Muhammad about himself and his mission. This century of conquest plays a major role in Islamic apologetics. If Islam were not God’s own religion, Muslims reason, and if Muhammad were not the messenger of God, they think, then these conquests would not have taken place and would not have been so successful. These conquests can be considered as akbar dalaala alla Sidq muHammad, “the best proof of the sincerity of Muhammad,” as a comment in the Qur’an at one point expresses it.

Europeans who are not used to employing this kind of reasoning in a debate are sometimes left mute when they are for the first time confronted with this assertion. At some of the meetings that purportedly contributed to the dialogue between Christianity and Islam, this argument was used. Perhaps that is, after all, a good thing, because what is the use of having a quarrel?
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But it is a ridiculous Islamic fallacy. When Christianity was able to win the Middle East and Europe over, it was without using violence. Should the Christians then be impressed that others, namely the Muslims, have managed to conquer such an area using brute military violence? No, of course not. On the contrary.

We should not enter into silly contests of miracles, but may establish that a religion like this needed to make use of the force of arms to achieve approximately the same thing that Christianity managed to achieve without violence. This of course proves nothing, but does make one think, and takes away from their hands one of their main “pieces of evidence” for Islam. In their propaganda, therefore, Muslims are eager to point to the later violent nature of churches and Christianity, in the centuries after Emperor Constantine, the emperor who made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire. That of course is true. Man is inclined towards all kinds of evil. Once the power of the state during the fourth century AD came into Christian hands, it was obviously made use of in a way that was considered normal in those days. But that was only after the triumph of Christianity.

Those who wish to may apologize for the later Christian violence, even though their personal share in the mistakes that were committed during those centuries is small. Because of the “confession” that is part of the Christian liturgy, Christians are perhaps trained too well in the confession of guilt, and that contrasts with the views of most Muslims, who are in fact proud of the warfare of Islam against the Christians, and of the military triumphs that were achieved, at least in the early days. Later the balance of power changed in favor of Christianity. But we need to understand fully that the Muslims could have stayed at home in Medina. They did not do so; they marched out to battle. According to Islamic tradition, Muhammad settled in Medina in 622, and since then the Muslims have increasingly engaged their neighbors with the use of arms. Time and again, the Muslims declared war on their neighbors at the borders of their ever growing empire.

That is their choice. It might also have turned out differently. They could have tried the same way which allowed Christianity to flourish in its first three centuries. That is what the Muslims did not do, instead following Muhammad as example as they went into one after another armed conflict with their neighbors, to increase the area where Islam rules. The imperialist wars of conquest these fights and battles have been part of are not something for which Muslims will ever pardoned for. To this day they consider — and this is what modern people find the strangest — that the success that the early Muslims were able to obtain on the battlefield is a proof of God’s favor. Oddly enough, the defeats suffered by the Muslims are not seen by them as a proof to the contrary. For if God is interfering with their wars, then, for example, in the conflict between Israel and the Arabs he is on the side of Israel.

Once the Muslims were the masters of the Middle East, they started — and it can not be said otherwise — to the harass and bully powerless Christians who were in the majority in their captive nations. For the Christians of Egypt, for example, this has been defined in the History of the Patriarchs of the Egyptian Church, a book in many parts, attributed to Bishop Severus ibn al-Mukaffa. How unfortunate, sad, and incomprehensible that no one at the top of the Christian Democratic parties is prepared to read this book (which is translated into English). Did not the Romans state that the gods first blind those they want to pervert?

For the Jews in Egypt this bullying is demonstrated beyond any doubt by the so-called Genizah documents, a vast collection of correspondence, fragments of accounts, receipts, etc., from the medieval Jewish community in Cairo. Israeli intellectuals and politicians are to some extent familiar with this so-called Cairo Genizah; they at least consider it a part of the history of Judaism, unlike Christian intellectuals, theologians, priests, bishops and politicians who have never even heard of Severus ibn al-Mukaffa.

The Muslims themselves write very openly about this harassment in the manuals of the sharia and in fatwas. Historically therefore, there is no doubt whatsoever. The literary tradition in chronicles of the victims (Severus), archeology (Genizah), and the administration and reporting (Sharia) of the perpetrators totally agree. That is not often so, and therefore you might think that a crowd of scientists would have focused on this episode in history.

But that seems not to be the case. Research with a scientific approach that might anger the Muslim elite is usually ignored by Western scholars. Not because the members of that elite might raise arms themselves, for they are all nice civilized people without blood on their hands. For the bloodshed they have radicals like Mohammed B. at their disposal. They do not need to do that themselves. Light and in all ways civilized pressure on Western researchers and colleagues (to whom half a word will do) is enough to create a wall of silence.

What does the harassment consist of according to the Muslims themselves? The core of it is summed up on a list that is known as “the Pact of Omar”. There were two Caliph Omars; the first from 634 to 644, the second from 717 to 720. Both are mentioned as the monarch under whom these rules were issued. In Arabic, this list has a bit clearer name: the “conditions”, shuruuT of Omar. These are on the conditions under which the Christians, the Samaritans, and the Jews within the areas that are conquered by Islam may hold on to their religion. They must distinguish themselves by the color of their clothing or headgear as non-Muslim. This is where the yellow star for the Jews derives from. They are not allowed to carry arms or own them (and are therefore completely helpless). Riding horses is prohibited. In combination with the prohibition on possession of weapons this obviously made a trip of any magnitude impossible in the early days.

Annually every non-Muslim person had to pay a personal tax. When it was handed over, the tax collector had to strike a blow on the neck of the non-Muslim, which was meant as a symbolic beheading. The purpose of this was to remind the non-Muslim that he had been overcome by the superior Muslim armies, and even though he was spared from being a prisoner of war, enslaved or decapitated, this would only be as long as the Muslim rulers were pleased to do so. Whoever thinks that this is all a theory should read the books of Bat Ye’or, or the forthcoming book by the Australian theologian Marc Durie*. Whoever could not pay the tax had the choice between becoming Muslim or death. Even under all these humiliations the oriental Christians prefer to remain silent, and we in the West owe the greatest respect to all those who have managed to endure this century after century without becoming disloyal to their church.

The Sharia, the Islamic law, as revealed in the manuals written by Muslims for Muslims, adds a few nice things to this. Major maintenance to church buildings is no longer needed and therefore forbidden, because Islam is coming to replace Christianity. It is not permitted to build new churches and synagogues. When a Muslim accuses a Christian or Jew of “insulting the prophet”, the Christian or Jew in question usually can only be saved by becoming a Muslim. Children whose father is unknown are considered Muslim. Muslim children must be raised by Muslims, so the churches never had the opportunity to care for the children of unmarried mothers, for example, by hiding them in a monastery. The list is long, and nowadays can be found in many reference books, and it gives a pretty good idea of how false and mean people can be to one another, while always looking up piously and muttering that it is only about the implementation of the laws of God.

Christians are not allowed to marry Muslim women, although Muslims are allowed to marry Christian women. This has led to many hormone-driven conversions of young Christian men. For Christian and Jewish girls who were married off to their Muslim lord and master, this brought a lot of humiliation with it. Christians cannot be a witness for the prosecution in court cases against Muslims. This has and had enormous consequences for criminal law in Sharia. The Muslim prohibition of music and wine also affects church music and the Eucharistic wine. It is almost unbelievable, but Christians and Jews who grew up under Islamic supremacy have usually fully internalized these rules. The Dutch also internalize these rules more and more and find it self-evident that the Muslim demands in this area must be met, and according to good Dutch custom, they sometimes are even ahead of the requirements that Islam demands.

What is nice about the game is that Islam does not even explicitly make such demands. That forces Christians who live under the authority of Islam to constantly ask themselves what is allowed and what is not allowed. The inhabitants of the Middle East have developed a good feel for that, but nevertheless sometimes get it wrong. Someone who has been raised in a free country may possibly never learn this; think of the British teacher in Sudan who gave a teddy bear the name Muhammad, and then only with the greatest difficulty managed to save her life. The wonderful Roman rule nulla poena sine lege, “no punishment without [clear] law” is obviously not the case under Islamic law.

This vagueness of the rules of Sharia is highly praised by the friends of Islam as the “flexibility” of the Sharia. From the Islamic perspective this flexibility is very effective, because it forces Christians to constantly ask themselves what their Muslim masters desire of them. And it’s bizarre to see how much trouble the Dutch also go to prevent their Muslim neighbors from feeling displeased. Islam, unlike most other religions, is capable of having a decisive influence on the lives of those who do not adhere to that religion. Just grab a newspaper and see the examples.

