Iran plotting to groom bin Laden’s successor

Netanyahu: It’s 1938 and Iran is Germany; Ahmadinejad is preparing another Holocaust

Netanyahu: It’s 1938 and Iran is Germany; Ahmadinejad is preparing another Holocaust
By Peter Hirschberg, Haaretz Correspondent
LOS ANGELES – Drawing a direct analogy between Iran and Nazi Germany, Likud leader Benjamin Netanyahu asserted Monday that the Iranian nuclear program posed a threat not only to Israel, but to the entire western world. There was “still time,” however, to prevent Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons, he said.

“It’s 1938 and Iran is Germany. And Iran is racing to arm itself with atomic bombs,” Netanyahu told delegates to the annual United Jewish Communities General Assembly, repeating the line several times, like a chorus, during his address. “Believe him and stop him,” the opposition leader said of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. “This is what we must do. Everything else pales before this.”

While the Iranian president “denies the Holocaust,” Netanyahu said, “he is preparing another Holocaust for the Jewish state.”

Speaking on Army Radio on Tuesday, Netanyahu hinted that Israel possesses the military capabilities necessary for curbing by itself the Iranian nuclear threat, declining to specify what these entail.

The Likud chairman said “I don’t want to analyze the capability required to eliminate [the Iranian] threat, but this capability exists,” when told by host Razi Barkai that Israel lacks the ability to eliminate Tehran’s nuclear program by military means.

“This capability is eroded over time, and if we wait years then obviously this capability would not exist anymore … but right now I disagree with the claim that nothing can be done against Iran,” he added.

When asked if Bush could afford embarking on another “military adventure” after Iraq, Netanyahu said acting on the Iranian nuclear program would not be adventurous but necessary.

“… Israel would certainly be the first stop on Iran’s tour of destruction, but at the planned production rate of 25 nuclear bombs a year … [the arsenal] will be directed against ‘the big Satan,’ the U.S., and the ‘moderate Satan,’ Europe,” Netanyahu said.

“Iran is developing ballistic missiles that would reach America, and now they prepare missiles with an adequate range to cover the whole of Europe,” he added.

“No one cared”
Criticizing the international community in his GA speech for not acting more forcefully in trying to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power – “No one cared then and no one seems to care now,” he said, again drawing on the Nazi parallel – Netanyahu warned that Tehran’s nuclear and missile program “goes way beyond the destruction of Israel – it is directed to achieve world-wide range. It’s a global program in the service of a mad ideology.”

Large sections of the international community, he said, also misunderstood the nature of radical Islam and its role in the Mideast conflict. “What happens in Iran affects what happens in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, not the other way round,” he said.

Netanyahu said he believed that Iran could still be stopped from acquiring nuclear weapons. “There is still time. All ways must be considered. We can’t let this thing happen,” he said, but did not outline specific measures he thought should be taken.

Referring to Israel’s preemptive strike in the 1967 War, he did say that stopping Iran required “preemptive leadership. Preemption requires will and vision.”

“Noone will defend the Jews if the Jews don’t defend themselves,” he said to loud applause. “Iran’s nuclear ambitions have to be stopped.”



McCain Pain

McCain Pain

Traditionalists – people who believe in the Constitution as it was written – will find little to like in Senator John McCain.  Like Supreme Court Justice David Souter, he is an establishment, liberal Republican in the Nelson Rockefeller mode, so deeply imbued with the moral relativism of modernity that he no longer knows where to find home port for the Ship of State. 

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Carol Turoff gives us an Arizonan’s perception of the real John McCain.

November 14, 2006
McCain: Embarking on the Ship of State

By Carol Turoff

Here comes John McCain. If only he could get Arizonans to like him.

