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Doomsday Redux

Reader comment on item: Europe is Finished, Predicts Mark Steyn

Submitted by Abu Nuwas (Saudi Arabia), Nov 16, 2006 at 08:22

Dear Readers,

As someone living and working the in the Middle East, I have a hard time reconciling what I read regarding the "Islamization" (Islamicization?) of Europe with what I actually see and experience on my frequent trips to Europe. To wit, I don't see what all the fuss is about.

Just to take one scenario: Two weeks ago, I was (again) at Amsterdam's Schiphol International Airport, and look where I might, I could see nary a hint of Islamization anywhere. If anything, from the crowds I saw, it is the Africanization or the Nipponization of Europe that we really have to worry about.

But there was no mosque, no muezzin calling the faithful to prayer, no thobes and no hijabs……and I was there for 5 hours waiting to catch a flight.

What really catches one's attention at Schiphol does indeed relate to the Middle East, but it is the hordes of US soldiers coming or going to that (this, in my case) part of the world, drinking it up at the huge bar at the main lounge which opens at 6 am and the Casino right next to the bar which I think opens up a little later (8 am). The whirling sound of the roulette table is very noticeable as is the clanking of coins at the one-eyed machines.

Oh yes, there was also a "special" Rembrandt show (through Dec 2006) at the upstairs museum they have there in case you are culturally inclined. But Islam? Sorry, not a peep.

In fact, the only contact I have had with Islam on a previous trip to Europe occurred also at Schiphol at one of the "smoking" areas they have there (very civilized of them, I must add).

As I was sitting there drinking my chocolate and sucking away at cigarette after cigarette (I only do this because smoking is prohibited on airplanes anymore so I have to "catch up" when and where I can), a beggar came up to me asking for money. There he was, this old thin Arab, obviously from the Gulf (I could tell by his dialect and clothes), most likely abandoned by his family in Europe. In typical Arab fashion, I started to chew him out for being so disreputable much to the chagrin of a younger Arab couple sitting close by and observing what was going on. Of course, my delivery was in flawless Khaleeji (Gulf Arabic), which added to the discomfort of everyone. (And so much for "traditional Arab family values").

In a more serious vein, I find it absurd that anyone can seriously propose that Europe is headed down an Islamic path. It isn't. There may be a lot of noise and movement that might lead one to believe that this is the case, but I assure you, it ain't happening.

There's been a slew of writers (Bat Ye'or, David Pryce-Jones, Robert Spencer, Arnaud de Borchgrave, Oriana Fallaci, Bruce Bauer…the list is nearly endless) that in one form or another, warn us of an Islamic led apocalypse in the making. They all have something of importance to say. But all of them miss the point….and the reality.

What is really happening is that Islam is disintegrating and dying, not only in Europe but in its heartland. That may be an exaggeration…..becoming irrelevant is closer to what I perceive. That doesn't make extremists any less fanatical…..in fact, it makes that much more dangerous. But to believe that European civilization is being transformed by Islam in any significant way is pure fantasy.

Islam in Europe had its heyday in Spain a thousand years ago....and even that story is largely based on myth and romanticism (i.e. Islam's influence on Spain (and Spanish) was at best superficial). Ultimately, it found itself on alien soil in Spain (Europe) and finally disappeared forever leaving only faint traces. In the same way today, Islam in Europe cannot survive. To suggest that it not only can survive but that it will become dominant is simply untrue.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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