With so many juridical rules that favor the Muslims and Islam, it is a miracle that about the year 1000 AD Muslims and Christians were still equal in number in the Middle East. Only in remote areas has Christianity managed to survive, as with the Maronites in the mountains of Lebanon. After the Crusades the percentage of Christians in the Muslim world dropped further, to about ten to fifteen percent; it remained roughly the same until the eighties of the last century. Only in exile, in the United States of America and Australia, have the Christian traditions that formed under Islamic supervision managed to maintain themselves.

After 9-11 and the millennium a lot quickly changed in this respect. In Lebanon, Iraq, Syria and Turkey, the last of the remaining native Christians are trying ho get out. The hurricane of Sharia fanaticism — mostly called Islamic fundamentalism or radicalism by us — was noted by many of them much earlier than by us in the West. It will not take more than a few years before the last Arabic, Turkish or Syrian Christians will have left Nazareth, Bethlehem, Greater Syria, Turkey and Iraq. In Muslim eyes this is a historically important development, which coincides with the peaceful conquest of Europe by Islam. To us here in Europe this doesn’t matter at all; on the contrary, with boundless naïveté we are building mosques for our immigrants from the Islamic world. While the elite plays the fiddle of multiculturalism, the suburbs are already burning.

Mosques play a central role in the rise of the Islam. The mosque is not only the prayer house, it is also the command center of jihad. The daily commands to order must be issued from the pulpit in the mosque. The stoning for adultery and beheading of apostates takes place in front of the mosque. The army that marches out on jihad departs from the mosque. Since the relief of Vienna in 1683, jihad against unbelief and unbelievers is no longer practiced by states, but by private organizations like the elusive Al-Qaeda, because a state that wages jihad would be destroyed by the Western military. In contrast, masked individuals who shoot from an ambush are harder to combat.

The shame about their own cowardice has disappeared; to come out in the open to fight is characterized as simply stupid. The hiding of the heroes of the jihad between defenseless citizens is a routine maneuver. Intense complaints if the enemy also happens to hurt those citizens belong to the daily game with the ignorantly stupid Western news agencies. Kamikaze-artists who in addition to themselves bring death to dozens of others receive from the hands of Islamic clergymen like Al-Qaradawi the crown of martyrdom. This Al-Qaradawi also preaches that God’s last punishment of the Jews was carried out “by Hitler against the Jews, but the next punishment must be at the hands of the Muslims” (January 30, 2009). This Al-Qaradawi is brought to Amsterdam by influential PvdA politicians [Socialists, Labour] and seen as their mentor. Deeper than this the Netherlands cannot fall, you maybe think. But then you are mistaken.

The advance of Islam can still go much further than is the case in Western Europe at the moment, and can only be stopped when we ensure that future victims of the jihad (i.e., the population of the Netherlands and the rest of Europe) retain their freedom of expression. Muhammad, the founder of Islam, always took special care to silence his possible critics first, usually by assassination, just like his namesake Mohammed Bouyeri who carried out the assassination of Theo van Gogh. The Islamic tradition itself teaches that only after Muhammad had silenced his opponents with violence could the process of Islamization begin. It is therefore of the utmost importance that we in the Netherlands (and anywhere else in the Free World) do not go any further towards the prohibition of criticism of Islam, because Islamic ideology is not resistant to the free word.

Christianity on the contrary, is. Christianity is the religion of the word, reason, love, and freedom. Islam on the contrary is the religion of violence, coercion, fear, and obedience. The nature of man is such that it will be a close contest as to which the two religions will win.

* An article by Dr. Marc Durie on a number of Islamic presumptions, “Isa, the Muslim Jesus”, can be read here. — VH.

Cross-posted at the International Free Press Society.

Gordon Brown Makes History

by Baron Bodissey

More British ranting, this time from Aeneas. He’s got a few things he wants to say about Gordon Brown:

Gordon BrownWherever he goes he is being told facts by world leaders that he could quite easily have gained by talking to people at home. We all know that Gordon has led us to economic and cultural oblivion.


In Chile he was told that they made provision while he made none, and in Brazil he was confronted with the racist rantings of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. I dread to think what he was told in Argentina, where he was being buttered up to giving away the Falkland Islands.

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Brown is friendless and isolated on the international stage. His has gone looking for friends and found indifference to his plight. He thought other leaders were as stupid as him but he has discovered the truth, that no leader in the world is as stupid as him. He has discovered that he is the most accident prone and incompetent Prime Minister that Great Britain has ever had.

Historians will write about his shortcomings for generations and children will laugh at his example in their schools. If he wanted to be the epitome of what not to do as Prime Minister then he has succeeded, in fact he has exceeded expectations. Congratulations Gordon on a job spectacularly botched in the grandest way possible! I bet you wish Blair was back! Well, time to enjoy wallowing in failure — you’ve made the history books in spectacular style.

Read the rest at Beer n Sandwiches.

A “Moderate Muslim” Brags About the Muslim Conquest of Europe

by Baron Bodissey

Fjordman just sent us this brief note, referring to a post at the Danish blog Uriasposten:

As I have explained before, we cannot rely on so-called “moderate Muslims” as most of them are lying, and even those who are not lying at the present can suddenly become “radicals,” i.e. normal Muslims, in a second. We thus have no choice but to treat ALL Muslims as potentially hostile people. Here is a “moderate Muslim,” who has earlier participated in “dialogue” meetings, who brags about how Muslims are conquering Europe. But only in Arabic, of course.

Below the jump is the video Fjordman is referring to:

“The House of Wisdom” by Jonathan Lyons: A Brief Review by Fjordman

by Baron Bodissey

The Fjordman Report
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.

Stephen O’Shea of The Los Angeles Times has reviewed the book The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization by Jonathan Lyons. I will publish a longer and more thorough rebuttal of this book at some point in April, either at Jihad Watch or at Atlas Shrugs. I will publish a review of John Freely’s related book Aladdin’s Lamp: How Greek Science Came to Europe Through the Islamic World next week at The Brussels Journal.

I have read both of them, and Freely’s book is the best of the two, or the least bad, since he at a minimum has some understanding of the history of science, which Mr. Lyons in my view does not. That doesn’t mean that I would recommend buying his book; there are better and more balanced titles available on the market. Stephen O’Shea in his very positive review claims that “Dust will never gather on Jonathan Lyons’ lively new book of medieval history.” I strongly disagree. I consider The House of Wisdom to be a bad case of poor scholarship.

Lyons’ book is 200 pages long, Freely’s Aladdin’s Lamp 255 pages. Neither of them mentions the terms ‘Jihad’ or ‘dhimmi’ even once in their books about Islamic culture. This says a great deal about the current intellectual climate. I didn’t notice these words while reading the books and they are not listed in the indexes. The authors certainly don’t devote much time to debating the violent aspects of Islamic expansionism through the Islamically unique institution of Jihad, or the fates of the conquered peoples. Is it a coincidence that whatever useful work that was done in the Islamic world happened during the first centuries of the Islamic era, while there were still large numbers of non-Muslims living in the region? We don’t know because the question is never debated by these authors, but it deserves to be.

While we should give credit to scholars in the medieval Islamic world when they made real contributions, we should not forget the huge debt they owed to earlier cultures, to the Indians and the Chinese, the ancient Egyptians and Mesopotamians and above all to the ancient Greeks. Mr. Lyons talks extensively about the astrolabe, yet he does not mention the name of the man who is by many considered the likely inventor of that instrument, or at least a strong contributor to its development, namely the ancient Greek astronomer and mathematician Hipparchus from the second century BC. He was the greatest of all Greek astronomers next to Ptolemy, and even Ptolemy, whose astronomy ruled Europe until the sixteenth century and the Middle East even longer, owed much to him. Hipparchus is simply too important to ignore.
– – – – – – – –
What’s worse is that Lyons doesn’t even mention Ibn al-Haytham, or Alhazen. I searched in vain for his name, which is not listed in the index. It is embarrassing for a book written specifically to criticize Westerners for their lack of appreciation of ‘Islamic science’ to completely fail to mention arguably the greatest scientist ever born in the Islamic world with a single word. It’s like writing a history of European science without mentioning Newton or Galileo. By saying that I do not mean to imply that Alhazen was of the same stature as Newton or Galileo. He was not. No scientist of that stature has ever been born in the Islamic world. But Alhazen was a competent scholar who did have a significant influence in optics.

