Tag Archives: Europe

Is Europe Anti-Catholic?

A former Polish prime minister, Jroslav Kaczynski told a recent audience there was a climate of anti-Christianity in the once solidly Christian Europe. “If Europe is to be strong, it has to be Christian. And today, it is anti-Christian and especially anti-Catholic.” There is something ironic concerning comments about the anti-Christian attitude that he believes is common in Europe. Unfortunately, Mr. Kaczynski does not offer any explanation for this turn of events. Which factors or ideas have resulted in this supposedly anti-Christian attitude emerging? Perhaps, one explanation for what he terms “anti-Catholic” stems from the inability of the Catholic Church to recognize the modern world and make adjustments to fit into it. The idea of a celibate priest or nun simply doesn’t fit into contemporary thinking. Of course, the concept of celibacy only came to the church after hundreds of years had passed from the death of Christ.

Perhaps, the people of Europe are not so much “anti-Christian” as having a different conception as to the meaning of Christianity. Perhaps, the stumbling bumbling behavior of the current Pope reflects his inability to grasp the nature of how Catholics think in the year 2009? Pope John XXIII stirred Catholics forty years ago, but none of his successors could build on the exciting ideas of this dynamic leader.

Sarkozy Puts Thumbs Down On Bush Missile Plan

President Bush has insisted for over a year there is need for a missile defense system in Poland to protect Europe against missiles from “rogue” nations like Iran or North Korea. Of course, North Korea is presently cooperating with the world on its nuclear development and Iran, as of this date, has no missiles, and certainly no plans to send any to Europe. President Nicolas Sarkozy, at a meeting with President Medvedev who is upset at missiles being stationed on his border, told the Russian leader of his misgivings about the missile system. “Deployment of a missile defense system would bring nothing to security… it would complicate things and would make them move backward.” His remarks came after a week in which Medvedev warned about the possibility of deploying Russian missiles to the border of Poland.

Sarkozy is the current president of the European Union and is concerned that Bush plans only would result in furthering hostility in Europe. “We could continue between Europe and Russia to threaten each other with shields, with missiles, with navies. It would do Russia no good, Georgia no good, and Europe no good.”

Hopefully, newly elected president Obama will sit down with Sarkozy and get his take on the situation rather than listening to the crazy ideas of George Bush.

Hate A Jew-Hate A Muslim-Both Groups Hated In Europe

Antisemitism and Islamophobia are on the rise in most places in Europe. In contrast to the United States and the United Kingdom where dislike of Jews has remained at a stable rate of about 7% for years, there has been a significant rise in dislike of Jews in most parts of Europe. However, dislike of Muslims is much higher, and the Pew Survey shows “Opinions of Muslims in almost all of these countries(Europe) was more negative than are views of Jews. Almost half of Spaniards and Germans expressed prejudice toward Muslims who are in their nations. The anti-semitism rate has almost doubled in countries like Spain and about one out of three people in Russia or Poland harbor hatred toward Jews.

According to the survey, “Great Britain stands out as the only European country included in the survey where there has not been a substantial increase in anti-semitic attitudes.” The Pew survey indicates people who are prejudiced against these groups come more frequently from those who are aged or who lack extensive education.

One can only wonder to what extent has the Israel-Palestinian conflict played a major role in fostering the growth of anti-semitism just as the presence of terrorism in the world has increased fear and hate of Muslims.

Europe Changing Demographically As Britain Grows

Revolutionary demographic changes are sweeping across Europe which will result in dramatically different populations fifty years from now. Overall, most European nations contain a higher percent of people who fit into the aged sector of society. German population is declining while that of Great Britain is increasing which will result in the years to come of Great Britain having the most populous society in western Europe. It will increase from 61 million to 77 million by 2060. Germany is experiencing the reverse with its current population of 82 million shrinking to about 70 million.,

These demographic changes will cause a re-evaluation of current policies such as attempting to restrict immigration from Middle Eastern or Asian societies. West Europeans will need young immigrants to take over many occupations and provide for the care of the aged population. Some critics of Muslim immigration complain it will result in transforming the historical Christian Europeans into a Muslim culture. Who knows, if these trends continue something analogous to that prediction might arise.

