In challenging my article about Marine Le Pen’s election loss, Michael van der Galien accuses me of “overlooking one rather important detail: the Front National is simply a horrendous party” with a dark past. Yes, it is; the media haven’t been shy about reporting on this subject; everybody who cared about this election has already heard every last particular, and I didn’t see any need to go through it all one more time.
Nor am I unaware of the party’s essentially socialist platform, its unfortunate support for what Galien quite rightly calls “France’s untenable and unaffordable welfare state.” Presumably by way of summing up my thesis, Galien writes:
Yes, yes, I’m aware that we all have to celebrate the rise of populism, and yes, to some degree those parties certainly have an important role to play in modern Europe. Even if you disagree with Le Pen’s policy ideas, you can at least respect her role as a battering ram against political correctness.
No, my concern isn’t with supporting populism per se. I am no fan either of the National Front (FN) or of Ms. Le Pen. My overwhelming interest is, quite simply, in standing up against the Islamization of Europe.
Yes, I wish Le Pen had more sensible views on the French welfare state; I wish her party didn’t have such an ugly history. But there were two choices in this run-off election, and only one of them was promising to strive to keep France from becoming overwhelmed by Islam.
Le Pen’s opponent, Macron, has said nothing to indicate that he considers France’s Islamization a problem. On the contrary, if anything he’s an outspoken enthusiast for the Religion of Peace. According to former Le Monde journalist Yves Mamou, “Macron’s political movement has largely been infiltrated by Muslim Brotherhood militants.” Like the politicians in Stockholm who have done so much to drag Sweden down the drain, Macron has denied that his own country has a culture of its own that is worth defending: “French culture does not exist, there is a culture in France and it is diverse.”
Last October, after terrorist attacks in Paris and Nice, Macron, according to Reuters, “said…that France had sometimes made mistakes in unfairly targeting Muslims, suggesting the country could be less stringent in applying its rules on secularism.” Reuters quoted Macron verbatim: “No religion is a problem in France today.”
Six months later, after a jihadist murdered a policeman on the Champs Élyssés, Macron gave a TV interview in which, as Gavin Mortimer noted in the Spectator, he “couldn’t bring himself to utter the word ‘Islamic’ until the 14th minute of his interview, and then it was in the context of what has been happening in Syria.” After briefly “offering his condolences to the dead policeman,” Macron “spent most of his time discussing education, tax and whether there is such a thing as French culture. Not really, concluded Macron, who said the richness of France lies in its diversity.”
Intimately connected with this refusal to criticize either Islam or Islamization is Macron’s strong loyalty to the European Union – which has steadily drained power from the people of Europe while encouraging disastrous immigration policies that have never been put to a public vote. So high is Macron on the EU that when he stepped out at his campaign headquarters to celebrate his election victory, the music playing was not La Marseillaise but the EU anthem, Beethoven’s Ode to Joy.
Galien writes: “It must give American ‘nationalists’ a great feeling of superiority to simply declare that Europeans have surrendered to political correctness and have forgotten who they are.” Since Galien is replying to my article, I assume he is suggesting here that I, personally, take some kind of pleasure in the political correctness of too many European voters and their failure to protect their countries from being overwhelmed by an alien and hostile culture.
On the contrary, I live in Europe, love the continent, and am genuinely grieved to see what has happened to it during the past twenty years. The danger that has been invited here dramatically affects my own life and security, and it will have an even more critical impact on the lives of my very young and beloved nephews, who will grow up in the Europe that this continent’s irresponsible elites have created.
For me, the bottom line here is that Macron is one of those elites, who gives every sign of wanting to continue – if not expand – the influx of Muslims into France, and Le Pen is not. Period. In my view, every other issue has to take second place to this one, because if this issue isn’t addressed firmly and quickly, none of the others will matter in the least.
This, plainly, is the real core of Galien’s argument with me: I consider the Islamization of Europe a critical and urgent problem; he does not – a fact that comes through clearly in his March 2016 interview with a Dutch website in which he discusses his conversion to Islam (he is married to a Turkish woman and lives in Izmir), praises the “beauty of the Qur’an” (which he found, on his first encounter with it, “almost hypnotic to read”), and in general displays all the zeal of a convert.