Another omission, though not as bad as Alhazen, is Ulugh Beg, who was one of the best observational astronomers in the medieval Islamic world. He, too, is totally ignored. I find it a bit odd that I, being a notorious Islamophobe and thus one of the persons Mr. Lyons keeps warning against, have to lecture him on which Muslims scholars deserve to be mentioned.

On page four of his book, Jonathan Lyons writes the following:

The arrival of Arab science and philosophy, the legacy of the pioneering Adelard and of those who hurried to follow his example, transmuted the backward West into a scientific and technological superpower. Like the elusive ‘elixir’ — from the alchemists’ al-iksir — for changing base metal into gold, Arab science altered medieval Christendom beyond recognition. For the first time in centuries, Europe’s eyes opened to the world around it. This encounter with Arab science even restored the art of telling time, lost to the western Christians of the early Middle Ages. Without accurate control over clock and calendar, the rational organization of society was unthinkable. And so was the development of science, technology, and industry, as well as the liberation of man from the thrall of nature. Arab science and philosophy helped rescue the Christian world from ignorance and made possible the very idea of the West. Yet how many among us today stop to acknowledge our enormous debt to the Arabs, let alone endeavor to repay it?

This isn’t serious scholarship; it is myth-making. Muslims clearly owe vastly more of science and technology to Westerners than we owe to them. Perhaps it’s time they start repaying their debt to us, not vice versa. I’m not suggesting that there was no good scholarly work done in the Islamic world. There are a few Muslim scholars from the medieval period whom I respect. Their contributions should not be ignored, but nor should they be inflated beyond all proportions, as Lyons does. If the Western scientific and technological contribution to the world is the size of an elephant then the Muslim one is the size of a squirrel, or a Chihuahua at best. There’s no shame in that. I like squirrels, but I would never confuse one with an elephant.

I will conclude by recommending some serious books which people can read instead of The House of Wisdom or Aladdin’s Lamp. About Islam I recommend essentially everything written by Robert Spencer. Bat Ye’or’s books are groundbreaking and important, though admittedly not always easy to read. The Legacy of Jihad by Andrew Bostom should be considered required reading for all those interested in Islam. It is the best and most complete book available on the subject in English, and possibly in any language. Ibn Warraq’s books are excellent, starting with his Defending the West . Understanding Muhammad by the Iranian ex-Muslim Ali Sina is also worth reading, as is Defeating Jihad by Serge Trifkovic.

If you are looking for books about the history of science, I recommend everything written by Edward Grant. The Beginnings of Western Science by David C. Lindberg is very good, though slightly more politically correct than Grant when it comes to science in the Islamic world. The Rise of Early Modern Science: Islam, China and the West by Toby E. Huff is excellent and highly recommended. These books are easy to read for an educated, mainstream audience.

For books that are excellent, yet more specialized and slightly more difficult, I can recommend Victor J. Katz for the history of mathematics and The History and Practice of Ancient Astronomy by James Evans for the history of pre-telescopic astronomy up to and including Kepler. Evans’ book is extremely well researched and detailed, almost too much so on European and Middle Eastern astronomy, but contains virtually nothing on Chinese or Mayan astronomy. For a more global perspective, Cosmos: An Illustrated History of Astronomy and Cosmology by John North is good and not too difficult to read.

As I wrote, the book Aladdin’s Lamp is significantly better, but still not good enough. Author John Freely doesn’t explain why Europeans did so much more with the same Greek material than Muslims did, and he says virtually nothing about how Muslims have for 1400 years wiped out Greek-speaking communities across the Eastern Mediterranean, a process which has continued on Cyprus until the twenty-first century. If we are going to talk about how much Muslims have “preserved,” shouldn’t we also talk about how much they have destroyed, in Europe, Asia and Africa? How are the few Christian communities still left in Anatolia, now called “Turkey,” treated, and what happened to what was once a Greek-speaking region? What happened to the Greek-speaking community in Alexandria, Egypt?

It is true that Muslims translated many Greek scientific works, which provided the basis for much of the scholarly activity that they did have. But these works were based on Byzantine originals and were not “lost” in the first place. Moreover, the author largely fails to explain why there was no Copernicus in the Middle East, and no Kepler. After all, Europe and the Islamic world had essentially the same, Ptolemaic Greek starting point during the Renaissance. Through the work of Copernicus, Tycho Brahe and Kepler, European scholars had broken free of Ptolemaic astronomy even before the telescope had been invented. Why was there no similar breakthrough in the Middle East? Toby Huff is the man to ask about this, or Grant. Frankly, Western astronomy and mathematics owes much more to the pre-Islamic Middle East, especially to Babylonian planetary astronomy, than we owe to the Islamic Middle East.

He calls al-Azhar an Islamic university, which it was not. The modern university is a European invention. He says virtually nothing about the 1400 years of continuous warfare against the non-Muslim communities on several continents, of which Greek-speaking communities were often at the front lines. The word “Jihad” is not listed at all in the index of his book; neither is the word “dhimmi.” As far as I can see, it is not mentioned once in a book of several hundred pages specifically dealing with Islamic history.

The first chapters about the Greek scientific legacy are not too bad. I disagree with a few details here and there, as well as with the relative emphasis on various scholars, but all in all this section is worth reading. The problem is that you can get this information from other books which do not suffer from the same shortcomings. He correctly indicates that some of the key translators of scientific works such as Hunayn ibn Ishaq and Thabit ibn Qurra were non-Muslims, and he includes a chapter on the translation movement from Byzantium to Italy and Western Europe. These are redeeming qualities, but the overall balance is dishonest, as he fails to explain why “Islamic science” declined and how the pre-Islamic cultures and non-Islamic communities of the region shrank. Their shrinking overlapped to a significant degree with the decline of “Islamic science.” Is there a connection between the two? Why are the last remaining Christians in Turkey under siege now?

Diversity: Greatest Strength or Greatest Threat? by guywhite

Diversity: Greatest Strength or Greatest Threat?

“We didn’t have the wonderful diversity of people that you have here today,” said Hillary Clinton during her 1995 trip to the Chicago school she attended as a child. “I’m sad we didn’t have it because it would have been a great value, as I’m sure you will discover.”

At the time when Hillary made this declaration, her own daughter was a High School student. Neither Mrs. Clinton, nor her husband (“America’s First Black President”) thought it advisable to send their child to a “diverse” school. President Bill Clinton may open a library near the Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas – a school at the center of integration battles in the 1950s – but he won’t let his child anywhere near it. Are we to believe that Bill and Hillary refused to send their daughter to a diverse school because they hate Chelsea? Are we to believe that the rich always send their children to lily-white private or suburban schools because they want to make sure that space is open in “multicultural” schools for the poor who cannot afford either private schools or homes in wealthy suburbs with non-diverse schools?

There’re practically no Whites who had a choice who’ve opted for “diversity”. After the U.S. Supreme Court imposed integration and forbade segregation, the rich and the middle class escaped to suburbs as soon as minorities began moving into their neighborhoods. It was the so-called “White Flight” that led to the creation of not only the suburbs, but also the building of most American highways built since the Brown v. Board of Ed decision. For Whites to live in the suburbs, they needed effective infrastructure to move from the suburbs to the major cities where they worked.

The rich and the middle class used their political clout to lobby for highways that allowed them to escape “diversity”. Many of the highways and other public works projects were built in a way to protect urban White areas from “multiculturalism” by leaving minorities on the “other” side of the government project, thus slowing the flight of Whites (and the taxes they pay) from cities.

Diversity is a failure not only in the United States, but throughout the world. Over the long term, the only result of diversity is war. Different African tribes are at each other’s throats in every country they are forced to share. Muslims fight each other, Sunnis against the Shia, Arabs against Kurds against Persians.

We are told to believe that Mexicans, Muslims and Africans will integrate into Western societies. But what proof is there? Similar people may overlook their differences and integrate within a generation or two. But where do we see people of different races successfully integrate into one?

To the extent diversity works anywhere, it is a result of the White Westerners’ belief in the God of Multiculturalism and Peace. During the first half of the 20th century, European and Western nations fought the two bloodiest wars of all time. This was not a result of White brutality, but rather a product of innovation that created airplanes, tanks, rockets, missiles, machine guns and other deadly weapons. Coming out of World War Two, the White Man was simply tired and could not go on fighting. The idea of embracing each other seemed like a way out of a permanent disaster with constant warfare. And so the West agreed to look beyond one’s tribal instincts and embrace one another. Of course, that is relatively easy for nations that are similar. The French embraced the Walloons. The Germans embraced the Dutch. The Norwegians embraced the Danes. The WASPs embraced the Irish. The Askhenazi (European) Jews embraced the Sephardic (Middle Eastern, Central Asian and Spanish) Jews. But it’s easy for people who are already similar to join hands and sing the kumbaya around the campfire.

