February 26, 2013 | By Bruce Bawer
Different parts of Europe, same story.
Let’s start with France, where a new report by a Jewish community group, Service de Protection de la Communauté Juive (SPCJ), says that anti-Semitism in that country has gotten so much worse in the wake of last year’s Toulouse school massacre that the number of Jews who are “crossing the Channel to find safe haven in the U.K.” is skyrocketing. One sign of the trend: “St John’s Wood Synagogue in London has set up a separate French minyan, attended regularly by 120 people on Shabbat,” with new faces showing up every week. A February 21 piece in the Jewish Chronicle about the SPCJ report noted that while anti-Semitic “incidents” in Britain and France are roughly comparable in number, those in France “are far more likely to involve violence.” It also quoted Britain’s Chief Rabbi as warning that “the position of Jews in Europe today is very difficult….Jews in Europe have begun to ask, is there a place for us here?” Perhaps the most telling detail in the Jewish Chronicle article was this: while the SPCJ report “originally stated that in over three-quarters of the antisemitic incidents the perpetrators were reported as being of North African origin,” this fact was later deleted from the text.
While French Jews flee to London, Londoners are scurrying elsewhere. On February 19, the BBC reported that over 600, 000 ethnic Brits have moved out of the capital in the last decade. Predictably, BBC editor Mark Easton spun this on the Beeb’s website as a positive development, arguing that all this relocation is a sign of “working class aspiration and economic success.” In other words, “in the first decade of the 21st Century, the dream of escaping to the country became a reality for tens of thousands of urban white Britons,” who “prospered from the housing boom and the capital’s economic growth” and “bought themselves that little cottage in the countryside or by the sea.”
Easton’s piece garnered over two thousand reader reactions before the BBC shut down comments. A large percentage of them were removed for violating the “house rules.” Of those that were permitted to remain, the following expressed what was by far the majority view:
• “Native Londoners are being driven out because their neighbourhoods are being overrun by cultures that are very different to, and sometimes openly hostile to their own….Politicians continue to sell this country’s future to advance their own political careers.”
• “Labour mis-sold multiculturalism as a pipe dream of diverse, thriving communities enriching each other’s cultures, when in reality it is much, much different.”
• “I challenge any MP (preferably Labour or Lib Dem) to go live in Peckham for a week, without your drivers or bodyguards, and then come back and tell me that multiculturalism is a good thing.”
• “Only this type of BBC/Guardian liberal could put the gloss of ‘success’ and ‘aspiration’ on this story….People are sick of this social experiment. They are voting with their feet.”
A considerable minority of commenters, to be sure, reliably dismissed such attitudes and concerns as “racist.” Yet when the Daily Mail asked Sir Andrew Green, chairman of the MigrationWatch think tank, what he made of the situation, he averred that the BBC was making “a very serious mistake in addressing an issue of such importance to the British public in such a trivial and superficial manner,” adding that it was “surely obvious that…people are not willing to live in an environment which has changed beyond recognition and against their own wishes.”
(One quick note before I move on: how frustrating it is that so many British critics of Islam have been brainwashed by their media into using the terms “white” and “Asian” when discussing subjects that have nothing whatsoever to do with skin color or continent of origin!)
All this fleeing, of course, is nothing new in Europe. Norwegians have been saying ta-ta to certain east Oslo neighborhoods for years. A couple of years ago the Danish newspaper Politiken ran an article headlined “Christians and Jews are fleeing from Danish ghettos,” noting that in Vollsmose, a suburb of Odense, Jews and Christians were clearing out because they were being threatened with beatings, while in Muslim-heavy areas of Copenhagen, Jewish kids were being advised to apply to schools in other parts of town. The only surprise was the article’s appearance in the ordinarily PC Politiken – that, and the willingness of a political scientist at Aarhus University to finger Islam as “a major part of the problem.” Jews, he worried, might well start emigrating from Denmark. A young Jewish man told Politiken that on several occasions Muslim neighbors in Vollsmose had offered him the explicit choice: leave town or get beaten up. He left.
The situation in Denmark has only gotten more and more rotten. Yesterday, the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten ran an article headlined “Why you can’t be a Jew in Copenhagen,” in which Martin Henriksen, immigration and integration spokesman for the Danish People’s Party, bluntly noted that owing to Muslim anti-Semitism, schools in Copenhagen “encourage Jewish parents to find other pastures” for their children. “We haven’t witnessed anything like this since the Occupation,” he wrote.
As I said at the outset: different places, same story. Danish Christians and Jews are being bullied by Muslim thugs into checking out of their neighborhoods and moving to safer locales. French Jews are taking it on the lam from Paris to settle in marginally less dangerous parts of London. Londoners are leaving their increasingly dodgy city and, literally, heading for the hills. East Oslo is being drained of ethnic Norwegians. And all of them are running scared for one reason, and one reason only: they’re terrified of getting beaten up by primitive thugs with a primitive religion who, at these European taxpayers’ expense, have been imported from some of the most primitive parts of the world. Years and years ago these cultural hooligans, these religious autocrats, these would-be enforcers of sharia, were welcomed to Europe by clueless, spineless political leaders, and – although the reality of “creeping jihad” has long since set in – they continue to be celebrated by most of those leaders (as well as by craven mainstream-media cheerleaders such as Mark Easton) for purportedly enriching European culture. And all the while, as a result, European culture is quickly going down the tubes.
When you’re discussing such large-scale phenomena such as this one – hundreds of thousands of Muslims occupying this or that part of this or that city, hundreds of thousands of native Londoners relocating hither and thither in consequence – it can be hard to grasp it all, to reduce the big picture to a comprehensible, human scale. As Stalin put it, one death is a tragedy; a million is a statistic. Yesterday Daniel Greenfield told the terrible story of how relentless harassment by Muslim schoolmates drove a nine-year-old English boy not to flight but to suicide. The other day the Norwegian newspaper Aftonbladet reported on another European boy who found himself in the jihadist crosshairs and was forced to flee.
Here goes. On the evening of February 16, a boy – whose named has been withheld, whether because of his age, or to protect him from reprisals, or both – got on a bus in the town of Egersund in western Norway. He was headed back home to Stavanger, fifty or so miles away, and was carrying his puppy. Upon boarding the bus, he checked with the driver to make sure it was OK to take the dog onboard. The driver said yes: he had no problem with it. Unfortunately, three other passengers, whom Aftonbladet identifies as being “of foreign origin” (another source actually dares to use the word “Muslim”), did have a problem. One of the men walked up to the driver and expressed his strong objection to the presence of the pet; another approached the boy and informed him that if he did not get off the bus with his dog at once, they would beat him up.
What happened next is in dispute. According to the boy, the driver, afraid not to cave in to the men’s demands, pulled the bus over and ordered the boy and his dog off the bus. The driver, for his part, claims that he knew nothing of the tensions between the boy and the Muslims, and insists that the boy left the bus of his own accord. In any event, the undisputed fact is that the boy exited the bus at a spot on the highway that was smack dab in the middle of nowhere. The temperature was below freezing; the time, just before midnight. Fortunately he had a cell phone, and was able to phone a friend to pick him up. When she finally got there, some time later, she said, “he was cold and still and it was plain that the incident had had a powerful impact on him.” The national railway system, which operates the bus, has chosen to accept the driver’s account and will not investigate the boy’s complaint.
Whatever the specific details of the story, the narrative’s main point is clear – as is its larger import. The story of that boy and his dog, simply put, is the story of today’s Europe in miniature – the story of a continent whose natives are increasingly being tormented by Koran-wielding tyrants, and increasingly in flight.