Wednesday, June 12, 2013

12-Jun-13: As Islamist numbers grow, Europe's future is unlikely to ever again be what it was

The cartoons irritated their sensibilities: Salafist Islamists rioting in Solingen, Germany, May 2012 [Image Source]
Germany's domestic intelligence agency, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (in German, the BfV), yesterday issued its annual report on domestic extremism. Der Spiegel says it shows
a surge in support for Islamists and growth in the number of influential neo-Nazi music groups... 
It says Germany's largest Islamist organization, the Milli Görüs, and Hezbollah Germany, now count on some 42,550 members. Last year's tally was 38,080.

Members and supporters of the German Salafist movement saw the sharpest overall rise. Germany's Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich, in issuing a banning order against three German Salafist organizationssaid in March that:
"Salafism, as represented in the associations that were banned today, is incompatible with our free democratic order. The groups aim to change our society in an aggressive, belligerent way so that democracy would be replaced by a Salafist system, and the rule of law replaced by Sharia law."
Salafism, originating in Saudi Arabia and highly influential there, holds that democracy must be destroyed and replaced with an Islamic form of government. While Salafists represent only a small part of Germany's 4.3 million Moslems, they have clout and know how to use it. They launched a very public campaign called Project READ! in April 2012, in which 25 million copies of the Koran were handed to every household in Germany, Austria and Switzerland for free..
The campaign to place a Koran in every German household is being spearheaded by a Rhineland-based Salafist, Ibrahim Abou-Nagie, a Palestinian hate preacher who leads a radical Islamic group called "The True Religion" [Die Wahre Religion]. In September 2011, German public prosecutors launched an investigation into Abou-Nagie after he called for violence against non-believers in videos posted on the Internet. In his sermons, Abou-Nagie glamorizes Islamic martyrdom and says that Islamic Sharia law is above the German Constitution. He also says that music should be prohibited, homosexuals should be executed, and adulterers should be stoned... In May 2012... more than 500 Salafists attacked German police with bottles, clubs, stones and other weapons in the city of Bonn, to protest cartoons they said were "offensive". ["Germany vs. Radical Islamists", Soeren Kern - March 15, 2013]
For their well-heeled Saudi Arabian backers/funders/leaders, the cost of the high-profile stunt was probably mere sauerkraut. But the significance of the German Salafists' ability to operate freely and attract media attention while delivering a resonating message of hatred and calling for the overthrow of democratic government and conventional law and order has implications that the German authorities have noticed. 

Extremist neo-Nazi music bands also do well, without giving away books. Today's Germany has 182 of them, but the report says they "held significantly fewer concerts than in the previous year" which probably indicates something.

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