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Norway and Silencing Rational Criticism

Reader comment on item: [Breivik and] Norway's Terrorism in Context

Submitted by Prof. Paul Eidelberg (Israel), Jul 27, 2011 at 11:46

The Norway massacre perpetrated by Anders Behring Breivik on July 25th indicates that the insanity of the Left breeds the insanity of the Right.

One terrible consequence will be the silencing of rational criticism of the Left and of Islam—an atheistic and a religious creed allied against the Judeo-Christian heritage. To comprehend the insanity of the Left, I will cite Dr. Michael Radu's posthumous book, Europe's Ghost: Tolerance, Jihadism, and the Crisis of the West (2009)—a monumental work with numerous case studies that illustrate the irrationality or perverse morality that permeates the policies of various European governments.

Europe today finds itself trapped in a posture of moral relativism that is undermining its liberal values. An unholy alliance among Middle East dictators, radical imams based in Europe, and Europe's traditional left wing has created a politics of victimology. This politics drives a [Muslim] culture that resists integration and adaptation, and aggravates such debilitating social ills as high immigration crime rates and entrenched unemployment. Nothing so helps Islamists recruit Muslim terrorists in Europe than the Left's efforts to describe Muslims as permanent victims—of something hateful (537).

Before continuing, we need some quantitative data of the Muslim presence in Europe. "Estimates of the number of Muslims in Europe range from official estimates of 12 million up to 20 million" (25). Dr. Radu notes that there are 200 mosques and 90 imams in Austria, as well as 50 mosques and 90 imams in Denmark (136-155). "In Norway the imam problem is as serious as elsewhere, or worse" (168). Indeed, Norway, like other European countries, has a "known Islamist terrorist presence" (287). Islam passed the Roman Catholic Church and Pentecostalism at the end of the 1990s to become the largest minority religion in Norway. In 2004, Muslims were registered members of 92 different congregations.

The largest concentration of mosques and imams, however, is in Britain, France, and Germany:

Country Mosques Imams
France 1,600 1,250
Germany 1,000 1,500
Britain 500 2,000
Total 3,100 4,750

Unfortunately, Britain and most Western European countries have succumbed to the error of identifying tolerance with moral and multicultural relativism, which leads them to tolerate Islamic intolerance. As a consequence, these democracies—above all Britain—constitute the world's major center of jihadic recruitment. In fact, several Arab states have lodged official complaints in London because of Britain's ultra-tolerant attitude toward terrorists! Suffice to mention four factors that characterize Britain as "Londonistan":

(1) Permissive immigration laws;

(2) An ultra-liberal judicial system;

(3) The "race card" or "victimology" tactic Muslims and left-wing intellectuals use against Europe's guilt-ridden colonialist past;

(4) An indiscriminate or absolutist view of "human rights" which often favors the release of terrorists over the security of its own citizens—the view fostered by Amnesty International (217-222, 548-554, 638-639).

Thanks to the protests of "human rights" ideologues, the deportation of terrorists in England is sometimes blocked by the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. Translated, this means that the rights of terrorists trump the duty of governments to provide security for their citizens (588). According to the Human Rights Convention, "No State … shall expel, return, or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture" (589). As a consequence, many terrorists, after a few years in prison, are released, free to roam at large and return to their terrorist activities—sometimes with a government dole.

The four so-called homegrown Arab perpetrators of the London bombings of July 2005 received a combined total of $1 million in welfare benefits before murdering dozens of commuters. Dr. Radu ruefully points out, "These are not isolated but common cases, and not just in Britain" (471). He emphasizes that:

Without … radical imams, the entire ideological, political, and psychological edifice of Islamism would crumble. Indeed, no jihadist terrorist act has ever been committed or planned in Europe (or anywhere else, for that matter, without some kind of theological
sanction from a cleric. It thus follows that any long-term solution to the threat of Islamist terrorism has to start with Islam's radical clerics—especially in the West, where they are more free to operate than in most Muslim countries. The terrorist operatives themselves,
most obviously those willing to commit suicide, are expendable, since their motivators and recruiters can always produce more—as they always do (162).

Having traveled throughout Europe and much of the Middle East, Dr. Radu vividly explains why Islamism is more prevalent in Europe than in Islamic countries. He points out that "While imams and religious leaders in general have an obvious influence throughout Islam, especially among the Shias, there are a number of reasons why that influence is stronger still among Muslims in Europe" (162). To begin with, Muslims in Europe, especially those born there, know much less about their faith than Muslims who live in Muslim majority countries, where Islam has permeated everyday life for centuries.