Arizona Senator John McCain sees the trouncing Republicans took nationally as an encouraging sign for his 2008 presidential bid. McCain is, after all, the ultimate chameleon, wearing his Republicanism as a badge when it serves him, yet pandering to the left when convenient. GOP losses provide him the opportunity to warm to Independents and swing voters, further antagonizing the conservative base of his party. Strategizing with advisors and confidants, he is expected to open an exploratory committee by month’s end. But in his home state of Arizona, McCain is not universally beloved by his fellow Republicans. While it is true he is repeatedly reelected, his challengers have been less-than-lightweights in the political arena. The old adage of Never a Hero in Your Own Hometown seems to apply, since the elected precinct committeemen in McCain’s own district have actually voted to censure him.

He was also denounced by the Maricopa County Executive Guidance Committee comprised of GOP leadership in a lopsided 17 to 3 vote. Mohave County later voted similarly. The EGC’s resolution declares, “We condemn John McCain’s betrayal of the trust Republican voters placed in him.” Pretty strong stuff from his party cohorts.

Hoisting the mantle of “moderates” and registered Independents, his candidate endorsements sorely lack influence with GOP voters. Whether endorsing gubernatorial, congressional or outlying city council candidates, his local selectees often lose. Where McCain shines is on the national horizon, as the mostly liberal media shower him with ample attention. And, why not? A registered Republican who acts like a Democrat plays well with this crowd. Having ditched the Goldwateresque title, “maverick,” he once reveled in, he currently appears to prefer, “reformer.” Now we just have to figure out what that means.

McCain’s much ballyhooed hug of President Bush concealed the dagger he was simultaneously sliding into George’s back. Their animus reaches back to 2000, when both campaigns were driving hard and fast. The underlying rancor swelled as he vocally opposed Bush’s tax cuts. Recently, McCain has given the military grief over detainee interrogation techniques. In supporting gun control, he antagonizes Second Amendment supporters. Forging what he terms “bipartisan” alliances with Democrats Russ Feingold and Ted Kennedy does little to endear him to his political brethren.

Barely escaping with his own political life after questionable associations with convicted financier, Charlie Keating, McCain’s epiphany has placed him in the forefront of campaign finance reform. Such efforts further exacerbated internal rifts, since opponents argue the measures violate First Amendment rights, infringing upon free speech. As leader of the so-called Gang of 14, he drew criticism for his deal-making regarding judicial filibusters. Support of embryonic stem cell research and his repeated votes to block drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge,lessening dependence on foreign oil, rankle. Kudos he received for his support of the Iraq war are tempered by his waffling on implementation and enforcement of reliable border security. McCain supports a guest worker plan offering citizenship to those who flagrantly and illegally enter our country. He was denounced for advising Hispanic demonstrators to discard their Mexican flags while marching through American streets, lest they further inflame U.S. citizens. McCain has also taken refuge in the global warming camp, much to the chagrin of many in his party.

Already age 70, he would be the oldest president in U.S. history, if elected. That fact, coupled with his renowned undisciplined temper and recurrent melanoma, could ultimately be deal breakers. Currently, the McCain’s are in the process of selling their Phoenix estate and moving to a high-dollar high-rise, where they have purchased an entire upper floor; providing the much needed security a national leader requires.

But close on his heels are Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and California Congressman, Duncan Hunter. Both Republicans are seriously eyeing the 2008 presidential race. Interestingly, this is the first time in eighty years there is neither an incumbent president nor vice president seeking election to the nation’s highest post.

Conservatives are left to ponder their intolerable choices if faced with Senators John McCain or Hillary Clinton heading the 2008 party tickets.

Carol Turoff is a former two-term member of the Commission on Appellate Court Appointments. During her eight years on the commission, she participated in the selection of four of the five current Arizona Supreme Court Justices as well as 17 judges on both Divisions I and II of the Arizona Court of Appeals. Appointed by two governors, Turoff served with three chairing Supreme Court Justices.


