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Has the EU Been Watching Lou Dobbs?

By Roberto Peña

Immigrants detained indefinitely, fingerprinting racially-profiled populations, mass deportations: this may sound like a typical European's justification for prosecuting President Bush at the International Criminal Court, but these disturbing developments are, in fact, part of a wave of anti-immigration policies taking hold in the European Union. The sentiment is likely a result of slowing economic growth and increased pressure on highly regulated labor markets, but such pressures are testing the limits of one of the EU's founding principles, the free movement of labor.

What began as a debate over undocumented immigration is turning into a debate over the merits of immigration, both legal and illegal, and leading to calls of preserving national identity

Recent anti-immigration sentiment contributed to the downfall of the proposed treaty to reform the EU in Ireland and the Netherlands. The 2004 murder of filmmaker Theo Van Gogh by Muslim radicals sparked a right-wing movement in the Netherlands, ultimately leading to the defeat of the treaty referendum. Polish immigration and a slowdown in the construction sector may have sealed the treaty's fate in Ireland.

From race riots in France to Mohammed cartoons in Denmark, every major European country is confronting rising levels of undocumented immigrants and the policy responses are startlingly un-European. Italy's immigration plan seeks to expel EU citizens who commit crimes, a possible violation of the EU's Community Law, which limits the expulsion of EU citizens from member states, and Brussels is threatening legal retaliation.

While the immigration reform legislation in the U.S. collapsed over the highly sensitive issue of amnesty, the European Commission chastised Spain and Italy for granting amnesty to undocumented immigrants in the last few years. Berlusconi returned to power in Italy, in large part, by talking tough on crime and immigration; the country passed a highly controversial immigration pact soon after his election. The plan formally criminalizes illegal entry and raises penalties, but perhaps the most controversial measure involves the fingerprinting of the Roma population. While an independent census can help policymakers understand their options, when combined with politically motivated and discriminatory actions, it is a recipe for disaster. In August, realizing the political gains derived by linking crime and immigration, a new plan involves Carabinieri patrolling the streets in several major cities to tackle both problems. Adding to this mix, several high profile incidents of violence against immigrants and amnesty now appears more likely in the US than in Italy. Last month, even the Vatican weighed in, urging for more compassion on the issue.

The U.S. debate offers a valuable model for analyzing the politics of immigration. The prevailing wisdom in Washington, circa 2006, was that immigration was a winning issue for Republicans touting their national security credentials. This strategy proved an utter disaster when the Democrats took over Congress and several single-issue conservatives lost their seats. In Italy, the immigration issue brought Berlusconi back from the dead, but whether or not this concern can distract voters from an ailing economy and political corruption is yet to be determined. When privacy concerns, civil liberties and human rights are taken into account, questions remain regarding Italy's immigration pact, let alone the frail coalition holding its government in place.

Roberto Peña is a graduate student in the Latin American Studies program at the Johns Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) Bologna Center in Italy.

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The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the Johns Hopkins University.

Comments (94)

reunionpi Author Profile Page:

Lou Dobb of CNN and what he pays in property tax on some parcels of land in New Jersey

14 acres for $26.03 annually
31 acres for $146.94 annually
30 acres for $238.08 annually
62 acres for $414.78 annually
43 acres for $368.28 annually
90 acres for $597.06 annually

270 acres for $1,793.27 equals $6.64 (six dollars and sixty-four cents) an acre for property tax

mibrooks27 Author Profile Page:

Europe has NEVER allowed immigrants to displace their own work force. Their laws about illegal immigrants are a lot more rational than ours, too. There is no such thing as automatic citizenship. If a child is born to an illegal parent, he/she isn't granted citizenship, cannot attend public schools, and the entire familiy is denied any sort of social services,inclusing medical services. In a medical emergency, the illegal is treated and deported. That is simply common sense. It protects their native workers. If we were so into providing slave labor and taxpayer subsidized low price workers for our busineses, we would do likewise.

desaparecidokb Author Profile Page:

speaking of Lou Dobbs

EgregiousPhilbin Author Profile Page:

What was racist was your assumption that there is something wrong with non-European immigrants, particularly "third-world" immigrants. And your implication that somehow immigration policy discriminates against Europeans is nonsense. The reason there are so few European immigrants (compared with those from India, Korea, Mexico, etc.) is the same reason there are so few these days from Japan. Things are just fine back in the home country; there's no incentive to go to America. Do you think immigration policy should prefer or privilege Europeans? If so, you have answered your own question about what was racist in your comments.

