Going from 2015 into 2016 in some German cities brought out the animal by several Muslim youngsters. More than 600 women claimed to have been victims of a spate of Muslim grooming and rape gangs, sexual assaults and muggings plus steaming in a.o. Cologne on New Year’s Eve where the police were completely overwhelmed by the violence, largely blamed on foreigners.
The Cologne attacks have were been blamed on gangs of predominantly North African immigrants from Algeria and Morocco as well as some Syrian refugees. Some of the immigrants were well known to Cologne police as pickpockets and muggers who frequent the station. Many are thought to be illegal immigrants whose asylum requests have been rejected.
A leaked police account of the Cologne violence, compiled by North Rhine-Westphalia’s Federal Criminal Bureau, described in harrowing detail what the female victims suffered.
“The attackers stuck their fingers through the tights and the underwear of their victims, they were surrounded on all sides, grabbed and fingered,”
the report said. It said most attackers had “bloodshot eyes” and were probably either drunk or on drugs.
The Federal Criminal Bureau said that such a form of mass sexual molestation was hitherto unknown in Germany but that similar violence had occurred in Egypt on Cairo’s Tahrir Square during the Arab Spring.
The Interior Minister, Thomas de Maizière, has pledged to increase the number of police video cameras across Germany to deter future incidents of mass crime.
When the German nationalist group Pegida (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the West) hosted a rally in Cologne, which drew more than 1,700 people, it was notable that in this case the police found it well appropriate to use water cannons on the crowd. The fact that water cannons and fully-militarized police were used against people protesting the rapes while the authorities did nothing to stop Arab and North African men from wreaking havoc on New Year’s Eve could be seen as emblematic of the political system’s priorities.
In Sweden the police had tried to keep it quite that there had been assaults and rapes at a festival. The man in charge of policing the festival, Peter Argen, appeared to admit the decision to play down the incident at the time was political, telling Dagens Nyheter, Sweden’s largest paper, that there were fears of “playing into the hands” of the country’s increasingly popular anti-immigrant party, the Sweden Democrats (Sverigedemokraterna). In Germany itself, anti-immigrant and counter demonstrations drew thousands overnight in Leipzig.
The Danish government secured backing for a controversial bill which would allow authorities to seize jewellery and other valuables from asylum seekers to help pay for their stay in refugee centres. Denmark’s national broadcaster DR reported that the government only won over sceptical MPs by amending the law to allow refugees to hold onto wedding rings and other items of sentimental value, like family portraits. The UN’s high commission for refugees has called the legislation
“an affront to their dignity and an arbitrary interference with their right to privacy.”
For many Europeans it is clear that if newcomers want to live here, they must accept certain values or else move on.
For Angela Merkel it was clear Europe should be very careful with Erdogan, who easilly could turn against the European citizens and calling names those who do not agree with him or do not want to go on the same line. Germany’s relationship with Erdogan is one of its knottiest problems. Mockery like the one from Erdogan we also could find by ISIS who laughed with Merkel and the European Union and managed to bring fear over Western Europe.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel her mantra that the Germans where going to make it was never implicating it would be easy. Eleven moths after she first said ‘Wir schaffen das’ (in the same spirit as Obama’s ‘Yes we can’) , she was under fire because of the increase in violence.
In July Angela Merkel responded to criticisms of her refugee policy, insisting that the country should stay the course despite Islamist terror attacks in Würzburg and Ansbach that have sparked urgent calls from her opponents for a harder line on immigration.
“I never said it would be easy,”
she rebuffed calls to reverse her welcoming stance toward refugees after a series of brutal attacks in the country (an axe rampage, a shooting spree, a knife attack and a suicide bombing stunned Germany, leaving 13 people dead, including three assailants, and dozens wounded) and said the four assaults within a week were “shocking, oppressive and depressing” but not a sign that authorities had lost control.
The German leader said the assailants
“wanted to undermine our sense of community, our openness and our willingness to help people in need”.
“We firmly reject this,”
she said at a wide-ranging news conference.