But what to do when Muslims who believe in covering up their women from head to toe arrive in Holland, a place famous for its libertine sexual mores? What to do when Africans arrive into Western countries and set fire in the middle of their hotel rooms when they want to cook food? Or when Mexicans demand that the City of Los Angeles spend money celebrating Cinco De Mayo rather than the Fourth of July? Most cultures would fight back. But Whites simply back down and go along with their own cultural destruction for the fear of being called racist.

Italians can live in the same neighborhood with Jews, and Germans can live with the English. But outside of their own race, they all feel uncomfortable. No White person will admit that he is unhappy about de-segregation forced upon them, but all Whites – those who joined Civil Rights marches singing “We Shall Overcome” and those who stood in front of school doors to prevent integration – oppose de-segregation when it comes time to choose the neighborhoods where they lived and schools where they sent their children.

Research by Harvard University’s liberal Professor Robert Putnam shows that the more diverse communities are, less its inhabitants trust anyone – from their next-door neighbor to the mayor. “The effect of diversity is worse than had been imagined. And it’s not just that we don’t trust people who are not like us. In diverse communities, we don’t trust people who do look like us…. They don’t trust the local mayor, they don’t trust the local paper, they don’t trust other people and they don’t trust institutions. The only thing there’s more of is protest marches and TV watching.”

This is true not only for Whites, but for people around the world. Almost every conflict around the world has a racial/ethnic character, usually because “diverse” people are forced to live together. When Sudanese Arabs meet Sudanese Blacks, they do not discuss the benefits of diversity – they brutally slaughter each other. Hutus and Tutsis prefer murder to being enriched by multiculturalism. Israel repeatedly clashed with its Arab neighbors. Christian Armenians locked horns with Muslims, whether in Turkey or in Nagorno-Karabakh. In the nearby Georgia, terror and warfare is seen in the diverse regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The USSR, which for generations used force, shame and propaganda to create a New Soviet Man who did not care about nationalism, fell apart as everyone reverted back to their ethnic groups. Whites in Africa were largely kicked out of almost every country, from Algeria to Mozambique, and even the last white communities in Zimbabwe and South Africa will likely be gone within a generation.

The most consistent and significant problem in the United States has come from racial diversity. When groups of kids clash in high schools or when gangs attack each other in jail, we do not see class warfare – we see diversity wars. It is not the rich fighting with the poor – it is usually Blacks engaging Hispanics (and sometimes other races, ethnicities or nationalities). South Californian Blacks do not consider illegal Mexican immigration “enriching” – they see it as a threat. Were it not for security guards and police, as well as metal detectors, schools in poor South Californian districts that feature large Hispanic and Black populations would’ve been filled with rivers of blood.

The history of the rise of American suburbs is a history of a desperate White flight away from schools that were being filled with Black children. It is undeniable that suburbs would not be even a quarter of their current size but for school integration and busing of kids into schools outside their neighborhoods to forcibly mix races. White teachers ran from the schools that turned Black, and even government programs giving educators significant additional benefits (such as full tuition reimbursement in a Master’s degree program) cannot attract Whites into predominantly Black schools.

But while the rich and the upper middle class built a virtual wall around themselves in their suburbs and neighborhoods, the poor couldn’t just abandon their homes because they didn’t have the money for a second house, and could not sell the home they lived because of the drop in property values caused by crime and decay brought on by the Blacks.

Even those renting their apartments often found it impossible to move out of “inner cities.” Many couldn’t afford to buy cars needed to move from suburbs to their city jobs, or they couldn’t afford to spend 3-4 hours a day traveling because they had to be home to cook, clean, paint, fix the car and perform other duties for which the rich hire help. They also could not afford to “buy” protection from diversity by donating time and money to the campaigns of influential politicians who would then build shields in the form of government buildings, colleges and highways around their remaining neighborhoods to prevent minorities from moving in, as was done for the upper class Whites.

The poor were stuck with “diversity”. Most of the poor were not educated, and could not articulate their arguments properly. Due to their lack of education, they could not explain that they want to live in their own culture, and do not want to face all the benefits of multiculturalism: “white bitches” raped in building stairways, guns brought to schools, drugs sold in parks, elevators treated as bathrooms, and vicious gangs beings the normal after-school activity for 13-year-olds.

Instead of properly articulating their concerns about crime and shockingly different cultural norms of minorities, the uneducated poor yelled racial epithets. The so-called “rednecks” may not have read Henry David Thoreau and Jean-Jacques Rousseau, but they surely could understand when their daughter came home brutally beaten and raped by Tyrone and Darnell, as their girlfriends Laquisha and Uneeq pulled out the hair of the “white bitch”.

The rich could afford to support diversity and integration in theory precisely because they could afford to avoid it by moving into different neighborhoods or the suburbs where their children could attend schools that were near-exclusively White. The poor opposed integration because there was no way for them to escape it other than by preventing minorities from moving into their neighborhood or attending their schools. For the poor, integration laws had a direct effect on their lives. To the wealthy, it was a politically popular theory support for which made them “nice” and “open-minded”. Racial self-flagellation became a way to improve one’s reputation. That the rich were usually educated and the poor weren’t also made the integrationists feel not only that they are good people, but that they are also smart for taking a politically-correct point of view.

And so the rich felt morally and intellectually superior to the “rednecks”. They would never yell racial epithets in public. And they usually worked with a limited number of exceptionally-well educated minorities without a problem. In fact, a few exceptionally well-educated and high-income minority families may even live in their neighborhood.

Of course, nobody in their neighborhood is named Tyrone or Laquisha, nobody has two children at the age of 15, nobody sells guns in schools and nobody urinates in elevators. The few Black people they see are exceptional and do not “Stay Black” or consider education and marriage a sign of “acting White”. You don’t live in a “diverse” neighborhood if none of your neighbors are named ‘Uneeq’ – and everyone spells the word as ‘Unique’ …

Well, wealthy whites might have been insulated for the first few decades…but now they are reaping what they sowed…or at least allowed to happen

case in point…the beautiful, young college girls that are being murdered, raped and robbed on a weekly basis now

You see…white flight can no longer protect young white females even IF their parents are wealthy

Eventually one must go into the rest of the world…and when that happens whites, wealthy or not become prey

Sure, if you stayed in your gated community and never left, you might be safe…but think about that for a minute…imagine the claustrophobic feeling of feeling like you cannot go into the world lest you be attacked by vicious non-white savages…think about South Africa

How long do you think even wealthy whites can keep living like this?

I say not for long, I say it is already beginning to change.
Everyone I know is racially conscious now whereas a few years ago nobody was that racially conscious…now everyone I know is.

IMHO we are entering into a new era of racial consciousness…something is going to give. Forcing people to integrate has not worked and mulit-culti platitudes are falling on deaf ears. White people are slowly, but finally waking up.

I think now is the period where we will start putting our white minds to solutions, and when the white man starts to think of solution he usually finds them

So lets start talking about possible solutions

Repatriation, rescinding Civil Rights laws bit by bit, re instituting freedom of association aka our Constitution, separate living areas for blacks, or possibly a another black nation state possibly somewhere in the Carribean…these are just of the cuff ideas…perhaps a combination of these.

Whatever the case whites are not going to change black behavior and temperament, those are part of black nature, but we can say enough is a enough and with strong will and determination say NO MORE and begin to discuss ideas.

One thing is for certain, we cannot say “thats impossible”

the situation is setting itself up to where nothing but guaranteed protection of our precious race, our DNA will be acceptable.

Consider this…8 million blacks live on the island of Haiti. We gave it to them and set up it’s government as a negro nation in the 1800’s. If 8 million blacks live on Haiti how much land would it take for 40 million?

I’ve estimated it will take an area about 5 times the size of Haiti. We could build the infrastructure as a “good faith” effort to show blacks no hard feelings.

All the other non-whites for the most part will have to repatriate themselves…and anyone from South of the Border will have to return.