MaryJessel Author Profile Page:

For the edification of DGGirl and others, here is a link to the history of the Barbary Slave raids on European peoples:

That doesn't include the numerous victims of the other major Muslim slave trade against Europe, the one directed against Eastern Europeans/Slavic people.

MaryJessel Author Profile Page:

MaxiCooper, don't listen to the hysterical cries of "racism" directed against you (Quote marks fully intended.) You are 100 percent correct that European immigrants are discriminated against in the US immigration game, that's why we only get 10 percent of our immigrants from our founding culture. It's also true that a European immigrant such as yourself won't get any "diversity" perks,while an immigrant from Africa or Mexico will, (unless you are from Spain and can sell yourself as a "Latino" - many white Spaniards do get "diversity" perks in the US.) How would you feel if you are a native born European-American descended from Revolutionary War soldiers, as I am? An illegal alien from Mexico who squeezed under the border three days ago can gets all kinds of "diversity" perks and other racial preferences that my own child -- a 10th generation American -- is not eligible for.

MaryJessel Author Profile Page:

DGGIrl -- there is absolutely nothing untrue about what I wrote about North Africa's European slaves. It is absolutely true that Barbaray Pirates kidnapped 1.5 million Europeans and sold them into slavery in North Africa from the 16th through 19th Centuries. What's the matter, you can't face the fact that whitey wasn't always the victimizer in the history of the world?

I know that the Berbers are the indigenes of North Africa. That was exactly my point - they were colonized by Arab Muslims, so your whining about Europeans colonizing North Africa is hypocritical in the extreme.

Did I explain myself clearly enough now?

MaxiCooper Author Profile Page:

What was racist or xenofobic in my comments? A) The fact that I was surprised that in 2004 USA out of 800 legal immigrants only 10 percent were of European descent? (When in Russia and Eastern Europe there is a huge demand for immigration, just like in Asian or African countries) or B) the fact that I expect immigrants to respect America, learn the language and accept the secular culture, not backmouth it and reject its customs, if THEY CHOSE to move here and make it their home?
If it was A) I am sure that if someone non-white have would made the comment that they were grossly under-represented in any selection process you would have felt really sorry for them, and totally understood their plight. Then, why should the whites or Europeans be discriminated against? Why the Caucasians coming from Eastern Europe or CIS (where salaries were/are still are 2-3 dollars a day) would not be eligible for any college scholarships - which are only available for non-caucasian immigrants and applicants? The principle was balance and fairness for all, right? B) Look what happened in Kosovo. The large community of non assimilated Muslim immigrants ended up staking their claim and carving out their own state, with help from our Government. Or look closer, at the ghetoizzation of America; you like it? I live at the border of Spanish Harlem and there are many people who lived in NYC for over 20 years and they don't know enough English to buy bread or answer to the simplest question. My first job in NYC was to sell bags in a store (although I am a PhD) for 4 dollars an hour, minimum wage, and I was fired in two weeks for a Mexican illegal immigrant who worked for only 2 dollars an hour. New York is full with illegal immigrants, in bars, restaurants, nail salons, most staff is illegal and the famous NYPD is curiously blind. Or is it bribed?

zennhead614wheatland Author Profile Page:

Doesn't seem odd to me.
Until the last decade, the U.S. had a handle on immigration, at least in the sense that the illegal flood wasn't overwhelming. September 11 changed the rules for the U.S., and it should have. I am amazed that anyone even consider trumpeting a system that does NOT address illegal immigration as a legitimate problem. If a nation fails to do that, then what happened in Great Britain in the last two years will happen in many other nations.
In Europe, the illegal flood certainly includes more illegals from Africa and the Middle East. It is likely that if the Obama regime attacks Pakistan, there will be some Pakistanis who
attack the U.S., although soft targets outside the country would be easier. Another aspect of illegal immigration by say, Pakistanis, in the government, would be those who would cooperate with rogue elements, or even establishment attempts by Pakistani intelligence to penetrate our secrets ... trade, diplomatic, defense.
The best bet for our own nation is to try, once more, to do a comprehensive bill. McCain (certainly not Obama), tried to work on a comprehensive bill. It failed because of right winger attacks on "amnesty," which the bill did not offer. Obama, if he wins, won't make any headway because his win will be divisive.
From living near the border, I favor more agents v. walls. Barriers make sense in areas where planting them would slow down vehicular traffic. Having about 1/3 more border agents would be better, since that would allow for a greater human presence, day and night, along the border. Electronic monitors would also help interdict the border. In the heat down there, if people perish in the desert, it is unfortunate, to be sure, but at some point, that fate has to serve as a deterrent, too.
Effective registration of seasonal or temporary immigrants would make sense; getting in the queue to legally immigrate is also sensible. Deportations make sense. The large scale deportation of illegals at a Kosher meat factory in Iowa has raised eyebrows, but such serious attempts to deport workforces heavily illegal is the only way to send a signal to the companies employing illegals: we WILL put you out of business if you continue to use huge illegal work forces.
If those measures are also being played in Europe, so be it.
There is no reason to allow a process that traditionally has been about a step up kind of gesture by someone, to become worthless. Illegal immigration has to stop. Once it's stopped, all nations can stabilize, and then monitor the legal system of immigration. Why is that so hard to figure for Ultra Liberals? Why do nations not have the right to draw lines in the sand, and impose negative consequences for those who fail to understand them?

