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Denazification - urgently needed in Europe Denazification - urgently needed in Europe
by Dr. Anis H. Bajrektarevic
2015-01-09 09:06:34
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There is a claim constantly circulating the EU: ‘multiculturalism is dead in Europe’. Dead or maybe d(r)ead?... That much comes from a cluster of European nation-states that love to romanticize their appearance thought the solid Union, as if they themselves lived a long, cordial and credible history of multiculturalism. Hence, this claim is of course false. It is also cynical because it is purposely misleading. No wonder, as the conglomerate of nation-states/EU has silently handed over one of its most important debates – that of European anti-fascistic identity, or otherness – to the wing-parties, repeatedly followed by the selective and contra-productive foreign policy actions.

je04_400The Paris shooting, terrible beyond comprehension, will reload and overheat those debates. However, these debates are ill conceived, resting from the start on completely wrong and misleading premises. Assassins in the Parisian Satirical Magazine are Islamofascists. The fact that these individuals are allegedly of the Arab-Muslim origins does not make them less fascists, less European, nor does it abolish Europe from the main responsibility in this case.

Fascism and its evil twin, Nazism are 100% European ideologies. Neo-Nazism also originates from and lately unchecked blossoms, primarily in Europe. (Some would say, über-economy in the center of continent, surrounded from all sides by the recuperating neo-fascism.) The Old continent tried to amortize its deepening economic and demographic contraction by a constant interference on its peripheries, especially meddling on the Balkans, Black Sea/Caucasus and MENA (Middle East–North Africa). What is now an epilogue? A severe democratic recession. Whom to blame for this structural, lasting civilizational retreat that Europe suffers? Is it accurate or only convenient to blame a bench of useful idiots for returning home with the combating behavior?        

*             *             *             *             *

 

My voice was just one of the many that included notables like Umberto Eco and Kishore Mahbubani – promote moderation and dialogue, encourage forces of toleration, wisdom and understanding, stop supporting and promoting ethno-fascism in the former Yugoslavia and Ukraine. These advices were and are still ridiculed and silenced, or in the best case, ignored. Conversely, what the EU constantly promoted with its councils, boots and humanitarian aid starting from Bosnia 25 years ago, Middle East, until the present day Ukraine was less of a constructive strategic engagement and more of a cult of death, destruction, partition, exclusion and fascism. (Some of the most notorious regimes on this planet are advertised and glorified in Europe, even though one of these hereditary theocracies considers as the serious criminal offence – like European Nazis in 1930s – if the prescribed state religion is not obeyed as the only existing one). On the other side, the European temple of multiculturalism– Sarajevo, was barbarically sieged and bombed for 1,000 days – all that just one-hour flight from Brussels. Still, 20 years after, Bosnia remains the only country in the world that does not exercise its sovereignty. It is administratively occupied by the opaque and retrograde international bureaucracy – predominantly European apparatchiks that institutionalized segregation in this country.

Illuminating cradles of multiculturalism – some of the brightest verticals of entire human civilization such as Jerusalem, Bagdad and Damascus still suffer unbearable horrors of externally induced, ahistorical destruction, hatred and purges.

Europe still defies the obvious. There is no lasting peace at home if the neighborhood remains restless. This horrific Paris shooting is only a painful reminder on how much the EU has already isolated itself: The very type of Islam Europe supported in the Middle East yesterday, is the version of Islam (or better to say, fascism) we are getting today in the Christian Europe as well as in the Christian neighborhoods of Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Thus, in response to the Balkans, MENA and Ukraine crises, the EU repeatedly failed to keep up a broad, single-voiced consolidated agenda and all-participatory basis with its strategic neighborhood. The EU missed it all – although having institutions, WWII-memory, interest and credibility to prevent mistakes – as it did wrong before at its home; by silently handing over one of its most important questions, that of European identity, anti-fascism and otherness, to escapist anti-politics (politics in retreat) dressed up in the Western European wing-parties.

Eventually, the ‘last world’s cosmopolitan’ – as the EU is often self-portrayed – compromised its own perspectives and discredited its own transformative power’s principle. The 2012 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, EU did so by undermining its own institutional framework: Nurnberg principles and antifascist legacy, Barcelona Process as the specialized segment of from-Morocco-to-Russia European Neighborhood Policy (EU) and the Euro-Med partnership (OSCE).   

The only direct involvement of the continent was ranging between a selective diplomatic de-legitimization and punitive military engagement via the Atlantic Europe-led coalition of the willing (the Balkans, Libya, Syria, Ukraine). Confrontational nostalgia prevailed again over both essential for any viable future: dialog (instruments) and consensus (institutions).  

The consequences are rather striking and worth of stating once more: The sort of Islam that the EU supported (and the means deployed to do so) in the Middle East yesterday, is the sort of Islam (and the means it uses) that Europe gets today. Small wonder, that Islam in Turkey[1] (or in Kirgizstan and in Indonesia) is broad, liberal and tolerant while the one in Atlantic-Central Europe is a brutally dismissive, narrow and vindictively assertive. Our urgent task – if we are serious about Europe – is denazification. Let’s start from Bosnia, Ukraine and Paris at once.

 *************************************************************************

Dr. Anis H. Bajrektarevic is professor in international law and global political studies, based in Vienna, Austria. His previous book Geopolitics of Technology – Is There Life after Facebook? was published by the New York’s Addleton Academic Publishers. His forthcoming book Geopolitics – Europe 100 years later is coming soon.