This can happen. We are facing genocide so something to assure our majority status and protection must happen. If we allow the third world to remain and continue to flood into our nation we will be replaced by non-whites who will not think twice about seizing power and dictating to us what will become of us. Look at Africa. In every country whites are being forced out. Even in South Africa whites are forced into gated prison communities and raped, robbed and murdered. It will be no different in America and Europe.

The revolution has begun.

Dead Culture Walking: Muslim Colonization Of Europe Should Frighten America

Dead Culture Walking: Muslim Colonization Of Europe Should Frighten America

By Brenda Walker

If there is anything that should make Americans’ blood run cold about immigration, it is the sight of Europe—and Britain, the home of Western civilization—being buried by millions of Muslim colonists. Europe is just hoping against hope that Islam isn’t going to explode into massive rioting (or worse), or impose total cultural Islamification.

Major jihadist terror occurred in London (July 7, 2005, killing 52 and injuring 700) and in Madrid (March 11, 2004, killing 191 and injuring 1841). Yet cowardly politicians continue policies of appeasement, which hostile Muslims correctly apprise as the fatal weakness of a culture too pacified to defend itself.

Some Europeans already accept the coming Eurabia. One Dutchman, mourning the future loss of Europe was quoted by Paul Belien as saying, “I am not a warrior, but who is? I have never learned to fight for my freedom. I was only good at enjoying it.”

Well, that’s honest. But how about less self-pity and more directed anger? Many Americans I know in the patriotic immigration reform movement had a come-to-Jesus moment of awakening from passivity, turning to resolve to save the country.

Did America encourage Europe’s socialist pacifism by protecting it too well, starting after the Second World War? Perhaps. Having your freedom handed to you on a plate is no way to appreciate its value.

Other causes of the continent’s tragic downfall are rooted in recent history. They include business’ desire for cheap labor (so familiar!), a trendy belief in secular multiculturalism as a replacement for Christianity and apparent ignorance of Islam’s long-standing enmity toward Europe.

Now the triumphs of Tours and Vienna are being trampled by immigrants, entering mostly legally. It’s a wonder the Muslims bother with terrorism at all when demography is working so well for them.

Europe’s swirl down the toilet bowl is little reported in this country largely because the Main Stream Media is not interested in showing it. The top media elites are still stuck on multiculturalism. But the European experience shows what a bogus ideology that is.

In 2004, CBS’s Sixty Minutes did present a chilling and memorable segment about the crime-filled immigrant housing projects in France, The New French Revolution:

“But nothing prepared France for what happened to a 17-year-old French Muslim girl named Sohane Benziane. Her case really woke up the country to the nightmare that has been festering so long in these projects.

“Sohane was burned alive in the basement of an apartment complex by a gang leader who had told her that he didn’t want to see her on his turf. After her murder, her sister, Kahina, dedicated a memorial at the site of her killing.”

Though emotionally searing, the Sixty Minutes piece contained no mention that France’s Muslim population is expanding rapidly. The number of Muslims residing in Western Europe in 1900 is estimated at around 50,000 . Now France alone is home to somewhere between four and eight million followers of Islam.

Just recently, five years later, Fox News has carried a televised report, Politicians Fret as Muslim Population Swells in Europe Amid Little Integration [March 24, 2009].

“Although there are no official statistics on how many Muslims live in Brussels, it is believed they make up about 25 percent of the city’s 1 million urban residents. [Filip] Dewinter, who opposes immigration and has called Islamophobia a “duty,” claims three of the 19 sections of Brussels, each with its own mayor, now have Muslim majorities.

“‘In those neighborhoods it’s not our government that’s in power,’ he said, ‘but the Muslim authorities — the mosques, the imams — who are in charge.’

“FOX News visited one of those neighborhoods, called Molenbeek, which looks more like North Africa than the heart of Europe…

“Yet Molenbeek remains disconcerting. Belgian police assigned three plainclothes officers to watch over a FOX News team shooting street scenes one morning in Molenbeek. When FOX News returned in the afternoon as more people were out and about, the police said it would be safer not to get out of the car. It wasn’t even dark yet.”

Notice this level of danger exists in Brussels—the supposed capital of the Europe Union.

News icon Edward R. Murrow is remembered in particular for broadcasting from London during the blitz to warn America of the threat to civilization posed by Hitler.

Had Murrow lived during our own time rather than WWII, he may well have tried to alert 21st century Americans to the present danger from totalitarian Islam on the march. But there is no modern Murrow to warn the people, because the MSM no longer does its job to inform about the pressing issues.

In the eye of the slow-moving storm, resistance to the invader is not particularly strong. Denmark has stiffened its entry requirements to keep out the unfriendlies, but it is the exception and not the rule. Italy’s education minister has suggested that a limit of 30 percent foreign students be the limit per classroom, so that the immigrants assimilate to the national culture rather than the other way around. Naturally, the economic downturn has made the majority of Europeans want the excess immigrants to go home, but many governments prefer not to upset Muslims, who are famously sensitive about the most minor slight.

Many Muslims are happy to remain on the dole anyway. One example is generous Sweden, where the primarily immigrant Rosengaard neighborhood of Malmo has an unemployment rate of 70 percent. (Plus, the area is so violent that fire trucks need police escorts, and the number of rapes has tripled in 20 years.)

Americans often have a low opinion of Europeans, particularly the French (once described on The Simpsons as cheese-eating surrender monkeys, a rip that has stuck). But we hate to see Britain turn into a quivering bowl of sharia jello out of respect for our shared Anglophone culture.

Who could have imagined that the countrymen of Winston Churchill would meekly acquiesce to recognizing and rewarding polygamy? Multi-wifed Muslim families even receive extra welfare benefits for the various harem members and kiddies—though bigamy is still illegal.

There was an uproar last year when Archbishop Rowan Williams suggested that Islamic sharia should be accepted as part of British law.

Sharia law—that’s the Muslim legal system that decrees the second-class status of women, executions for homosexuals and amputations for theft.

The Archbishop remains ensconced in Lambeth Palace, despite demands for his resignation during the sharia kerfuffle. In fact, weathering the crisis appears to have made him bolder.

“On the anniversary of the interview in which Dr Rowan Williams said it ‘seems inevitable’ that some parts of sharia would be enshrined in this country’s legal code, he claimed ‘a number of fairly senior people’ now take the same view.

“He added that there is a ‘drift of understanding’ towards what he was saying, and that the public sees the difference between letting Muslim courts decide divorces and wills, and allowing them to rule on criminal cases and impose harsh punishments.”

[Archbishop of Canterbury: Society is coming round to my views on sharia, By Martin Beckford,, Daily Telegraph, Feb 15, 2009].

Is everyone assured that “harsh punishments”flogging, amputations, etc.—will not occur at some future date?

And whatever happened to the proud tradition of the Magna Carta? Is nothing worth defending? How shameful to surrender founding legal principles of centuries’ duration so thoughtlessly to the Islamic interlopers.

Britain is fascinating to observe because it is far advanced along the immigration road to hell, especially given its powerful multicultural nanny state.

Plus, the extra helping of Muslims makes British cultural survival all the more challenging. The UK shows exactly what not to do in public policy—a combination of poorly chosen immigrants, the false ideology of multiculturalism and disempowerment (both physically and psychologically) by disarming the populace.

Sadly there seems to be little organized opposition among the traditional folk against their new alien overlords. However, there are uprisings of appropriate anger on rare occasions. One such was the outrage of Luton residents toward Muslims insulting British soldiers returning from serving in Iraq. Local people of all ages simply wouldn’t allow Muslims to abuse the troops and proceeded to chase off the obnoxious hecklers. [Watch.] It was brief demonstration that normal patriotism (and therefore hope) has not been completely repressed by the liberal thought police in Britain.

But from this side of the pond, the UK looks like toast. In 30 years, London will likely be a sand-free version of Riyadh, with wall-to-wall burqas, and Saudi-style morality police in place of bobbies.

Yet even with Europe’s Technicolor demonstration that Muslim immigration equals cultural suicide, American elites and the press still cling to the dangerous fable that we are somehow immune from those troubles because America does assimilation better than Europeans.

Perhaps we do in the area of employment opportunity. But that’s not the point. We should instead be asking whether Muslim immigrants become loyal members of the US community—and many don’t. A 2007 Pew poll found that only 28 percent thought of themselves as Americans first while 47 percent identified primarily as Muslims. Their loyalty lies abroad with the worldwide Muslim community (the ummah), which sees itself as being victimized by the West.

But because of what Enoch Powell called obstacles which are deeply rooted in human nature” when grappling with slow-moving threats, we snooze on, despite the throbbing neon message of doom.