longbow1 Author Profile Page:

Europe is facing an extremely serious crisis: start having babies or face cultural and economic annihilation.

abhab Author Profile Page:


"Folks simply don't like 'strangers' with new customs, strange religions, and different political views 'moving into the neighborhood.
So much for 'love thy neighbor'...."
Not true! Unless the new neighbor threatens my security and openly denigrates my culture and preaches the replacement of my constitution with a primitive intolerant ideology that runs counter to all the principles I hold dear.

tbrucia Author Profile Page:

It's too bad American education is so crummy... Immigration has been an issue before in American history. Consider the reaction of many 19th century Anglo-Saxon Protestant old-timers to subversive Roman Catholic Italians, Germans, and Irishmen -- all supposedly under the command of that arch-enemy of democracy, the Pope. Nativism isn't something new; it's as old as change itself. Folks simply don't like 'strangers' with new customs, strange religions, and different political views 'moving into the neighborhood.
So much for 'love thy neighbor'....

battleground51 Author Profile Page:

Immigration can be a good thing if it is tightly controlled. Just as with anything good, too much can be bad. America's outlaw immigration problem has cooled off a little because some of its laws are now being enforced. It's about time!

Watch out though. If Democrats take charge, the borders could be blown wide open again.

Democrats seem to tolerate illegal. Especially if they think it will benefit them.

ACORN is just one example. Registering illegal immigrants, multiple times is par for their, crooked course. Barack H. Obama loves them for it. It will be rewarded in his administration.

battleground51 Author Profile Page:

Massive immigration both legal and illegal threatens the national cohesion, identity, and economic well being of first world nations.

These are facts that cannot be denied.

To tolerate the influx of tens of millions of foreign speaking, unskilled, and uneducated immigrants is to tolerate national suicide, slow but sure.

European nations are finally waking up to this circumstance. They are very late and maybe too late. America must learn from Europe's plight and seal its border tight.

Outlaw immigration is like a cancer on the nation. If it spreads unnoticed, it soon cannot be stopped and takes over and kills the whole body.

jailkkhosla Author Profile Page:

As the Muslim population crosses 15% in any non-Muslim country their demand for a separate Islamic state germinates. They achive their goal at 25% with aid of violence, protests against alleged dicrimination, and with the aid of pseudoliberals who grant them their every wish. the Univ of Michigan even builds them footbaths for their ritual foot and hand washing using taxpayer money.

Learn from India. Muslims stabbed the country in 1947 and forced its break up. But the majority did not go to Pakistan as they had promised. Instead they stayed and have increased their population from 9% after partition to nearly 20% now and the killings and bombings have begun. Hindus have been cleansed fro Kashmir. In Gujerat Muslims burnt 59 Hindu women and children to death in train.

Another break up of India is not an "if" but a "when". I predict within 50 years India will have anotehr Partition mainly because the pseudoseculars give in to every wish of the Muslims to get their vote in the elections. The Indian govt subsidizes the pilgrimage to Mecca every year and every Muslim imam is paid a slaary from taxpayer money. Non-Muslim priests get nothing. No Hindu pilgrimage is subsidized even though India is a Hindu country.

Those that do not learn from history will repeat it. The Indians are not learning. Will the Europeans?

