Europe is historically a group of Christian nations, now banded together as an economic unit known as the European Union (EU). Turkey is a Muslim nation, on the edge of Europe, with a long stated goal of entering the EU, but consistently denied on the basis of religion.
Turkey’s President Erdogan decided to benefit by the crisis in Syria, by using migrants flooding into Europe as a method to change the demographics to Turkey’s favor.
Turkey has been sending boat loads of asylum seekers and economic migrants from Syria, and other Muslim countries, such as Iraq and Afghanistan. Promises of benefits are inferred, but not stated by the Europeans.
Turkey did not empty their Syrian refugee camps, as they profit by the donations and international pledges for the upkeep of the refugees. Systematically, the money which comes pouring in for the refugees is only partially spent on the refugees. The Turkish authorities from the highest office holder, to the lowest guard on duty at the camps, are benefiting financially from the refugees. They encouraged persons, inside Syria and elsewhere, to go on the boats to Greece.
The migrants did not travel free of charge. Each person taking a boat ride paid between one to three thousand Euros to make the short crossing in inflatable rafts. Many of the migrants came from safe and peaceful areas, such as the Syrian coast, which had never had battles, or airstrikes. Those persons did not leave death and destruction behind them, but sold homes, cars and furniture to pay for their new life in Germany, at the expense of the German taxpaying citizen. The people in the camps, who could have benefited the most out of a new European life and welfare benefits, could not sail away, because they had no money to pay for the voyage.
Migrants followed migrants, like sheep running over a cliff, encouraged by jealousy, envy and greed. They wondered why they should stay in Syria when their neighbors were getting free benefits in Germany. Certainly, there were refugees who had suffered greatly in Syria and elsewhere and did, and still do, deserve help in starting a new life, in a safe place.
The Turkish people smugglers, “Boat-Men”, have worked and profited freely. The Turkish police, intelligence services, security forces, Coast Guard, and Military have all been trained, well paid, and on duty in large numbers. Yet, the “Boat-Men” have gone on operating without fear of obstruction. The “Boat-Men” pay a large fee to the government authorities to turn a blind eye.
The population of Europe had been dwindling, due to a low birth rate, unlike Muslim countries, because of the culture of large families. Erdogan’s plan was to increase dramatically the Muslim population in Europe, and eventually Turkey would be the winner, by entering the EU, as the objection due to religion could no longer be used.
The plan would depend on the new migrants eventually becoming citizens, and future generations might be government office holders and officials. It is estimated that over two million Muslims have entered Europe in 2015. This huge influx will have drastic consequences inside Europe and globally.
The Saint Sophia Cathedral in Istanbul has been a tourist attraction for over half a century. The Christian Cathedral was converted to a Mosque after the Islamic conquest of Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire, by the central Asian hordes which became the Ottoman Empire. In 1934 the Turkish government designated Haji Sophia as a museum, which later became a UNESCO world heritage site.
Recently, President Erdogan officially re-converted the museum to a Mosque, and last Friday was the first Friday sermon and public prayer there. The Mufti of Turkey held the sword of Sultan Mohammed al-Fatah, who was a brutal leader of the Ottoman era which lasted 400 years. This marked the first Islamic prayer done there in 86 years.
International condemnation or dismay was voiced at the decision, including the UN, the US, the Vatican, Egypt, Spain, Greece and the domestic Turkish opposition to the Erdogan administration.
Political analysts have commented that this newest move is one more step in the Erdogan plan to re-establish a new Ottoman Empire, which is built upon Radical Islam as a core value, and the move away from modern Turkish secular values which were the foundation of the Attaturk ideology. Erdogan’s AKP party is based on the Muslim Brotherhood ideology, which is Radical Islam, and is not a religion, nor a sect.
In response to this edict by Erdogan, Syria announced plans to construct a new cathedral in the Christian village of Squelbia, in the Hama province, and it will be named Saint Sophia Cathedral, in honor of the shrine in Istanbul. Syria was the birthplace of Christianity and continues to have large Christian communities throughout the country, though many have left due to persecution by the Radical Islamic terrorists who were supported by Turkey.
Steven Sahiounie is an award-winning journalist
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.