Muslim immigration to America is growing, but the overall number is still small as a proportion of population. But it’s never too early to quit the habit. Clever analysts have noticed that when the percentage of Muslims in a non-Muslim culture reaches around 10 per cent, bad things happen.

America—let’s not go there!

We are just as vulnerable to the actions of hostile Muslim immigrants as our fellow English-speakers across the Atlantic. But we still have the blessing of time. We could come to regret ignoring Europe’s experience by allowing numbers of Islamists here to reach critical mass. Even a handful of determined jihadists can kill thousands, as we learned on 9/11.

We must realize as a nation that there’s no right to immigrate—and we are foolish to welcome possible enemies.

Brenda Walker (email her) lives in Northern California and publishes two websites, LimitsToGrowth.org and ImmigrationsHumanCost.org. She’s still looking for the Mythical Moderate Muslim.

By Bernard Lewis
Posted: Tuesday, March 20, 2007
AEI Annual Dinner, Irving Kristol Lecture  (Washington)
Publication Date: March 7, 2007
View Europe and Islam, the monograph based on this lecture, as an Adobe Acrobat PDF
Introductory remarks by Christopher DeMuth, Reuel Marc Gerecht, and James Q. Wilson

Bernard Lewis

Lewis’s Lecture

Thank you, Vice President and Mrs. Cheney, ladies and gentlemen. As you have been told, I have studied a number of languages, but I cannot find words in any of them adequate to express my feeling of gratitude for the honor and appreciation which I have been shown this evening. All I can say is thank you.

My topic this evening is Europe and Islam. But let me begin with a word of personal explanation. You are accustomed for the most part to hearing from people with direct practical involvement in military and intelligence matters. I cannot offer you that. My direct involvement with military and intelligence matters ended quite a long time ago–to be precise, on 31 August 1945, when I left His Majesty’s Service and returned to the university to join with colleagues in trying to cope with a six-year backlog of battle-scarred undergraduates.

What I would like to try and offer you this evening is something of the lessons of history. Here I must begin with a second disavowal. It is sometimes forgotten that the content of history, the business of the historian, is the past, not the future. I remember being at an international meeting of historians in Rome during which a group of us were sitting and discussing the question: should historians attempt to predict the future? We batted this back and forth. This was in the days when the Soviet Union was still alive and well. One of our Soviet colleagues finally intervened and said, “In the Soviet Union, the most difficult task of the historian is to predict the past.”

I do not intend to offer any predictions of the future in Europe or the Middle East, but one thing can legitimately be expected of the historian, and that is to identify trends and processes–to look at the trends in the past, at what is continuing in the present, and therefore to see the possibilities and choices which will face us in the future.

One other introductory word. A favorite theme of the historian, as I am sure you know, is periodization–dividing history into periods. Periodization is mostly a convenience of the historian for purposes of writing or teaching. Nevertheless, there are times in the long history of the human adventure when we have a real turning point, a major change–the end of an era, the beginning of a new era. I am becoming more and more convinced that we are in such an age at the present time–a change in history comparable with such events as the fall of Rome, the discovery of America, and the like. I will try to explain that.

Conventionally, the modern history of the Middle East begins at the end of the 18th century, when a small French expeditionary force commanded by a young general called Napoleon Bonaparte was able to conquer Egypt and rule it with impunity. It was a terrible shock that one of the heartlands of Islam could be invaded, occupied, and ruled with virtually no effective resistance.

The second shock came a few years later with the departure of the French, which was brought about not by the Egyptians nor by their suzerains, the Turks, but by a small squadron of the Royal Navy commanded by a young admiral called Horatio Nelson, who drove the French out and back to France.

This is of symbolic importance. That was, as I said, at the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century. From then onward, the heartlands of Islam were no longer wholly controlled by the rulers of Islam. They were under direct or indirect influence or control from outside.

The dominating forces in the Islamic world were now outside forces. What shaped their lives was Western influence. What gave them choices was Western rivalries. The political game that they could play–the only one that was open to them–was to try and profit from the rivalries between the outside powers, to try to use them against one another. We see that again and again in the course of the 19th and 20th and even into the beginning of the 21st century. We see, for example, in the First World War, the Second World War, and the Cold War, how Middle Eastern governments or leaders tried to play this game with varying degrees of success.

That game is now over. The era that was inaugurated by Napoleon and Nelson was terminated by Reagan and Gorbachev. The Middle East is no longer ruled or dominated by outside powers. These nations are having some difficulty adjusting to this new situation, to taking responsibility for their own actions and their consequences, and so on. But they are beginning to do so, and this change has been expressed with his usual clarity and eloquence by Osama bin Laden.

We see with the ending of the era of outside domination, the reemergence of certain older trends and deeper currents in Middle Eastern history, which had been submerged or at least obscured during the centuries of Western domination. Now they are coming back again. One of them I would call the internal struggles–ethnic, sectarian, regional–between different forces within the Middle East. These have of course continued, but were of less importance in the imperialist era. They are coming out again now and gaining force, as we see for example from the current clash between Sunni and Shia Islam–something without precedent for centuries.

The other thing more directly relevant to my theme this evening is the signs of a return among Muslims to what they perceive as the cosmic struggle for world domination between the two main faiths–Christianity and Islam. There are many religions in the world, but as far as I know there are only two that have claimed that their truths are not only universal–all religions claim that–but also exclusive; that they–the Christians in the one case, the Muslims in the other–are the fortunate recipients of God’s final message to humanity, which it is their duty not to keep selfishly to themselves–like the Jews or the Hindus–but to bring to the rest of humanity, removing whatever obstacles there may be on the way. This self-perception, shared between Christendom and Islam, led to the long struggle that has been going on for more than fourteen centuries and which is now entering a new phase. In the Christian world, now at the beginning of the 21st century of its era, this triumphalist attitude no longer prevails,
and is confined to a few minority groups. In the world of Islam, now in its early 15th century, triumphalism is still a significant force, and has found expression in new militant movements.

It is interesting that both sides for quite a long time refused to recognize this struggle. For example, both sides named each other by non-religious terms. The Christian world called the Muslims Moors, Saracens, Tartars, and Turks. Even a convert was said to have turned Turk. The Muslims for their part called the Christian world Romans, Franks, Slavs, and the like. It was only slowly and reluctantly that they began to give each other religious designations and then these were for the most part demeaning and inaccurate. In the West, it was customary to call Muslims Mohammadans, which they never called themselves, based on the totally false assumption that Muslims worship Muhammad in the way that Christians worship Christ. The Muslim term for Christians was Nazarene–nasrani–implying the local cult of a place called Nazareth.

The declaration of war begins at the very beginning of Islam. There are certain letters purported to have been written by the Prophet Muhammad to the Christian Byzantine emperor, the emperor of Persia, and various other rulers, saying, “I have now brought God’s final message. Your time has passed. Your beliefs are superseded. Accept my mission and my faith or resign or submit–you are finished.” The authenticity of these prophetic letters is doubted, but the message is clear and authentic in the sense that it does represent the long dominant view of the Islamic world.

A little later we have hard evidence–and I mean hard in the most literal sense–inscriptions. Many of you, I should think, have been to Jerusalem. You have probably visited that remarkable building, the Dome of the Rock. It is very significant. It is built on a place sacred to the Judeo-Christian tradition. Its architectural style is that of the earliest Christian churches. It dates from the end of the 7th century and was built by one of the early caliphs, the oldest Muslim religious building outside Arabia. What is significant is the message in the inscriptions inside the Dome: “He is God, He is one, He has no companion, He does not beget, He is not begotten.” (cf. Qur’an, IX, 31-3; CXII, 1-3) This is clearly a direct challenge to certain central principles of the Christian faith.

Interestingly, they put the same thing on a new gold coinage. Until then, striking gold coins had been an exclusive Roman privilege. The Islamic caliph for the first time struck gold coins, breaching the immemorial privilege of Rome, and putting the same inscription on them. As I said, a challenge.

The Muslim attack on Christendom and the resulting conflict, which arose more from their resemblances than from their differences, has gone through three phases. The first dates from the very beginning of Islam, when the new faith spilled out of the Arabian Peninsula, where it was born, into the Middle East and beyond. It was then that they conquered Syria, Palestine, Egypt, and North Africa–all at that time part of the Christian world–and went beyond into Europe, conquering a sizable part of southwestern Europe, including Spain, Portugal, and southern Italy, all of which became part of the Islamic world, and even crossing the Pyrenees into France and occupying for a while parts of France.