PMB #270
3588 Plymouth Rd.
Ann Arbor, MI
Phone :734-528-0006

  • Michigan-based Islamic organization which has been described as a “glorified al Qaeda recruitment center”

The Islamic Assembly of North America (IANA) was created in 1993 by American and Canadian representatives of various Muslim centers and organizations. Its mission is to “unify and coordinate the efforts of North America’s dawah-oriented organizations” [groups that perform missionary work for Islam]; to spread the “correct knowledge of Islam … and to assist its dissemination among Muslim Americans and immigrants”; to analyze current events in the Muslim world; to assist oppressed Muslim workers and scholars; to produce “a serious and effective media institute to serve the Islamic presence in North America”; and to “create a dawah program … that will protect the Islamic presence in North America.” To achieve these objectives, as well as its “final goal of reviving the Islamic nation to its proper state and condition,” IANA uses conventions, general meetings, dawah-oriented institutions and academies, books, magazines, and youth programs. 

In February 2003, four individuals associated with IANA were indicted for illegally sending millions of dollars to Iraq through a Syracuse,
New York charity called Help the Needy. In addition, a
University of
Idaho student named Sami Omar Al-Hussayen (who was a member of IANA’s Technical Committee) was arrested for knowingly failing to mention his affiliation with IANA on his visa application when he entered the
United States. The Seattle Post-Intelligencer quotes one federal source saying that Al-Hussayen was “in touch with people who could pick up the phone, call UBL [Usama bin Laden], and he would take the call.”

According to court papers filed by
Idaho prosecutors in 2003, IANA’s mission included the “dissemination of radical Islamic ideology, the purpose of which was indoctrination, recruitment of members, and the instigation of acts of violence and terrorism.” In National Review Online, IANA has been described as a “glorified al Qaeda recruitment center.” 

IANA’s Vice Chairman, Rafil Dhafir, in 2005 was convicted of illegally laundering money to
Iraq. Moreover, Sami Omar Al-Hussayen was indicted for routing to IANA thousands of dollars he had received from overseas sources, and for providing computer expertise and website services to the organization. 

According to Dore Gold’s book Hatred’s Kingdom, in May 2001 — four months before the 9/11 terrorist attacks — IANA’s main website featured justifications for “martyrdom operations,” including crashing an airplane “on a crucial enemy target.” In 2003 the IANA website posted the fatwas, or religious rulings, of two radical Saudi sheiks who maintain close ties to al Qaeda and provide religious justification for acts of Islamic terrorism. Radical proselytization, both written and spoken, was a common theme on the website. Considerable attention was given, for instance, to the teachings of Osama bin Laden’s mentor Abdullah Azzam

The IANA website also hosts recruitment videos for jihad, with clips displaying the corpses of mujahedeen warriors killed in terrorist operations. One such video shows deceased al Qaeda-funded “martyrs” from
Chechnya, eulogizing them as heroes who had given their lives in service to Allah. 

IANA has created additional websites to disseminate its message. One such site,, was named for the aforementioned Abdullah Azzam, and was shut down by the FBI in 2002. Another IANA website,, promoted the Saudi charity Al-Haramain, whose Bosnia and
Somalia branches supported al Qaeda and in 2002 were raided by American and Saudi government authorities. The link to al-Haramain never appeared on the English-language version of the website. As a rule, IANA has published its most radical content — glorifying suicide missions and jihad — solely in Arabic; its English products and publications do not contain terrorist propaganda.

Since 2002, IANA’s Inmates Program has shipped at least 530 packages of Islamic indoctrination materials to prisons across the
United States. Each package consists of seven different Islamic books, twelve audio cassettes, one copy of the Koran, and a videotape on Muslim prayers and rituals. 

According to a New York Times interview with former IANA Director Mohammed al-Ahmari, approximately half of the organization’s funding derives from the Saudi government, and the other half from mostly Saudi private donors.

Letters from Gitmo

Letters from Gitmo
By David Frum | November 14, 2006

The 430 prisoners in the detention centre at Guantanamo Bay send and receive 44,000 pieces of mail per year. Lawyers fly in and out on the commercial flights from Miami to the U.S. base to meet with their clients. The International Red Cross inspects the camp and interviews prisoners.And yet the idea persists that
Guantanamo represents some kind of “American Gulag”–and that the detainees are victims of a monstrous miscarriage of justice: innocent goatherds and blameless wedding guests swept up by blind American injustice.

