8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues in:

Angelika C. Dankert

Europe under Pressure, page 67 - 94

The Development of the European Union under the Influence of the Arab Spring, the Refugee Crisis and the Global Threat of Terrorism

1. Edition 2017, ISBN print: 978-3-8288-3971-7, ISBN online: 978-3-8288-6688-1,

Series: Wissenschaftliche Beiträge aus dem Tectum Verlag: Rechtswissenschaften, vol. 93

Tectum, Baden-Baden
Bibliographic information
Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues The following part focuses on intercultural issues and highlights critical topics causing difficulties in the cohabitation of different cultures with diverse ethnical and religious backgrounds and different ways of thinking as a result of the refugee crisis and the high number of non-EU foreigners now residing in the Union. A lack of knowledge causes a gap between the respective cultures. It is essential to clearly define the meaning of words expressed and to scrutinize the etymological roots of terminology used. In the absence of a profound understanding, a frequent appearance of foreign terms triggers the feeling of familiarity, but knowledge of cross-cultural communication is not created by regular repetition without precisely defining the foregoing (see Annex U: The conflict of Islam and Democracy). Europe’s Values under Foreign Influence Today’s global village causes increased interaction due to neighboring with people from foreign cultures and diverse ethnical backgrounds. The geographical decrease in distance implies an enhanced analysis of the respective culture including values, norms and beliefs. Culture has an impact on all aspects of life by influencing and determining the individual’s way of thinking and acting. Hofstede (2005) refers to culture as ‘programming of the mind,’ as the individual is unaware of the process to actually be programmed to a certain culture. However, culture defines the scale for morality and sets the guideline for appropriate or socially not accepted behavior by e.g. tabooing certain topics. Culture and cultural heritage define the individual as successor of the inherited values, norms and rules (Dankert/Dekkiche, 2017). It is important to understand each individual’s ‘cultural backpack’ (see Glossary) when referring to interculturality and compatibility of multiple religions across the range of cultures. Blinkered mindsets are out of place. Discussions on intercultural issues make it important to reflect the own value system and individual culture objectively by critically analyzing one’s own behavior, morals and values while bearing in mind the historical development and considering linguistic and social aspects. Without open-mindedness and the ability to objectively evaluate ‘culture’ as determinant of thinking and behavior, it will not be possible to draw conclusions and to find sustainable solutions on questions about harmonious cohabitation. In some debates, there is a subtle negative connotation when someone refers to ‘Western values’ or ‘Western lifestyle.’ However, these terms do not implicate something frightening, threatening or bad. It is only possible to understand the thinking 8 8.1 67 structures and patterns of a counterpart when understanding the individual cultural heritage and thus being able to reflect upon it. Terms are interpreted differently, words might be used in a different context, and the result is the feeling of insurmountable conflict of interests. The absence of a profound understanding of the counterparts’ value system, which underlies e.g. religion and history, makes ‘democracy,’ as pillar of Western societies, a perceived evil trap for those entering Europe’s borders and separates them from the European society by terminology issues. It is not per se a conflict of ideologies, but rather, despite criticism of this theory, a ‘conflict of civilizations’ (Huntington, 1993), as ‘civilization’ (see Glossary) is shaped by culture. Defining European Values according to the TEU The European Union is founded on the values of respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities (Article 2 S. 1 TEU). These values are common to the member states in a society in which pluralism, non-discrimination, tolerance, justice, solidarity and equality between women and men prevail (Article 2 S. 2 TEU). The objective of the Union is laid down in the treaties: promoting peace, its values and the well-being of its people (Article 3 (1) TEU), whereby the Union offers its citizens an area of freedom, security and justice without internal frontiers, in which the freedom of movement is ensured […] with respect to external border controls, asylum, immigration and the prevention and combating of crime (Article 3 (2) TEU). The Union shall combat social exclusion and discrimination and shall promote social justice and protection, equality between women and men, solidarity between generations and protection of the rights of the child (Article 3 (3) S. 4 TEU). The EU shall respect its rich cultural and linguistic diversity and shall ensure that Europe’s cultural heritage is safeguarded and enhanced (Article 3 (3) S. 6 TEU). In its relation with the wider world, the Union shall uphold and promote its values and interests and contribute to the protection of its citizens. It shall contribute to peace, security, the sustainable development of the earth, solidarity and mutual respect among people, free and fair trade, eradication of poverty and the protection of human rights, in particular the rights of the child, as well as to the strict observance and the development of international law, including respect for the principles of the Charter of the UN (Article 3 (5) TEU). Skeptics argue that on top of the debt crisis, the terrorism crisis and the Brexit the migration crisis will be the trigger for the beginning crisis of values (Nixon, 2016). ‘How will tomorrow be like?’ is a question vehemently raised again during these days (Council of Europe, 1995: 49). European values are humanist values, but the constant influence of other religions, values, morals and norms caused by the refugee crisis and the resulting high influx of Muslim people entering the Union’s borders seeking for asylum and permanent residence frighten the European society. The anticipated submission to a foreign culture is a predominant topic and is discussed by many intellectuals and experts in television shows, papers and multi-party talk shows. The question 8.1.1 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 68 behind xenophobia, racism and skepticism about people with an immigration background is whether European values brave foreign influence or, what is argued by skeptics, whether the mentality of constant solidarity and pure tolerance will irrevocably damage the ideals and freedoms the Union is built upon. This refers to Article 3 (3) S. 4 TEU, highlighting the Union’s responsibility to ‘combat social exclusion and discrimination,’ triggering a slight conflict with Article 3 (3) S. 6 TEU, referring to the Union’s accountability ‘to respect [Europe’s] rich cultural and linguistic diversity [in order to] ensure [the safeguarding and enhancement of] Europe’s cultural heritage.’ The question is whether safeguarding non-EU values and cultural heritage should be pursued as well, following the non-discriminatory approach and the protection of minorities (but it is not distinguished between local, originated European minorities and intra-EU minorities as a result of e.g. the refugee crisis), or whether it is about European values and cultural heritage exclusively, referring to the puzzle pieces of European identity. Is Europe actually allowed to focus on safeguarding and promoting European values exclusively to ensure the continued existence of what the Union is built upon? Or is Western and European attitude as ‘tolerant and open society’ by definition restricting the option to focus solely on something? Critics claim that the current refugee crisis will ring in the end of European values by simultaneously eroding the basis of the Union. Critics talk about ‘no tolerance to the intolerant,’ referring to the increased tension between Europeans and Foreigners (Kissler, 2015). The quotation roots in a debate about the building of mosques, the height of minarets regarding the protection of neighbor-rights and unacceptable impairment through, inter alia, calls to prayer, the legal admissibility and the general weighing of interests with focus on the principle of consideration and the statute that exotic architecture is not covered by infringed neighbor-rights (compare Administrative Court Arnsberg, resolution from 17 May 2011 – 14 L 218/11) and the academic career of women wearing hijab during e.g. the participation in official government bureaucracy. Reversely, the quotation refers to the limited freedoms, chances and possibilities for heterodox and potentially uncovered females in Islamic countries and to the level of tolerance that can be expected there, with special focus on the possibility to practice tradition, cultural heritage and religion. A tit for tat mentality is not compatible with European values but again many skeptics refer to the unlimited tolerance triggered by the non-discriminatory approach and criticize the created vicious cycle doomed to end the value community Europe. Female Islamic Covering – Compatibility with European Values Generally, it has to be differentiated between various female styles of Islamic veils as openly displayed symbol of belonging to the Muslim community: sheila, hijab, al amira, khimar, chador, dupatta, niqab and burka (Pew Research Center, 2016). The Afghani and Pakistani styled burka, favored by the Taliban, covers body and face including a grill across the eyes, permitting women to see without being seen by keeping the face totally concealed (Vyver, 2014). There are no statistical data about the 8.1.2 8.1 Europe’s Values under Foreign Influence 69 number of Muslim women actually wearing the burka in the European Union. The estimate in Germany is between 300 and 3,000, but no definite statistical number can be given for the respective country or for the member states in total (Löffelholz, 2016). Nonetheless, the number of women wearing burka is comparatively small. This paper is not focusing on female Islamic covering, but the ongoing debate about a burka ban is a discussion driven ad absurdum, facing the number of women actually wearing a burka. The lack of knowledge about Islamic clothing and covering and the danger of getting confused about burka and niqab mislead many giving an opinion on this issue. In contrast, the niqab is seen more often on the streets of Europe nowadays. The covering is a combination of abaya and a second veil covering the face but leaving the eyes visible. This form of covering is more popular and seen more often apart from the most common form of displayed veil, the hijab, as headscarf styled in combination with modest Western clothes. Daily conflicting situations between European regulations and the religiously founded convictions occur, and the discussion about the compatibility of European values with