Merkel repeated her rallying cry from last year when she opened the borders to people fleeing war and persecution, many from Syria, which brought nearly 1.1 million migrants and refugees to Germany in 2015.
“I’m just as convinced now as I was then that we will cope . . . and we will live up to this historic task.”
she said, agreeing that they had overseen some problems but also pointing at our challenge in times of globalisation.
Merkel said that she would not allow jihadists, following a series of deadly attacks in France, Belgium, Turkey and the US state of Florida, to keep her government from being guided by reason and compassion.
“Despite the great unease these events inspire, fear can’t be the guide for political decisions,”
“It is my deep conviction that we cannot let our way of life be destroyed.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel in August called on the EU and North African countries to do deals modelled on a controversial agreement with Turkey to stem migrant flows to Europe.
Under the EU-Turkey agreement, Ankara agreed to take back one Syrian who made it to Greece in return for being allowed to send one from its massive refugee camps to the bloc in a more orderly redistribution programme.
The deal also pledges billions of euros in EU aid for Turkey, visa-free European travel for Turkish citizens and accelerated EU membership talks.
“We must agree on similar deals with other countries, such as in North Africa, in order to get better control over the Mediterranean sea refugee routes,”
Merkel told regional daily Neue Passauer Zeitung.
“Such agreements are also in the interest of the refugees themselves,”
she said, pointing to the huge risks migrants take in crossing the Mediterranean in rickety vessels, as well as the large sums they have to pay smugglers for the perilous sea passage.
“It is safer for them and there are good reasons for them to remain in Turkey, close to their homeland, where the cultural and language barriers are lower,”
she said, defending the deal with Turkey as
“correct, as before”.
Near the end of 2016 she came more and more criticised, even by rebels from her own conservative bloc being accused of exposing the country to unacceptable risks without stricter controls on people coming into the country. The December assault on a Christmas market also proofed how easy a criminal could go from Germany to Italy, passing the Netherlands, Belgium and France.
All citizens with the German politicians were awaiting urgent action from the federal government and Europe.
Merkel announced a string of new security measures including improving an “early-warning system” to detect radicalisation among refugees, training the military to respond to major attacks, boosting intelligence cooperation with allies and speeding up deportation of rejected asylum seekers.
Her strong stance and firm attitude to have Europe to be willing to help war refugees made the rightwing populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) party stronger with a campaign against “Islamisation“, which would deal Merkel a stinging blow one year ahead of a general election.
Life in communist East Germany informed the chancellor’s firm line with China’s ruling party.
In a way Merkel could have been seen as the de facto ‘European Leader’, but this position is based on her mastery of domestic politics, argued the FT’s Gideon Rachman.
Many European governments harbour resentment against Ms Merkel. But they will miss her ability to keep Europe together when she finally falls.
In September in rural Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (West Pomerania) the anti-immigration Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) party (Alternative for Germany) earned a small footnote in post-war history, becoming the first state where the CDU has ever been outflanked by a party of the right. Only three years old, the right-wing party her growing popularity, by reflecting a classic protest vote, was a clear sign to Ms Merkel, but also for the other European members states. Angela Merkel has admitted that her hated open-door policy on Muslim migrants led to her party’s crushing defeat in elections.
AfD gathered strength, pushing chancellor’s Christian Democrats into third place, and her defeat would set the stage for national elections. CDU could muster only a pitiful 19.2 per cent of the vote compared to the victorious AfD’s 21 per cent, leading to growing scepticism about Merkel’s ability to cling onto power in Germany after her party also lost three elections to the AfD in March. (Who voted AfD? The election data crunched – Süddeutsche Zeitung; German voters are frustrated and nobody is listening – Tanit Koch, Bild ; Merkel in her own words – Bild interview on her refugee welcome; There is trouble brewing for Merkel – Nico Fried, Süddeutsche Zeitung; Spiegel wrote:
“The AfD has essentially staged a revolution in Merkel’s backyard. And it did so by turning the elections into a single-issue vote: Merkel’s refugee policies.)