Ten days ago, I joined one of the regular tours of Guantanamo organized by the
U.S. military. Hundreds of
U.S. and international journalists, human rights experts, and parliamentarians had taken this trip before me. (You can read a four-part description of the visit in the next four issues of the Toronto Sun, in articles and photographs by Peter Worthington, who travelled with me.)

Here in this shorter space, I want to focus on something else: the words of the detainees themselves, as posted in 53 PDF volumes at

These statements are excerpted from the testimony of detainees before military tribunals. The evidence against the detainees in many cases remains classified, but you can read the protestations of innocence in full–and determine their credibility for yourself.

Some selections from my own still incomplete reading (citations will be posted Monday at

  • One detainee, a Kuwaiti national named as an al-Qaeda operative on a seized al-Qaeda hard drive, was captured as he tried to flee from Afghanistan into Iran. He insisted that he had no association with any terrorist organization. What then had brought him to
    Afghanistan? His answer: He had donated 750 Kuwaiti dinars (“not a lot of money” he added) to an Islamic charity to dig wells in Afghanistan–and had decided to travel from
    Kuwait to see that his money was properly spent.
  • Another detainee, a Yemeni, explained that he had come to
    Pakistan to study medicine at a university. Unfortunately, the particular university he had selected lacked any medical faculty. He ended up instead studying the Koran in a student guesthouse–and when one of his housemates suggested they take a sightseeing tour of
    Afghanistan, he agreed to go along. The housemate’s name? He had forgotten it.
  • A detainee identified by eyewitnesses as a Taliban military judge, who inflicted hideous punishments on hundreds of accused, explained to the tribunal that he was in fact only a humble chicken farmer. The question, “What did you feed your chickens?” baffled this detainee. He answered: “A mixture of foods they sell in the bazaar” (perhaps at the Afghan equivalent of Petco).
  • One detainee was apprehended in possession of a military identity card that named him as a member of an especially vicious Taliban militia. He explained that it was not his own card. It belonged to a friend who had asked him to hold it for him.
  • A Saudi mechanic said that he had journeyed to
    Afghanistan because someone had persuaded him that it was the ideal place to complete his religious education. Who was this person? “I don’t know.”
  • An Afghan detainee intercepted at the Pakistan border carrying a satellite phone, thousands of dollars in cash, without identity papers and riding alongside a noted al-Qaeda explosives expert, explained that he had not realized he needed identity papers to cross the border between Afghanistan and
  • A former Egyptian army officer acknowledged that he had undergone training in
    Afghanistan at a camp run by the Kashmiri group, Lashkar-i-Taibi (LiT). However, he said, he had been listening to the BBC in February 2001 and heard an announcer describe LiT as a terrorist organization. After that, he said, he quit the group and had never had anything to do with them again. How had he supported himself in
    Afghanistan over the following year? He had, he said, relied on charity from his fellow Muslims.
  • A young Tajiki told the tribunal that he had attended a training camp at the suggestion of a man he met on a train. He did not know the man’s name. But he had never had any weapons training: He had spent his time carrying firewood.
  • A Saudi detainee, confronted with evidence that he had traveled to Bosnia in the mid-1990s, then to Sudan, then to
    Afghanistan, explained that he had devoted himself exclusively to the construction of mosques. But had his travel not been paid by al Haramain, a well-known front group for al-Qaeda? He knew nothing about that. “If al Haramain is a terrorist organization, why is it my problem? Am I guilty if they are terrorists?”

Or, in the words of that Yemeni would-be medical student without a medical school: “What is the meaning of ‘terrorist’? I don’t even know what that word is.”

That’s his story, and he’s sticking to it.

But what’s the excuse of those in the West who succumb so easily to the deceptions of terrorists who cannot invent even half-way plausible lies?