After a long and bitter struggle, the Christians managed to retake part but not all of the territory they had lost. They succeeded in Europe, and in a sense Europe was defined by the limits of that success. They failed to retake North Africa or the Middle East, which were lost to Christendom. Notably, they failed to recapture the Holy Land, in the series of campaigns known as the Crusades.

That was not the end of the matter. In the meantime the Islamic world, having failed the first time, was bracing for the second attack, this time conducted not by Arabs and Moors but by Turks and Tartars. In the mid-thirteenth century the Mongol conquerors of Russia were converted to Islam. The Turks, who had already conquered Anatolia, advanced into Europe and in 1453 they captured the ancient Christian citadel of Constantinople. They conquered a large part of the Balkans, and for a while ruled half of Hungary. Twice they reached as far as Vienna, to which they laid siege in 1529 and again in 1683. Barbary corsairs from North Africa–well-known to historians of the United States–were raiding Western Europe. They went to Iceland–the uttermost limit–and to several places in Western Europe, including notably a raid on Baltimore (the original one, in Ireland) in 1631. In a contemporary document, we have a list of 107 captives who were taken from Baltimore to Algiers, including a man called Cheney.

Again, Europe counterattacked, this time more successfully and more rapidly. They succeeded in recovering Russia and the Balkan Peninsula, and in advancing further into the Islamic lands, chasing their former rulers whence they had come. For this phase of European counterattack, a new term was invented: imperialism. When the peoples of Asia and Africa invaded Europe, this was not imperialism. When Europe attacked Asia and Africa, it was.

This European counterattack began a new phase which brought the European attack into the very heart of the Middle East. In our own time, we have seen the end of the resulting domination.

Osama bin Laden, in some very interesting proclamations and declarations, has this to say about the war in Afghanistan which, you will remember, led to the defeat and retreat of the Red Army and the collapse of the Soviet Union. We tend to see that as a Western victory, more specifically an American victory, in the Cold War against the Soviets. For Osama bin Laden, it was nothing of the kind. It is a Muslim victory in a jihad. If one looks at what happened in Afghanistan and what followed, this is, I think one must say, a not implausible interpretation.

As Osama bin Laden saw it, Islam had reached the ultimate humiliation in this long struggle after World War I, when the last of the great Muslim empires–the Ottoman Empire–was broken up and most of its territories divided between the victorious allies; when the caliphate was suppressed and abolished, and the last caliph driven into exile. This seemed to be the lowest point in Muslim history. From there they went upwards.

In his perception, the millennial struggle between the true believers and the unbelievers had gone through successive phases, in which the latter were led by the various imperial European powers that had succeeded the Romans in the leadership of the world of the infidels–the Christian Byzantine Empire, the Holy Roman Empire, the British and French and Russian empires. In this final phase, he says, the world of the infidels was divided and disputed between two rival superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union. In his perception, the Muslims have met, defeated, and destroyed the more dangerous and the more deadly of the two infidel superpowers. Dealing with the soft, pampered and effeminate Americans would be an easy matter.

This belief was confirmed in the 1990s when we saw one attack after another on American bases and installations with virtually no effective response of any kind–only angry words and expensive missiles dispatched to remote and uninhabited places. The lessons of Vietnam and Beirut were confirmed by Mogadishu. “Hit them, and they’ll run.” This was the perceived sequence leading up to 9/11. That attack was clearly intended to be the completion of the first sequence and the beginning of the new one, taking the war into the heart of the enemy camp.

In the eyes of a fanatical and resolute minority of Muslims, the third wave of attack on Europe has clearly begun. We should not delude ourselves as to what it is and what it means. This time it is taking different forms and two in particular: terror and migration.

The subject of terror has been frequently discussed and in great detail, and I do not need to say very much about that now. What I do want to talk about is the other aspect of more particular relevance to Europe, and that is the question of migration.

In earlier times, it was inconceivable that a Muslim would voluntarily move to a non-Muslim country. The jurists discuss this subject at great length in the textbooks and manuals of shari`a, but in a different form: is it permissible for a Muslim to live in or even visit a non-Muslim country? And if so, if he does, what must he do? Generally speaking, this was considered under certain specific headings.

A captive or a prisoner of war obviously has no choice, but he must preserve his faith and get home as soon as possible.

The second case is that of an unbeliever in the land of the unbelievers who sees the light and embraces the true faith–in other words, becomes a Muslim. He must leave as soon as possible and go to a Muslim country.

The third case is that of a visitor. For long, the only purpose that was considered legitimate was to ransom captives. This was later expanded into diplomatic and commercial missions. With the advance of the European counterattack, there was a new issue in this ongoing debate. What is the position of a Muslim if his country is conquered by infidels? May he stay or must he leave?

We have some interesting documents from the late 15th century, when the reconquest of Spain was completed and Moroccan jurists were discussing this question. They asked if Muslims could stay. The general answer was no, it is not permissible. The question was asked: May they stay if the Christian government that takes over is tolerant? This proved to be a purely hypothetical question, of course. The answer was no; even then they may not stay, because the temptation to apostasy would be even greater. They must leave and hope that in God’s good time they will be able to reconquer their homelands and restore the true faith.

This was the line taken by most jurists. There were some, at first a minority, later a more important group, who said it is permissible for Muslims to stay provided that certain conditions are met, mainly that they are allowed to practice their faith. This raises another question which I will come back to in a moment: what is meant by practicing their faith? Here I would remind you that we are dealing not only with a different religion but also with a different concept of what religion is about, referring especially to what Muslims call the shari`a, the holy law of Islam, covering a wide range of matters regarded as secular in the Christian world even during the medieval period, but certainly in what some call the post-Christian era of the Western world.

There are obviously now many attractions which draw Muslims to Europe including the opportunities offered, particularly in view of the growing economic impoverishment of much of the Muslim world, and the attractions of European welfare as well as employment. They also have freedom of expression and education which they lack at home. This is a great incentive to the terrorists who migrate. Terrorists have far greater freedom of preparation and operation in Europe–and to a degree also in America–than they do in most Islamic lands.

I would like to draw your attention to some other factors of importance in the situation at this moment. One is the new radicalism in the Islamic world, which comes in several kinds: Sunni, especially Wahhabi, and Iranian Shiite, dating from the Iranian revolution. Both of these are becoming enormously important factors. We have the strange paradox that the danger of Islamic radicalism or of radical terrorism is far greater in Europe and America than it is in the Middle East and North Africa, where they are much better at controlling their extremists than we are.

The Sunni kind is mainly Wahhabi and has benefited from the prestige and influence and power of the House of Saud as controllers of the holy places of Islam and of the annual pilgrimage, and the enormous oil wealth at their disposal. The Iranian revolution is something different. The term revolution is much used in the Middle East. It is virtually the only generally accepted title of legitimacy. But the Iranian revolution is a real revolution in the sense in which we use that term of the French or Russian revolutions. Like the French and Russian revolutions in their day, it has had an enormous impact in the whole area with which the Iranians share a common universe of discourse–that is to say, the Islamic world.

Let me turn to the question of assimilation, which is much discussed nowadays. How far is it possible for Muslim migrants who have settled in Europe, in North America, and elsewhere, to become part of those countries in which they settle, in the way that so many other waves of immigrants have done? I think there are several points which need to be made.

One of them is the basic differences in what precisely is meant by assimilation and acceptance. Here there is an immediate and obvious difference between the European and the American situations. For an immigrant to become an American means a change of political allegiance. For an immigrant to become a Frenchman or a German means a change of ethnic identity. Changing political allegiance is certainly very much easier and more practical than changing ethnic identity, either in one’s own feelings or in one’s measure of acceptance. England had it both ways. If you were naturalized, you became British but you did not become English.

I mentioned earlier the important difference in what one means by religion. For Muslims, it covers a whole range of different things–marriage, divorce, and inheritance are the most obvious examples. Since antiquity in the Western world, the Christian world, these have been secular matters. The distinction of church and state, spiritual and temporal, lay and ecclesiastical is a Christian distinction which has no place in Islamic history and therefore is difficult to explain to Muslims, even in the present day. Until very recently they did not even have a vocabulary to express it. They have one now.

What are the European responses to this situation? In Europe, as in the United States, a frequent response is what is variously known as multiculturalism and political correctness. In the Muslim world there are no such inhibitions. They are very conscious of their identity. They know who they are and what they are and what they want, a quality which we seem to have lost to a very large extent. This is a source of strength in the one, of weakness in the other.

