QED

Slamming the Door on Delusion

exec order trumpIf we are to believe the narrative being written an ocean away in the United States, it seems humanity has entered the winter of its empathy. America is now the land where racism, Islamophobia—whatever arbitrary definition it takes on today—and hatred reign. Evil, it seems, has won. With President Trump signing an executive order temporarily suspending immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries, the bell tolls for charity and decency. Our world has turned its back on Muslims, so the story goes, and whatever fate awaits them is no longer our concern.

This narrative is, of course, a false one, although one might be forgiven for believing otherwise — popular fictions being often favoured above truth by those who fervently wish to believe. However, I wonder if the obscurantists who are constructing this narrative have stopped to consider this one question: If Trump’s executive order is intended to bar Muslims, and only Muslims, from entering the United States, why don’t Indonesia, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Nigeria—the five most populated Muslim countries — figure on his hit list?

The answer, as it so often the case, hides in plain sight. Compared with their Middle-Eastern and North-African counterparts, the aforementioned Muslim countries are functioning states, not purely hotbeds of radicalised Islamic terror. Libya, Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen are.

But all this confusion could have been avoided if the petulant progressive parade had, instead of accepting the celebrity version of events on Twitter, taken the time to actually read the executive order in its entirety and extract its intent. The title alone provides this: Protecting the nation from foreign terrorist entry into the United States.

It will also irritate the regressive left to find that nowhere in the order are Muslims mentioned—only ‘foreign nationals’. This makes it incredibly hard to virtue-signal, but a good progresive will always met that challenge. As to why the measures are needed, well, Section 1 of the executive order spells it out:

Deteriorating conditions in certain countries due to war, strife, disaster, and civil unrest increase the likelihood that terrorists will use any means possible to enter the United States.

This is by no means an unreasonable conclusion. If recent years have taught us anything, it is this: the road to hell is indeed paved with good intentions. After all, anyone who denies that Germany’s open border policy has been anything short of an unmitigated failure has never heard of the multicultural revelry at Cologne station and many other locations.

In just one year, 2015, migrants committed over 200,000 crimes in Germany and were responsible for a further 90,000 in the first quarter of 2016. New Year’s Eve celebrations were marred at the start of 2016 by a spate of sexual assaults carried out by mostly migrant populations (this, however, was swept under the rug to prevent public opinion from denouncing the entry of over one-million migrants with little-to-no vetting procedures). And reports of ISIS militants sneaking into Germany posing as refugees become increasingly common as the situation in Syria worsens.

But these threats aren’t endemic to Germany. Turkey’s experience is also cause for trepidation. In October, 2015, Turkish officials warned of ISIS militants shaving their beards and concealing their identities under niqabs in an attempt to make their way across the border. Sweden, too, was embarrassed by the migrant crisis after a plethora of fully grown men found their way into the country by fraudulently claiming to be children—this would be almost comical, if it weren’t for the fact that one of the ‘unaccompanied minors’ is standing trial for stabbing a twenty-two year old woman to death at a youth hostel.

The lesson here is simple: radicalised Muslims are willing to go to extreme lengths to flee their countries and disrupt the peace of others. Sovereign nations must be vigilant in their vetting procedures. It also means  suspicion of those claiming to be refugees is justified.

Because the US understands this, and elected the current president partly as a consequence of this perception, the Trump administration has enacted a ‘temporary’ travel ban from at-risk countries. By exercising his constitutional right as President to maintain the sovereignty of his nation’s borders—as outlined in US Code Title 8 Section 1182—Trump has granted the US time to determine a course of action that guarantees refugees admitted into the US will share its values, rather than those “detrimental to the interests of the United States.”

But pragmatism alone isn’t enough to prevent progressives from denouncing as bigots anyone who supports this action or is at least consider the possibility of its merit. This despite the fact that the executive order expressly opposes actual bigotry:

…the United States should not admit those who engage in acts of bigotry or hatred (including “honor” killings, other forms of violence against women, or the persecution of those who practice religions different from their own) or those who would oppress Americans of any race, gender, or sexual orientation.

