Old Europe’s new crisis.
Europe, the charming continent of windmills and gondolas. But lately, Europe has become the continent of endless strikes and demonstrations, bombs on the trains and subways, radical Islamic cells in every city, and ghettos so hopeless and violent even the police won’t enter them. In Spain, a terrorist attack prompts instant capitulation to the terrorists’ demands. In France, the suburbs go up in flames every night. In Holland, politicians and artists are murdered for speaking frankly about Islamic immigration.
This isn’t the Europe we thought we knew. What’s going on over there?
Traveling overland from London to Istanbul, journalist Claire Berlinski shows why the Continent has lately appeared so bewildering—and often so thoroughly obnoxious—to Americans. Speaking to Muslim immigrants, German rock stars, French cops, and Italian women who have better things to do than have children, she finds that Europe is still, despite everything, in the grip of the same old ancient demons. Anyone who knows the history can sense it: There is something ugly—and familiar—in the air.
But something new is happening as well. Indeed, Europe now confronts—and seems unable to cope with—an entirely new set of troubles. Tracing the ancient conflicts and newly erupting crises, Menace in Europe reveals:
• Why Islamic radicalism and terrorist indoctrination flourish as Europe fails to assimilate millions of Muslim immigrants
• How plummeting birthrates hurtle Europe toward economic and cultural catastrophe
• Why hatred of America has become ubiquitous—on Europe’s streets, in its books, newspapers, and music, and at the highest levels of government
• How long-repressed destructive instincts are suddenly reemerging
• How the death of religious faith has created a hopeless, morally unmoored Europe that clings to anti-Americanism, anti-Semitism, and other dangerous ideologies
• Why the notion of a united Europe is a fantasy and what that means for the United States
In the end, these are not separate issues. Berlinski provocatively demonstrates that Europe’s political and cultural crisis mirrors its profound moral and spiritual crisis.
But this is not just Europe’s problem. Menace in Europe makes clear that the spiritual void at the heart of Europe is ultimately our problem too. And America will pay a terrible price if we continue to ignore it.
From the Hardcover edition.
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|Title of eBook: Menace in Europe|
|Release Date: 12-18-2007|
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|Publisher: Crown Publishing Group|
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Menace in Europe
I keep a spiral-bound notebook on my desk filled with miscellaneous notes—the usual collection of ideas that seem insightful at three in the morning but substantially less so at daybreak, ideas that may well have been insightful but have been lost to posterity because my handwriting is indecipherable, scraps of overheard dialogue, observations made from the windows of trains.
One scrawled passage in particular stands out now. The date was July 3, 2005. “Within six months,” I wrote, “there will be another major terrorist attack or political assassination in Europe.” I am embarrassed to admit that my next thought, apparently, was that this would be inconvenient for me, since it would necessitate making major revisions to this book.
Three days later, Trafalgar Square erupted in celebration at the announcement that London would host the 2012 Olympics. The next morning, as the rush hour drew to a close, four suicide bombers detonated themselves in central London, killing 52 people and injur- ing 700 more. Papers with headlines from the previous evening had not yet been pushed off the newsstands: “Blimey! It’s London’s turn!” said one, and I can only imagine how those jolly words must have appeared to commuters staggering off the smoke-blackened London Tube.
Four more bombings were attempted on the London transport system two weeks later. This time, the bombs failed to detonate and the bombers survived, leaving behind forensic evidence that permitted police to ascertain their identities. Both the living and the dead bombers were British, born and r...