Germany’s Jewish leaders have reacted with horror to the success of the AfD, Charlotte Knobloch, President of the Jewish Community of Munich and Upper Bavaria expressing their worries
“That an extreme-right party which blatantly incites hatred against minorities in a disgusting way can rise unhindered in our country is a nightmare come true.”
At the same time the increasingly vocal Visegrad four central European countries, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and Czech Republic could not be ignored.
“Brexit is a fantastic opportunity”
giving them a historic cultural moment.
“There is a possibility of a cultural counter-revolution right now.”
With Turkish troops in action in Syria and Mr Erdogan taking steps to mend frosty relations with Mr Putin, at the biannual meeting of foreign ministers for informal talks in Bratislava, known in EU parlance as the Gymnich meeting, named after the German town in which foreign ministers first met informally in the 1970s, Turkey was dominating this time, since the coup attempt there having been friction between EU leaders and Ankara over president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s crackdown on the army and a huge civil service purge, plus the intern problems he wanted to cause in the EU member states between Gülen followers and Erdogan fans. Mr Erdogan also complained that there was too little solidarity from European leaders after the coup attempt.
In January 2016 US President Barack Obama has engaged his Presidential veto to stop a bill that would have stripped Planned Parenthood.
In the New York Times January editions Nicholas Kristof assailed the Burmese government for its horrific treatment of the Rohingya minority – and faults Nobel Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi for her silence on the issue. Also in the Times, Masha Gessen explained how foreign criminal investigations were shedding light on the corruption of President Putin’s regime in Russia.
The American and the European press came more under fire by the Trump family, accusing one after the other of ‘false news’.
Melania Trump in September sued the publisher of the Daily Mail for $150m over “false and defamatory statements”. The lawsuit turned on a Daily Mail story that cited a Slovenian magazine’s report that a modelling agency, which employed Mrs Trump in the 1990s, had also served as an escort service. The lawsuit was filed in spite of the Daily Mail publishing a retraction. Mrs Trump‘s lawyer led the Hulk Hogan suit that brought down Gawker (- something you can read more about in Nick Denton’s Lunch with the FT. )
Nightclubs, because of the loud music, the drunk people and the crowd, became considered a target for ISIS and Canada got the first turn with a shooting at Ten X Nightclub at the 1100 Block of 10 Avenue southwest in Calgary just before 2 a.m. Sunday morning January 10.
On video’s we could see how calm Salah Abdeslam was after the attacks in Paris.
In Turkey not only Istanbul’s nightclubs became unsafe by ISIS, several political groups started to become more active again now Erdogan came to limit the freedom of speech.
By a suicide bomber at least 10 people were killed and 15 injured in Sultanahmet Square, close to the major tourist attractions of the Blue Mosque and Hagia Sophia on the 12th of January.
The war on terror by the beginning of 2016 had already increased the death-toll with 4.500%.
In the United States of America Donald Trump made good use of the situations around refugees and terror attacks in Europe to get the whopping 45 millions Americans on food stamps, on his hand accusing the Obama governement of the dire economic environment that thrusts people into poverty and despair, and which would become worse, according to Trump when America would not make more work of getting the refugees and asylum-seekers out of the States.
Whilst Obama asked to keep appealing to the bigger interests and hopes of America
— not our narrow ones and fears, as we’ve seen too frequently in our politics.
Trump worked on that fear and told many lies, also making the Democrats the evil of the State, having politicians like the Clintons who had to belong to prison (according to Trump).
Obama may have laid out a vision for an economy that’s even stronger, a country that’s safer, and a union that’s more perfect, than the one before he started, at the end of the year the thunderstorm was lurking around the corner with a Trumpet being able to destroy it soon when he would come into power in 2017.
Obama first became a figure of global importance when, in July 2008, the then-candidate mesmerized a crowd of 200,000 Berliners and therefore his last major tour abroad had to be sealed over there, where he redeveloped his strongest rapport with any world leader: German Chancellor Angela Merkel. There Obama got his last, line of defence.
