Perhaps the oddest thing about the migrant invasion of Europe is that so many Europeans are adapting, apparently with little protest, to seeing the streets they live and work in militarized.
There is no strategy on the part of European governments to reverse this trend and restore the non-militarized situation that was normal – seemingly permanent – for as much as 70 years. Until the Islamist attacks in 2015, it had been that long since Paris was a war zone.
The difference, in the period May 1940 to August 1944, was that there was a war being fought to liberate Paris from the German occupation. There was a vision for restoring a non-militarized Paris, one in which the streets were roamed by neither enemy marauders nor French soldiers keeping order.
In 2016, there is no such vision or strategy.
The implications for France’s future are appalling. Every day that goes by invites the citizens to develop increased comfort with being in cities patrolled constantly by combat-armed soldiers. That situation is far more dangerous than the migrant invasion itself. The point of Western civilization is to not live with militarized streets: to not have the guns of a national army constantly trained on the people.
But in the biggest cities of Europe, the imagination of the people seems to have grown startlingly dim. The only option they can see is arming someone else to protect them. If they ever knew any history, they apparently have forgotten it. No national government, ever, anywhere, has been trustworthy with that situation. Indeed, in the last quarter millennium, France has been the scene of some of the worst abuses in Western Europe perpetrated by national governments against their people.
Americans need to take note of this.
Battles in the streets
Here are some of the particulars of the current situation. A video has been going viral of an epic battle last week between migrants at the Stalingrad Metro station on the edge of Paris’s 10th Arrondissement. (The 13 November 2015 attacks were launched in the 10th, which has a large Muslim immigrant population.)
The migrants came largely from the makeshift migrant city that had grown up in Calais, on the Channel coast, but was dismantled in the last several months by the French authorities.
According to local reporting, hundreds of migrants – originally from Ethiopia, Sudan, and Pakistan – had come from Calais to form a camp under the shelter of the elevated Stalingrad Metro station. Authorities cleared them out in March, but within a couple of weeks, hundreds of them were back again.
The video shows what the area under the elevated platform looks like. And it shows the battle that broke out the night of 14 April, when the two factions of migrants began attacking each other with whatever came to hand, including long metal bars and what look like parts of shipping crates.
European media misrepresent what’s happening
It doesn’t help the situation that at least some Europeans are lying to themselves about these events.
A volunteer security group was present at the time of the first battle the night of 14 April. (There were two battles that night, with a couple of hours between them.) Local media – people reporting from the scene – said that the volunteers came under attack, along with one of the migrant factions, but did nothing to start the fight. The first punch was reportedly thrown when someone tried to restrain a drunk among the migrants.
The mainstream media, on the other hand, have reported the event in a different way, depicting the security volunteers as thuggish “far-right” vigilantes who started the fight.
We need not romanticize the volunteers to recognize that when migrants are suffered to camp in the streets, living among piles of trash and engaging in massive fights that endanger the public, the root problem here is not the neighborhood volunteers – whatever their political views.
There are no doubt some people I would disagree with, and not want to associate with, among the volunteer groups now stepping forward in parts of Europe to restore some security to the streets. But I’m done accepting the psychotic premise that the desire to secure the streets can only be felt by low-life racists or xenophobes.
The emergency is here
French life is already being transformed, and it is not in any way “extreme” to object vigorously to the direction things are going. If the things happening in Paris were happening my city, objecting to them would look to me like simple common sense.
The “answer” to France’s problem cannot be to fill the city streets with the national army and just keep shuffling more and more warring migrants around from one Metro station to another. Besides being crazy, this solution France is backing into is already transforming France into not-France. Paris with soldiers all over the streets, and no-go zones and migrant war zones, isn’t France. It isn’t Western civilization. It isn’t the point of having the organization of France, the EU, the cultural identity of the Frenchman or the European.
It’s a civilization being deconstructed and left lying in pieces, as something undefined and inexplicable emerges. Far from a new normal being established, what we are seeing is an insanely abnormal and unsustainable.
Yet, writing on Friday about Operation Sentinelle, the military surge into the urban streets of France, the UK Guardian observes that there’s no plan aiming to end this period of civilizational deconstruction by default. Emphasis added:
[Bénédicte Chéron, a Sorbonne historian] said it would be politically difficult now for politicians to move to end the operation and “take the khaki off the street” when the terrorist threat is still there. Many believe France will have troops on home turf for a very long time.
It’s a curious blindness that doesn’t see the truth: at the end of that “very long time,” what is left will not be France.
Too many Americans are afflicted with the same blindness. But those who can see need to speak up for the truth, and not let a similar situation inch its way onto our shores.