this form of covering becomes increasingly heated (e.g. incident to lift the veil in a bank in order to finalize a transaction (Friedmann/Hipp, 2016)). Following Article 2 TEU and the respect for human dignity and minorities and Article 3 S. 4 TEU referring to combat social exclusion and discrimination, it has to be concluded that expressing religious beliefs by openly following a dress code as part of an intra-EU minority (again, no differentiation between originated or newly settled minorities is made) is an irrevocable right safeguarded by the Treaty on the EU. Article 2 TEU also implies the equality between women and men, and Article 3 S. 6 TEU obliges the Union to ensure that Europe’s cultural heritage is secured and enhanced. It is said that the EU should uphold and promote its values and interests and contribute to the protection of its citizens. The conflict of interests gets obvious, as gender equality was not given anymore, as burka ban supporters argue, while opponents claim that women had never been more free. As previously stated, it is essential to define the terminology when discussing intercultural topics to ensure a common base with regard to the argumentation. The term ‘free’ is obviously defined differently in both societies, as critics of the burka ban argue that ‘freedom’ was not about exposing a naked body but supporters refer to the burka as deindividualization. Again, the perspective is crucial to the argumentation, and the cultural discrepancy in defining ‘free’ and interpreting the burka as material symbol of bondage creates a sheer insurmountable gap between the arguing parties. The regulations on airports and in e.g. banks are an essential part of the security concept, and the implementation of separated women rooms in order to lift the veil in front of female employees, as demanded by a covered lady in a Sparkasse subsidiary (Friedmann/Hipp, 2016), causes an inevitable conflict about the degree of European tolerance and adaptability towards the counterpart. As many critics stress the urgent need of foreigners to adapt to local values by referring to the same adaptability of Westerners visiting Muslim countries, the sensitive debate is more a question about the consequences of actually implemented separated rooms in accordance with shariaopted separation between men and women, again conflicting with European values 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 70 and the equality approach. In contrast, the non-implementation will for sure lead to social separation of e.g. burka-women due to limited scope of action in parts of the daily life, but the philosophical question is about encroachment on religious freedom in a society claiming tolerance and religious freedom for the individual. Other issues remain open, like the unbalanced rules and regulations for (Muslim) foreigners and the local population referring to the scanning and natural undressing at airports for non-Muslims, but no such demand for those purely covered. The discussion about the burka ban is still ongoing and it portrays the severe gap between opponents and supporters of Islamic covering in Europe. The question is about the compatibility with European values, referring to gender equality, freedom and democracy vs. supporting a dress code, which is a sign of Saudi Wahhabism associated with sharia and ‘tit for tat’ mentality, necessarily resulting in a clash with the ideals of a society based on the rule of law and developed security concepts. Nevertheless, the heated discussion about the burka ban seems media-driven and exaggerated, in the face of the small number of women actually wearing the Wahhabi-oriented full-covering in Europe. Moreover, a ban in e.g. Germany would require an amendment of the constitution, as such a ban would ‘infringe on religious freedoms and cannot be justified without constitutional change’ (Friedmann/Hipp, 2016). Political correctness might refuse to open up a debate about a more popular Islamic covering as referred to before. Referring to the black cloth as statement against the European society and proclaiming a negative attitude towards European values, the debate has to address a far intensified sensitive issue, particularly because it affects a larger number of veiled women. When the argumentation is purely about the isolation from ‘Europe’ as value system and society through cloth and because of arising security concerns due to the opaque and non-see-through layers of black tulle (e.g. Kenya, incident in 2013 (Shute, 2013)), the discussion has to focus on e.g. the niqab, but further differentiation and demarcation are not part of this paper. However, if the argumentation in the fundamental debate about validity and uniform application of European values is taken seriously in order to defend ‘Western values’ (see Glossary), freedoms and the non-separation of women and men in public, the types of questions in debates have to be modified. Burka opponents refer to the inability to integrate into the society by building a defensive, visible wall of dark cloth between themselves and the immediate environment. The question is whether establishing contacts ‘with the immediate environment’ are actually desired, which has to be negated, but the paper will not focus on theological argumentation. Supporters of a burka or niqab ban stress security issues. In an open society, it has to be possible to clearly identify the counterpart, also because of security issues, as explained before. The societal question refers to the conflict between the liberal cohabit and the face/eye-covering full veil. Interculturally seen it is important to shake hands in Western societies and to directly look into the eyes of the counterpart, which demonstrates honesty, competence and a good character (Nunez/Nunez Mahdi, 2007). A survey showed that pedestrians who were asked about their perception of burka often referred to fear. Social psychologists explain that mimic was a door to communicate efficiently with the counterpart. It is an essential part in keeping control 8.1 Europe’s Values under Foreign Influence 71 over a situation and in successfully evaluating the spoken word. A face veil inhibits the look behind, and the strong association of the burka with a foreign (and potentially unknown) culture, terror and Islamism prevails and results in fear and rejection (Wölfle, 2016). Critics argue that the burka was a symbol of suppression, but it is more a symbol of a patriarchic society and cultural heritage than religiously founded. There is no sura in the Qur’an referring to a full-covering including face veil and obligatory eye-grit, which define the burka, again demonstrating the culturally diverse interpretation of modest dressing and variations of veils, yet no further differentiation and interpretation of ‘fatwas’ (English: legal texts) is made in this paper. There is no EU harmonized regulation concerning a burka ban in public. The member states treat this issue differently: since 2011, France has prohibited women to wear burka or niqab in public, willful violations result in a fine. Belgium introduced the burka prohibition in 2011 as well, but additionally to the payment of a fine, the state ordered imprisonment in case of willful violation. The Belgian court argued that freedom of religion was not absolute. The prohibition to cover is an essential element of equality between men and women, the societal life and public security. Tessin, a Swiss Canton, introduced the burka ban just recently, in 2016, and the Netherlands are about to decide on a law to ban the eye-veiling cloth out of governmental buildings, schools and hospitals based on public safety issues (Scherfig, 2016). According to Article 4 of the German Constitution, ‘freedom of religion, freedom of conscience and freedom of religious and ideological commitment is invulnerable. The undisturbed practice of religion is ensured.’ Germany as a state is ideologically neutral and holds a legal monopoly against religious communities. The constitution guarantees all citizens the undisturbed practice of religion on the basis of human dignity. The perception of religion is different from the perception in e.g. France, a country based on laicism and the strict separation of state and religion, declaring religion a private matter and thereupon justifying the burka ban. Generally, legally forced covering for females can only be found in e.g. Saudi Arabia, Iran and Sudan, countries with a Muslim majority. A headscarf ban for female employees in public institutions and for state servants can also be found in other countries with a Muslim majority like e.g. Malaysia, Morocco, Albania and Turkey. Tunisia and Egypt applied the ban on headscarves as well until its re-establishment during the Arab Spring. Countries following the French laicism approach, like Belgium, parts of Switzerland and former French colonies like Syria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger, aim at separating state and religion, thus favoring a ban on Islamic covering, as explained before (Speer, 2016) (see Annex V: Concealment Worldwide: Selected Portray of Countries forcing or banning the Islamic Veil). The fundamental question concerns the potential compatibility and harmonization of European values in the definition of the Treaties with e.g. burka and niqab. From a Western perspective, the full covering body veil is a symbol of female suppression as expression of a patriarchic society, hindering integration, threatening the society and causing safety issues. Wearing a burka in Europe is an openly demonstrated sign against Western society, as argued by skeptics. The wall, that is built between the covered women and the rest of the world separates her culturally, societally and elimi- 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 72 nates the possibility to get in contact with Europeans easily. The universality of European values is challenged by existing prejudices and arguments on this issue (Nikolaïdis, 2014). It is for sure a challenge for Europe to prove whether European values are indeed universal values. Nevertheless, the claim for universal European values simultaneously triggers anti-Western sentiments, again with focus on a perceived superiority. Applying European values and standards, grounded on traditions, universally to everyone in the Union results in the rejection of Western values as epitome of onesided suppression and intolerance. The degree of argumentation is a balancing act, and both counterparts make it essentially hard to find consensus. It has to be defined whether values should be interpreted differently depending on culture, region, context and persons applied to. Primarily, it has to be seen that values, norms and beliefs actually highly differ across the globe and strongly depend on the regional and cultural context. Therefore, if the answer is positive, meaning values and norms have to be interpreted differently, depending on culture and the person on which these norms are applied to, then Europe sacrifices itself by willingly entering the path that is criticized by Henryk Broder claiming ‘critics to pure tolerance’ (Broder, 