Obama and Merkel may have made for something of an odd couple, for us Europeans it was clear that for 2016 they both where the main figures of the year, Merkel getting the position of Woman of the Year and carrying the mantle of the West.
The charismatic orator met understatement personified. The public intellectual outshined the reclusive scientist. His biography spans the globe; she hails from provincial East Germany. The one roused sky-high expectations; the other was eternally underestimated. And if Obama’s attention was drawn to the rising powers of Asia, Merkel was focused on keeping the Old Continent afloat. It seemed improbable back then that the two leaders would form any bond beyond the polite and professional.
wrote, November 16, 2016.
Ms Merkel soon recognised the challenge having to say goodbye to Donald Trump in a letter to Mr Trump pledging him to work together on the basis on common democratic values — an unprecedented condition for a German chancellor to set for a US president.
Obama said that his successor had
“expressed a great interest in maintaining our core strategic relationships”
including in Nato. While the outgoing US president blamed inequality and fear for rise of Trump and Brexit and even perhaps might well be wrong about Mr Trump’s intentions, Ms Merkel’s best working assumption were that he was right.
Donald Trump insisted also he would have campaigned differently if Electoral College didn’t exist – and still won
Strange that so many Americans had difficulties with Obama making it possible for Americans to go to Cuba and Vietnam. For some also the dark part of the U.S. power structure — intelligence agencies collaborating with criminal elements and shady business people — simply proved too tight-knit a network for the U.S. government to choose an enlightened course of action.
It may be said that an Obama quick fix to what many considered the excesses of the U.S. war on terror did not materialize and that he did not manage to close the prison at Guantanamo. U.S.-German relations were also not spared new strains. Berlin’s refusal to support a NATO-led intervention in Libya was as incomprehensible to the United States as it was to the country’s other allies (even if history has since offered some vindication for that reluctance).
Germany’s handling of the eurozone crisis was openly criticized by Washington, which feared a new downturn for a global economy that was barely in recovery. In turn, revelations of extensive National Security Agency surveillance of international organizations and Western governments, including of Merkel herself, left Germans perplexed and angered at the United States.
Somehow we may speak about a Obama-Merkel team that showed a political symbiosis, that few would have expected during his early years in office, taking stance against Moscow which made claims to an exclusive sphere of influence in Ukraine and elsewhere. It was the German chancellor who became the key interlocutor with the Kremlin and rallied reluctant Europeans behind sanctions against Russia. The U.S. president, in turn, added transatlantic coherence by making sure that American responses and sanctions were in lockstep with those of the European Union.
Obama on his farewell tour through Europe tried to assure allies anxious about Donald Trump’s election victory.
“willing to stand up to Russia where they are deviating from our values and international norms.”
The Syrian war and open genocide is also one of the biggest failures of Obama and of the European Union, they never taking the strong position forcing one or the other on their knees. The decision not to intervene in Syria’s civil war, and then to facilitate Assad’s murder of his own people through political and military coordination with Iran and Russia, was according to some Obama’s choice.
At the end of November Obama called on his successor to regard US as an ‘indispensable nation’ and to bolster international order it helped to create
Several Trump promoters did everything to blacken Obama. They presented promoting conspiracy theories such as the idea that President Barack Obama was born in Kenya and that Saddam Hussein was behind the Oklahoma City bombing. They could produce all false and damaging talk until at last in November members of the Donald Trump transition team close to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie had been pushed out and Frank Gaffney, who had peddled conspiracy theories, had been brought on.
The public was told Trump nor his helpers had contact with Turkey nor Russia, though after he was chosen as president elect it soon proved to be different and even very bad for the safety of the United States of America. Trump had lied on many occasions (more than Hillary Clinton) and betrayed his country though not many seemed to worry about it.
In October Donald Trump’s top military adviser, retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, met with two Turkish community leaders in New York City, one of whom has close ties to Turkish government agents.