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The Outcome of Two Cultural Revolutions: While China Turns Christian, Europe Turns Muslim

The Outcome of Two Cultural Revolutions: While China Turns Christian, Europe Turns Muslim

At the beginning of the 21st century, Europe is being Islamized, while China is being Christianized. This proves that if God exists He must have a sense of humor. Buddhism and Taoism still claim most worshippers in China but the state-sanctioned churches count up to 35 million followers. The underground churches are estimated to have 80 million members or more, about 12 million of them Catholics, the rest Protestants.

In a Beijing beauty salon, convert Xun Jinzhen explains why Christianity has become so popular: “We have very few people who believe in communism as a faith, so there’s an emptiness in their hearts.” Among the Chinese converts are some figures from the 1989 democracy protests. According to Han Dong-fang, “I think human beings need something at a spiritual level. We don’t want to believe we are coming from nowhere; going nowhere. In China we have traditionally followed Buddhism. We had quite a deep religion. But communism destroyed everything. When communism became this corrupted thing which failed everybody, people still needed a belief. I think that’s the reason for Christianity in China.

It is noteworthy that the capitalist economy of China and South Korea is booming at the same time as Christianity is spreading among Chinese and Koreans. Christianity is retreating in Europe, which is in serious economic decline. Korean and Chinese students of European classical music play Beethoven, Bach and Mozart while Western youth listen to Gangsta rap and enjoy Arabic music at Islamic cultural festivals. Will the dynamic of individualism bloom in China while it is suffocating in Europe where it was once championed?

During the Cultural Revolution, the Red Guards youth militia, created by Chairman Mao to use against his rivals, destroyed great numbers of priceless Chinese historic buildings and artifacts. The education system ceased to function, as young people were encouraged to criticize and disparage all traditional institutions as well as their parents and teachers. There was an anti-Confucian campaign and widespread persecution of religion, both seen as parts of the established culture that needed to be crushed to pave way for the new Marxist society.

The Chinese Cultural Revolution took place in the late 1960s and early 70s. At roughly the same time, there was a “Cultural Revolution” in the West in the form of the “hippie” youth rebellion. The Western Cultural Revolution, too, was influenced by Marxist thinking, including radical Feminism, and attacked, albeit less violently than their Chinese counterparts, all established institutions, including the traditional culture and religion as well as the authority of parents and teachers. Quite a few Western observers sympathized with the Chinese Revolution. Some even praised Mao’s teachings and spread his Little Red Book.

The Cultural Revolution in China was so violent and destructive that it greatly contributed to discrediting Marxism in the country. Only a few years later, after Mao Zedong’s death in 1976, Deng Xiaoping initiated capitalist reforms. Marxism unhinged the traditional religion in China, leaving the door open for Christianity. Marxism unhinged the traditional religion in Europe, leaving the door open for Islam. Nature abhors a vacuum. I believe the Chinese got the better part of that deal.

The major difference is that while the Cultural Revolution in China is now universally considered a crime, the people behind the Cultural Revolution in the West in many ways won, and are in a near-hegemonic position in our media and academia to shape public discourse. The Chinese Cultural Revolution was, by comparison, a violent, but briefer episode, while in the West it became an institutionalized, ongoing project stretching over decades, continuing its mission of discrediting Western culture and disconnecting Westerners from their religious roots from within Western universities and media.

Some argue that at least the Western Cultural Revolution didn’t physically destroy the cultural treasures of the West, just the Christian culture that produced them. This is only partially true. Indirectly, since it paved the way for Muslims, who some consider allies in their quest to destroy Christian Western culture, it opened the doors to people who may well physically destroy the un-Islamic European cultural treasures, the Louvre, Rembrandt’s paintings at the Rijksmuseum, just like they previously did to pre-Islamic culture all over what is now the Islamic world. The Western Cultural Revolution may in the long run prove to have been even more destructive than its Chinese counterpart, whose excesses later triggered a revival in China, while the very survival of Western civilization is now in question.