The progressives somehow still believe conservatives, libertarians, classical liberals, nationalists, or any other group who helps constitute the silent majority, take joy in Trump’s executive order. They believe we think all migrants are terrorists. what reprehensible stereotyping! It should go without saying that an overwhelming majority of those in favour of temporarily suspending immigration from war-torn countries find the situation incredibly disheartening.

The only difference is that they are sufficiently flexible to understand the reasoning behind it, rather than clinging to those comforting and much-chanted cliches that do so much to burnish the virtuecrats’ self-regard.

No person on either side of the political spectrum enjoys watching the Middle-East become an even bigger basketcase than is its norm. Slaughter in the name Koranic intolerance is utterly vile and deserving of severe condemnation. The idea that some think otherwise is not only shameful, but perverse. But therein lies the nature of bad ideas: they nestle most contentedly in the emptiest of heads.

Whilst it is a measure of the West’s compassion to provide refuge for the most desperate and vulnerable, national safety cannot be compromised by a rejection of reality. The American century is marked by its failures to modernize underdeveloped nations through Western expansion, and each failure ultimately came back to bite the hand that fed it. From Iran to Afghanistan, and more recently in Iraq, the US, having begrudgingly accepted the role as the world’s policeman, is slowly accepting that it is virtually impossible to disseminate certain cultural values into fundamentally incompatible regions unless said regions truly desire them. And if other cultures aren’t willing to accept American values on home soil, they are highly unlikely to accept them abroad. Some things are just too entrenched to remove, no matter the impediment they pose to actual progress.

Nevertheless, with Brexit, Trump, the rise of One Nation in Australia, and with Angela Merkel calling to ban the burqa after conceding ‘our laws take precedence over honour codes, tribal customs and sharia’, perhaps an argument could be made that the West is beginning to shift its focus. Instead of instilling Western values into divergent countries, a policy that governed international relations for over a century, and one that has to an extent contributed to the regional instability we face at present, it appears the thinking now is that Western values should instead be contained within the borders that define where they are already and universally accepted. Maybe, in part due to exhaustion, the West is beginning to prioritise internal security matters over external ones. Could it be that our civilization is ushering in an era of cultural preservation, a period defined by defending the pillars of Western tradition instead of diffusing them?

As Harvard’s Samuel P. Huntington notes in his seminal Clash of Civilizations, “the survival of the West depends on Americans reaffirming their Western identity and Westerners accepting their civilization as unique, not universal, and uniting to renew and preserve it against challenges from non-Western societies.”

If Western power and influence is declining in the global economy, and if Western cultural values are increasingly declared irrelevant on the global stage, perhaps the West can no longer guard the rest of the world from tyranny and must instead look after its own house. In the meantime, before the US resumes its refugee intake, it is the nation’s responsibility to guarantee it has the resources and services available to help those most deserving thrive in their new home. And this it must do by ensuring that those who make it to their shores truly want to be there.

But more importantly, as stated in the executive order, it must not admit those who “bear hostile attitudes toward it and its founding principles.”

Ciaran J. Ryan is a Melbourne writer

20 comments
  • ianl

    > ” … Angela Merkel calling to ban the burqa after conceding ‘our laws take precedence over honour codes, tribal customs and sharia’ …”

    Merkel is facing an election where polling, such as it is, is suggesting she may lose ground, or even lose control of any governing coalition. One has to suspect that her quote above is mostly just telling people what she thinks they want to hear. In other words, she is not to be trusted, ever. The overall situation is that entrenched German *politicians* (please note, NOT the general German populace) are once again running Europe, this time through their Brussels proxies and close economic control. Sad to say, anti-Semitism is also once again in view, this time in the guise of “open borders” for enormous numbers of people who have only murderous hatred for the Jewish culture. Like the Golon, this simply never ends …

    Lest it be thought that I have my own anti-German bigotry, I have only enthusiasm and respect for German engineering and cultural achievements and the decency of the general population. I’ve worked in Germany for long enough periods several times and the only aspect I disliked was that they drive on the wrong side of the road ! But their politicians ? Another country, I think. The “open borders” achievement in Germany and Central Europe is beyond horror in its’ perversity – large chunks of major, famous and much pre-loved cities are now unliveable for the initial population, culturally shriven and prone to random, terrifying attacks on helpless, guiltless civilians. And still some people think that Trump shouldn’t try to avoid or at least ameliorate that situation in the US ?