A term sometimes used is constructive engagement. Let’s talk to them, let’s get together and see what we can do. Constructive engagement has a long tradition. When Saladin re-conquered Jerusalem and other places in the holy land, he allowed the Christian merchants from Europe to stay in the seaports. He apparently felt the need to justify this, and he wrote a letter to the caliph in Baghdad explaining his action. I would like to quote it to you. The merchants were useful since “there is not one among them that does not bring and sell us weapons of war, to their detriment and to our advantage.” This continued during the Crusades. It continued after. It continued during the Ottoman advance into Europe, when they could always find European merchants willing to sell them weapons they needed and European bankers willing to finance their purchases. Constructive engagement has a long history.

One also finds a rather startling modern version of it. We have seen in our own day the extraordinary spectacle of a pope apologizing to the Muslims for the Crusades. I would not wish to defend the behavior of the Crusaders, which was in many respects atrocious. But let us have a little sense of proportion. We are now expected to believe that the Crusades were an unwarranted act of aggression against a peaceful Muslim world. Hardly. The first papal call for a crusade occurred in 846 C.E., when an Arab expedition from Sicily sailed up the Tiber and sacked St. Peter’s in Rome. A synod in France issued an appeal to Christian sovereigns to rally against “the enemies of Christ,” and the Pope, Leo IV, offered a heavenly reward to those who died fighting the Muslims. A century and a half and many battles later, in 1096, the Crusaders actually arrived in the Middle East. The Crusades were a late, limited, and unsuccessful imitation of the jihad–an attempt to recover by holy war what had been lost by holy war. It failed, and it was not followed up.

Here is another more recent example of multiculturalism. On October 8, 2002–I insist on giving the date because you may want to look it up–the then French prime minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin, who I am told is a staunch Roman Catholic, was making a speech in the French National Assembly and talking about the situation in Iraq. Speaking of Saddam Hussein, he remarked that one of Saddam Hussein’s heroes was his compatriot Saladin, who came from the same Iraqi town of Tikrit. In case the members of the Assembly were not aware of Saladin’s identity, M. Raffarin explained to them that it was he who was able “to defeat the Crusaders and liberate Jerusalem.” Yes. When a French prime minister describes Saladin’s capture of Jerusalem from the largely French Crusaders as an act of liberation, this would seem to indicate a rather extreme case of realignment of loyalties.

I was told this, and I didn’t believe it. So I checked it in the parliamentary record. When M. Raffarin used the word “liberate,” a member–the name was not given–called out, “Libérer?” He just went straight on. That was the only interruption, and as far as I was aware there was no comment afterwards.

The Islamic radicals have even been able to find some allies in Europe. In describing them I shall have to use the terms left and right, terms which are becoming increasingly misleading. The seating arrangements in the first French National Assembly after the revolution are not the laws of nature, but we have become accustomed to using them. They are difficult when applied to the West nowadays. They are utter nonsense when applied to different brands of Islam. But as I say, they are what people use, so let us put it this way.

They have a left-wing appeal to the anti-U.S. elements in Europe, for whom they have so-to-speak replaced the Soviets. They have a right-wing appeal to the anti-Jewish elements in Europe, replacing the Axis. They have been able to win considerable support under both headings. For some in Europe, their hatreds apparently outweigh their loyalties.

There is an interesting exception to that in Germany, where the Muslims are mostly Turkish. There they have often tended to equate themselves with the Jews, to see themselves as having succeeded the Jews as the victims of German racism and persecution. I remember a meeting in Berlin convened to discuss the new Muslim minorities in Europe. In the evening I was asked by a Muslim group of Turks to join them and hear what they had to say about it, which was very interesting. The phrase which sticks most vividly in my mind from one of them was, “In a thousand years they (the Germans) were unable to accept 400,000 Jews. What hope is there that they will accept two million Turks?” They used this very skillfully in playing on German feelings of guilt in order to inhibit any effective German measures to protect German identity, which I would say like others in Europe is becoming endangered.

My time is running out so I think I’ll leave other points that I wanted to make. [Shouts to go on.] You don’t mind a bit more?

I want to say something about the question of tolerance. You will recall that at the end of the first phase of the Christian reconquest, after Spain and Portugal and Sicily, Muslims–who by that time were very numerous in the reconquered lands–were given a choice: baptism, exile, or death. In the former Ottoman lands in southeastern Europe, the leaders of what you might call the reconquest were somewhat more tolerant but not a great deal more. Some Muslim minorities remained in some Balkan countries, with troubles still going on at the present day. If I say names like Kosovo or Bosnia, you will know what I am talking about.

Nevertheless, I mention this point because of the very sharp contrast with the treatment of Christians and other non-Muslims in the Islamic lands at that time. When Muslims came to Europe they had a certain expectation of tolerance, feeling that they were entitled to at least the degree of tolerance which they had accorded to non-Muslims in the great Muslim empires of the past. Both their expectations and their experience were very different.

Coming to European countries, they got both more and less than they had expected: More in the sense that they got in theory and often in practice equal political rights, equal access to the professions, all the benefits of the welfare state, freedom of expression, and so on and so forth.

But they also got significantly less than they had given in traditional Islamic states. In the Ottoman Empire and other states before that–I mention the Ottoman Empire as the most recent–the non-Muslim communities had separate organizations and ran their own affairs. They collected their own taxes and enforced their own laws. There were several Christian communities, each living under its own leadership, recognized by the state. These communities were running their own schools, their own education systems, administering their own laws in such matters as marriage, divorce, inheritance, and the like. The Jews did the same.

So you had a situation in which three men living in the same street could die and their estates would be distributed under three different legal systems if one happened to be Jewish, one Christian, and one Muslim. A Jew could be punished by a rabbinical court and jailed for violating the Sabbath or eating on Yom Kippur. A Christian could be arrested and imprisoned for taking a second wife. Bigamy is a Christian offense; it was not an Islamic or an Ottoman offense.

They do not have that degree of independence in their own social and legal life in the modern state. It is quite unrealistic for them to expect it, given the nature of the modern state, but that is not how they see it. They feel that they are entitled to receive what they gave. As one Muslim friend of mine in Europe put it, “We allowed you to practice monogamy, why should you not allow us to practice polygamy?”

Such questions–polygamy, in particular–raise important issues of a more practical nature. Isn’t an immigrant who is permitted to come to France or Germany entitled to bring his family with him? But what exactly does his family consist of? They are increasingly demanding and getting permission to bring plural wives. The same is also applying more and more to welfare payments and so on. On the other hand, the enforcement of shari`a is a little more difficult. This has become an extremely sensitive issue.

Another extremely sensitive issue, closely related to this, is the position of women, which is of course very different between Christendom and Islam. This has indeed been one of the major differences between the two societies.

Where do we stand now? Is it third time lucky? It is not impossible. They have certain clear advantages. They have fervor and conviction, which in most Western countries are either weak or lacking. They are self-assured of the rightness of their cause, whereas we spend most of our time in self-denigration and self-abasement. They have loyalty and discipline, and perhaps most important of all, they have demography, the combination of natural increase and migration producing major population changes, which could lead within the foreseeable future to significant majorities in at least some European cities or even countries.

But we also have some advantages, the most important of which are knowledge and freedom. The appeal of genuine modern knowledge in a society which, in the more distant past, had a long record of scientific and scholarly achievement is obvious. They are keenly and painfully aware of their relative backwardness and welcome the opportunity to rectify it.

Less obvious but also powerful is the appeal of freedom. In the past, in the Islamic world the word freedom was not used in a political sense. Freedom was a legal concept. You were free if you were not a slave. The institution of slavery existed. Free meant not slave. Unlike the West, they did not use freedom and slavery as a metaphor for good and bad government, as we have done for a long time in the Western world. The terms they used to denote good and bad government are justice and injustice. A good government is a just government, one in which the Holy Law, including its limitations on sovereign authority, is strictly enforced. The Islamic tradition, in theory and, until the onset of modernization, to a large degree in practice, emphatically rejects despotic and arbitrary government. Living under justice is the nearest approach to what we would call freedom.

But the idea of freedom in its Western interpretation is making headway. It is becoming more and more understood, more and more appreciated and more and more desired. It is perhaps in the long run our best hope, perhaps even our only hope, of surviving this developing struggle. Thank you.

Bernard Lewis is the recipient of AEI’s Irving Kristol Award for 2007.