2008). Broder (2008) argues that a tolerant society, supporting each individual to fully act out its own interests and beliefs, was denying the differentiation between good and bad, as each assessment was automatically anti-tolerant, causing the borders of tolerance to blur. If values are adoptable and changeable, depending on a particular context, Broder (2008) climaxes in a betrayal to Europe as value community. Values define the community and the sustainable and efficient living together. Abandoning the basis of European cohabitation means dispatching the underlying codex for 500 million European citizens across 28 member states by uprooting them from Europe as an institution and community. Therefore, the question has to be negated: values have to be constant to raise the claim for universal application to everyone and equally to both genders. Freedom of religion, as anchored in the TEU and the constitutions of the member states, is given, but freedom of religion and expression for some, while disturbing the freedom of others, is not sustainable and will cause disputes, incomprehension and hatred. European values are indeed universal, but it is up to the Europeans to apply them universally to secure a future of mutual agreement after finding consensus on this stony path and to reach a high level of integration by living together as neighbors in an inter-faith dialogue. Cultural Relativism Threatening the Project Europe The Union was designed to prevent war, therefore the European Project can be referred to as peace project, creating a united Europe. It is not just about peace, but also about the association of states committing themselves to common values, rejecting the authoritarian and intolerant ideologies known in Europe before (Scheppele, 2015). Referring to equality of humans, freedom for the individual and humanity, it is Europe’s challenge to face external cultural influence, while sticking to own values. 8.1.3 8.1 Europe’s Values under Foreign Influence 73 The roots of the Union and essentially its past are guides through a rough time of political unrest and turmoil, which is now affecting all member states that are catching up on equal footing. Europe’s population feels neglected when it comes to its own interests and historical heritage and the fear to be restricted in its freedoms, which have been developed centuries ago and unite the Europeans in a common past. ‘Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité,’ as credo during the French Revolution in 1789, triggered movements all over Europe, like the Hambach Festival in 1832. Freedom of the person (Art. 2 GG), freedom of religion (Art. 4 GG), freedom of art/speech/science/education (Art. 5 GG), freedom of assembly (Art. 8 GG), freedom of association (Art. 9 GG), free career choice (Art. 12 GG) and the right to petition (Art. 17 GG) are some of the fundamental freedoms written down in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Germany. Most of the rights Germany roots on today have been developed during the age of enlightenment and the ideas of Immanuel Kant, who was philosophizing about the ‘reason as source of morality.’ The Hambach Festival was proclaiming freedom and democracy during the time of Restoration and at the beginning of the Vormärz era. These stages were essential parts in the development of Germany, yet the partially censored and cancelled German carnival celebrations in February 2016 in several cities raise doubts as to its factual application. Political correctness triggered censorship: not respect, but fear of unpredictable consequences that might follow a ‘provocation,’ previously part of freedom of expression and cultural heritage. The actual offensive and distasteful character of e.g. Prophet Muhammad caricatures by Charlie Hebdo in 2015 are not to be discussed further, as the thought-provoking impulse is about the double standards, not about the art itself. There is no right or wrong when expressing an opinion, as it is not about the quality of the expressed opinion, which in most cases demonstrates the tolerance of a society. ‘There is no need for debates if agreement prevails. Yet the end of a debate is the end of freedom if the applause does not cease’ (Kissler, 2015: 29). Muslims easily criticize the West as anti-Muslim and accuse governments of being involved in a Jewish world conspiracy. However, it has to be objectively seen that the EU-citizens’ fear, which might result in antipathy or even rejection, is not spurred on by mass propaganda but has its reasons. The instigations of violence, expressed just by a small minority of Muslims, yet so dramatically and justified on the basis of a world religion, makes it comprehensibly hard to distinguish between (Muslim) refugees and warriors of the Caliphate proclaiming these ideas. This minority that describes Christians as ‘error, turned away from true faith’ and proclaims their approach as universal Islam, indeed triggers anti-Muslim feelings across the Union. It is difficult for European citizens, heterodox and atheists, to separate the body of thinking, ideology, spiritual Islam and institutionalized as well as jihadist Islam and not to stereotype foreigners with Muslim background, when the ones executing terrorist attacks actually refer to a holy book of a world religion, claiming to be the most pious and devout by proceeding this way (Kissler, 2015). Granting tolerance is easy when unconcerned, but hereby it is essential to understand the difference from cultural relativism, meaning tolerance on the brink of the abyss and passive follower behavior regarding a form of violence legitimated as tradition and therefore worthy of acceptance (Broder, 2008). The con- 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 74 flict will be further explained in Chapter 8.7 under consequences of ‘Trinity of Multiculturalism.’ Islamisation of Europe or the Europeanization of Islam Many Europeans benefit from the freedom of movement within the Union, deciding to live, work and study abroad. However, it has objectively to be kept in mind that refugees, apart from economic migrants and forum shoppers, were forced to leave their homes due to an existential fear. The immigration was neither planned long in advance nor voluntarily. For many, Europe is not the promised land in terms of living and working preferences, nor a desired role model for values, norms and beliefs. This factor is essentially important when it comes to Europe’s challenge regarding a sustainable and successful integration. From the angle of intercultural science, it is apparently hard to give up behavior and thinking that have been shaped by the immediate cultural environment for generations. Therefore, it is ultimately important to understand each individual’s cultural backpack (Slawomir, 2005: 7), a reminiscence that cannot be removed before crossing a country’s border. There is no clash of cultures but a conflict between two civilizations with historical roots. Tibi (2008: 16) refers to the Cornell Project of 2002 that resulted in two options for the future of Europe: the Islamisation of Europe or the Europeanization of Islam. Global Migration and especially the refugee crisis triggered a movement of people, refugees and immigrants as transmitter, introducing the politicization of religion and the religionizing of politics on the European continent, rooting in thoughts that originally developed outside of Europe (Tibi, 2008). Intellectuals often refer to the value system in the open, post-modern European society. Unlimited thought and articulation skills seem to be given and induce the tolerant society to open up for e.g. sharia, while simultaneously jeopardizing Europe’s future when making so-called ‘wrong tolerance’ respectable due to political correctness (Tibi, 2008). ‘Tolerance becomes a crime when applied to evil’ (Mann, 1952: 649), and as result the Union is indeed polarized (Nixon, 2016). Cultural, linguistic and religious aspects have to be examined carefully to create a sustainable environment for a harmonious blend of cultures. This issue also refers to the willingness and likelihood to give up and adopt certain structures, despite the fact that the move was rather forced than voluntarily, neither planned nor properly organized (see Annex W: Likelihood of Cultural Adoption – A Scientific Demarcation). The question refers to the compatibility of role models, values and thinking with so-called ‘Western lifestyle.’ Both sides have to be open-minded to adapt to the new situation. It is essential for the people arriving in Europe to internalize European values and to take over European identity. Both-sided tolerance and, in particular, unbiased both-sided cultural open-mindedness are essential for successful integration (Tibi, 2008). 8.2 8.2 Islamisation of Europe or the Europeanization of Islam 75 Historical Fear of Foreign Infiltration with Changing Participants History does not per se repeat itself, but it tends to leave marks that might lead to the assumption that history was likely to be repeated. Yet the surrounding and situational circumstances differ dramatically and cannot be superficially compared without removing blinkers. The current debate about Muslim migrants is a perceived threat the world has seen before, yet with changing participants throughout history. Looking backwards, the Irish-catholic immigrants in 19th century London were originally seen as a threat to the British. In the beginning, voices claimed that these folks were not to be integrated into the major population, but the actual rapidness and success of the immigration story became legendary. The Irish migrants were integrated within less than two generations and quickly seen as an enrichment to society (Saunders, 2012). Still, history showed that tragic events and incidents dramatically influence the public awareness of a whole ethnical tribe, religion or language family by creating lasting preconceptions. It is undeniable that 11 September 2001 changed the perception of the rest of the world towards its Muslim neighbors. Suspicions and smoldering distrust characterized the following years. Different theories developed and ideas about ‘conquering the Occident’ and ‘disloyalty towards host-states, due to pure loyalty towards religion’ spread through the media and became popular debate topics for mainstream media. Different voices claimed that Islam prevented successful and sustainable integration and resulted in the destruction of Western freedom and tradition. In 1993, the theory of the ‘clash of civilizations’ (see Glossary) enjoyed a revival under Samuel Huntington. The author hereby defined the medieval image of rivaling empires, yet outmoded by cultural growing together and strong economic ties. In a second publication of 1993, Huntington argued more precisely about the change in conflict pattern over time. After medieval disputes, mainly due to economic and territorial expansion drivers, followed by clashes between nations, Huntington referred to ideological conflicts. Primarily, these conflicts took place between actors within the Western world. After the end of the Cold War, conflicts tended to