Neo-Nazis? Here is yet another indication of the deleterious effects of the abdication of the European political mainstream. Its refusal to confront and deal with the many and various effects of rapid, large-scale Muslim immigration into Europe leaves the field open to unsavory groups. Then the presence of such groups taints the whole issue and give ammunition to the Leftists and jihad apologists who claim that anyone who opposes the Islamization of Europe is a crypto-Nazi anyway. In a sane Europe, prime ministers and parliaments would be discussing Sharia, deciding just how much of it, if any, they intend to allow, and moving sternly against those who are trying to implement Sharia in their states. But we do not live in a sane age in Europe’s history.
The construction of one of Europe’s biggest mosques near to a globally famous Christian landmark has sparked a furious row in Germany.
Immigration and integration are hugely sensitive questions in Germany, which is home to a Turkish community of several million. But almost within the shadow of Cologne Cathedral, political correctness has now been replaced by bitter confrontation as the city’s Muslims begin to build a 2,000-capacity mosque with twin minarets that will reach 170ft.
“Muslims have been here for 40 years, yet people are praying in back rooms,” said Seyda Can, an Islamic theologian at the Turkish Islamic Union in Cologne. “There are 120,000 Muslims in Cologne, that’s 12 per cent of the population. We should not hide.”
Work will begin in the autumn on the Â£15 million mosque, which will include huge glass and stone cupolas and two six-storey minarets.
“With this mosque Muslims will no longer think of their old countries as their home, but of Germany,” she said.
That will do it, eh? No need to deal with any questions about Sharia or the overarching loyalty to the umma, transcending loyalty to any nation state, that has always been part of Islam? All that will just fly out the window as soon as this mosque is completed, I suppose?
“Two hundred years ago the first Protestant church was built in Cologne. It was a long process for Protestants to be accepted but today, of course, they are. Why can’t we be the same?”
Because Islam is not the same. Protestantism is not incompatible with the European separation of religion from state power. Islam traditionally recognizes no such separation. What assurance can you give us that Muslims in Germany will acquiesce to this separation without any intention to impose Sharia in the future?
However, others believe that the mosque in the city’s Ehrenfeld district, just two miles from the Gothic spires of Cologne Cathedral, will foster, rather that heal, divisions.
“It’s not a popular plan,” said Joerg Uckermann, the district’s deputy mayor. “We don’t want to build a Turkish ghetto in Ehrenfeld. I know about Londonistan and I don’t want that here.”
Mr Uckermann is part of a curious coalition of protest that has united Jewish intellectuals and neo-Nazis. Leading the charge is Ralph Giordano, a prominent Jewish author, who wrote recently that Germany was witnessing a “clash of two completely different cultures” and questioned whether they could ever be reconciled.
Stating that he had received death threats for his opinions, he added: “What kind of a state are we in that I can face a fatwa in Germany?”