Murdering Freedom

Last week, the Italian interior minister, Giuliano Amato, hosted a conference in Rome on “Islam and Integration.” Italy, one of Europe’s southern border states, has 1 million Muslims out of a population of 58 million people. Illegal immigrants arrive in Italy in huge numbers. According to a recent survey, the country could count almost 7 million Muslims by the end of the next decade.

The Italians, however, have a way of dealing with illegal immigrants. They regularly transform them into legal residents by granting them official papers. Since 1988 Italy has organized six amnesties for illegal aliens — the last one in 2006, when 500,000 people were given permission to stay. Most of them leave Italy shortly afterward. Since Italy belongs to the European Union and since the EU adheres to the principle of the free movement of persons, an amnesty gives immigrants the right to freely enter all EU member states. Italy allows the immigrants in so that they move out, to EU nations with more generous welfare systems.

Mr. Amato, a former prime minister of Italy as well as the former vice president of the EU’s Constitutional Convention, boasts that his country has few problems with Muslims. They are well integrated in Italian society, he told the conference. The Socialist politician downplayed phenomena such as violence toward women by Muslim immigrants. Mr. Amato said wife beating is also customary among indigenous Italians in Sicily — a comment which infuriated Sicilian politicians.

One of those attending last week’s conference was the Dutch integration minister, Ella Vogelaar. Like Italy, the Netherlands has a population of about 1 million Muslims (of a total 16.5 million people). Upon her return home, Mrs. Vogelaar gave an interview to Trouw, a Dutch Protestant newspaper. She said that Muslim immigrants must feel appreciated. According to the minister, the Dutch have to help “Islam take root in the Netherlands.”

Mrs. Vogelaar, a member of the Dutch Labor Party, told Trouw that the Netherlands, while so far a country of Judeo-Christian traditions, is gradually becoming a “Judeo-Christiano-Islamic” society. She clearly considers this process beneficial, although, she added, it “may still take a couple of centuries” before it is fully achieved. Mrs. Vogelaar is saying nothing new. Every visitor to major West European cities can see that the continent’s urban areas are rapidly turning Islamic — a dramatic process, which, if not stopped, will take only decades, not centuries, to achieve.

Mrs. Vogelaar's dishonesty lies in her feigned appreciation for the Judeo-Christian roots of Dutch society, to which she would now add a third religious component. The Dutch Socialists played a prominent role in transforming the Netherlands into a radically secularist society, from which God is absent and where people who are reluctant to perform same-sex “marriages” cannot find jobs in the civil service.

The Dutch Labor Party did everything in its power to undermine Judeo-Christian religions, but it is today the vehicle of the most radical Islamization. This has nothing to do with appreciation for yet another religion, but rather with the fact that, like secularism, Islamism is an enemy of Judeo-Christian values.

The European left appreciates Islamism not because it is a religion, but because it is a totalitarian political ideology. The Dutch Labor Party is catering to Islamist extremists even to the point of silencing party members like the Muslim apostate Ehsan Jami.

The same hypocrisy is displayed by Mr. Amato. He says that Europe will benefit from what religious Muslims can offer. However, Mr. Amato was the vice president of the European Convention, which vetoed any reference to God in the preamble to the EU Constitution. Sadly, there are more politicians like Mr. Amato and Mrs. Vogelaar. Take Patrick Janssens, the Socialist mayor of Antwerp, a city just south of the Dutch border. His administration sacks civil servants who warn about a takeover of Antwerp’s mosques by Islamist groups, and has them replaced by members of these very Islamist groups. Last week, Mr. Janssens welcomed international homosexual activists to Antwerp, which he likes to style the “gay capital of Europe.”

Does it make sense to cater simultaneously to radical homosexuals and Islamists? It does not, unless Europe's Christian heritage is your enemy.

Meanwhile, a German appeals court convicted a man for calling abortion “murder.” Klaus Günter Annen, a father of two, runs a Web site where he asks people to pray for “doctors planning an abortion murder.” On a separate Web page he lists German gynecologists who perform abortions. Last Thursday, the Oberlandesgericht in Karlsruhe stated that since abortionists do nothing illegal, no one is allowed — not even in an indirect way — to call them murderers.