take place between the frontiers of Western and non-Western civilizations, as non-Western civilizations revolted ‘against the role of chessboard-figures on the game board of Western driven geopolitics’ (Schwan, 2001: 12−15). Christopher Caldwell (2009) summarized the growing fear of infiltration and undermining of value by raising the question: ‘can Europe be the same with different people in it?’ 9/11 proved that the idea of monolithic, not compatible cultures creating a spiritual no-man’s land culminating in the end of the Occident was generally conceivable by the public. These radical thoughts serve as a platform for e.g. Geert Wilders, the third most popular politician in the Netherlands. By encouraging electorates to deny tolerance for those who deny the savoir vivre of the Netherlander, Geert Wilders does not consequently speak out intolerance but justifies his paroles by consequence (Saunders, 2012). The likeliness, willingness and compatibility to integrate sustainably are questioned, and a differentiation has to be made between the ones willing to integrate, happily coexisting with other communities and religions, the ones favoring the concept of live and let live, without aiming for integration or valuing the benefits of a 8.3 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 76 merged society described as tolerant, and the intolerants. Whereas all have a right of existence, clashing body of thought causes trouble and disagreement on neighboring each other. Statistics on the percentage of Muslims preferring sharia in their home country varies dramatically from country and region, as well as the degree and extent of the actually favored application. The attitude towards Muslim law again highlights the integration efforts and the adjustments that have to be made. In case Islam is the officially favored religion in a country, the support of sharia is obviously significantly higher. Referring to the ones seeking refuge in Europe, it is important to question the probability to accept European law and law enforcement mechanisms with focus on the desire to apply sharia on spot (Pew Research Center, 2013) (see Annex X: Support for Sharia across 39 Muslim Countries). America, Canada and Australia have been immigration countries for ages, but Europe has a different history, as it had been European migrants taking up residence there, not the other way round. The absence of an immigration act in Germany shows the situational context (compare Annex O): Germany finds it still difficult to accept migration as factor of a fast changing world. The country does not have a regulation on immigration based on qualification, national interests and economic needs like classical immigration countries (e.g. America, Canada, Australia), ‘behaving like a country with irregular migration, neglecting its de facto regular migration for decades’ (Falkowski, 2011: 83). Traditional non-immigration countries refer to refugees and ‘non-EU-immigrants as foreign threat and the ultimate others’ (Bauder, 2011: 22). The perception roots in the practice of ‘national identity formation through the negation of immigrants’ exist’ (Bauder, 2011: 22). In the past, countries like e.g. France reacted to the diverse and partially conflicting interests of different cultures living in the country by banning signs of worship and excluding religion lessons from public schools, as secularization is high in France. An example of adaption is the UK, where sharia courts have settled conflicts since their establishment in the 1980 s (Saunders, 2012). Prejudice and wrong expectations on both sides are not conducive for the heated debate within the Union. The insecurity and vulnerability of a society offers platforms for politicians, lobbyists and private individuals all over Europe and fuels xenophobia. Geert Wilders is just one example of keeping up the crisis by re-establishing a way of thinking that has been dispelled from people’s minds for the last six centuries (Saunders, 2012). In order to maintain Europe, built on common humanist values, the EU’s task is to preserve an open-minded attitude, excluding stereotyping and condemning clustering bogeyman images across ethnicities. Anti-Semitism and Legitimacy of Israel in Post-War Europe In the debate about migration and integration, issues like the embedded anti- Semitism in thinking, the acceptance of Israel as a state and the Palestine question have been neglected. However, these topics, which seem to be kept outside the discussions due to political correctness, as some critics argue, have the potential to actually 8.4 8.4 Anti-Semitism and Legitimacy of Israel in Post-War Europe 77 split society. Post-war Europe is sensitized to the topics referring to e.g. anti-Semitism, as especially Germany is working through its history, facing its responsibility as major European force next to e.g. France. A dangerous body of thinking might cause unpredictable movements in the already established right-wing across Europe and trigger a development that contradicts the post-war ideals and values the EU is built upon. As the majority of refugees have their origin in countries where the regimes declare Israel and Judaism the cause of all evil (Brenner, 2015), it is in the responsibility of European governments to remove the misconception of a Jewish enemy and to replace it with practiced tolerance of parallel existences. Intolerance is a symptom, not the actual cause of totalitarianism, but for sure triggered by means of intolerance (Council of Europe, 1995). A targeted partnership is difficult to achieve when neither side is open for a coexistence. Nonetheless, urgent support and educational work have to be implemented in order to demonstrate the limits of a Western society. The specifically targeted attacks on Jews in Paris and Copenhagen, as well as e.g. the desecration of Jewish graves in France in 2015, have an impact on the Jewish community in Europe. Petr Papousek, vice president of the Jewish World Congress, declared that the increased anti-Semitism in Europe was a result of foreign Muslim migration condemning Judaism. Israel is actually awaiting a new wave of Jewish migrants over the next couple of years due to the increasing number of anti-Semitist incidents (Kusicke, 2015). Prevention mechanisms have to be established for a sustainable and peaceful Europe, and it is important to critically question and ban arising stereotypes on both sides. There must be no leeway for a repetition of the past. Europe is challenged, as the lack of understanding the deeply religiously rooted perception is unknown and neglected in the debate. Humanitarian aid for those in need, but safeguarding those already living within the Union as neighbors and friends is a balancing act when it is not about an opinion, but about profound religious beliefs, which determine the body of thinking. Conflict of Cultures – Jihad against McWorld Double standards and double morals have to be abandoned. It is claimed that the post- European society was tolerant, but still certain sensitive issues cannot be addressed publicly (Tibi, 2008). However, it is essential to debate openly about difficulties of combining the interests of neighboring civilizations (see Annex Y: Mutual Suspicion and Incrimination thwarting Impartiality). Neglecting existing inconsistencies due to political correctness or naïve thinking endangers Europe’s future. The importance to maintain and defend pluralistic values becomes obvious when referring to e.g. ‘Je suis Charlie.’ The terrorist attack in 2015 on a French satire magazine, due to the publication of Prophet Muhammad caricatures, was not a single act against the caricaturists in charge but a violent statement against a society that defines itself as pluralistic, based on humanistic values and the ideals of free-thinking. 8.5 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 78 It is important to differentiate between Islam and Islamism, as the demarcation is between Islam as religion and Islam as cultural-political ideology and basis of identity policy, triggering world conflicts. Islamism is not per se an anti-globalization movement but the source of conflict between two civilizations. As transnational religion based on the idea to form the world according to Islam, Islamism can be seen as a movement of sacral revival. The Communist Manifest, as basis of internationalism and transnational movement during the 19th century, enjoys a parallel revolution on Sayyid Qutb’s manifest from the mid-20th century, aiming at ‘hakimiyyat Allah’ (English: theocracy) and de-secularization. Islamist scholars argue that Europe failed as actor on the world stage and an oriental replacement was simply a natural development. Global migration and especially the refugee crisis trigger the movement of refugees and immigrants, as migrants introduce the politicization of religion and at the same time the religionization of politics on the European continent, yet the roots of these thoughts lie on the downside of Europe (Tibi, 2008). These days, conflicts have a religious core, which is a cultural side effect of structural globalization, however running withershins. The 21st century marks the era of the global village, but the question is whether this ‘village’ is indeed as global as anticipated. Fear of the unknown is a culturally rooted fear, and especially during these rough times, the vicious cycle of reversion to traditions and the well-known triggers separation and drives the gap between ethnical groups, nations, countries and civilizations further. Despite advantages of globalization, the caused cultural fragmentation should not be overlooked. The reversion to the own culture and religion is a defensive answer to the somehow imposed trend of a global culture. The term ‘Jihad vs. McWorld’ (Barber, 1996) includes stereotypes but summarizes and describes the two opponents in the ongoing crisis. It is important to understand the Islamic resistance, euphemistically speaking, not as resistance against the Western world but as resistance against Western values, which have developed to universal values including a world order (Tibi, 2008). The refugee crisis is the reason to discuss these issues, but as long as Europe does not understand which questions have to be raised, where political correctness is necessary and where self-imposed restrictions, due to regrets about colonial misconduct, is out of place, no sustainable measure can be undertaken in order to enlarge upon the situation. Disregard and ignorance towards relevant topics will result in Muslim enclaves and parallel societies, which are then, positively and negatively, referred to by the term multiculturalist society. Another factor that is neglected in the discussion is the religiously founded ‘da’wa,’ a religious duty for travelling Muslims to spread Islam as Muhadjirun, meaning to actively missionize the heterodox as part of ‘hidjra’ (English: migration). Tibi (2008: 40) critically raises the question whether European tolerance, in its purest definition, will provide the ground for Islamic universalism, referring to the Muhammad caricatures that have caused the terrorist attack referred to as ‘Je suis Charlie.’ The professor for international relations argues from a perspective many Europeans skip, due to the lack of knowledge or what critics refer to as ‘Euro-egoism’ (see Glossary) and the idea to consider European body of thought as universalistic body of thought, 8.5 Conflict of Cultures – Jihad against McWorld 79 stereotyping humans despite cultural differences to think, argue and draw conclusions the very same way, based on e.g. humanistic values and the ideals of Immanuel Kant. Tibi (2008) explains that the excitement about the caricatures of the Prophet is not due to simple tastelessness, but about the sharia-oriented censorship. A similar application of censorship for an infringement on e.g. Christian or heterodox emotions would not be legitimate and non-justifiable, as the authors’ rights are secured under the freedom of expression and art. In a scenario of abused religious freedoms as part of an identity policy, Tibi expects step-to-step Islamisation of Europe. In the beginning of the 21st century, Europe provides the platform for a conflict of civilizations, not for a clash of civilizations. Inclusion through Europeanization as e.g. the killing of heterodox persons is not and must not be covered by the ‘freedom of religion’ (Tibi, 2008), as e.g. a Belgian Court argued that ‘religion is not absolute’ (Scherfig, 2016). Excluding sharia and its practices is essential in order to maintain the rule of law and the constitutionally secured rights: policies are needed to provide lasting security for both communities (Tibi, 2008: 133). The conflicting contradictions in here result from the ‘Trinity of Multiculturalism,’ defined as differences, acknowledgement and cultural rights as fundamental rights (Tibi, 2008: 41). ‘Sharia’ as fundamental cultural right and thus as right to be acknowledged in a multicultural environment is the trigger for the vicious cycle, when arguing about pluralistic values, freedoms and tolerance towards an intra- EU minority (Article 2 S. 2 in conjunction with Article 3 No. 3 S. 4 TEU, but without precise definition of ‘intra-EU minority’ as purely domestic minority or as result of e.g. the refugee crisis). Human rights for the individual clash with sharia, multiculturalism as contrast to cultural pluralism remains an issue, but in the effort to de-religionize, Europe is confronted with an immensely religionized world (Tibi, 2008). The challenge for the European Union is to understand that it is not the migrants who cause a conflict of civilizations but the kind of religious ideology that is introduced on the continent as result of the migrant crisis. It is essential for the people arriving in Europe to adapt to European values and to take over European identity. The difficulty is that in the discussion about arriving refugees many leave out the particularity that, according to Tibi (2008), it is not ‘individuals [who] arrive on spot, but members of the Islamic diaspora.’ Referring to the Muhammad caricatures causing the ‘Je suis Charlie’ terrorist attack in 2015, pluralistic values have to be maintained and defended. Before, the sea has been a natural border between Europe and ‘dar al- Islam’ (English: house of Islam). Immigration has to be closely linked to security, and due to the refugee crisis Europe has to deal with the development of the Middle East in a way beyond politics to understand the people crossing the Union’s borders. Attempts to democratize the Islamic world in a time of Islamism will fail (Tibi, 2008). Europe, as a community of shared history and ideals, is founded on human dignity, not on a randomly created list of values as reference points (Hager, 2004). The tolerant society opens up for sharia while simultaneously jeopardizing Europe’s future in implementing a so-called ‘wrong tolerance’ due to ‘political correctness’ as dangerous enemy to the ‘island of freedom in an ocean of tyranny,’ as Horkheimer (1968: XIII) refers to Europe. Tibi (2008) argues that it had to be differentiated between the Islam- 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 80 ic and Islamist challenge, meaning a challenge due to the religion of Islam and the challenge due to the political ideology of Islamism. Without clarification and demarcation, the spiritual Islam will be abused for a new form of totalitarianism (Tibi, 2008: 159−160). Islamisation, as claimed by Tibi (2008), does not fit to Europe, as there is no awareness of common values. Europe has to open up a dialogue without political correctness, research and differentiate, daring to address sensitive issues in order to thwart totalitarianism in the form of Islamism, regardless of peaceful institutional Islamism or violent Jihadism (Tibi, 2008: 134), and to prevent stereotyping by focusing on an enhanced understanding of religion as driver of 21st century conflicts. Post-Review of Kuwaiti Official Fahad Al Shalami’s Declaration in Connection with the European Cultural Integration Task Back in September 2015, Al Shalami’s statement (compare Annex I) seemed superficial, two-faced and ignorant. Uttered at the swelling peak of the refugee crisis by an official representative of Kuwait demonstrating his point of view and excluding humanitarian responsibility, it may seem conflicting with the idea of a Muslim community united in pan-Arabism and, as often argued by Western critics, split in countries separated by artificial borders created by the imperialistic forces back then. Following this popular argument of Western critics, the understanding of the statement is even more important, as it clearly points out the differences and mixed perceived sense of Arab’s belonging within the Arab world. Many Europeans and Westerners do stereotype an overall ethnical group referred to as ‘the Arabs,’ whereby ‘ethnicity is defined in cultural and linguistic terms and in terms of descent from distant ancestors’ (Barakat, 1993: 40). Cultural divergences and peculiarities are underestimated due to lack of information and knowledge. It is necessary to understand Al Shalami’s statement in favor of cohabitation and coexistence in tomorrow’s European Union. Claiming to be united as Muslims, overriding national borders, but directly closing off behind these so disliked national borders when it comes to the question of taking in culturally close people in need, seems duplicitous. The statement of Al Shalami includes a second hint, which is essential to highlight in order to understand the intercultural difficulties Europe will face in the years to come. The backgrounds of a Kuwaiti, declaring Syrian refugees as ‘culturally different,’ are important to understand. It is an irrefutable fact that there is no community that can be referred to as ‘the Arabs,’ taking the prejudicial assumption that the created cluster is similar with regards to shared norms, values, beliefs, heritage and history. This paper is not about intercultural characteristics, cross-cultural differences and peculiarities, so in-depth explanations are kept out. However, the knowledge and understanding of existing cultural differences and various forms of practiced cultural heritage is crucial in order to prevent further stereotyping and false assumptions. There are indubitable local features, cultural distinctions and regional specifications that make it impossible to lump together ‘the Arabs’ as one huge clan. Iran as Shia-dominated Persia, as well as the North African states, are part of the so-called Muslim community and the Arabs as 8.6 8.6 Post-Review of Kuwaiti Official Fahad Al Shalami’s Declaration in Connection with the European Cultural Integration Task 81 well, but only in the broadest sense. Cultural clustering and sub-grouping is essential in understanding the divergences in order to manage sustainable future integration of refugees in Europe. Ignorance and stereotyping will cause long-lasting damage for a Union based on diversity and the understanding of a community made up of different ethnical, linguistic and cultural backgrounds. The author emphasizes to act now for the ‘Europe of tomorrow’ as key for a sustainable coexistence of a highly biased relationship between the Orient and the Occident, now meeting within the borders of the EU. European Cultural Outlook The EU is on the move: it is simply a question of how deeply the supranational entity will have been influenced by the ongoing debates and incidents on all levels and how far-reaching, positively and negatively, the impact of the refugee crisis and the resulting intercultural and religious issues will be. It is up to the Union and the community, the Europeans themselves, to react and demonstrate lively the essence of European identity. It is undoubtedly a balancing act to combine value systems of the Orient and the Occident, and the Union for sure has enjoyed times less challenging. History has always been a guide for predicting the future and deriving recurring events. This time, it is on the Europeans and the EU to strive for a future that does not include partial remarks of the 1930 s past. This task especially includes the Muslim Europeans with a major responsibility and refers to the well-established Islamic European communities’ duty to prevent increased religious clustering and societal split. As long as terrorist attacks are executed in the name of Islam, the respective community bears responsibility and has to be held accountable. Silent conviction is disproportionate, in contrast, public demarcation and implementation of prevention measures are needed. Today’s special challenge results from the blurred line between individuals executing acts of violence and their religious belonging. Not despite, but because of their religious affiliation, terrorist attacks are devotedly performed and dedicated to a holy book. Xenophobia as a term generalizes on ‘foreigners,’ but turns to religious xenophobia in this crisis, inaugurating a turning point in today’s perception of terror, as terrorist attacks are closely linked to and executed in the name of religion, thereupon urging the Muslim community to bear responsibility. The cruelty and frequency of attacks executed by individuals of a world religion referring their acts to Islam triggers a natural humane stereotyping. Demarcation is essential to prove cross-religious ‘we’ as unity, standing together at the same frontier against religiously rooted terror and to prevent the perception of a religious community silently in accordance with the executed acts of violence. Maintaining European ideals and values, especially the high standards of freedom and rights, demands a commitment and confession on Europe as collective in order to succeed and to demark terror and affiliation from the heterodox, neighboring our homes. The fear of foreign infiltration is historically proven, but peculiarities have to be outlined: the Irish were culturally and linguistically not really ‘foreign’ to the British, 8.7 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 82 and even in terms of religion, both communities could refer to the common ground of Christianity. The differences to today’s integration task are obvious, as