The threat of civil war in Europe

While 2022 has already seen its fair share of horror in the ongoing Russian-Ukrainian war, this winter could see the rise of a new specter: civil war. German social researcher Piotr Kocyba expects a new wave of violent protests as the continent cools. Kocyba, who works at the Chemnitz University of Technology and is a board member of the Institute for Protest and Movement Research in Berlin, says right-wing extremists are already heating up the mood, but the left also wants to call citizens to street demonstrations. “If the crisis lasts longer, it is not excluded that terrorist groups will form, as was the case during the anti-refugee demonstrations”, explained the researcher to the German media.

Kocyba is not alone. “Europe’s wealthier nations face increasing risks of civil unrest over the winter, including street protests and demonstrations, due to high energy prices and rising cost of life, according to a risk consultancy,” Reuters wrote. And according to Verisk Maplecroft senior analyst Torbjorn Soltvedt: “During the winter it would not be surprising if some of the developed countries of Europe would start to see more severe forms of civil unrest. That was before Reuters reported that Europe may have to prepare for mobile phone blackouts, as there are currently not enough backup systems in many European countries to handle widespread blackouts.

The authorities are not optimistic either. Stephan Kramer, chairman of the Thuringian state’s internal intelligence office, told German broadcaster ZDF that he expects “legitimate protests to be infiltrated by extremists…and that he is likely that some will become violent”. They will probably be worse than what has already been seen. “What we have experienced so far in the Covid pandemic in terms of partly violent clashes on social media, but also in the streets and squares, was probably more like a children’s birthday party in comparison,” Kramer said.

John Laughland, visiting scholar at Mathias Corvinus Collegium in Hungary, though skeptical of the “power of the streets,” anticipates that “we are going into uncharted territory. If there are power outages, if people are cold, if there are food outages, if cell phone networks go down…because they have batteries and if there are power outages that are too long, they may not work”, the results will be “unpredictable”.

These warnings might surprise those who have paid no attention to the social disintegration of Western Europe over the past decade. But Europe has seen a series of growing social crises over the past decade, from major increases in the cost of living, to mass immigration, to pandemic lockdowns. A winter without energy could turn out to be the final straw.

In 2018, the yellow vests movement in France took 300,000 people to the streets during more than a thousand demonstrations against the rise in the price of diesel, which had risen to an average of €1.51 per liter (today today the price is 1 €). 1.65 per liter). They started fires, tore down traffic signs, erected barricades, ripped up cobblestones and threw them at police while shouting slogans against liberal President Emmanuel Macron. The Yellow Vest protesters were middle-aged white Europeans from working-class neighborhoods. Is France ready for the revolt of young Muslim immigrants from the ghettos when the radiators get cold and the telephone batteries run out?

The “culture of protest” of young immigrants has become well documented over the past twenty years. In France, thousands of cars burn every New Year’s Eve and in the fall of 2005, more than 8,000 vehicles are destroyed. Of course, the liberal media has a hard time dealing with this. An article from LocalThe French edition of reads almost like a piece of Onion: “Why do the French set fire to cars on New Year’s Eve? … It is because of a long-standing French tradition which sees young people in certain parts of towns set fire to dozens of cars.” Note that the use of the term “youth” here, without an adjective, is Newspeak for “immigrants.”

Meanwhile, news from Sweden in April can hardly be masked by such a creative use of the words: “Several days of unrest in Sweden, sparked by the burning of the Koran by a far-right group, hurt the least 40 people, police said on Monday, calling for more resources to deal with the violence,” France24 reported. Dozens of police cars were set on fire. Christian Swedes rarely set fire to their neighborhoods in defense of the Quran: It was obviously the work of immigrants, but it was only a repetition of previous events: in 2018, 80 cars were set on fire across the country by “youths”, and similar events occurred in 2013.

These riots are so common that they have even been portrayed on TV and in movies. Recently, the French action film Athena told the story of a massive revolt by immigrants against the French police following the death of a young member of the group. It’s getting a wide stream through Netflix (see the trailer here). But the German series Berlin dogs from 2018, also now on Netflix, perhaps paints an even better picture. The TV show draws attention not only to the possibility of immigrant gangs rebelling, but also to neo-Nazi groups willing to capitalize on such a crisis slowly developing beneath the surface of a liberal utopia. (You can see the trailer here.)

