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Is This How Europe Ends?

Our Western interventions and wars have left millions of people uprooted and in exile.

Migrants run away from tear gas shot by Greek border police as clashes erupt when they tried to break fences in the Turkey-Greece border province of Edirne on March 7, 2020. (Photo by BULENT KILIC/AFP via Getty Images)

The FT undertakes to instruct the Old Continent on what its duty is and what its future holds: “The EU will face flows of migrants and asylum seekers across the Mediterranean for decades to come.”

Can Europe not repel this unwanted home invasion from the Global South?

It is “delusional” to think so, says the FT. Europe must be realistic and set about “providing legal routes for migrants and asylum seekers.”

What occasioned the editorial was Greece’s rough resistance to Turkish President Erdogan’s funneling of thousands of Syrian refugees, who had fled into Turkey, right up to the border with Greece.

Another Erdogan objective is to coerce Europe into backing his military intervention in Syria to prevent President Bashar Assad from capturing all of Idlib province and emerging victorious in his civil war.

In the human rights hellhole that is Syria today, we may see the dimensions of the disaster wrought when Wilsonian crusaders set out to depose the dictator Assad and make Syria safe for democracy.

A brief history.

When the Arab Spring erupted and protesters arose to oust Assad, the U.S., Turkey and the Gulf Arabs aided and equipped Syrian rebels willing to take up arms. The “good rebels,” however, were routed and elements of al-Qaida soon assumed dominance of the resistance.

There, the latest fighting has pushed 900,000 more refugees to Turkey’s southern border.

The 21st-century interventions and wars of the West in the Islamic world have not gone well.

George W. Bush was goaded into invading Iraq. Barack Obama was persuaded to overthrow Colonel Moammar Gadhafi in Libya and the Assad regime in Damascus. Obama ordered U.S. forces to assist Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in his war to crush Houthi rebels who had ousted Riyadh’s resident puppet in Yemen.

And what has the West reaped from our Mideast wars?

In Afghanistan, we have concluded a deal with our enemy of two decades, the Taliban, that will enable us to pull our 12,000 troops out of the country in 14 months and let our Afghan allies work it out, or fight it out, with the Taliban. America is washing its hands of its longest war.

In five wars over 20 years, we lost 7,000 soldiers with some 40,000 wounded. We plunged the wealth of an empire into these wars.

And what did these wars produce for the peoples we went to aid and uplift, besides hundreds of thousands of dead Afghans and Arabs and millions of people uprooted from their homes and driven into exile?

Now, Europe is being admonished by the FT that, having done its duty by plunging into the Mideast, the continent has a new moral duty to take in the refugees the wars created, for decades to come.

Will these migrants and asylum seekers become good Europeans? Or will they create in the great cities of Europe enclaves that replicate the conditions in the African and Middle East countries whence they came?

The history of the last half millennium tells the story of the rise and fall of a civilization.

In the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries, Spain, Britain, France and Portugal, and then Belgium, Italy, Germany and America, all believing in the superiority of their civilization, went out into the world to create empires to uplift and rule what Rudyard Kipling derisively called “the lesser breeds without the law.”

After two world wars, the rulers of these empires embraced a liberalism that now proclaimed the equality of all peoples, races, creeds, cultures and civilizations. This egalitarian ideology mandated the dismantling of empires and colonies as the reactionary relics of a benighted time.

The colonizers of yesterday are becoming the colonized of tomorrow. Is this how the West ends?

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of Nixon’s White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.

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