religion, culture, tradition and language highly differ between the frontiers ‘Europe’ and ‘newcomers,’ having no common basis. Sustainable integration will be the major challenge in the years to come. Defining ‘freedom of religion’ rather as ‘freedom of faith,’ thus excluding physical patterns, seems to be a likely secular approach but facilitates living together and cohabitation. Europe has to become aware of its values and realize their meaning and importance. Evaluating the consequences of decisions taken today and facing the accusation of pure tolerance, Europe has to define which values are worth to be kept and at which point tolerance actually restricts freedom and decide upon this assessment. Today, rights and freedom are taken for granted, but the number of generations enjoying these rights can still be counted easily. Naturally, appreciation is difficult without the need to cope with a challenge, but the refugee crisis impacts the roots of the European society in the long run and is indeed a major challenge to master. It is essential to understand European values as legacy, as back then people gave their lives while fighting for these rights. We owe it to ourselves, as successors of the ones paving the way for what is referred to today as innate European spirit, to not decrease the validity of European values including their application but, in contrast, to maintain a pluralistic and open society. The future is shaped by the decisions taken today, and each EU-citizen can contribute to Europe’s future as spoke in the wheel: insignificant when acting individually, but powerful when part of a strong alliance. Repercussions are existing challenges but worth to be taken seriously. The Union has never experienced a similar situation with such a drastic impact on the innate value system before. Time will witness the outcome of integration efforts and the future shape of the Union under the foreign influence. An approach has to be defined in order to integrate successfully: ‘Europeanization,’ ‘multiculturalism’ or by setting up a new pattern for sustainable integration. Understanding cultural exchange as benefit to personal development and broadening the horizon without stereotyping or prejudice will enable the EU to grow further. Concerns about cultural compatibility should be removed by actually living cultural diversity, following the Union’s motto ‘united in diversity,’ yet broadening this diversity as result of the new cultural patterns in the Union. The question which should be raised during today’s discussion on multiculturalism and assimilation is how to establish an environment of open-mindedness and interest on the European side and on that of the newcomers’. ‘Tolerance’ is stressed in this debate, however, a differentiation has to be made between embracing cultural diversity and learning from different cultures to enhance together or by undermining one’s own values, identity and historical heritage. It is important to include the citizens according to the principle of subsidiarity: acting as close as possible to the Europeans, for the citizens as the Union’s residents, adding in this context the European responsibility to maintain cultural heritage and values. The citizens’ responsibility is to safeguard the legacy of those who laid down the principles for what should become known and defined as European values later, as successors of the ones shaping the Union’s spirit. 8.7 European Cultural Outlook 83 Despite the challenges and difficulties the EU is facing, national conflicts have to be overcome. Oppression and xenophobia do not belong into the 21st century, neither into the European Union, which is based on humanist values and freedoms. Without remaining true to its values and understanding its responsibility, the Union and the unique model of a supranational entity cannot persist. The EU has to prove its ability to change reasonably according to the zeitgeist, while sticking to its raison d’être and valuing its stages of development as reminiscent, including the source of today’s cohabitation, rooting in revolutions and brave uprisings for what became the essential part of today’s Europe. Nobody can predict the future, but it can be forecast that the Union will emerge changed after the end of this crisis and the sum of challenges faced. 8 Interculturality, Multiculturalism, Cultural Relativism and Compatibility Issues 84 Repercussions for the European Union Emerging Nationalism – Backlash against a United Europe Until 1918, ‘nationalism’ was closely linked to the formation of national states and was regarded as a component of national history. It was either class or national culture based including linguistic aspects. Afterwards, ethnical and philosophical matters, as basis for nationalism, were included in the theorization. Nationalism can be seen as ‘primitive revival of tribalism on an enlarged artificial scale,’ whereby sociology equates ‘society’ and ‘nation’ as simply differing in class, status and power (Gellner, 2008: XVII). Generally, nationalism is defined as loyalty and devotion towards a nation, whereby the sense of national consciousness often exalts the particular nation, including its culture, language and history, by putting the nations’ interests above other nations’ needs (Merriam-Webster, 2016). ‘Patriotism’ has to be differentiated from nationalism, as it emphasizes ‘identityforming’ feelings and a strong sense of belonging to the respective country within a community, yet superiority is not included. The country or ‘nation’ refers to ‘an ethnically homogenous historical group, associated with a particular territory’ (Primoratz/ Pavković, 2016: 203). ‘Sectionalism,’ another synonym that is used for nationalism, is a term describing a geopolitical group pursuing its own interests, whereby the group is rather small and does not compromise the entire nation (Merriam-Webster, 2016). By definition, there will be no sections before the creation of a national state has taken place (Finkelman/Kennon, 2008). ‘Jingoism,’ as another term differentiation, is always based on military aggressiveness as sort of belligerent nationalism (Winter, 2010) aiming to pursue ideas of cultural superiority (Merriam-Webster, 2016). The extreme patriotism results in an expressed hostility towards other nations (Winter, 2010). The differentiation is important in order to understand the ongoing political shift to the right across Europe and to prevent stereotyping or false assumptions about parties. Most terrorist groups can be described as purely jingoistic. The platform of Europe’s right-wing parties is rather mixed, depending on the previous situation and context in the respective country, influenced by triggers like unemployment rate or discontent with the leading government. Political Impact: European Parties’ Shift to the Right An excerpt from Muammar Al Gaddafi’s live speech held in Timbuktu (2006) is currently heavily discussed and interpreted by some as meaningful prophecy. The Libyan ex-leader said that one day Europe would be a Muslim continent by simple immigra- 9 9.1 9.2 85 tion, ‘without swords, without guns, without conquest’ (Al Jazeera, 2006). The ongoing debate about migration and contingents is fueled by this quote, as some Europeans feel vindicated in their fear of foreign infiltration by referring to Al Gaddafi’s words. However, the phenomenon of political extremism has not solely developed due to the current refugee crisis that originated in the Arab Spring. Anti-system political parties, racist, anti-Semitic, xenophobic, anti-liberal and eurosceptical groups have been well-established across the Union before. Several factors have to be discussed in the analysis of the parties’ development and historical, social and economic parameters have to be considered in order to understand the whole picture. Historical data show that bad economic conditions over a longer period (e.g. Great Depression (1930), Global Financial Crisis (2008)) facilitate the rise of authoritarianism, as people tend to become more radical. The year 2008 is considered a turning point regarding the boost of political extremism across Europe. High unemployment and economic stagnation over a significant period of time triggered political reactions and resulted in electoral success for far-right parties in the Netherlands, France, Austria, Hungary and Greece. Although the aims of these parties cannot be generalized, as their goals may slightly differ, they all have a common ground in the financial crisis, boosting their significant electoral success (Klapsis, 2015). The following table demonstrates a lineup of far-right political parties and their election results before and after the financial crisis in national and European Parliament elections. EU Election Results before and after the Financial Crisis Country Party National Parliament Elections [%] European Parliament Elections [%] Year Year 2006 2008 2013 2004 2009 2014 Austria Freedom Party of Austria 11.04 17.54 20.51 6.31 12.71 19.72 2007 2010 2014 Belgium Flemish Interest 11.99 7.76 3.67 14.34 9.85 4.26 2005 2009 2013 Bulgaria Attack 8.14 9.36 7.30 14.20 11.96 2.96 2005 2007 2011 Denmark Danish People’s Party 13.25 13.86 12.32 6.80 15.28 26.61 2003 2007 2011 Finland The Finns 1.57 4.05 19.05 0.54 9.79 12.87 2002 2007 2012 France National Front 11.34 4.29 13.60 9.81 6.34 24.86 2005 2009 2013 Germany National Democratic Partyof Germany 1.58 1.78 1.46 - - 1.03 2009 2012 2012 Tab. 9.1 9 Repercussions for the European Union 86 Country Party National Parliament Elections [%] European Parliament Elections [%] Year Year 2006 2008 2013 2004 2009 2014 Greece Golden Dawn 0.29 6.97 6.92 - 0.46 9.39 2006 2010 2014 Hungary Jobbik 2.20 16.67 20.54 - 14.77 14.67 2006 2008 2013 Italy Northern League 4.58 8.30 4.08 4.96 10.21 6.15 2006 2010 2012 The NL Party for Freedom 5.89 15.45 10.08 - 16.97 13.32 2006 2010 2012 Slovakia Slovak NationalPeople’s Party 11.68 5.08 4.56 2.02 5.56 3.61 - 1.33 1.58 - - 1.73 2002 2006 2010 Sweden Swedish Democrats 1.44 2.93 5.70 1.13 3.27 9.70 Source: Klapsis, 2014 The national parliament electoral success in Hungary (20.54%, 2013), Austria (20.51%, 2013), Finland (19.05%, 2013) and France (13.60%, 2013) displays an undeniably rising right-wing across the Union. Some of the right parties display an open form of xenophobia by showing antagonism towards e.g. Muslim minorities and migrants, rather than a cultural or biological one, therefore they are considered cultural racist parties (e.g. Front National, France) but not classical racist parties (Ignazi, 2003). They have in common the wish to benefit from favorable situations, growing rapidly on the fertile ground of insecurity and fear, as extreme political situations ease the rise of extreme political leanings (Klapsis, 2014). The connection between critical economic situations and political change has been proven by researchers before: due to insecurity about the future, economic crises make people more susceptible for demagogy and populism, which raises fears and anxieties. Today, the question is about political instability, though a weak economy is fueling the rise of political extremism, but is not the only trigger by far (see Annex Z: Performance of right-wing populist Parties in European Parliamentary Election). Examples are Sweden and Austria, two of the wealthiest and most prosperous countries in the Union, which yet show a significant rise in the right-wing (Klapsis, 2015). The political landscape in Europe did not only begin to change because of the current crisis, as there have been political shifts to the right before, e.g. the Front National under Marine Le Pen in France. However, the terrorist attacks executed by undercover terrorists crossing the Union’s borders by officially seeking refuge and local IS sympathizers caused anger and fear in the country, leading to garnered support within the population. Geert Wilders from the Netherlands’ party PVV has been one of the most popular faces of the political right for years as well. Meanwhile, the party 9.2 Political Impact: European Parties’ Shift to the Right 87 is represented in the European Parliament due to a 13.32% electoral success. Another example is Austria, a country that has always been a stronghold of right national politics. The FPÖ in Austria has already celebrated an electoral success in 2000 with 26.9%. Hungary is known for the active Jobbik, a movement for ‘a better Europe.’ The country’s president, Victor Orbán, supports the party, making Hungary a so-called brown spot within the Union. Up until now, Poland has been the only European country with an extreme radical right-wing government and has denied taking in refugees due to terrorist attacks in France before. The country is openly anti-European, claiming ‘Poland first’ under the paroles of the PiS party. Greece’s right-wing has already discussed the introduction of landmines on popular migrant routes in 2002. Nikolaos Michaloliakos and his folks are known for violence. The Italian Lega Nord aimed at a separation from the economically weak South since 1990, now openly fomenting against migrants, as thousands pass the country’s borders daily. Germany’s right-wing under Frauke Petry (AfD) is still more insignificant in comparison to the European right party big players (Holzhauser, 2015). The partially systematic abuse and misinterpretation of European legislation, referring to the minors sent on smuggling boats across the Mediterranean Sea or via the Balkan Route to benefit from the rights of the minor to get granted family reunion, have to be addressed. Moreover, when an obvious or attempted abuse of welfare systems becomes public, xenophobia and hatred are the natural consequence, causing suspicion, prejudice and stereotyping among European citizens and supporting dangerous right tendencies. The exploitation of welfare systems could be reduced by harmonized benefits and enhanced data collection systems among the member states. Enhanced collaboration and actual harmonization of registration systems would decrease the development of parallel societies made up of nationals from countries of origin declared as safe, who live in the Union under the scope of the screen, by detection again pushing the right-wing. Europe accused of Rising Fascism – A Demarcation In 2016, Europe is split into three sub-blocs: first, the North, centered around Germany including the Benelux States, Nordic and Baltic countries united in similar economic policies and the belief in tight financial budgets as well as – until very recently – tolerant immigration policies. Second, the South, sharing equal economic problems, desiring a relaxation of debt and deficit rules from the EU turning the Southern states into a kind of entity, and third, the Eastern states, comprising former communist countries, making up an entity because of a common past, less sophisticated democracies and more populist voters compared to the ‘old’ member states, as well as the fact that they are all in a worse financial position. Victor Orbán, Hungarian prime minister, referred to the Brexit as ‘cultural counter-revolution’ and aims to take the initiative for his country by stressing the governments’ role in standing up for national identity. The Eastern countries are united in the idea of a decentralized Europe, against ‘outsiders.’ The unofficially created North and South alliances may also be ex- 9.3 9 Repercussions for the European Union 88 plained by cultural differences, but further explanation is kept out. Europe’s current challenge is the increased populist East and how to deal with the ongoing development of rising stereotyping and prejudice (Bershidsky, 2016). Some critics claim that it was fascism that was now slowly rising in Europe, but this is a misinterpretation of the term fascism and an ‘attempt to discredit the resurgence of nationalism, trying to defend the multinational systems that have prevailed in the West since World War II’ (Friedman, 2016 a). As nationalism was part of the Enlightenment, referring to liberal democracy and human rights in order to determine and decide on national interests as citizens, tyranny was feared, and multinational empires dominating the area of today’s Union were associated as epitomes of tyranny. During the national uprisings in Europe of 1848, as well as during the French and the American (liberal) revolutions, multinational systems were destroyed and replaced by national states. The main difference between fascism and nationalism is the electoral process, which might vary from country to country, but it is always based on the citizens’ periodical selection of leaders (Friedman, 2016 a). As the UK just recently decided to leave the Union and anti-immigration policies as well as protectionist features increased, again influenced by the high influx of non- EU foreigners entering the Union over a short period of time, critical voices claimed this was a sort of fascism. However, this is not fascism but choices taken by the people and executed by their elected authorities. Without judging the decisions as right and wrong, it has to be seen that these are expressions of liberal democracies, not dictating the way to go, but rather representing the citizens’ view, without guarantee that the majority’s view is wise and just. The rise of nationalism is a result of the European institutions’ failure to function effectively, as the EU is still struggling with economic problems as a result of the financial crisis in 2008. The influx of migrants is the topic that has dominated the media for months, but it has just overshadowed the unresolved issues the Union still has to face, e.g. Greece’s debt crisis. The nationalists raise the question whether internationalization was still beneficial and demand an urgent change, but the ongoing European nationalist movement must not be misinterpreted as fascism (Friedman, 2016 a). The impact of the refugee crisis and the debates on reintroduced borders in a per se borderless Union demonstrate the degree of vulnerability in today’s integrated Single Market. The possibility to remain separate and abstain was cut throughout the years and resulted in plenty of advantages for the member states, yet challenging times demand an intense confrontation with inconvenient but actually existing side effects of the integration process. Fear of the unknown, cultural issues and the general anxiety of foreign infiltration trigger vivid outcries, condemned in e.g. right parties’ electoral success as perceived solution for current issues. It is not appropriate to cluster the right-wing affiliates per se as uneducated sympathizers with the former National Socialist regime, but one has to differentiate further and include the feeling of neglect, as the political representation of moderate parties is no longer perceived as adequate. Concerns have to be taken seriously, and the political debate has to remove its stereotyping on superiority by facing the fear of European citizens. Tabooing a politically represented wing is inadequate in a pluralist Union. Dealing with concerns 9.3 Europe accused of Rising Fascism – A Demarcation 89 and opinions of valuable EU citizens in order to find a sustainable solution simultaneously combats xenophobia, hatred and the accusation of fascism, all rooted in the issue of non-EU foreigners arriving in Europe seeking refuge and the ones abusing the open-door policy built on the grounds of humanity. Brexit – Future Shape of the Union’s Structure Under the slogan ‘don’t be deceived again, vote leave,’ the British voted for Brexit in July 2016 (Friedman, 2016 b) and are expected to be out in 2018 after the end of the exit negotiations (Rhodes, 2016). The Brexit, as narrow result of the British referendum, can be explained by the historically demonstrated anti-European attitude of the Brits (Kenealy/Peterson, 2015) including the impact of the refugee crisis. The results of the referendum, an expected renewed recession and weakened economy, polarized the already split nation further (Rhodes, 2016). Opponents of a united Europe claimed the dysfunction of the common economy, as the Union is still struggling with the consequences of the financial crisis of 2008 (e.g. 20% unemployment rate in southern Europe). Remaining part of an entity that economically stagnates and the feeling of oppression and loss of control by being forced to follow external decision-making from Brussels additionally triggered the probability of an exit. The lack of sovereignty led to a rise in nationalism, not just in the UK but across European countries that are based on the belief that the institutions no longer served a purpose but take control away from the right of national self-determination. Another issue that triggered the Brexit vote was the immigration crisis and in particular the increased terrorist attacks across Europe (Friedman, 2016 b). The rising religiously oriented extremism in Europe triggered the British exit, as many EU critics and Brexit supporters discussed the likelihood of a safer UK without Union membership, yet the UK has never been part of the Schengen area and is indeed constantly executing border checks (Swinford, 2016). Despite moral obligations to support refugees on the basis of humanity, opponents see the migration wave affecting the country’s internal status quo regarding culture, politics and economy too negatively (Friedman, 2016 b). The outcome of the referendum demonstrates people’s increased disbelief in multiculturalism, internationalism and cosmopolitanism. The vote was preliminary motivated by anti-immigration sentiments that were supported by those promoting the anti-liberal package. Nationalism, as trigger for the result of the referendum, has many reasons and should not be underestimated when discussing Europe’s future and the potential to remain an entity. Far-right nationalist parties across the Union feel vindicated in their aspiration for a decentralized Europe after the Brexit. Especially in Hungary and Poland as well as in France, the Scandinavian countries and Italy, the demands for an own ‘exit’ increased and became more likely, resulting in a partially fractious democratic breakdown. In the author’s opinion, the openly held discussion on xenophobia, as well as an increased racism against foreigners in general but against