December 07, 2004


Charles Bremer writes:

Reluctantly, some intellectuals have lately concluded that the model for Europe should be the US. On Tuesday a writer for Libération, the French left-wing daily, noted that immigrants in the US threw themselves into “the American dream” and prospered. “There is no French, Dutch or other European dream,” she noted. “You emigrate here to escape poverty and nothing more."

Hey, unfair! There's a German dream, as David Kaspar reported last month:

ZDF, one of the two German public tv channels, secretly made a film in a Berlin mosque. And this is what the preacher said:

"These Germans, these atheists, these Europeans don't shave under their arms and their sweat collects under their hair with a revolting smell and they stink. Hell lives for the infidels! Down with all democracies and all democrats!"

Down with all democracies. Dream on!

Posted by Tim Blair at December 7, 2004 03:07 AM

Historian Bernard Lewis has predicted that Europe will have a muslim majority by the end of this century. The question is, will the Europeans be Islamicized, or the Muslims Europeanized? Only a miraculous culture change will result in the former.

Posted by: Ken Barbie at December 7, 2004 at 03:44 AM

Europe is doomed. The demographic trends together with native European denial about the migration in their midst is evidence enough. Remember that the threat to raise the retirement age in Holland brought ten times more protestors to the streets than the murder of Theo Van Gogh.

It's startling, however, that the first point made by the Imam applies marginally more to the French than the Germans. Does Shariah Law require you to bathe regularly?

Posted by: Crazy Chester at December 7, 2004 at 04:07 AM

Tim what exactly is your point? o_O

Posted by: Nic White at December 7, 2004 at 04:24 AM

Nic: If I had to guess I'd say the point is that maybe...just maybe Europe needs to get a hold of their Islamic extremist situation before it gets a hold on them first...

...and Europe could do with a little better hygene when it comes to armpit hair and other matters of odor.

To sum it up: Maybe America ain't so bad after all, if only for the fact we have less armpit hair and tend to stink less.

Posted by: Tej at December 7, 2004 at 05:46 AM

To the original point, the notion of a French Dream (shoes made of leather), a Dutch Dream (a painted house), a Belgian Dream (all the Walloons gone) or a Luxembourg Dream (a yard without buried WWII ordnance) is too good not to parody. A Danish Dream? No wool allergy. A Norwegian Dream (two consecutive days of warm weather).

Any of these Dreams for real would have to involve more than ten square feet of living space, a heated bathroom, a car with at least fifteen horsepower, a job and FREEDOM to own a gun, defend yourself, keep some of your earnings and not be pushed around by the fucking time-servers in Brussells. Forget it. It will never happen.

Posted by: Crazy Chester at December 7, 2004 at 06:33 AM

The Germans are prone to dreaming, which is fine, and also prone to exporting their dreams. They once dreamed of a Jew-free Europe, for example.

The Russians also dreamed, and still, dream, of empire. So do the French.

That is the dream of Europe right now - the eternal French goal of French dominance, being pursued via the committee rather than the battalion. That, unfortunately, is a dream that no one will emigrate to join.

Posted by: R C Dean at December 7, 2004 at 07:27 AM

I'm sorry, but if you're going to start applying the word 'intellectual' to those who make judgements based on facts and common sense, than the very term has become so degraded that it no longer means anything!

Posted by: Ken Begg at December 7, 2004 at 07:30 AM

The threat to Western Civilization. The Fatherland got it wrong last time, maybe they will get it correct this time.

Posted by: Paulm at December 7, 2004 at 08:21 AM

I'm surprised the imam didn't mention that these European infidels don't shave their pubic hair, either.

To meet Islamic standards of beauty, one has to look like plucked chicken.

And we all know that Europeans don't wash enough, but it's a bit rich to hear this coming from Middle Easterners.

Posted by: mr magoo at December 7, 2004 at 09:56 AM

If the Europeans could stop listening to the "we're so sorry" Lefty crowd and stop being ashamed of their culture they may have a chance.

Many Europeans have been taught that only BAD THINGS are associated with Western Culture. They have become ashamed of their culture and themselves.

It's the same mentality we see in today's "we're so sorry for electing Bush" crowd. I'm surprised they haven't created a web site that let's people apologize for being alive and enjoying life.

