Shootings in France at a satirical magazine and a kosher grocery store sparked political leaders from more than 40 countries to join millions of French residents in massive marches through the streets of Paris in solidarity against terrorism.
In Germany, the marches were a little more pointed – not just in opposition to terrorism, but against what people in many parts of Europe are calling the “Islamization” of the continent.
George Friedman has been dissecting these events.
On whether the European multinational, multicultural experiment has failed:
“Yeah. I never thought it got off the ground. It was the most perfect institution for an utterly prosperous time you can imagine. It just has no way to share adversity. It has no common core, if you will, that says we Europeans owe each other. Because for a thousand years these countries have been enemies of each other.”
On the so-called “Islamic Issue”:
“The idea of the complete outsider: doesn’t fit into our culture, doesn’t speak our language, doesn’t share our faith, doesn’t share our history. And then there’s the fact that many of the immigrants who went to Europe went there simply to make money and not to make a new life for themselves – they didn’t intend, necessarily, to stay. So think of what’s happening with the Islamic terrorists as part of an additional element to what is already, not quite an explosive, but a dangerous situation.”
On what it means to be ‘European:’
“In the 1920s and ’30s, the issue was, is a Jew really a German? That same question is being asked now. The way I look at it, the ‘Jewish question’ was always a question of what is the German nation. The question being asked about Muslims is really, ‘what is the European nation now?’”
On the next “flashpoint”:
“Greece is having elections at the end of this month and the leading party is an anti-Europeanist party that wants to, or has spoken of, defaulting on its debts to Europe and withdrawing from the European Union. If Greece withdraws and puts up trade barriers, what is to keep other countries from doing that?”