migrants in particular, is likely to be repeated in other countries when elec- 9.4 9 Repercussions for the European Union 90 tions will take place. The result of the UK referendum fueled nationalist movements all over Europe. The discomfort with multiculturalism and the fear of changing social and cultural norms became obvious (Rhodes, 2016). Euroskepticism, as ‘political ideology opposing European integration, is a complex phenomenon,’ which had already developed in the 1980 s (Glencross, 2014: 267). These days, Euro-skeptics and Euro-critics across the left/right divide in European politics (Glencross, 2014: 271) primarily claim the Union’s top-down approach. Frustration is expressed as to how integration hampers ideological goals at both ends of the political systems (Glencross, 2014: 271). The outcome of the British referendum campaign demonstrates the citizens’ hostility against the ‘Brussels heteronomy’ processed in pre-electoral slogans like ‘take back control’ (Haughton, 2016) and ‘let’s make Britain great again,’ adopting Donald Trump’s campaign slogan post-Brexit on a journal’s front page. Intense bureaucracy, outdated administrative practices (Tömmel, 2014) and the tendency to centralize competences in Brussels striving for continuous harmonization (Heckmann, 2016) collide with a lack of transparency, causing the ordinary European citizen to feel ignored, passively directed by others and deceived about his domestically existing democratically defined rights to influence the political direction and the decision-making. The British Euro-skepticism was pushed by contestation of national political parties, being torn over how to respond to the citizens’ dissatisfaction and disagreement on how to cope with the refugee crisis (Glencross, 2014). The Union was originally designed to be a constant entity, built on abandoned powers and shared competences by definition of ‘unity.’ The supranational entity underestimated the power of nationalism and the ‘attempt to retain nationality as cultural right’ (Friedman, 2016 a). After 2008, the decision-making process and the perceived externally imposed doctrine of Brussels became increasingly difficult to accept for some member states, resulting in the current situation of a shift to the political right and the support of anti-European ideas (Friedman, 2016 b) to prevent refugee distribution per quota. Europe has to be understood as post-modern society made up of national societies (Beck, 2012), which is mirrored best in the mosaic of cultural patterns across the Union. It is not that citizens lack the feeling of identity, but the stress ratio, created through the parallel existence of two identities, first, national state, and second, a higher set integration network, causes obvious identification issues (Beck, 2012: 61). Change, as result of adaption and adjustment, as well as flexibility, are key capabilities to remain sustainable and constitute the essential steps the EU has to take in order to efficiently support the citizens’ interests, rather than sticking desperately to a model that turned out to be not suited to last persistently and that does not meet the perception it intends to create with its given structure. EU-Turkey Statement – A Pragmatic Collaboration It seems that the Union is struggling at all frontiers simultaneously these days. The migrant crisis caused the acknowledgement of admissions, yet some of them might be 9.5 9.5 EU-Turkey Statement – A Pragmatic Collaboration 91 repercussions of the idea of a united Europe with respect to its path of development and its profound values. The ‘Turkey Deal,’ as colloquially referred to, is an agreement between the EU and Turkey, released in March 2016 (Jacobsen, 2016). The EU acted pragmatically, out of the situational context and desperation, facing the humanitarian needs and the states’ inability to handle the ongoing events effectively and efficiently. The Union’s move to set up an agreement granting Turkey several benefits in return, which previously have been discussed rather critically, is best mirrored in the longlasting negotiations on Turkey becoming a member state of the Union or not. The agreement was initiated in order to stop the flow of migrants on the Aegean smuggling route landing in Greece, or precisely, within the Unions’ borders. Greece’s lack of capacity to process the mass of asylum applications was due to the country’s inability to handle the high number of migrants while still suffering from the effects of the financial crisis and other unresolved correlated issues. In return, Turkey was promised to receive facilitated EU visas for Turkish citizens and 6 billion Euros in financial aid for the refugees being stuck behind the Turkish border (Kingsley, 2016 b). The special clause that caused heavy criticism throughout the EU and across different national parties concerned in particular the accession negotiations between the two partners (Unknown, 2015 b). Critics claim that the deal breaks EU law and the UN Refugee Convention, as the convention clearly denies expelling asylum seekers without having previously examined the applications individually (Kingsley, 2016 b). The facilitated issuing of Schengen visas and the thereby linked possibility for Turkish citizens to benefit from the freedom of movement within the Union is seen very critically by many. Opponents of the arrangement feared a win-lose situation: a potential actual reduction of the refugee influx, but a simultaneous increase of impoverished Turkish nationals seeking welfare benefits in Central and Western Europe. Critics claim that the deal would trigger poverty migration, as ‘many shantytowns in Turkey resemble South American favelas’ (Hausner, 2016). It is expected that the 90 days of legal stay permit under the short-time visa of the Schengen area will be exploited by phasing out the permit in order to settle down permanently within the EU’s borders. Moreover, the constantly suppressed Kurdish nationals in Turkey might also take the possibility to escape via the newly created quasi legal entry, whereby the agreement would act as misleading door-opener to another wave of migration with unknown impact (Hausner, 2016). Turkey has aimed to become a member state since 1999, and the official acceleration negotiations started in 2004 (Unknown, 2015 b). Critics argue that the country had never been part of the area of today’s EU, neither culturally nor geographically throughout history. Accepting Turkey as member state of the Union would trigger further negotiations about accepting Israel and the Maghreb states as future Union members, neglecting the idea of Europe as a geographical unity based on common historical and cultural origins (Schuster/Köppel, 2004). The fundamental EU values are, inter alia, democracy, the rule of law and the respect for human rights including the rights of persons belonging to minorities (Article 2 TEU). In direct comparison to EU member states, a data analysis shows that Turkey holds a marginal position in the European Values Survey 2000, demonstrating the reason why the accession negotia- 9 Repercussions for the European Union 92 tions have not been settled for such a long time (Würmeling, 2007). Ongoing human right abuses, torture and questionable quasi freedoms conflict with EU-ideals and values, the European member states have committed themselves to (Schuster/Köppel, 2004). Especially Austria and Bavaria critically questioned several clauses of the agreement. The parties claimed that the European accession negotiations would be taken ad absurdum when trying to negotiate about opening the door of Europe for a country publicly abusing human rights and suspending the rule of law so continuously and vehemently. The democratic standards of Turkey are far below the general guideline’s expectation, and being aware of these facts while continuing accession negotiations means to willingly overrule fundamental European values (Unknown, 2015 b). Ongoing human right violations and the internal war against the Kurdish minority, as well as the AKP-Islamism and president Recep Erdoğan’s neo-Ottoman striving for hegemony, are claimed by critics. Therefore, the EU-Turkey Statement is seen as fundamental betrayal of European values, as the EU’s concession to hold out the prospect of accession conflicts too immensely, again highlighting the pragmatic politics under which the agreement was concluded (Göll, 2016). The impact of the agreement is far-reaching: inspired by the Union’s deal with Turkey, Sameh Shoukry, Egyptian foreign minister, just recently declared officially that his country would positively answer a potential deal with the Union as well. Shoukry denied the accusation of human right violations in Egypt and referred to several established integration measures. However, in October 2016, the Commission officially denied to enter into any further refugee-related agreement with African states similar to the one concluded with Turkey. Critics claim duplicity of the responsible EU authorities and demonstrate alertness regarding the impression that only selected states were worth concluding an agreement with (Unknown, 2016 c). Skeptics also argue that Erdoğan was the one to express power, abusing the Union’s vulnerability, while openly demonstrating his ability to transfer refugees or block the routes to the EU. At the same time, Juncker is accusing ‘part-time Europeans’ as an additional reason for the entities’ susceptibility, as he refers to member states deciding occasionally about showing solidarity and acting as part of the Union (Luther, 2016). It is crucial to finally define roles: is the Union a petitioner, at the mercy of Turkey? Or is the Union meeting the country on equal footing as coalition partner in a humanitarian crisis? As long as no differentiation is made and the positioning of the two players is unclear, it will be easy to abuse the situational context for desired benefits that were not granted without, surrendering European values, leaving behind the initial idea at the beginning of the creation of the Union, but fighting these ensnared diplomatic battles on the people’s backs, burdening Europeans and refugees. 9.5 EU-Turkey Statement – A Pragmatic Collaboration 93

Chapter Preview



The past years were characterized by a massive influx of migrants crossing the Union’s external borders seeking asylum. Illegal migration, exploitation of social welfare systems, foreign infiltration and the instrumentalization of religion condensed in terror attacks determine today’s changed attitude towards foreigners, refugees and migrants and therefore strongly impact the current European political agenda.

Angelika C. Dankert describes the development of the EU and provides information on events that led to the creation and the spill-over of the Arab Spring. Roots and origin of Jihadist ideology as well as goals of religiously motivated terrorism are illustrated and European standards on morals and values are critically questioned. Through investigation of current matters in the field of law, security and interculturality, this book reveals the biggest geopolitical challenge of the 21st century.