On November 1 “Obamacare” began frightening millions, many of whom falsely believed that the new “law” would make health insurance cheaper, though seeing rates continuing to go up, up, and away – and in many cases, consumers now having even fewer health plans from which to choose.
Eric Jans, an insurance broker from Nashville, told CBS News that most of his clients had been covered by Blue Cross Blue Shield until they recently decided to pull out of the Nashville market. Rates became so high that the insurer apparently had no choice but to flee, which means Jans and his family no longer have health insurance, nor do most of his 300 clients that were covered by the insurer, a devastating blow to this subset of the working American populace.
“As of January 1, unless we jump on to something else … we’re looking at $750 a month this year to $1,100 next year,”
Jans was quoted as saying.
This made several looking for what they called the President-elect Donald Trump’s first priorities, and a major heralded tenet of his campaign, to repeal, or at least seriously amend, Obamacare and replace it with an open insurance marketplace and individual Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), which will drive down costs and make insurance more affordable and available to all Americans.
Trump while campaigning made many promises. Some will benefit from his plans, but the white working class will not be among them.
For the first time since Spain had returned to democracy, neither of the country’s two largest parties secured more than 30 per cent of the vote in the 2015 December 20 contest, and the second-place Socialists (who polled 22 per cent) have repeatedly refused to join a grand coalition with the Popular party (28.7 per cent) of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. The Catalonian government not so interested any more towards creating all the trappings of independence, including a central bank and tax authority.
Britain stunned Europe when it voted to leave the bloc in a referendum, triggering debate about the grouping’s future and the need for reforms.
At their first post-referendum talks in late June, Hollande, Merkel and Renzi — the leaders of the eurozone’s three largest economies — urged “a new impulse” for the EU.
More people felt that Europe should not interfere with the way they want to live and with the international scene, because that last bit risks bringing mischief over Europe .
Martin Schultz, the German social democrat who serves as president of the European Parliament, in January compared Law and Justice’s tactics to Russia’s Vladimir Putin in an interview with Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. While Poland’s anti-establishment Wprost magazine went so far as to depict Ms Merkel as Adolf Hitler on its cover, with Mr Schultz and Mr Oettinger in Nazi military uniforms standing behind her.
- March 16, 2017
Preceding article: 2016 in review Politics #1 Year of dissonance
- UNHCR recommends measures for strengthening security and refugee protection
- Muslim Grooming (Rape) Gangs and Sharia
- A stain of shame for the European Union
- Denmark votes in favour for a Discriminatory Nazi law
- Symbolic move to scare people away
- Migration not something to fear
- Trump brand of migrant demonization #1
- Prince of Wales warning that the world is in danger of “forgetting the lessons of the past”
- Looking at the September 2016
- Could Brexit lead to Frexit – or Czexit?
- Trump has been buffetted by accusations of misconduct
- Dutch Trumpism defeated
- There Is Going To Be A “Civil War” In Europe Between Muslims And Non-Muslims
- The Time is Now – Europeans Awaken!
- Merkel Backs Down On Open Border Policy
- EU way of life
- Pope Francis Likens Jesus to ISIS, says Muslims Must Breed with Europeans
- Love Europe Hate the EU
- The Europeans….Medemblik !!
- People: An Observation
- “Brexit” Wins – Where now for Liberty?