    Brexit may help the UK pull its’ feet back out of that dank, foetid, corrupted water. I certainly hope so.

  • Jody

    Agree with your comments about Germany!! My only complaint about that country is what I regard as ‘excessive liberalism’ – you know; the kind where you can be menaced on public transport by drunks and harangued by nut-jobs in the streets because they have ‘rights’. Not so in Austria where that isn’t tolerated. ‘(Which one is the freer society’?, I hear you ask.)

    The American ’empire’, such as it was, is finished. Trump is a representation of that fact and the ensuing internal chaos of lost hegemony. Like most empires, they fail from within. The regressive and repressive Left has played a huge role in this and it has taken a bulldozer like Trump to try and ram through their institutionalized paralysis. I don’t like either Trump or his nation very much these days, but I wish him well. Australia should move away from its ‘relationship’ with the USA once and for all. My advice to Trump: “come and get yer stuff”!

    • en passant

      Jody,
      You say: ” I don’t like either Trump or his nation very much these days, but I wish him well.” No, you do not wish him and America well or you would be able to tell us all just three achievements you expect of the Trump Administration. You have been asked many times, but reply with obfuscation, insults and personal attacks, but no substance.

      So, how strong is our ability to defend ourselves should we need to do so? Of course, as we both know, our region is the most peaceful in the world, with no threats to our sovereignty, our culture, or our economy, so why do we need allies like the USA at all? Your answer is that we do not.

      So please, just chatter on as is your way and do not try to sound rational or sensible.

      • Jody

        Obfuscation, insults and personal attacks are your forte and your know that your comments are merely your own projections. There are always internet trolls on every site and you are one of two for Quadrant and, consequently, deserve to be ignored. Deal with your issues of aggression which are never a cover for sensible dialogue.

    • Warty

      I think you are a tad inconsistent here, Jody. I remember a day or two, someone calling himself ‘from Ohio’, responding to an article in Spiked. He wrote: ‘Trump is shattering something far more valuable to the powers that be: their narrative’. To which Jody (using a different nom de plume) answered: ‘BRILLIANT. APPOSITE. CORRECT.’ Now, when I challenged Jody’s doppelgänger, she admittedly denied having fallen in love with DT, but we still have her enthusiastic acknowledgement of FromOhio’s statement.
      Here you suggest that Trump represents the fact that the American empire is finished??? and that he also represents ‘ensuing internal chaos of lost hegemony’, here I suppose you mean the hegemony of the RINOS and their Democrat lookalikes, though this is not entirely clear, though you do acknowledge the role of the ‘regressive and repressive left’.
      But, no, you haven’t finished, you say it has taken a bulldozer like Trump to try and ram through their (Washington’s? The swamp’s? The elite’s?) institutionalised paralysis. Without saying that the silent majority gave rise to a Trump, and that it needed all the lack of decorum, the failure to acknowledge the whole PC narrative, that made a Trump so hated by the snowflakes, and ironically, a Jody, who purports to be a conservative.
      So, is Jody a little confused? There is grudging support for the need for a Trump, though you don’t quite put it that way. He is still called a bulldozer (I know he’s big, but . . .) he is perhaps sorting things out (again you don’t quite put it that way). Now, here’s where it gets truly sticky: Jody tears out a page from Paul Keating’s Chinophile directives on foreign policy: ‘Australia should move away from its relationship with the USA once and for all’. Are you kidding Jody? The gathering momentum of the populist movement here in Australia is building on the successes of the one in a life time DT. Our politicians of all hues are trying to mimic aspects of Trumpy’s populism, even tricky little Shorten. Jody, Australia is going to bed with Trump, like it or not.

  • Keith Kennelly

    Rubbish Jody.