I think one of the reason they hate the US is because there's a fair number of us who ARE NOT SORRY. We like our culture. In fact, we'll fight to keep it.

None of us is perfect, but that's no reason to hate yourselves so much you commit cultural suicide (which is what Europe is doing).

Posted by: Chris Josephson at December 7, 2004 at 10:12 AM

My family are European'd never guess that from the comments I frequently post which are almost entirely critical of Europe and European foreign policy. You'd also never know that I was of European descent because of my decidedly Middle-Eastern appearance, which strangely enough has never been a problem for me in this so-called racist country. Well, here I go again...could Europe be any more stupid??? No wonder they plunged the world into two world wars in one generation! They inevitably seem to back the wrong horse. To this day anti-Semitism is rife and growing, and so is Islamic fascism...and right under their very noses!!!
It's because I love Western culture so much that I'm so critical of Europe. Fashion today seems to dictate that Western culture (Christianity included) is shameful and something to be sneered at. I think THAT is the real reason for the anti-Americanism that is so trendy in Europe and other places right now. America is the vanguard of Western culture and values in the 21st century, and the American people seem to be the only ones not afraid to fight for it.

Posted by: Brian. at December 7, 2004 at 11:03 AM

Muslims critical of German body odor? Accurate, I have to say, Europeans generally smell bad, even the Brits. But they don't compare to the horrible stench of a group of Arab Muslims.

And by the way, do Muslim men shave their armpits?

Whatever, a familiar story of the relative pigmentation of cooking equipment comes to mind.

Posted by: DrZin at December 7, 2004 at 11:34 AM

Forgive my Westocentrism, but Brian is right, including his reference to Christianity, which laid the foundation for the freedom of the individual.

Among our intellectual traditions is skepticism and open inquiry, both of which have been corrupted by prosperity, narcissism and comfort, to the extent that some of us are now skeptical about ourselves.

Maybe it's just too easy to throw conviction and belief overboard and take on disbelief. European
disbelief in Western Culture seems to be accompanied by a subversive habit of inaction in all sorts of areas. When you believe in things, sometimes you need to defend them and they don't seem to be up to the task.

Posted by: Crazy Chester at December 7, 2004 at 11:56 AM

We should cut the Euros some slack...It must be pretty damn frustrating to realize you've reduced your self-hating selves into a dying breed of irrelevant former imperial masters.

...Especially frustrating having been shown up by an unapologetic coalition of techy puritan fascists and Mad Max Jesus lovin' convicts.

Israel should just ship over a few tons of MDMA to ease their collective pain and wean them away from moldy cheese and scat videos.

Posted by: monkey fan at December 7, 2004 at 12:33 PM

For what it's worth (nothing!), there were times in Germany when I was almost knocked over by the smell of local nationals. I didn't have that happen in Saudi Arabia.

Posted by: Donnah at December 7, 2004 at 01:00 PM

I was once at an airport as a flite to Lebanon were being check in. They have five people seeing off one traveler. Alas I had to pass through this large group. I have never smelt anything as bad as that not even at the local tip.

Posted by: Le clerc at December 7, 2004 at 01:45 PM

On once occasion when I worked at a hotel, I dry-heaved on account of about 15 Pakistani merchant sailors in the lobby. It was the pomade in the hair. My whole face was numb.

My worst stench encounter though was when I went to help a sweet little old lady. She opened her mouth to speak and it was like a tomb. Like someone took a crowbar and cracked open a coffin to exhume a corpse. I almost hurled on her shoes.
I think it was her dentures. They'd have given Proust an epiphany.

Posted by: Donnah at December 7, 2004 at 02:19 PM

Sikh cab drivers.

Posted by: Greg at December 7, 2004 at 03:25 PM

Yes, Moslem men shave armpits and pubic hair. Generally once a week, often on Saturday night before they go out. At least that was my experience living in Turkey. Women also.

Sleeping with a Moslem man for the first time, the hairlessness can be a bit offputing. Also, the body odour, or alternatively, the excessive use of perfume. However, they make up for it in other ways.

Posted by: Maxi at December 7, 2004 at 03:58 PM