It is often argued that Adolf Hitler was only able to grab power in Germany in 1933 because freedom and democracy were already dead. Soon, the secularist totalitarianism in contemporary Europe will be replaced by an Islamist totalitarianism. The Islamists will not need to kill freedom and democracy. The latter have already been murdered.

This piece was originally published in The Washington Times on July 18, 2007 .

@ Yitzhak

A very interesting post,Yitzhak.I believe it deserves a direct reponse from Mr Belien,and I for one hope you get it.


I like Mr. Belien’s writing’s very much but few things, which are factually not correct. I am not sure either Mr. Belien was unaware of that or perhaps he didn’t check the facts and just reported from he said she said kind of thing.

I think I am bit more aware of ground realities in Italy then most people who never lived in Italy. There was no amnesty for illegal immigrants in 2006 and it’s absolutely falsehood to say Italians granted permisso di seggorno to 500,000 illegal immigrants in 2006.

In 2006 Prodi Government accepted 175,000 applications from immigrants not living in Italy although many had submitted the applications even thou they were in Italy illegally later they raised the numbers to about 350,000 total number of applications submitted were more then 650,000. As of yet Italian government had not granted any staying permits to the people who submitted the applications due to the fact Bossi-Fini legislation passed In 2002 required every immigrant to leave Italy and go back to country of origin before they are granted stay permit. The legislation is very complicated and chance of gaining status like that is less them 15%. Therefore very few take risk to go back and wait. All of these applications are still in legal limbo. Current government is trying to amend Bossi-Fini law in order to grant stay permits to closer to 1 million currently staying in Italy illegally. But Amato-Ferrero amendment is still in parliament and future of that bill is not clear coz parliament haven’t decided when they will vote on it.

Last amnesty was granted by Berlusconi Government in 2002 and I must mentioned the so called Anti-Immigration Lega di Nord and Allianzia Nationale were both part of that government. As matter of fact that amnesty bill was crafted by Umbarto Bossi leader of Northern League and Franco Fini leader of National Alliance.

As far about Welfare system and moving out to another EU country from Italy I am very doubtful of this claim. Just few simple reasons an immigrant who holds permisso di seggorno of Italy cannot obtain Welfare benefits from any other EU country. To get Welfare benefits an immigrants must be an Asylum seeker in that country or must be legal resident of that country a person holding permisso di seggorno doesn’t fall in any of above-mention categories further more Italy is linked with SSII and EURODAC systems. Which makes it almost impossible for an Immigrant holding permisso di seggorno to claim welfare benefit elsewhere.

More then 65% of immigrants in Italy are from Eastern European countries.

There is immigration problem in Europe and I admire your efforts to raise awareness of such problems. But I would encourage you not to make your arguments on shaky grounds. There are Millions of legitimate reasons to make a solid case.

Italian amnesty

Thanks, Yitzhak, for the correction. I do not speak Italian. My source for the 2006 amnesty of illegal immigrants in Italy was the Brussels newspaper De Morgen of July 25 last year, which said that Italy was about to grant residence permits to 517,000 illegal aliens in 2006.

De Morgen wrote (in Dutch):
In een breuk met het tijdperk van ex-premier Berlusconi heeft de nieuwe linkse regering van Romano Prodi eind vorige week besloten om dit jaar 347.000 sans-papiers méér te regulariseren dan het quotum van 170.000 dat onder Berlusconi was vastgelegd. Daardoor krijgen dit jaar in totaal 517.000 illegaal in Italië verblijvende werknemers een verblijfsvergunning.

Obviously De Morgen, a leftist newspaper (our equivalent of The Guardian), is not a reliable source.


Islam's Contribution to Europe's (illegal) Abortion Debate

Last Thursday,the Oberlandesgericht in Karlsruhe stated that since abortionists do nothing illegal,no one is allowed - not even in an indirect way - to call them murderers.


No one? Does that include those "religious Muslims" who Mr Amato insists have so much to contribute to post modern European society,or do they get a pass on this one,and if so,why?