This means that for a Muslim in France, the Netherlands, or Britain the imam supplemented, among the young, by the Internet) is the main vehicle for introduction to Islam. "Furthermore, in Europe the 'mosque,' however defined [some are in homes and even in garages] more often than not plays a major role in maintaining cultural cohesion … which could easily produce a terrorist cell. Ironically, multiculturalist polices [of the host governments] that encourage the preservation of ethnic and cultural distinctiveness also, at least indirectly magnify the influence of imams over the Muslim population …" (163). Radu elaborates:

Few of these imams are locally trained—at least in part because of the generally lower educational level of Muslims in Europe. Language is also an obstacle—a trained imam is expected to read and know the Quran and its original Arabic. This difficulty is heightened further by the fact that Turks and Southern Asians do not understand Arabic, and most
young Arabs born in Europe do not speak Arabic, or speak it poorly. The inevitable result of this reality is that the overwhelming majority of imams in Europe are at best immigrants themselves and at worst temporary imports from the countries of immigrants' origin,
unfamiliar with Europe's cultural surroundings and often unable even to speak the language of their new flock. As for the relatively few Muslims from Europe who do train as imams abroad, far too often they do so in places like Saudi Arabia, attracted by financial incentives and the presence of the Holy Places, or Pakistan—the two major sources of radical Islamism (163).

From this it's obvious that the number of imams in Europe on which jihadism depends is only a small fraction of the number mentioned earlier, and most are located in England, France, and Germany. (It was in Germany where the 9/11 attacks were planned.)

Now, let's leave aside Europe's permissive immigration laws, its turnstile system of justice for terrorists, and its "human rights" ideology that molly coddles terrorists at the public expense and more victims. We must also mention Europe's fear of being accused of "racism"—a term extended to mean almost any proposal or law intended to protect peaceful citizens against jihadism. To this add politicians who take a permissive view of terrorists for partisan reasons. The Muslim vote can make a difference, especially in close races.

When all is said and done, it should be reiterated that terrorist attacks are sanctioned by a small percentage of the number of imams previously mentioned. Realistically, the West is not confronted by 1.5 billion Arab jihadists; and even if the percentage of Muslims that support jihad exceeded the low 10 to 15 percent estimated by Daniel Pipes, the term "support" doesn't translate into active jihadists. Whatever the percentage, it can be drastically reduced by addressing the question: What should be done about the small number of imams that instigate terrorist attacks? Turnstile justice only exacerbates the problem. Surely longer terms of incarceration are required, if not deportation.

Of course, Europe's left-wing elites or ultra-humanists—judges and politicians, as well as intellectuals and journalists—will call this "racism" and a violation of "human rights." The same humanists that support partial birth abortion and euthanasia will vociferously oppose anticipatory self-defense against jihadists. These inhuman humanists are facilitating murder and the disintegration of Europe.

Fortunately, public opinion is overwhelmingly opposed to this pathological state of affairs. According to Radu, public opinion is becoming increasingly assertive against Europe's ruling elites. Hence we can expect more European countries to elect politicians comparable to Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders or to French president Nicolas Sarkozy, whose nationalist orientations stand opposed to the Islamization of Europe. Serious people will wonder whether the Norway massacre will hinder his salutary change.

As for the United States, thanks very much to its tens of millions of evangelical Christians, America has not succumbed to the malaise of post-Christian Europe. Besides, America has a politically significant number of high profile individuals and organizations that strongly
identify with the Judeo-Christian foundations of Western Civilization.

Unfortunately, the Norway massacre has provided the Left with a right-wing bogeyman to silence rational criticism of Islamic doctrines which even former Muslims like Syrian-born psychiatrist Dr. Wafa Sultan have rejected as utterly contrary to the basic beliefs and
values of Western civilization, above all the inviolable dignity and rights of the individual. Anders Behring Breivik violated those rights, and by so doing he has broken what one commentator has called the "sound barrier" to right-wing frustrations—frustrations which may erupt in acts of insanity.

One last thought. The Norwegian atrocity, notwithstanding its tragic consequences for the victims and their loved ones, may remove the self-degrading moral relativism that has undermined the dignity and self-confidence of countless Europeans. Alas, that it should take such tragedies to awaken people not only to evil, but also to the timidity and misguided humanism of their governments. How sad and paradoxical, that the benign policies European governments are contributing to the decline of our Judeo-Christian civilization. We dare not be silent when at stake is the preservation of a civilization based on the concept of man's creation in the image of God, a civilization that has prospered under the benevolent rule of reason, justice, and truth.


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