The situation in Western Europe was made worse by Eurabians and Euro-federalists, not all of them Leftists, groups with a different agenda but with a shared interest in breaking down the traditional European national cultures through mass immigration and Multiculturalism.

I have heard arguments claiming that Catholic countries are more resistant to Multiculturalism and Muslim immigration than Protestant countries such as the Netherlands or Sweden. These persons would thus disagree with my calls for the United States to return to its Anglo-Protestant roots, since they view Protestantism as a part of the problem. According to Alexander Boot, “Spain, Italy and France today appear more, shall we say, Western than the countries of northern Europe. The latter had their defenses stripped away by Protestantism.

Maybe I’m biased in this regard since I come from a Protestant country myself, but I am open to all arguments that can be proven. I will not dismiss the possibility that Italy, for instance, may have put up stronger cultural resistance to Political Correctness than Norway. However, even in nominally Calvinist the Netherlands and Lutheran Scandinavia, the native population has higher birth rates than in Catholic Italy, and I’m not convinced that Catholic Spain under its current Socialist government is stronger than Lutheran Denmark.

A comment at The Brussels Journal said: “The other problem with Christianity is that most public intellectuals still balk at actually believing in it – our Fjordman above; Theodore Dalrymple; Oriana Fallaci – all of them declare themselves atheists while touting Christianity. There is no way that this kind of thinking is going to build a realistic resistance – functioning ideologies absolutely require that the elites believe the same as the masses, albeit with more sophistication and detail.

I take it as a compliment to be compared to the likes of Dalrymple and Fallaci. There are several reasons why I hesitate to give my unconditional support to the Church. The first is that Christianity can be a tad too soft in dealing with Islam. I’m more in the “Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition” camp myself. But above all, because the Church itself has been infected by the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s and 70s. I know Oriana Fallaci grew closer to the Catholic Church towards the end of her life, but I sometimes wonder whether she was fully aware of how much Islamic apologists have infiltrated the Vatican.

George Weigel is an American conservative, Roman Catholic theologian and the author of the book The Cube and the Cathedral. Weigel writes that Western Europe “is depopulating itself in numbers greater than at any time since the Black Death of the 14th century. When an entire continent, healthier, wealthier and more secure than ever before, fails to create the human future in the most elemental sense — by creating the next generation — something serious is afoot.” He believes this is caused by spiritual boredom: “Europe, bored, asks only to be left alone with its pleasures. […] Europe’s effort to create a tolerant, civil, democratic civilization by cutting itself off from one of that civilization’s sources — Jewish and Christian convictions about the dignity of the person — is likely to fail.

However, in another essay, Weigel states that: “We know that, in the past, Christians used violence to advance Christian purposes. The Catholic Church has publicly repented of such distortions of the Gospel […] Can the church, therefore, be of some help to those brave Islamic reformers who, at the risk of their own lives, are trying to develop a parallel Islamic critique of the distorted and lethal ideas of some of their co-religionists?

This is a deeply misplaced comparison. The Crusades were a brief and isolated event in Western history, triggered by more than four centuries of unprovoked Islamic aggression. It may have helped stem the expansion of Islam, thus saving Western civilization. We may owe an apology Jews and Eastern Christians who unwittingly got caught up in it, but we owe none whatsoever to Muslims.

Three Christian high school girls were beheaded as a Ramadan “trophy” by Indonesians who conceived the idea after a visit to Philippines Jihadists. Javanese trader Hasanuddin appeared in Jakarta Central Court charged with directing the murders. After discussions with friends, he decided that beheading Christians could qualify as an act of Muslim charity, and found an “excellent” target – a group of schoolgirls who traveled by foot.

The Islamic practice of beheading dates back to Muhammad and his companions, who massacred hundreds of Jews of the Banu Qurayza tribe in Medina, dumped their bodies in a ditch and sold their women and children as slaves. This is not a “distortion” of Islamic teachings; it was done by the founder of the religion, who later had sex with one of the women who had just watched her husband being murdered that very same night. Exactly how does this compare with the example of Jesus?