Few topics are as controversial as the prospect of civil war between immigrant groups and neo-Nazis in Europe. The subject is a minefield. Anyone who does not condemn far-right violence in strong enough terms can easily find themselves accused of “whitewashing” the perpetrators. At the same time, many conservatives in Europe are so fed up with everyone being labeled “extreme right” that they no longer want to hear about the real neo-Nazi threat.

Of course, in a moral and legal sense, responsibility for any violence rests solely with the perpetrators and instigators. At the same time, one should not forget that various social phenomena are in constant interaction with each other, and mass migration is described in sociological literature and international journalism as one of the main reasons for the strengthening of opinions far right. It also cuts in both directions.

Some have speculated that European Muslim communities could be attacked by far-right terrorists in response to international attacks by Islamist terrorism, and that such violence could lead to further radicalization of immigrant Muslim communities. After the 2015 attacks in Paris, journalist Jeff Guo noted in the Washington Post that many Muslim communities in Western Europe and North America had been threatened after the jihadist attack; it was important because, as the title of his article put it: “Hate of Muslims plays into the hands of the Islamic State.

In the years following the 2015 migrant crisis, the possibility of a civil war between Islamic and far-right terrorists in Europe has been increasingly discussed by scholars and politicians. In a rare case of bipartisan consensus, the libertarian critic of Islam Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the British “anti-fascist” NGO Hope not Hate and French President Emmanuel Macron have all admitted that the prospect of a “civil war” between the Muslims and the extreme right were dangerously close: certainly, Macron spoke of “civil war” on the issue of the burqa. In a 2019 presentation, Péter Keresztes, the head of Hungary’s civil intelligence agency, summed up the situation: “As anti-Islamism grows in the West, the Muslim community is under attack and jihadists may seek revenge. “.

Other European authorities seem to agree; the Dutch National Security and Counterterrorism Coordination Office has long denounced the growth of far-right and Islamist extremism (see here and here). Apparently, you can’t flood a nation of 17 million with 100,000 migrants without triggering tensions. It should be noted that after the most infamous far-right attacks in Germany in recent years, such as the shooting in Hanau in 2020 and the bombing in Volksmarsen in February 2020, the authorities have increased the protection of Muslim community facilities. After the March 2019 shootings in Utrecht, where a Muslim man killed bystanders, Dutch police also closed mosques in the city, apparently for fear of a far-right counterattack.

But the Utrecht attack indicates an even more worrying trend. This Islamist attack was itself a response to a massacre at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, the same month, which, in turn, was a response to attacks on Christians by Muslims in the Far East. From the actions of the European authorities, it is clear that they fear a series of back-and-forth terrorist attacks, during which, responding to attacks in various parts of the world, jihadists and neo-Nazi terrorists organize a bloodbath for innocent Christians and Muslims in Europe.

So, will Europe’s cities burn this winter? While it’s impossible to know exactly what will happen, mass protests and civil unrest seem almost inevitable: in fact, protests are already taking place in Czechia and Germany. Here I would like to quote some mainstream newspaper articles about the unrest, but alas, the establishment seems to be blind to these protests. Meanwhile, Steve Hanke of the Cato Institute has published a video of them.

In other places too, the blackout has already begun. In January, before the start of the war in Ukraine, the Kazakh government nearly fell due to violent protests sparked by rising inflation. “Inflation-related discontent quickly spiked in Kazakhstan, where violent unrest led to the deployment of foreign peacekeeping troops. a demonstration effect on their own citizens,” Economist Intelligence explained.

Even in March this year, high energy costs had already sparked unrest in parts of Europe. As the Associated Press reported, in Spain, “picketers dumped burning tires on a highway overnight. … Police arrested six people and placed 34 others under investigation, the Ministry of Health said. “Interior. Striking truckers were also accused of throwing rocks at trucks still working this week, tearing up cargo tarps, slashing truck tires and threatening working drivers with violence.”

Perhaps time will once again prove Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán right. “It’s no wonder, then, that angry and cheated people replaced one government after another that introduced the [anti-Russian] sanctions,” he said a few weeks ago in a speech to the Hungarian parliament, referring to the devastating loss suffered by the Italian left in the recent elections. very well that before the end of the winter, several other globalist European governments will follow.