Border Wars: The Democratic Dilemma
Dr. Alan Ned Sabrosky
The democracies of Europe and America and a few other random places have a compelling mantra. It is that democracy is good for the people, and resistant to threat. Others about the globe who ape democratic trappings but not its ethic – virtually everyone professes to be some sort of democracy these days, even if they rule autocratically (think of poor Syria) or use martial law at a national level (as in the Philippines) – are less sure. And they are more correct. Democracy is good for the people living under it. But democracies are largely political hot-house plants, helpless in the face of any but the most trivial internal or external threats. When faced with them, they do one of three things: sharply restrict democratic liberties, swing to an authoritarian alternative – or collapse.
The history of the past two centuries is rife with examples of this phenomenon – which is that what makes democracies so worthwhile to live in makes them virtually defenseless against significant threats. We see this most explicitly in the 20th century with the economic collapse worldwide following the carnage of the First World War. America and Britain did best, and they were badly damaged. Other countries went to communist or fascist (including national socialist) alternatives, or at least saw the rise of significant fascist or communist parties, often accompanied by civil war: Russia (USSR), Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland, Rumania, and others in Europe alone exemplify this, and there were still others elsewhere.
And what did the elected democratic governments do as economies collapsed and internal and/or external threats emerged? Why, they did what elected democratic governments always do: they dithered, they temporized, they bleated of compromise and sought consensus without unduly challenging their citizenry to bear burdens they might find uncomfortable bearing, or to pay prices that might distract from their pleasures. And they failed miserably, in whole or in part.
This dismal precedent is being replicated today in Europe and North America on two fronts: the massive and growing influx of narcotics (see image), and the growing influx of illegal immigrants – mostly Hispanic in the case of the US & Canada, and mostly Middle Eastern & African in the case of Europe – and the violence from these combined threats is becoming even greater and more widespread in Europe than in the US, where it is bad enough. That these often overlap with the influx of narcotics is not incidental – gangs and gang members find democracies in both continents to be easy pickings, their police and courts largely hamstrung by constitutional guarantees intended to protect law-abiding citizens, and the profits huge.
But the narcotics link is only a nasty edge to the much greater problem of just what this influx of illegals means to North America – and especially Europe. All have had waves of immigrants in different degrees in the past, mostly looking for work. The current waves are qualitatively different, however: while many come simply for support and survival, some come for revenge – this is especially true in Europe, where many coming from the Middle East and partly Africa are from countries that have been savaged by the US and European countries the past quarter century, serving as de facto Israeli pawns to destroy Israel’s enemies, in the process ripping up countries and killing or making refugees of millions. Unsurprisingly, some from those places want payback – and they are getting in a position to receive it.
This is the concept of “border wars” – not simply repelling external threats, but dealing with immigrated threats that challenge cultures and governments from within. If one wants a precedent, think of the waves of barbarians that overwhelmed Roman Europe. The result was the Dark Ages. The current influx can be socially, culturally and economically almost as devastating – and that is the good news. The bad news is that, in sufficient numbers, they can submerge the existing cultures of European countries and transform them into something entirely different – it has happened before elsewhere.
None of this ought to be surprising to anyone familiar with the situation, and governments in France, Germany and Sweden in particular ought to be painfully aware of what is happening and the potential consequences. But their response is the usual democratic response – appeals to understanding, pleas for compromise, some closing borders and others opening them wide – indeed, the response of Angela Merkel’s government in particular is roughly the political equivalent of a counselor advising a woman facing gang rape to lie back and enjoy it, which almost makes me wonder if she retained enough of her communist upbringing to subconsciously wish the destruction of the Federal Republic.
Make no mistake about it. The existing governments have only two choices: stop the influx of immigrants, suppress the violence by any means necessary including the use of their armies, and expel forcibly those who are causing the disruption, by martial law if needed. Think of this as the equivalent of dealing with armed insurrection and not crime or civil disorder, and one will not be far wrong.
Or know with absolute certainty that alternatives to their governments await, formal or informal, and that those alternatives will – with sufficient provocation – replace them. And of course, cease doing America’s (and therefore Israel’s) bidding in the Middle East – needless interventions based on lies in Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Libya, and Syria have given rise to this problem, and ending those interventions would go a long way to ameliorating it. Washington and Tel Aviv will be unhappy, of course, but the people of Europe will rest easier and their governments will be more secure – and perhaps the same will obtain in the United States eventually.
Alan Ned Sabrosky (Ph.D, University of Michigan) is a ten-year US Marine Corps veteran. He served in Vietnam and is a graduate of the US Army War College.
featured image credit: DPA/EPA courtesy of Daily Mail