    The American Empire is re asserting itself after the ultimate weakling Obama and the Corruption of the Bushes and Clinton.

    What you are seeing is A powerful and strong leader tellling the rest of the world America, its progress and its freedoms are no longer to be taken for granted or abused.
    Eg this week with the fool ‘Trumbull’ trying to foist an unacceptable situation on the US and with the threat to the Mexican President that the US will send in troops if the Mexicans don’t control their drug cartels.

    Of course you don’t like Trump. It’s b cause he’s daring to shake up the order of the elites and trashing their self delusion and self focus. You don’t realise it but you are still trying to hang on to that old order. You are resistant to the change that is coming.

    The change coming in the US will eventually come here.

    All we need is a leader who is strong enough and who has the interests of the nation and our culture at their heart.

    Pauline Hanson and James Ashby are not that.

    Tony Abbott is.

    • Jim Kapetangiannis

      I couldn’t agree with you more but until Mr. Abbott comes out of his corner with all fists flailing, the desperation candidate will continue to gain strength. But it is a big ask because the reward for loving the people will be to wear and bear their hatred.

      Quite frankly – S…ff the Liberal party! Their loyalty to the one who handed them an almost unassailable margin in the house of representatives makes all bets off. I used to think that it would be good for Mr. Abbott not to return like for like and magnanimously stand above the more than obvious moral turpitude of his successors. He is that “old fashioned” kind of man that can show kindness if not exactly “love” towards those who have treated him badly. But I now think that loyalty to the people of Australia “trumps” (ouch…)any loyalty to any one party.

      It’s telling that Abbott would include his political enemy in the ministry and give him an opportunity to display his talents which were sadly lacking then (the NBN was Malcolm disaster) and are even more sadly and manifestly lacking now. It’s even more telling that his successor will not do anything of the kind because it may threaten his position, even though the PM he deposed is both experienced and capable (more so than most in the current line up).

      Abbott has recently been derided for honouring his opponents Rudd and Gillard but that just reflects on a populace, a press and a current leadership that is joyfully descending into barbarism. Unless he or someone else makes a move, then Pauline Hanson will just continue to grow in strength and that in the absence of a strong and viable alternative, may ultimately not necessarily be a bad thing.

  • Don A. Veitch

    Samuel P Huntington has been a very, very influential pointy-head. Huntington’s solution for Vietnam was to herd the entire SV population into safe zones and then defoliate the jungle, thereby exposing VC and NVA and killing them. The man is (was) a socio-path.

    Trumps ‘ban’ on immigration is only for 6 months. It is a precondition and part of Trump’s ‘secretive’ plan for the USA to get serious on ISIS et. al.
    There are about 300-350 death squads, in Syria, about 70,000 murderers under the payroll/patronage/support of the Saudi, Qatar, Turkey AND NATO. They have move around for 15 years now, following their master’s voice(s). After massive battles at Aleppo, Mosul, Raqqa, Manjib, Idlib etc, the survivors, will have no home. Trump, argues for safe zones, and sensibly, will stop them moving into USA and reeking jihadi vengeance.

  • gardner.peter.d

    ..” perhaps an argument could be made that the West is beginning to shift its focus.”

    Emphasis on perhaps. The need is indisputable. I follow Brexit closely and it is only now, 7 months since the UK’s referendum on EU membership, that there is some awareness in the EU and among far too many of Britain’s own elite, that UK is not the supplicant in these negotiations but the EU is. Brexit does not pose any insurmountable problems whatsoever – one really can be that confident – if there is a will to stand up as an independent sovereign nation. Continued membership of the EU would almost certainly ensure reinforcement of everything the EU is getting wrong and would drag Britain down in its probable collapse. Brexit is by far the safer long term solution for Europe for Europe’s problems.

    The diversity that is the true strength of the West is its cultural, political and economic diversity established in its numerous independent sovereign nations. The imposition of what is called diversity in PC-speak is ethnic, meaning only skin deep; human rights, meaning uniformity not diversity; and religious, meaning empowering just one steadfastly intolerant religion which hitherto has been unable to impose its will because it lacked the numbers and lacked the misguided political support of a ragbag of minority activists who also wish to force majority conformance to their views – fellow travellers.