[1] While the cacophony of European contradictions works more on a self-elimination of the EU from the region, Turkey tries to reinsert itself. The so-called neo-Ottomanism of the current (Anatolian, eastern rural power-base) government steers the country right into the centre of grand bargaining for both Russia and for the US. To this emerging triangular constellation, President Erdoğan and its PM Davatoglu wishes to appoint its own rhythm. Past the ‘Arab Spring’, neither will Russia effectively sustain its presence in the Middle East on a strict pan-Arabic secular, republican and anti-Islamic idea, nor will the US manage to politically and morally justify its backing off of the absolutistic monarchies energized by the backward, dismissive and oppressive Wahhabism. Ankara tries to sublimate both effectively: enough of a secular republican modernity and enough of a traditional, tolerant and emancipating Islam, and to broadcast it as an attractive future model across the Middle East. Simply, Bosporus wakes itself up as an empiric proof that the Islam and modernity goes together. In fact, it is the last European nation that still has both demographic and economic growth. Moreover, Ataturk’s Republic is by large and by far the world’s most successful Muslim state: It was never resting its development on oil or other primary-commodity exports, but on a vibrant socio-economic sector and solid democratic institutions. This is heavily contesting, not only for Russia, but primarily for the insecure regime of the House of Saud (and other GCC autocracies), which rules by the direct royal decree over a country of recent past, oil-export dependent and fizzing presence and improbable future. No wonder that on the ideological battlefield, the two belligerent parties will be dominating the Middle East, which is currently in self-questioning, struggling past yet another round of hardships. The outcome will be significantly beyond the Arab world, and will reverberate all across the Sunni Muslim world. Ankara is attempting to justify that the Saudi-promoted Islam is actually a toxic, separatist/sectarian Wahhabistic ideology that self-constrains Muslims, and keeps them on a wrong side of history by hindering their socio-economic and political development. It does so, Turkey claims, by holding Muslims on a permanent collision course with the rest of the world, while Turkey-promoted Islam is not a weaponized ideology, but a Modus Vivendi, which permits progress and is acceptable for all (including the non-Muslims), with the centuries-long history of success.   


     
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Emanuel Paparella2015-01-09 12:50:43
Indeed Anis, as he bard observed a rose by any other name still smells the same. Christopher Hitchens had it on target when he coined the word “Islamo-fascism,” and you hit the nail on its head by pointing out that there is a growing “democratic recession” in Europe which has emboldened the extreme right extremists, who call themselves populists (the La Pen and Wilders type, just to mention two), to become part of EU mainstream politics and to enter, as a Trojan horse, the citadel of democracy and plan its demise from the inside. Some of them now seat pretty in the EU Parliament and bide their time. It should come as no surprise that what the unspeakable crime perpetrated by the Islamo-fascists in Paris recently has been immediately been picked up by all the anti-immigrant, anti-multiculturalists neo-Fascists and Neo-Nazis of Europe as vindication and vindication of all their misguided concerns for the welfare of the EU. They are now shedding crocodile tears but on close analysis one will notice that indeed birds of a feather always flock together; that those same extremists stand ready to eventually do the very same despicable deeds done by "Islamo-fascists" once they gain power. Hitler did exactly that: first he became Chancellor, democratically, and then he became dictator for life. But the lesson does not seem to have been learned yet. The ideology may look different but the mind-set is the same.

You are quite right in pointing out that to recover from such a democratic recession a new denazification program is urgently needed in Europe, and that Europe is now getting at home the sort of Islam that it promoted in the past in the Middle East. The chickens always come home to roost.


Author, prof. Anis2015-01-10 15:04:12
I am very thankful to this precious comment to our notable prof. Emanuel. Hope more people will voice and contemplate on this most urgent task we have here in Euirpe. Before closing, this is what I wrote some years ago when other tragic event shocked us in Europe (that time from Norway). The full text you can find on Ovi pages and also compare that time date and its accurace with this of today:

No doubt, just as the cyber-autistic McFB way of life is the same in any European and Middle Eastern city, so are the radical, wing politics! Have you spotted any critical difference between the rhetoric of Norwegian serial killer Breivik and the Al Qaida Wahhabi ‘Islamists’? “Just like Jihadi warriors are the plum tree of Ummah, we will be the plum tree for Europe and for Christianity”– many news agencies reported these as words allegedly written by the Christian Jihadist Anders Behring. The European (right-wing) parties opposing e.g. Muslim immigration are nothing but the mirror image of the MENA’s Islamist parties. In both cases, there are: (i) Socio-political outsiders (without much of an coherence, integrity and autonomy) that are denouncing the main, status quo, parties as a ‘corrupt establishment’; (ii) Extensively exploiting domestic economic shortcomings (e.g. unemployment, social inequalities, etc.), but they themselves do nothing essential to reverse the trend; (iii) Making ethnic and religious appeals (preaching the return to tradition), attacking foreign influences in their societies and otherwise ‘culturally purifying’ population; (iv) Generally doing better in local rather than in national elections (the ‘Rightists’ win on the national elections only when no other effective alternative exists to challenge the governing party/coalition block); (v) More emotionally charged populist movements than serious political parties of the solid socio-economic and socio-political program (per definition, these parties have very poor governing score).


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