Obama Sitting On Top Of Berlin

Barack Obama left America several days ago on a journey to prove he knew something about world affairs. He secured agreement from Prime Minister Maliki of Iraq that his plan for withdrawal of US forces within 16 months was in accord with thinking of the Iraq government. He presented a picture to Israel of a man who just might be able to help that nation work out its differences with Palestinians. Yesterday, an estimated 200,000 cheering and enthusiastic Berliners roared their approval of the man from America they believe is the exact opposite of the man from Texas. Obama began his speech insisting he was not a politician or a candidate for president, but simply a proud American from a family of immigrants who had made good in the land of democracy. But, he also made certain Berliners knew he understood their city had been a beacon of democracy during the famous Berlin airlift of the 1940s. “In the darkest ours, the people of Berlin kept the flame of hope burning.” How could any proud Berliner not roar with approval?

Obama openly stated there is a feeling in Europe his nation no longer listens to the Old World, but he intended as president “to build new bridges” from the new to the old world.
He emphasized, there is need for allies, “who will listen to each other, learn from each others, and, most of all, trust each other.”

Obama also offered challenges to Europeans to help win the war in Afghanistan, help rebuild prosperous Iraq and work to win the war against terrorism. Perhaps, the greatest challenge posed was “to come together to save the planet.”

All in all, it was a speech that aroused enthusiasm and hope among Europeans that America was turning away from the brinkmanship warlike attitude of Bush towards one in which there would be cooperation before any decisions are made regarding world peace or war.

Putin-US A Frightening Monster Abroad!

Prime Minister Vladmir Putin while on a trip to France told its leaders to avoid behaving like the United States which he characterized as a nation that threatens world peace. “How can one be such a shining example of democracy at home and a frightening monster abroad? he asked. Putin accusd the United States of building new Berlin Walls in Europe by pushing NATO to expand into ex-Soviet Unin states like Georgia and the Ukraine. The Russian leader urged France to pursue its own foreign policy and not ape that of the United States. “France, I hope, will continue to conduct an independent foreign policy. This is in the nature of French people, they don’t ant their country tied down, and any French leader will have to respect that.”

The Bush administration has opened the door for nations like Russia to assume the mantle of leading the fight for peace. As long as the United States pushes for anti-missile bases in Europe against non-existant enemies, the Russian government can come across as one which seeks peace, not war. Hopefully, a new president of the United States will rethink Bush foreign policy goals in Europe.

Does Europe Want Out Of Afghanistan?

American officials for the past few months have been demanding greater enthusiasm and presence by European nations for the fight in Afghanistan. In public, NATO is asking its members to furnish additional troops for the war in that nation, but in private, there are strong desires for an end to participation in a war that apparently is headed nowhere due to mistakes on the part of the Bush administration. Accoding to Der Spiegel, there is a secret document being prepared that deals with the future of Europe’s presence in Afghanistan. It supposedly contains benchmarks that must be made and a timetable for withdrawal of NATO forces. There is no question Germany has extensive doubts about the entire mission and the German population and its political parties lack enthusiasm for the entire venture.

German Defense Minister Franz-Joseph Jung has been considering developing a master plan that would outline needed poltical and economic achievements in Afghanistan based on benchmarks to be attained by certan dates. The plan supposedly has NATO forces focus more on training the Afghan army than engaging in fighting with militants. There is also mention of dealing with the drug situation and establishing an independent judiciary.

Ironically, the German plan is more in accord with ideas raised by Democratic candidates in the current primary fight for clear guidelines and more emphasis on training Iraq forces to handle their own fighting.

Flash-Osama bin Laden Wants West Out Of Middle East!

In another example of Osama bin Laden attempting to come across as a real threat, the terrorist leader urged European leaders to get out of the Middle East for their own good. He noted, “with the grace of God…the American tide is receding and they eventually will return to their home across the Atlantic, it is in your own interests to force the hand of your politicians(away from) the White House.” He said the United States and the Europeans would soon be out of Afghanistan which would allow its neighbors to “settle their scores.’ Osama bin Laden also claimed he alone was responsible for 9/11 and the Taliban knew nothing about his plans or actions. He expressed concern that Americans deliberately bombed innocent children and women in order to break the spirit of the mujahideen.

Osama bin Laden is undoubtedly hiding in some mountain cave in Pakistan, distant from any serious military action and increasingly becoming a voice from the past. He expresses horror at the killing of innocent women and children by NATO and American planes, but not a word about his followers who commit suicide amidst women and children. Thousands have died because he encouraged suicide attacks in crowded areas where Muslims gather because of his mistaken belief that somehow he alone is communicating with God. The tide is receding, but he forgets it is also the tide of disgusted Iraqis and Afghans who are tired of the senseless deaths caused by al-Qaeda. Osama bin Laden is as much impressed by his own voice as Bush is impressed with his grasp of the Middle East. Both men believe themselves in communication with a God who seeks violence and death in the name of God. Their God is not the God of Muslims or Christians or Jews.