    There is still a long way to go.

  • [email protected]

    Another excellent article in QOL.

    Allow me to make a point that very much belongs with the topic but rather obscure in the article.

    Please note:

    “The American century is marked by its failures to modernize underdeveloped nations through Western expansion, and each failure ultimately came back to bite the hand that fed it.”

    And

    “Instead of instilling Western values into divergent countries, a policy that governed international relations for over a century, and one that has to an extent contributed to the regional instability we face at present, it appears the thinking now is that Western values should instead be contained within the borders that define where they are already and universally accepted.”

    What the article fails to clearly spell out is that those “underdeveloped nations” and “divergent countries” are all Islamic. Western influence on other, non-islamic countries, while not always wholly beneficial, did not cause the mayhem that materialised in Islamic countries. In fact, much of western values have been wholeheartedly embraced by many Asian and African countries which benefited immensely as a result. Likewise, immigrants to western countries from non-western but non-islamic countries rapidly integrated into the host communities for the benefit of all. The degree of rejection of western influences in non-western countries, and of immigrants in western countries, is directly proportional to the sway Islam holds over those countries and individuals.

    The obvious conclusion is that the problems are not the result of friction between the west and the rest, but between Islam and the rest.

    • en passant

      A true and accurate comment

    • ian.macdougall

      According to the Koran and Islamic tradition, that same Koran and the Hadiths contain all the information necessary to guide one in life. Nothing new can be added to it. It is final. And it was written by one man.
      But being a human creation, Islam has never successfully spoken with one voice. From the day after the death of Mohammad, it has had the Sunni/Shia divide.
      However it is in the interest of all of Islam’s clerics to discourage questioning of its authority. Apart from a brief flowering early on, Islamic education has never sought to develop the critical faculties of the youth. Those clerics are agin it. Thus science, and with it technological progress, has withered in the Islamic world, which leads to a certain frustration amongst Muslims, and a ‘we wuz robbed’ attitude. So at the same time as they are trying to emigrate to western countries, Muslims are inevitably aware of the shortcomings of the societies in which they were born and raised. They also have to account for this in a way that excuses Islam.

      Pew research indicates that around 20% of young Muslims sympathise with jihadists. That is one helluva lot of potential terrorists, even if around 80% of them don’t.

  • padraic

    It may be time to expand the existing Commonwealth group of nations to include USA and other countries who share our social, political and cultural values and give it more clout in areas like immigration and defence so that we could do an UNXIT and attend the UN as observers and circle the covered wagons. No one is bellyaching about the Commonwealth at the moment, so it may be worth a try. And now that colonialism is dead and gone and nations are independent let them get on with their private nightmares and leave us out of it.

  • Lacebug

    LACEY UNDERPANTS (off-topic) I read Elizabeth Farrelly’s piece in the SMH today about our battle with nature, and in it she mentions a new play at the STC about how Mary doubted her son’s divinity and resurrection. I sent the following letter to the comments page. No surprise it was rejected:

    I’m waiting for the STC to put on an equally controversial play about the prophet Muhammad’s father doubting his son was really a prophet and simply a misunderstood odd-job man

    • Warty

      Well, here is an example of ‘all roads leading to Rome’. You are not entirely off-topic, in that you have hit upon a significant Trump election issue, viz. relativism of cultures (in the eyes of the millennials) but more particularly their need to elevate Islam at the expense of Christianity (you know that totally imperialistic religion). So you have picked up on this same false narrative here in Australia: the left will do all it can to undermine Christianity, Western Culture and above all, white heterosexual males (the ones who voted for Trump in their droves).

      • Lacebug

        Agreed! And in melbourne there’s a hot stage show called The Book of Mormon. I suggest we scribe a play called The Quaran.

  • Keith Kennelly

    STC?
    Stupid Theatre Company ..,

    • Lacebug

      I like this Keith.

  • Keith Kennelly

    Jody

    Besides en p, in your opinion, who is the other troll on quadrant?

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