The bailed-out Greeks are still broke. Now their islands are flooded with a horde of migrants from the Middle East and Africa.
Spain, Portugal, and Italy are almost in the same boat. Their shared Mediterranean traditions — and vulnerabilities — are far different from those of northern Europe’s more affluent nations.
Given the triad of history, geography and culture, it is no accident that Europe on the Mediterranean is being hit first by Third World immigration heading northward. Southern Europe always seems to owe money to the north.
Eastern Europeans are angry that the EU tries to override their own individual immigration laws. Nearly a million immigrants, most of them young male Muslims, now flock to the borders of Eastern European countries. From the Baltic states to the former Yugoslavia, these nations for 500 years were caught in the meat grinder when East fought West in Eastern Europe, the battered sea wall against which the tsunami of the Islamic Ottoman Empire finally crashed and receded.
The British always counted on the English Channel to separate them from the passions of their mainland European cousins — namely France and Germany. Now, migrants hop bullet trains under the channel to reach the promised land of British entitlements — as the United Kingdom tries to back away from the European Union.
As a result of the continent-wide chaos, millions of Europeans are now furious with the European Union. Its inflexible euro and vast bureaucracy seem not just to override but often destroy local customs and traditions.
In truth, the EU exists in name only. In reality, it is largely run by the German government and its bankers, who decide how a debtor like Greece will or will not stay in the EU, or how many migrants Europe collectively should let in.
Because of Germany’s unique 144-year history — having been at the heart of three wars in Europe — its neighbors have been happy to prosper in its reflected glory of pacifism and prosperity. Germany’s population and economy remain by far the largest in Europe.
It is not the bureaucracy of the European Union that has kept the peace since World War II — the longest war-free period in Europe since the fall of Napoleon. The EU did not exist until 1993, nearly a half-century after the end of World War II. The euro monetary union is not even two decades old.
What, then, has kept Europe quiet?
The answers are three artifacts of World War II that are rarely mentioned, but should be. None have anything to do with the EU.
One reason is American-led NATO. The treaty organization channeled national militaries into a central armed force led by an American policeman that never quite left its beat after the end of World War II.
As originally envisioned, the alliance really did keep the Soviet Union out of Europe, America in it — and the Germans down. Should NATO disband, European nations will be free to arm and sign treaties with any power they choose. We know how that worked out between 1870 and 1945.
The second keeper of peace is the peculiar role of nuclear weapons on the European continent. Only the United Kingdom and France have nuclear missiles. But the strongest and largest nation, Germany, does not — for a variety of reasons dealing with the postwar rehabilitation of the defeated and discredited Nazi state.
Should Britain and France ever give up their nuclear weapons, as the new head of British Labor Party has advocated, or should Germany (or others) go nuclear, then watch tensions and conflicts rise in a manner unseen since the end of World War II.
Third is the war guilt of Germany, a still-powerful force 70 years after the defeat of Hitler.
The destruction of Europe, the Holocaust, and the 60 million dead that followed from Germany’s invasion of Poland in 1939 are the ghosts that still haunt Germans, most of whom were not yet born when the war ended.
Guilt accounts for why Germany lends money that it knows will not be paid back. A desire for atonement (along with labor shortages) explains why it welcomes in thousands of young male Islamic migrants with minimal background checks and with no real idea how to integrate them rapidly into German society.
Amid rising ethnic tensions, hordes of migrants and massive debt, Europeans can keep or junk the mess of the European Union and the inflexible euro as they please, without much worry that they will revert back to their bloody past.
But they should leave the sleeping dogs of Europe alone. They need NATO. They must not tamper with the present nuclear club of Europe. And they should tread lightly around the Germans’ strange and sometimes unpredictable expressions of penance.
Otherwise, what follows could be frightening.
© 2015 Tribune Media Services, Inc.
19 thoughts on “The Three Crucial Factors to Maintaining the Peace in Europe”
My concern about the EU goes in a different direction.
We now see Russian combat forces in both Iraq and Syria, and Russia and Iran are making common cause against the west.
I can see Putin and his new allies using Migration as a weapon: The EU has been unable to cope with the waves of Muslims moving north, Saudi Arabia has generously offered to build 200 mosques in Germany, the Muslims in Europe are not being assimilated, the birthrates of the European countries are well below replacement level (except for the Muslims, who are out-reproducing Europeans a couple of times over).
I can well imagine Putin trying to make the entire EU into a vassal state: “Hey EU! Nice European tradition you guys have! It’d be a shame if it were diluted or destroyed by a huge influx of impoverished Muslims, wouldn’t it?”
All he has to do is to prevent a solution in the Middle East that would motivate its peoples to stay at home.
President Obama promised to change the country, and he did. But in doing so, he’s changed the world. He’s the most consequential leader since Stalin and Hitler.