In a quote brought to my attention by Lawrence Auster’s blog, the official doctrine of the Catholic Church (in the Nostra Aetate document of the Second Vatican Council from the 1960s) says about Islam: “The Church regards with esteem also the Moslems. They adore the one God, living and subsisting in Himself; merciful and all- powerful, the Creator of heaven and earth, who has spoken to men; they take pains to submit wholeheartedly to even His inscrutable decrees, just as Abraham, with whom the faith of Islam takes pleasure in linking itself, submitted to God.

How can I defend Christianity from secularists who say that it is pretty similar to Islam if the Church and even some “conservative” theologians insist on the same absurd equivalence?

My main problem with wholeheartedly supporting the Church is that it is, at best, lukewarm in defending the West by confronting Islam. If there is such a thing as evil then Islam is evil. If the Church cannot recognize that, then what good is it? Give me some determined and armed atheists who fight for their children’s freedom rather then some lukewarm Christians who engage in dialogue with Muslims.

Although I am not a believer I respect the Christian influence on Western culture, but at the same time I am pragmatic enough to support forces that are capable of defending Europe and the West against Islam. If the Church can demonstrate that it is up to the task, I will give it stronger support. Until then, I will give it conditional support only because it gives only conditional support to the West.

Blogging for Bolton

Garbage in, garbage out

Iran training al-Qaeda terrorists, grooming #3

Vive La Caliphate Does European Islam mean Islamic Europe?

Vive La Caliphate
Does European Islam mean Islamic Europe?
by Jeremy Rabkin
11/20/2006, Volume 012, Issue 10

America Alone
The End of the World
as We Know It
by Mark Steyn
Regnery, 256 pp., $27.95

It’s human nature to recoil from the saddest or most distressing sights. If there’s another side of us that is fascinated by disaster, there are lots of disaster stories competing for attention. Cable news and the Internet make it all too easy to switch over or click on to the latest breaking tale of woe. To keep us focused on the most alarming underlying trends, we need a really entertaining writer.

So here’s Mark Steyn, with all his trademarked verbal slapstick and clowning. And his new book is intensely sobering. Most of it has been said before–and by no one more insistently than Steyn himself in his regular columns in America, Canada, and Britain. But with the space now to keep spinning out the implications, Steyn offers a warning that is riveting.

The challenge starts with demographic trends. European birthrates have fallen way below replacement levels. In today’s Italy, for example, there are barely half as many children under the age of five as there were in 1970. As the proportion of old people increases and the proportion of young workers declines, European welfare states face financial strains that make our own problems with Social Security look mild and manageable.

Immigration, once seen as an answer to this problem, now poses an even more intense challenge in much of Europe. Immigrants from Muslim countries have maintained high birthrates and concentrated in major cities, so large parts of major cities are now preserves of immigrant cultures. Complacent talk of multiculturalism has allowed European governments to ignore the challenge of winning the loyalties and attachments of immigrants. For children of immigrants, who have no strong attachments either to their old or new countries, extremist ideology often fills the void.

In practice, Steyn warns, Europe is trending toward societies that are not so much multicultural as bicultural–split between a growing minority that embraces Muslim discipline and identity, and a bewildered, anxious, aging population that does not. Bicultural societies are rarely stable.

Europeans scoff at the idea that Iraq could become a pluralist democracy, but then imagine that European social democracy can ensure happy harmony with people fired by some of the same zeal as Iraqi “insurgents.”

You think Kurds and Arabs, Sunni and Shia are incompatible? What do you call a jurisdiction split between post-Christian secular gay potheads and anti-whoring anti-sodomite anti-everything-you-dig Islamists? If Kurdistan’s an awkward fit in Iraq, how well does Pornostan fit in the Islamic Republic of Holland?

