The tide of Muslim migration threatens to engulf Europe, the sirens of Cultural Marxism try to weaken resistance by telling the continent’s defenders that they have no moral right to resist. Europeans, they charge, have a history so stained with colonialism and slavery that accepting the Muslim wave is simple justice, the Europeans’ due comeuppance for their historical sins.
These were the injustices, real and alleged, perpetrated during Europe’s age of imperialism and colonialism, beginning around five hundred years ago and ending during the middle part of the last century. Part of that imperial drive involved the conquest and subjugation of Muslim countries which began in the nineteenth century. Muslims cite this as a reason that the West owes them a moral debt, and they add that they have not forgotten about the Crusades.
The worst of the injustices was during Europe’s colonial reign, it is said, was the African slave trade, when Europeans were involved in the shipment of Africans, perhaps as many as ten million, to the New World. According to the critical theorists of Cultural Marxism, this is one transgression for which the West can never atone. Westerners must hang their heads low and accept whatever retribution comes their way. Viewing this pathological Western guilt, Muslims are more than happy to endorse it and use it to their advantage.
But this narrative is terribly unbalanced and flawed to say the least. It ignores the benefit that the West has provided the world in terms of technology, health and medicine, humanitarian aid, and political systems upholding personal liberty and human dignity. And though the West engaged in slavery, let the record also show that the Western nations eventually repudiated and ended slavery as the result of their ideals concerning personal freedom. And let the record also show that it was Westerners’ growing respect for self-determination that often brought a peaceful end to their colonial rule.
But there is another, far different history of aggression, colonialism, and slavery. It is the sad tale of Islam’s 1,000-year siege of Europe, beginning in the 700s and continuing to the 1700s. Muslim armies launched unprovoked war on Europe with their invasion of what is now Spain in 711. After conquering most of that land, they headed to modern-day France, intent on taking all the continent. Charles Martel drove them back to Spain, which partially remained in their hands until in 1492 the Spaniards finally drove them out.
Spain has come under much justified criticism for the subsequent colonialism that it launched in the New World. That being the case, it is pertinent to ask what made the Spaniards so excessively zealous and warlike. One obvious reason was having to contend with centuries of Muslim aggression. Islam indirectly left its impact on Latin America.
Muslim attacks on Europe never let up after the initial assaults. As this warfare raged, European Christians launched their Crusades to recover Palestine. This was hardly the aggression that Muslim apologists now allege. Rather, it was a backlash against ongoing Muslim aggression to recover territory which had been Christian prior to Muslim conquest.
After the Crusades ended in the thirteenth century, Muslim armies went on the offensive in Eastern Europe and Russia. Eventually all of southeastern Europe and southern Russian came under their control. Again, the intent was to take the whole continent, a goal just barely prevented by the armed forces of Christian Europe. Finally the tide began to turn in the 1700s as the West developed superior military technology. Still, it took to the end of the nineteenth century before all of Europe was free. It was not moral suasion that persuaded the Muslims to leave; it was cold steel.
During the reign of Muslim colonialism, Europeans suffered the humiliations of “dhimmi” status under their Muslim overlords. They also suffered slavery. That institution, contrary to what many modern Americans and Europeans believe, was not just one of whites ruling blacks. As the consequence of Muslim rule and slave raiding, as many as eight million white European Christians were enslaved, and often forced into some of the most degrading and deadly forms of servitude imaginable.1 These included being worked to death in quarries and as rowers in galley ships. Sometimes the men were castrated to serve as eunuchs. Women commonly became sexual slaves.2
Black Africa suffered even more from Islamic slavery. Muslims set up a substantial slave traffic between Central Africa and the Middle East at least six centuries before Europeans got involved in the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Muslim slave traffic greatly exceeded the Atlantic trade in numbers, perhaps 17 million. It involved forced marches northward across the Sahara Desert, causing a mortality rate much higher than the Atlantic crossing. These slaves generally had to endure the same degraded status as the European slaves, and in at least one instance their suffering was worse, with castration of males being more common.3
Muslim slavery found significant sanction in the Koran and other sacred texts.4 Mohammad, whom Muslims are told to emulate, owned and traded slaves. Muslim slavery thrived until the nineteenth century when European powers finally—for the most part—ended it. Still, it exists even today in Muslim countries like Mauritania and Sudan, where light-skinned Arabized masters hold blacks in bondage.
The memory of the Atlantic slave trade still causes a racial divide. At the same time, black Africans and white Europeans can find common ground in their shared and painful experience as victims of Muslim enslavement.
Today, Islam stands once
more at the threshold of Europe, and it threatens to accomplish demographically
what it couldn’t achieve by force of arms. The morale of Europe will determine
whether that conquest comes to pass, a morale now greatly weakened by
inappropriate Western guilt. The spectacle is a bizarre moral inversion, with
Europeans ignoring their virtues and obsessing over past sins—while yielding to
a faith and its adherents who so grievously sinned against them and so many
others. Meanwhile, Muslims show little if any remorse for their history.