In Albert Speer’s memoirs, take out his ball-bearing factories and the Nazi war grinds out quickly. Overlord Merkel rules a kingdom of tourist’s and welfare-seeker’s—Vlad’s prize is elsewhere, and in bloody-good time, the E.U. slays itself. The E.U. is a child sucking mostly off the energy-teat of Russia and the Middle-East—-a monumental Achilles-heel. With that in mind, Russia’s western district is being Fortified, the space created in the Ukraine and Crimea is for Defensive purposes. With Russia’s western back covered, It’s straight down to “Russo-Georgian war” territory, and then straight down to ally Iran. Syria is being colonized as a major Russian military base—9.5 million Syrians have been displaced, half the population. Iraqi military runs away from ISIS, in what’s left of Iraq. Egypt shifted towards Russia, Turkey towards China. Russia’s liquid production has plateaued, in good time will sink, one-trick Vlad needs a new bag of tricks. Europe’s descent into a third-world delight is written, if the Middle-East falls under nefarious control. What to do is clear, the will to do it is not. Calling overlord Merkel—-the E.U. needs a Winston Churchill makeover.
The truth is that the EU was doomed to begin with. The structure of the modern day EU is eerily similar to a very young United Stated during the time period from 1781 – 1778. During that time, the United States operated under what is called the Articles of Confederation. It set up a Central government but it had no power to tax, or enforce laws. All it could do was issue a single currency. The structure of the EU is such that they lack the authority and enforcement to punish member states that violate the treaty rules. However, it is important to keep in mind that the EU was formed as a monetary union to share a single currency. This can be attributed to European’s divergent political views and reluctance to give up their sovereign power to a central government. And therein lies the problem…
“The truth is that the EU was doomed to begin with.”
True, but I’d argue irrelevant. The EU puppet masters don’t believe that, or if they do, they will not admit it.
I’d also argue that Vlad might feel he has a score to settle with the west . . . in other words, given his position of strength and the west’s continued and successful efforts to demonstrate weakness, he might just indulge his desire to see the empire of the old Soviet Union not only recreated, but expanded. He did, after all, describe the fall of the Soviet Union as the greatest tragedy of the 20th C (or words to that effect).
Why wait for collapse to happen when you can indulge your hate for the west and be the agent of that collapse?
You say “The EU puppet masters don’t believe that, or if they do, they will not admit it.”
Ah but it is relevant even if the “puppet masters” don’t acknowledge it. Focus on this:
“The real advantage which truth has, consists in this, that when an opinion is true, it may be extinguished once, twice, or many times, but in the course of ages there will generally be found persons to rediscover it, until some one of its reappearances falls on a time when from favourable circumstances it escapes persecution until it has made such head as to withstand all subsequent attempts to suppress it.” – John Stuart Mill
“Saudi Arabia has generously offered to build 200 mosques in Germany”
The likelihood of the relatively ethnically pure nation of Germany wanting enough Muslims to fill 200 mosques is between nil and none. Ethnologist Frank Salter writes “Relatively homogeneous societies invest more in public goods, indicating a higher level of public altruism. For example, the degree of ethnic homogeneity correlates with the government’s share of gross domestic product as well as the average wealth of citizens. Case studies of the United States, Africa and South-East Asia find that multi-ethnic societies are less charitable and less able to cooperate to develop public infrastructure. A recent multi-city study of municipal spending on public goods in the United States found that ethnically or racially diverse cities spend a smaller portion of their budgets and less per capita on public services than do the more homogenous cities.”
Dr. Byron Roth in his 2010 book “The Perils of Diversity: Immigration and Human Nature” states that the debate over immigration policy in the Western world is critically uninformed by the sciences of evolutionary biology and psychology. In his work he examines the intersection between culture, genetics, IQ and society. He states, “Prominent among the fundamental features of human nature is a natural bias toward one’s own kind, making harmony in multi-ethnic societies problematic at best. All historical evidence indicates that “diversity” is not a strength, and that blood is thicker than water. Ignoring such biological realities leads to failed social experiments that may cause great human suffering.”
I agree with much of your post. But I’d like to comment on this: “The likelihood of the relatively ethnically pure nation of Germany wanting enough Muslims to fill 200 mosques is between nil and none.”
I could have made my point about Saudi Arabia offering 200 mosques much more clearly. I was thinking of Islamic countries finding ways to coerce and entice European countries to add Muslims. But as I read what I wrote, that 200 mosques reference is a non-sequitur.
I was thinking of Qaddafi’s observation: “We have 50 million Muslims in Europe. There are signs that Allah will grant Islam victory in Europe—without swords, without guns, without conquest—will turn it into a Muslim continent within a few decades.”
True, Qaddifi’s is not entirely an accurate representation of the real world (most of the European muslims are in Russia, I believe), but it does hint at a goal if not a strategy, and if the migration wasn’t a conscious strategy to begin with, it could certainly be turned into one.
