When, seven months ago, I finished writing my book, "The West's Last Chance: Will We Win the Clash of Civilizations?" (Regnery Publishing, Washington, D.C., Sept.11, 2005), London had not been attacked by Islamist terrorists, the Tate Museum in London had not removed an art exhibit because it offended radical Muslim sensitivities, and France had not yet experienced the explosion of violence from elements of its Muslim population in its "no-go zone" communities.
The fact that I predicted all those events in my book was not the result of clairvoyance. It was merely the result of a normally intelligent person looking at the facts, and their rather obvious implications, without the blinding effect of a politically correct mentality.
After studying what the radical Islamists were saying and doing in Europe, I opened my book with a scenario of a London Islamist terrorist attack and an Islamist demand for removing offensive European artwork from museums. Then I wrote: "Muslim parts of Paris, Rotterdam and other European cities are already labeled no-go zones for ethnic Europeans, including armed policemen. As the Muslim populations -- and their level of cultural and religious assertiveness -- expand, European geography will be 'reclaimed' for Islam. Europe will become pockmarked with increasing numbers of little Fallujahs that will be effectively impenetrable by anything much short of a U.S. Marine division."
"Thus, as the … fundamentalism expands into European (and perhaps to a lesser extent American) Muslim communities, not only will Islamic cultural aggression against a seemingly passive and apologetic indigenous population increase, but the zone of safety and support for the actual terrorists will expand as well." ("The West's Last Chance," pp 55-56).
Now, two weeks into the appalling explosion of violence in Europe (and the equally appalling French governmental passivity in the face of such violence), most of the world's media treats this huge event as the third or fourth story on the evening news. From the BBC and CNN to the major newspapers of the world, the story is underreported and mis-reported. On Monday, the Washington Post was still not reporting the story on the front page.
The big networks have consistently given only headline coverage to the story. I was in Russia last week (lecturing and doing media on my book) and actually timed the BBC coverage of the French Muslim violence story at about a minute and a half, while in the same broadcast the post-Pakistani earthquake relief story was given over 15 minutes. CNN International proportioned their coverage similarly.
Soon, the violence of the last two weeks will be seen as the opening of an event of world-historic significance.
Even when the current violence subsides -- even when the French government attempts to placate their radical Muslim population by offering more welfare benefits and programs -- it will not be the end of the story. A new benchmark of the possible will have been established. The flaccid and timorous response of the French government will only increase the radicalizing Muslim elements' contempt for Western cultural weakness.
As Paul Belien, writing from Brussels this weekend observed: "It is not anger that is driving the insurgents to take it out on the secularized welfare states of Old Europe. It is hatred. Hatred caused not by injustice suffered, but stemming from a sense of superiority. The "youths" do not blame the French, they despise them."
As Mr. Belien reports, look what a typical radical Muslim leader, Dyab Abou Jahjah, the leader of the Brussels-based Arab European League says: "We reject integration when it leads to assimilation. I don't believe in a host country. We are at home here and whatever we consider our culture to be also belongs to our chosen country. I'm in my country, not the country of the Westerners."
Or consider the statement of a German radical Islamists that I recounted in my book (based on a National Public Radio news story broadcast): "Germany is an Islamic country. Islam is in the home, in schools. Germans will be outnumbered. We [Muslims] will say what we want. We'll live how we want. It's outrageous that Germans demand we speak their language. Our children will have our language, our laws, our culture ("The West's Last Chance," page 75).
This is not about Muslim poverty (the Islamist terrorists who hit London all had good jobs. Mohammed Atta, who struck us in New York, was well-born and came from a prosperous family). It is about radical Islamist self-confidence and contempt for the West. And, it is about Western weakness.
We should not sneer at French weakness, but rather should encourage them to re-find their strength. It is a strength we will need to find in ourselves, as well. Vive la France!