Georgetowner1 Author Profile Page:

Language is the number one unifying aspect of a society. It used to be a badge of honor in the US to learn English upon immigration. Also, it is not xenophobic to believe that all immigration should be done in a legal manner. The purpose is to control the influx of people that add a burden to those who are already here. I am not against someone coming to this country to work and create their good life but I am sick of having to pay for their medical bills and the education of their children.

sally62 Author Profile Page:

Another view of immigration: interesting article about US and "ideological" or partisan immigration support:

In 96 and 2000 "Active Citizenship Campaign" linked to ACORN & made it possible for thousands of new citizens to get papers without "due process" or meeting requirements while other, less Democrat voters, had to wait in line.

My family came to the US as refugees in the 60s. We were able to do in 1 generation what it would have taken several in our original countries. The people of a small church in Tennessee who sponsored us were the most wownderful people we could have imagined. They gave us a future after war and the loss of everything we had.

The secret to our relative success? RESPECT for the society we were introduced to, RECOGNITION for the openess and opportunities they offered total strangers and our making every effort to fit in and cause no reason for them to regret they had helped us. Of course, at home, we were free to continue our traditions - we shared them BUT we never imposed them on others.

ALL problems with immigration occur when people want their cake and eat it too. You cannot wear your customs on your sleves and impose your language or traditions outside the home. Anywhere.

Those who do refuse to assimilate in their public lives show disdain and arrogance to all those generation of peoples who welcomed and made a place for people from all over the world then built this country - THEY did not ask for Ukranian to be used in the local schools or the military to wear pleated white skirts and pompoms on their shoes!

This is the ONLY criticism I have of the Spanish speaking immigrants. They MUST use English outside the home. They woud see annimosity reduced to 0 if only they could respect the land they chose to go to and keep their great traditions private .. for sharing & enjoying with others, not imposing them on others.

sally62 Author Profile Page:

Europeans have every reason to worry about anything goes immigration. (& so does the US) Due to the huge cost of social services, agricultural subsidies and percentage of "government employees" in Europe there is very little wiggle room for their economies.

Traditionally immigration has been of low education, low pay, low taxes and high social services consumers/people. The more "ethnic" issues are not the real problem - it is economics.

Clearly a dollar spent for services for an immigrant would be much better used to grow the local economies & services where they come from and the ethnic issues would be avoided leaving exchange on a more equal level a desireable result.

The effects of culture shock for some immigrants are personal tragedies and mental illness. It is not humane to let people immigrate who have hugely different cultures and cannot adapt. They should have a chance to NOT have to immigrate to survive.

EgregiousPhilbin Author Profile Page:

Your kidding, right? Did you really throw the old communist line at me? What, are we still embroiled in the cold war? (I thought that ended about 20 years ago.) Anyway, why do you think that immigrants from the third world, now or in the past, want to destroy us? Do you think they are all Muslim? And do you think all Muslims want to destroy us? I guess you are trying to reprise the old white-supremacist "yellow peril" panic. Here's the point: your kind of thinking is, as I suggested, simply reprising the old bigotry that we should have outgrown years ago. We have been enriched by immigrants from India, China, Vietnam, western Africa, Mexico, etc. They do not undermine our culture. And their kids are perfectly assimilated, even if their parents wear "funny" clothes and speak a "funny" language or speak with a "funny" accent. And, by the way, they usually speak more than one language, which is more than most Americans can say. As for you, if you've been here for 40 years but have not assimilated, perhaps it's time for you to go home. Or does that only apply to third-world immigrants?

arjay1 Author Profile Page:

All of these posts overlook an obvious problem concerning immigration since everyone in America is an immigrant, including the 'native' Americans who arrived around 20,000 years ago. The problem is that Democrat and Republican immigrants over the past thirty years have managed to waste eleven trillion dollars of the Independant citizen's money. For one and a quarter trillion the hard working Independants could have bought one-way tickets for these wasters so they could go back to whatever country they came from.

lagging Author Profile Page:

Mr Peña seems a bit confused. The Netherlands did not torpedo the treaty as he claims (Ireland did through a referendum and will no doubt be pressured to repeat the referendum ad nauseum until it passes). The Netherlands did however torpedo the preceding proposed EU Constitution (together with France). Having learned from this, the EU renamed the proposed Constitution to a regular treaty, took out the proposed EU anthem as sole change, and had the Dutch government adopt the treaty despite widespread opposition from the Dutch public.
And that isn't an incident. The EU will force through nearly anything it fancies regardless of majority popular opposition in the member countries. By now, the EU is legally far more intrusive in the individual member states, that the US Federal Government in the individual states here.

