Bruce Bawer’s 1997 Stealing Jesus decried the “claustrophobic narrowness” in American fundamentalist Christianity’s conception of the spiritual and divine. Bawer further maintained that its votaries “…breath taking combination of historical ignorance and theological certitude” had engendered a reductio ad absurdum literalist understanding of religion, effectively “..dispiriting…denying and dispelling…life’s mysteries.”
By September 1998, Bawer and his male partner decided to relocate permanently to Europe, initially Amsterdam. The Netherlands sociopolitical discourse, Bawer believed, had transcended “culture war platitudes” and “…the foolishness of fundamentalism”. Bawer recalls candidly his own angry assessment of the contrasting American discourse at the time he departed for Europe:
Yes I loved my country, but I also realized that I wanted to be away from it—away from the idiocy, the intolerance, the Puritanism. More and more, I felt I belonged in Europe.
While Europe Slept chronicles Bawer’s personal encounter with Europe’s ongoing Islamization since late 1998. And his riveting narrative is a testament to Bawer’s intellectual honesty. Shunning glib moral equivalences between America’s Christian fundamentalist movement, and the infinitely more radicalized and destructive Islam rapidly transforming a self-deluded Western Europe into Eurabia, Bawer was acutely aware, even prior to September 1, 2001 that
..Europe was falling prey to an even more alarming fundamentalism whose leaders made their Protestant counterparts look like amateurs…Western Europeans had yet to even acknowledge that they had a Religious Right. How could they ignore it? Certainly as a gay man, I couldn’t close my eyes to this grim reality. Pat Robertson just wanted to deny me marriage; the imams wanted to drop a wall on me. I wasn’t fond of the hypocritical conservative-Christian line about hating the sin and loving the sinner, but it was preferable to the forthright fundamentalist Muslim view that homosexuals merited death.
The book is divided chronologically into three sections: prior to 9/11/01 (“Before 9/1: Europe in Denial”), in the immediate aftermath of 9/11/01 through March 10, 2004 (“9/11 and After: Blaming Americans and Jews”); and from the March 11, 2004 Madrid bombings through August 2005 (“Europe’s Weimar Moment: The Liberal Resistance and Its Prospects”).
Early in the opening section, Bawer’s reaction to reading John Esposito’s transparent apologetic on Western Muslims struck a familiar cord—Esposito’s denial of any threat posed by European Islam (as Bawer aptly observes, a “…fundamentalist Islam [that] was on the march and wasn’t adapting to democratic values”) is consistent with the same author’s whitewashing of the brutal living legacy of the Islamic jihad conquests. A unique strength of While Europe Slept is that Bawer complements such perspicacious observations with hard data. Thus section one also introduces the reader to important information on Muslim demography and use (and abuse) of the Western European social welfare system. Although Muslims comprise (officially) between 2 and 10% of the population in most West European nations, France is already 12% Muslim and Switzerland 20%. But as Bawer notes, these statistics are merely the tip of the steadily emerging demographic iceberg:
Already, in most of Western Europe, 16 to 20 percent of children are Muslims…within a couple of generations many [Western European] countries will have Muslim majorities.
Cognizant of this phenomenon, a Danish Muslim leader, typical of many European imams, declared triumphally in 2000, “Muslims have a dream of living in an Islamic society…This dream will surely be fulfilled in Denmark…We will eventually be a majority”. And such demography is already destiny in Islamic satellite colonies interspersed throughout Western Europe where demands for sovereignty began well before the recent Muslim intifada in France this past fall, 2005. Bawer provides these alarming examples from across Western Europe:
In France, a public official met with an imam at the edge of Roubaix’s Muslim district out of respect for his declaration of the neighborhood as Islamic territory to which she had no right of access. In Britain, imams have pressed the government to officially designate certain areas of Bradford as being under Muslim, not British, law. In Denmark, Muslim leaders have sought the same kind of control over parts of Copenhagen. And in Belgium, Muslims living in the Brussels neighborhood of Sint-Jans-Molenbeek already view it not as part of Belgium but as an area under Islamic jurisdiction in which Belgians are not welcome.
These burgeoning Muslim communities are also consuming disproportionate amounts of state sponsored welfare benefits. For example, Danish Muslims comprise 5% of the population, yet they receive 40% of the governmental outlays. And despite this largesse, facilitated by sympathetic social workers, the social workers themselves are often tyrannized by their Muslim clients. Bawer describes the chilling situation in Denmark:
Some clients lay waste to social security offices and hit social workers—not out of frustration, but because they’ve learned that such bullying gets them what they want.
Bawer further documents how Norwegian (Oslo) imams preach brazenly that Muslims should expect such welfare benefits—and feel justified in supplementing them by stealing from stores—as a form of jizya* extracted from their infidel “host” societies—societies that have not yet accepted their requisite subservience to Islamic Law!
The final two sections of While Europe Slept elaborate how even two cataclysmic events—the 9/11/01 and 3/11/04 mass murdering acts of jihad terrorism—failed to alter Western Europe’s self-destructive capitulation to Islamic atavism. Bawer recalls that a mere 36-hours after the devastation of 9/11/01, vitriolic anti-American attacks resumed unabated in the mainstream Western European media. He identifies one plausible source of this ignorant and seemingly implacable contempt:
The intensity of the European establishment’s anti-Americanism is matched only by the intensity of its nostalgia for the good old days of Soviet Communism. Few politicians, professors, or journalists will admit to missing Communism. But most of them are awfully quick to say that, well, at least when the Soviet Union was around, it provided a counterweight to American power. This despicable, but now standard line, turns Cold War history on its head.