- Brexit exports ‘Benex’
- It’s Like Being Stuck in a Good Dream That I Can’t Wake Up From
- 59% of Europeans Say Trump is Right on Refugees Increasing Threat of Terrorism
- Forced Multiculturalism Does Not Benefit Europeans
- In Europe, good wisecracks make good neighbours
- Europeans ignoring “antisemitism” at their peril, says EU human rights commissioner
- Europeans welcome us, post-election–
- ISIS Terrorists Recruit European Youth Through Social Networks
- My Cologne: there’s a lighthouse that never goes out
- Organized crime on the rise in Germany
- “I have a double name. One for the Indian side and one for the German side”
- German authorities carry out 13 simultaneous counter-terrorism raids across five states
- 2016: A Year in Review
- The Most Picturesque Half-Timbered Towns in Germany
- Booliska Jarmalka Oo Raadinaya Nin Tunisia Ah Oo Gaadhi Jiidhsiiyey Dad Jooga Suuq
- Top Trump Adviser Went to Moscow and Flirted with Conspiracy Theories
- European MPs call for end to EU membership talks with Turkey amid post-coup crackdown
- European Parliament Votes to Suspend Talks on Turkey Joining the EU
- What on earth is Turkey complaining about? Their presence in Syria is illegal under International Law
- Erdogan Warns Turkey Could Open Gates for Migrants if Pushed by EU — After EU Stops Talks With Turkey on EU membership
- This is ridiculous, if Greece doesn’t take them the migrants can die away, the EU is fucked with all its “values” no one cares about them any longer: Erdogan threatens to open Turkey’s borders to Europe in protest at EU
- Merkel says EU and Turkey must stick to migration deal
- Erdogan, Putin in Syria Talks after Turkish Soldiers Killed
- Erdogan’s Turkey: ‘Democracy’ Wins
- In response to a European Parliament decision Turkey threatens to unleash refugees on Europe
- ‘Know Your Limits!’ Erdogan Reminds EU Parliament Who’s In Charge of Turkey
- Rivlin thanks Erdogan for Turkey’s help battling fires (Not good!!!)
- On the Same Day, One Year Apart, Russia Gets Its Revenge and Halts Turkey in Northern Syria
- Subliminal Halos of the Rich and Famous II
- UN torture expert starts Turkey visit amid abuse claims
- Erdogan Has Been Torturing His Opponents For Months
- Turkey: A dictatorship by any other name
- Second Signpost Alert: Trigger by Erdoğan?
- Erdogan: Turkish forces are in Syria to end Assad’s rule
- Erdogan admits Turkey illegally entered Syria to fight Government and not terrorists as originally claimed
- Erdogan: Turkish forces back “free Syrian army” – Interview Mnar Muhawesh
- No, Erdogan Didn’t “Trick” Putin and The Ayatollah
- Russia “Surprised” by Erdogan comments on Syria
- Turkey’s Erdogan: Israel restricting Muslim worship
- Brüssels Zittern vor dem großen Wandel
- PFW: Battle for Aleppo Over, Real War Has Begun
- Erdogan finally admits the real reason for his military intervention in Syria
- Relations turco-russes : Ankara joue un double jeu?
- Turkey’s the ruling party and the opposition have agreed on a transition to a presidial system, which they called a Partisan Presidency. What exactly will this system be?
- Erdogan, Putin discuss Syria as Turkish-backed rebels push to al-Bab
- Putin says grateful to Erdoğan for Turkish Stream agreement
- Al-Assad: Aleppo Win Huge Step toward Ending War
- WikiLeaks Claims Prove Erdogan’s Family and Turkish Minister’s Links to ISIS
- Tayyip Erdogan powers in Turkey to be expanded by constitutional reform
- Trump: Erdogan-Style Purges & the New Deplorables
- There is no such thing as a heartless “good cause”
- Why EU-Turkey Accession Negotiations Should Be Suspended – Mehmet Ugur.
- Mapping Radicalisation
- What measures is the EU taking to combat terrorism?
- ” The story of a radicalisation: ‘I was not thinking my thoughts. I was not myself”
- Across the Great Divide – Afterword
- How Can A Society Support An Ideology The Majority Doesn’t Believe In?
- Counter-radicalisation efforts must recognise the effect of community deprivation
- Facebook Policy Chief: Social Media Must Step Up Fight Against Extremism
- New Report on Mental Health and the Foreign Fighter Phenomenon: A Case Study of
- The Netherlands
- The Islamist-led assault on Prevent
- A view from an uncomfortable barstool by Landlord
- Distortion of History: the pitfalls
- The Islamisation of my Country – 1
- The Islamisation of Dewsbury
- Video: Is Europe Doomed by Migrants
- Stuttgarter Platz has been reduced to 10% of what it was