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The Shadow of Mein Kampf: Europe’s Struggle With Itself

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“Senior figures in Britain’s Jewish community have cautiously welcomed the republication of Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf for the first time since the Second World War.”

The Observer, December 27, 2015

Dublin, Ireland.

The good news is that one million migrants made it into Europe in 2015. The bad news is that Mein Kampf is back on Germany’s bookshelves. Europe’s struggle with itself continues. A race between universalism (Marx) and paranoia (Hitler) has restarted and it’s not sure which will win this time around. As NATO pushes East in search of lebensraum. And as migrants rush in behind, in search of survival, something must give. Europe must revolutionise or revert to fascist type.

The good news is that Hitler’s beloved white man is running out of biological energy. The bad news is that, in defiance of common sense, the white man refuses to mate with Africans and Asians. Behind Europe’s fake migrant crisis there is Europe’s real demographic crisis. The former crisis being fake because migrants are the solution to the latter crisis.

In the middle of 2015 The Telegraph summed up the facts with these words: “Europe is slowly dying”. And around the same time The Observer echoed this stark message in its headline: “Europe needs many more babies to avert a population disaster”.

According to the United Nations, the World Bank and the CIA, Europe’s birth rate is the lowest in the world. In 2012 it was 9.9 per 1000, compared to 38 per 1000 in sub Saharan Africa (the North American rate was 12.4). As a result Europe’s population growth is almost nonexistent. In 2012 it was 0.2%, compared to Africa’s 2.5% and North America’s 0.9%.

With a rapidly ageing population Europe doesn’t know what to do. While the answer is staring it in the face – immigration from Africa and Asia – Europe is busy creating contradictions that prevent this biological progress. For example: Sweden says yes to immigration, Denmark says no and Germany says yes and no. Germany, the caudillo of Europe, said yes to 800,000 immigrants in 2015, while at the same  time paying a 3 billion euro bribe to Turkey, to get it to close its borders to migrants.

Meanwhile Britain rejects the few refugees in Calais, France. And France itself, probably Europe’s most racially mixed country, hysterically  closed all it’s borders for awhile, after an act of terror in Paris. As for Europe’s Mediterranean, it is busy building a “wall” on the sea in a pointless attempt to stop people migrating from poverty and war. Indeed the Portuguese, Spanish, Italians and Greeks are themselves migrating north alongside the Africans and Asians.

So what’s to be done? How is Europe going to absorb past, present and future migrants – keeping in mind that this absorption isn’t an option but a necessity.

One of Europe’s best books of 2015 points at both the problem and the way forward. In Who is Charlie? Xenophobia and the New Middle Class, the French writer Emmanuel Todd analyses the protests that followed the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris in January 2015. And unsurprisingly he finds a flatulent French fraud, that reflects the greater European farce.

While preaching about the Republic  but imposing neoliberalism, the French elite and their counterparts throughout Europe are opening the doors to the Mein Kampf mentality. As inequality rushes forward together with the euro madness, immigrants are being exposed. As austerity rips apart Europe’s social contract, not only are the new migrants vulnerable but so too are Europe’s youth (a huge percentage of which are the sons and daughters of immigrants). Todd brilliantly concludes that Europe’s new neoliberal middle class are in fact the real danger to Europe’s future.

The very people Europe’s productive future depends upon (the youth and the immigrants) are being sacrificed and scapegoated for the benefit of a selfish pseudo-European elite. They’re pseudo-European because while wrapping themselves up in the European flag they are killing whatever chance Europe has left to develop and grow rationally.

In a Europe in which the euro has replaced God, Emmanuel Todd writes of zombie Catholic and Protestant regions and their inegalitarian tendencies. He notes their preference for hierarchical structures and predestined paths. All of which is music to the ears of Mein Kampf.

This time around however the fuel for the fire isn’t anti-semitism but islamophobia. Whatever anti-semitism there is, Todd correctly sees as being a by product of islamophobia.

And the answer to this Vichy like panorama? It can only be: the rapid rediscovery of Europe’s egalitarian  values. In a word: the end of neoliberalism. Which for Todd automatically means the end of the current European project and its fortress like institutions. With nothing to offer but fearful right wing policies at home and abroad: the European Union has failed Europe. Therefore the fate of the migrants and the youth will best be served by the break up of at least the Eurozone. More freedom and flexibility, as regards fair social and economic policy, is to be found outside rather than inside “Europe”.

A rational Europe that welcomes the much needed new life from afar cannot be found in the capitalist calculations made in Brussels and Berlin.

I saw and heard the unconscious admission of this when I attended a “citizenship ceremony” in Dublin last December 14. At this event, for the 3000 Africans and Asians receiving Irish citizenship, only the Irish flag was on view. This despite the fact that the 3000 people were receiving European citizenship as well as Irish citizenship. And the high court judge who officiated only spoke of Ireland’s revolutionary year (1916) in his political lesson for the new Irish. The European Union had been banished from the stage. There was no place for it in the celebration of immigration and equality.

Outside in the streets however the euro and neoliberalism ruled. And as a consequence, the shadow of Mein Kampf fell everywhere. Europe’s struggle with itself continues but cannot last forever. Europe must eventually accept that it is a part of Africa and Asia. Otherwise it has no future.

Aidan O’Brien is a hospital worker in Dublin, Ireland.

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