Bawer also describes the resurgence of raw Antisemitic rhetoric, and anti-Jewish violence fomented, in part, by “poisonous, fraudulent reportage” throughout Western Europe. And when blatantly Judenhass crimes committed by Muslims are grudgingly reported by this same media, critical details routinely omitted in such accounts, include:
(a) that Muslims in Europe have not been attacked by Jews; (b) that unlike anti-Semitic acts, which are encouraged and applauded by influential figures within the Muslim community, anti-Muslim attacks are isolated events that no respected person or institution approves of; (c) that the number of anti-Muslim attacks is dwarfed by the number of attacks on Jews
The third (and last) section of While Europe Slept analyzes the moribund responses to the 3/11/04 Madrid bombings, in addition to subsequent lesser traumas such as the murder of Theo Van Gogh and the 7/7/05 London bombings. Bawer excoriates these grossly inadequate reactions as tantamount to “…a chorus singing hymns of brotherhood and eager to convert the entire world to its religion of eternal peace”, concluding,
It’s a pretty delusion. In reality, Europe is even now entering another chapter in its long history of violent struggle. The enemy can’t be wished or talked away. And what’s at stake isn’t just sovereignty of one or two nations but modern democratic civilization.
Nearly 30 years ago, in 1978, Charles Emmanuel Dufourcq, the great historian of Medieval European Islam, was concerned (even then) that historical and cultural revisionism might precipitate a recurrence of
…the upheaval carried out on our continent (i.e., Europe) by Islamic penetration more than a thousand years ago…with other methods
By the early 1990s, Bat Ye’or had already observed that European Islam was adhering to its traditional supremacist orthodoxy making no effort to eliminate doctrines incompatible with true ecumenism and core Western Enlightenment values:
I do not see serious signs of a Europeanization of Islam anywhere, a move that would be expressed in a relativization of religion, a self-critical view of the history of Islamic imperialism...we are light years away from such a development...On the contrary, I think that we are participating in the Islamization of Europe, reflected both in daily occurrences and in our way of thinking...All the racist fanaticism that permeates the Arab countries and Iran has been manifested in Europe in recent years...
Bat Ye’or’s seminal 2005 Eurabia—The Euro-Arab Axis elucidated the ideological underpinnings and resultant sociopolitical developments which had transformed Western Europe into a hemi-continent of dhimmitude. The fruition of this hideous utopian contruct—Eurabia—is a Western Europe rife with Judenhass Anti-Zionism, Anti-Americanism, and a perverse, self-loathing denigration of its own Western heritage, firmly rooted in both Christianity, and the Enlightenment. Bruce Bawer’s independent research and keen, unflinching observations put flesh—much like the tortured flesh of the recently murdered Parisian Jew Ilan Halimi—on the bones of Bat Ye’or’s Eurabia. Bawer’s informed and gripping narrative makes clear the disturbing unwillingness of Muslim immigrants en bloc to accept foundational Western principles of equality, and integrate peacefully into their host societies. While Europe Slept demonstrates that continued denial of any Islamic etiology for the major problems confronting Western Europe begets more Islam as the “solution,” and accelerates the hemi-continent’s apparently inevitable trajectory towards Lebanonization, and/or complete Islamization, with implementation of the Shari’a.
[*Note on jizya : Under the Shari’a (Islamic Law) regulations, either the non-Muslim infidels must convert to Islam, or they pay the blood ransom jizya—classically, in a humiliating public ceremony which often involved blows to the head or neck—and their life and belongings are protected. The nature of such “protection” is clarified in this definition of jizya by the seminal Arabic lexicographer, E.W. Lane, based on a careful analysis of the etymology of the term:
The tax that is taken from the free non-Muslim subjects of a Muslim government whereby they ratify the compact that assures them protection, as though it were compensation for not being slain [An Arabic-English Lexicon (London, 1865), Book I Part II, Jizya, p. 422.]
The “contract of the jizya”, or “dhimma” encompassed other obligatory and recommended obligations for the conquered non-Muslim “dhimmi” peoples. Collectively, these “obligations” formed the discriminatory system of dhimmitude imposed upon non-Muslims – Jews, Christians, Zoroastrians, Hindus, and Buddhists – subjugated by jihad. Some of the more salient features of dhimmitude include: the prohibition of arms for the vanquished non-Muslims (dhimmis); the prohibition of church bells; restrictions concerning the building and restoration of churches, synagogues, and temples; inequality between Muslims and non-Muslims with regard to taxes and penal law; the refusal of dhimmi testimony by Muslim courts; a requirement that Jews, Christians, and other non-Muslims, including Zoroastrians and Hindus, wear special clothes; and the overall humiliation and abasement of non-Muslims. It is important to note that these regulations and attitudes were institutionalized as permanent features of the sacred Islamic law, or Shari’a. Islam manifests itself as a political ideology, not merely a religion, when its teachings are followed on these and other prominent and enduring features.]
Click Here to support Frontpagemag.com.