Sure, Western decadence has an appeal, even for children of Algerian immigrants in the banlieux of Paris. But restless young people may well combine the worst aspects of Western decadence with the worst impulses of Islamist extremism: “Whether in turbans or gangsta threads, just as Communism was in its day, so Islam is today’s identity of choice for the world’s disaffected.”

A reform of Islam? “What if the reform has already taken place and jihadism is it?” Steyn puts the challenge very sharply: “Those who call for a Muslim reformation in the spirit of the Christian Reformation ignore the obvious flaw in the analogy–that Muslims have the advantage of knowing (unlike Luther and Calvin) where reform in Europe ultimately led: the banishment of God to the margins of society.”

In some places, gradual but relentless accommodation to the new culture will steer societies along a path where “there’s very little difference between living under Exquisitely Refined Multicultural Sensitivity and sharia.” Elsewhere, there may be resistance, triggering street violence or political upheaval. Amidst worsening economic trends and increasing instability, more and more educated young people will seek their futures in more promising countries–hastening the dissolution of the old society. So Steyn foresees “societal collapse, fascist revivalism, and then the long Eurabian night, not over the entire Continent but over significant parts of it. And those countries that manage to escape the darkness will do so only after violent convulsions of their own.”

Even if that nightmarish vision is too extreme, the strategic point remains: No matter what rhetoric our State Department adopts, European nations are not going to be confident, capable partners for American international aims. Would France help us thwart the nuclear plans of the mullahs in Tehran? The “quai d’Orsay can live with Iran becoming the second Muslim nuclear power. As things stand, France is on course to be the third.”

Steyn still expresses hope for the effort in Iraq, and not just as a way of emphasizing the hopelessness of coming conflicts in Europe. In many Muslim countries, people may think about their own future more soberly or reasonably, because they’re not viewing things through the perspective of mounting conflict with hedonists across town. Meanwhile, Russia, China, and Japan face their own demographic crises. The utter incapacity of international institutions will discourage smaller countries from thinking about anything more than their own immediate interests. So on Steyn’s telling, we are heading to an era of ongoing crisis, an era when the world cannot bring itself even to constrain the spread of weapons of mass destruction, much less focus concentrated condemnation on such “depravities” as suicide bombing.

The United States really will be “alone” in fundamental ways. It is the one nation in the developed world that is not facing demographic decline, the one nation for which the challenge of Islamist extremism remains largely external. What is out there, of course, can come crashing into the heart of American cities as it did on 9/11. And meanwhile, we continue pouring billions of petrodollars into the coffers of Middle Eastern regimes that still seem content to recycle that immense stream of wealth into extremist religion in Europe and around the world.

Steyn offers little in the way of policy prescriptions. He argues that American self-confidence owes much to our tradition of keeping government in bounds and encouraging the self-reliance of individuals. So he ends up warning that proposals for emulating European welfare states–as in extending government guarantees for health care–will have momentous strategic consequences. Maybe. But I’m not sure invoking the imperatives of national defense in every debate about domestic spending or regulation is really a good way to get people to take defense concerns more seriously.

Steyn’s main point remains. The collapse of existing political structures in Europe will require not just a reassessment of strategic calculations–NATO and all that. It will require a very considerable psychological adjustment. A calm and reasonable future is not, after all, guaranteed by the advance of technology, by the expansion of trade, or by the softening of old ideologies in the advanced countries.

The threat is not that a new caliphate will rule the world, but that the world will revert to medieval chaos and wretchedness. The United States certainly can’t expect to restore the world as it was in the 1990s, but it also can’t pretend that everything will be fine if we let history take its own path. We may find unexpected allies, including some in those Muslim countries that don’t want to be dominated by jihadist visions. But whatever we do, we can’t assume that old allies in Europe will be there for us.

Steyn’s conclusion is not a joke: “To see off the new Dark Ages will be tough and demanding. The alternative will be worse.”

Jeremy Rabkin teaches international law at Cornell and is author, most recently, of Law without Nations? Why Constitutional Government Requires Sovereign States (Princeton).