IN THE WAKE OF PARIS ATTACKS, EUROPE REASSESSES ITS OPEN BORDERS ...December 7, 2015
In last Thursdy's News and Views from the Nefarium, I suggested that Europe was reassessing its domestic policies regarding the refugee crisis, as a component of a vast reassessment of its anti-terrorism policy and commitments in the wake of the sad attacks in Paris. This assessment, I suggested, was a component in a wider reassessment of the real epicenters of international Muslim terrorism, with one of the epicenters centered upon Saudi Arabia. We do not need to rehearse what that country stands for, nor what its domestic policies are like. We all know them. The German BND, I noted, had fingered Saudi Arabia in and its increasingly rash interventions in the Middle East, and the LA Times headline article regarding the recent sad events and shootings in San Bernardino Califoria highlighted the Saudi connection. All this, I suggested, means that there may be a fundamental sea change underway in the west's, and particularly the USA's relationships with that country.
But in the wake of the Paris attacks, I also suggested that there would have to be a complete Europe-wide assessment of its domestic policy regarding refugees from Islamic countries, both to preserve the EU itself, and to head off the growing populist revolt from Britons, Germans, Swedes, French, Italians, Spanish, and basicaly any other European nation that sees an implicit threat to its national and European - and yes, secularized Christian - culture and identity. That, according to this article shared by many of you, appears to be underway:
The key paragraph here I think is this:
The Schengen area is a central pillar of the European Union, allowing for the establishment of a borderless Europe, where 26 countries have abolished passport and other border controls. However, the outer ring of the Schengen zone has been found wanting, with hundreds of thousands of people crossing into Schengen unchecked.
Why is this key? I suspect that when one reads between the lines, the answer is obvious: the crisis is going to be used to establish Europe-wide external border controls, with a goal to stem and eventually halt the influx of refugees. In other words, the internal borders of Europe, say, between Belgium and the Netherlands, will remain open, but getting into any European nation from abroad will be subject to border controls. The crisis is being used as a crisis of opportunity to cement the European Union even more tightly together, and, one might aver, to create an even more sharply defined sense of "European-ness" and "non-European-ness".