Let’s cut to the chase. Dr. Byron Roth in his 2010 book “The Perils of Diversity: Immigration and Human Nature” states that the debate over immigration policy in the Western world is critically uninformed by the sciences of evolutionary biology and psychology. In his work he examines the intersection between culture, genetics, IQ and society. He states, “Prominent among the fundamental features of human nature is a natural bias toward one’s own kind, making harmony in multi-ethnic societies problematic at best. All historical evidence indicates that “diversity” is not a strength, and that blood is thicker than water. Ignoring such biological realities leads to failed social experiments that may cause great human suffering.”
A quick look at the historical record shows that conflict between tribal groups has been common throughout human history. Cooperative defense by tribal peoples is universal and ancient and it is bound to have boosted the genetic fitness of those who acted to further the interests of their group. Under such circumstances it would be odd indeed if natural selection did not mold the human mind to be predisposed to ethnocentrism. Numerous papers and the academic literature have come out supporting the view that humans are ethnocentric and that such altruistic dispositions as sharing, loyalty, caring, and even motherly love, are exhibited primarily and intensively within in-groups rather than toward a universal “we” in disregard for one’s community.
Many intellectuals conclude that the American experiment was destined to be a failure, grounded as it was in egalitarian, Enlightenment nonsense.
A point of clarification. Vlad wouldn’t necessarily have to implement the threat I outlined. That threat could be a version of the doctrine of “A Fleet In Being.”
The mere possibility of implementing it could cause the EU bigwigs to quake in their boots.
Better to appease him and insure Peace in Our Time than challenge him.
Remember who has to make this decision: is there anyone out there who believes the EU leaders will do anything other than cave to a plausible threat, given the US doesn’t have their back now and can’t be counted on to have it in the future? ((Thank you American voters! You’ve shown you can elect a President who could turn in an instant to undermine any longstanding friendships we have!)
This article should be translate in french, german, italian, spanish, swedish ect………….
Trés bon article sur l ´europe Monsieur Hanson.
“” Xi offers way to build new model of major-country relationship with US.”” Must be tough in China when the plastered on smile of a Dictator is absent. Xi calls up the name “Thucydides” and more understanding and trust. Xi heads back to China to green-light more massive first-strike military build-out and island building, all on the backs of his poisoned and enslaved people. The unwinnable fight in the Afterworld is waiting, mortal leaders—–the Soul was sold for trinkets.
In light of the present looming nightmares in Europe perhaps some of their citizens who thought so highly of the ‘hope and change’ promised in the last couple of U.S. elections are really ‘hoping’ for some serious ‘change’ in the next one.
I agree completely with Frank’s analysis! Heterogeneous societies never survive! Tribalism trumps all!
The Romans found that out they allowed the Visigoths to settle in Roman territory and then gave them citizenship! However, the Romans never assimilated the Visigoths into Roman society and suffered the consequences……..the Visigoths sacked Rome!
Europe is on the brink of being sacked by these Muslim invaders and we are not far behind!
One can only wonder if the present German “war guilt” will ever be replaced by a return to the “good German sword?” Already there are cries in Germany for it to be treated as a “regular country”.
We can only ponder the possibilities.
“”” US on the ropes: China to join Russia zero hedge.””” The last paragraph in the article pretty much sums up the quality of Western leadership, and worst of all, the road the West is now forced to travel on. So easy to see all this coming…………..The good people of the West have been utterly failed by those in power—-Quick, put some fingers in the dam. God help us
Memory-lane, ——– “”” Corker: Obama doctrine means abandoning Middle East.”” Grab your ankles Europe. Dr Hanson’s Four Horsemen. All that focus and resources expended on low-grade B.S.—–meant the West is now wide-open to God knows what.
Victor, the EU was preceded by the European Coal and Steel Community. How do you come to the conclusion that its contol over steel and coal, vital materials for re-armament, did not preserve peace?
How is Europe going to stay together when even the individual countries cannot keep it together? Catalonia wants out of Spain. Northern Italy wants to get rid of the deadweight South. Tomorrow it could be Bavaria deciding that it’s not going to let Merkel resettle the population of Syria in its territory, and secede. Nobody is going to send in an army to prevent anybody from seceding so what’s to keep it from happening?
They can impose sanctions and try to isolate Catalonia, but how long could they possibly keep that up with media coverage that will be showing poor starving children in Barcelona punished for exercising their right to self-determination? These new, wealthy countries that break out will end up with expensive currencies, but they will probably find the tradeoff worthwhile: their own immigration policies, protection of their borders, the end of wealth transfer to the poorer regions of their countries, more faithful national identities that preserve their language, culture and religion.
With nuclear weapons as a null factor and Islam unable to win against the West in small wars, they’ve hit upon moder Europe’s weak point. Demographics. And they are exploiting it by invasion via immigration. Sheer genius, really.