Berlusconi indeed built a platform around crime and immigration, which isn't a surprise as Italy is suffering under a crime wave predominantly from Eastern Europe (the former communist countries adopted into the EU at the behest of big business, but with predictable results). Berlusconi didn't invent the link, he merely named the facts.

Under its leftist governments of the past, EU member states long welcomed mainly economic refugees (many of whom criminal and/or rather hostile to western culture) at the cost of billions and rewarded the growing illegal population with regular amnesties, the excesses of which are now slowly being paired down.

Comparing this situation with the US, where legal refugees have to make their own living instead of living on welfare for decades and where the vast majority of illegals are lured by a paycheck from businesses instead of criminal enterprise is laughable at best.

Lila1 Author Profile Page:

"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me.
I lift my lamp beside the golden door."

cingi Author Profile Page:

Watch the Keynote Speeches of Presidential candidate Chuck Baldwin and Ron Paul:

Use your vote to Uphold, Defend and Protect our Constitution, our Rights and Freedoms and the Sovereignty of our Nation.

Shootingsparks Author Profile Page:

the "EU" is a misnomer. It has united capitol markets, but has fractured societies.

Forcing people to chase jobs around europe, and allowing hedge fund managers to decide to economic fate of folks is an idiotic neo-con policy that has proven to be a disaster for real folks who work for a living.

It has even spawned new terms and definitions... take a peek, you will find this truly heartbreaking...

DontTypeLies1 Author Profile Page:


I am another one of european descent who immigrated here 40 years ago. We came with just my mother and father and 3 sisters. We assimilated because we are european and come from the same ideological background, although still different, we spent our whole lives trying to assimilate. I am now almost 50 years old and still NOT assimilated.

What in the world are you going to do with people who have opposite or hostile ideologies to yours. I came with just 5 family members who are your ideological cousins and spent my whole life assimilating with struggles and obstacles no one born here would face, but you want people to come here millions at a time with hositlity in their hearts who come to fight and conquer you? Are you out of your mind? Or are you just a communist?

You will get what you ask for. Liberalism and Marxism leads to nothing but wars and conflict.

Dcgrl Author Profile Page:

And they are also the descendents of the 1.5 million white slaves who were brought to North Africa by the Barbary Pirates. But thanks for admitting that Arabs/Muslims are NOT the indigenous peoples of North Africa. They are themselves brutal colonizers, who did their very best to wipe out the indigenes when they came across them, so it makes no sense at all to argue that Europeans "deserve" to be colonized by North African Arabs as some kind of karmic justice.
Absolutely not true. The Berbers are the indigenous people of North Africa. Berber is derived from the Roman term for barbarians. The Barbary Coast of North Africa was named after the word Berber. They are the oldest group of indigenous people still living on the land they first inhabited, since about 3000 BC. Berbers. can be found all across North Africa today. They still retain their original language. There are many different Berber dialects. They converted to Islam and over time they have mixed with the Arabs as well as European colonizers such as the Portuguese, Spanish and French. Forty percent of the population in Morocco is Berber. Perhaps mixing with the European colonizers (either willingly or unwillingly) explains all the green eyed Moroccans that some people have seen.

EgregiousPhilbin Author Profile Page:

You echo the bigoted sentiments that the Chinese "third world" immigrants were greeted with when they arrived in the middle of the 19th century. They were considered "unassimilable" by the largely white supremacist population in America at that time. Yet the Chinese built the western half of the transcontinental railroad, reclaimed the swampland in California to make it perhaps the most productive farmland in the world, built wineries, created the shrimping industry, succeeded in farming (i.e., the Bing cherry), and, in short, made significant contributions to America. All this while being violently and persistently victimized by racism and discrimination (e.g., the Chinese Exclusion Act, segregated schools, discriminatory laundry ordinances, the violence at Rock Springs, etc.). Ironically, perhaps the best indication of their assimilation was that they used the American court system to challenge just about every piece of discriminatory legislation they were victimized by. So when America was violating its own ostensible set of values--you know, equality, freedom, etc.--the Chinese were insisting that these ostensible American values actually be practiced. Pretty good assimilation for third-worlders, don't you think? I guess third-worlders can make a contribution, huh?

dummy4peace Author Profile Page:

The US immigration policy is still family and employment based. For every frail, undereducated looking senior, there has to have a son or daughter who had contributed to our society by holding a job with enough income to sponsor the parent for five years before he or she is naturalized. Quite a few of these old folks actually managed to educate quite a few Ph.D.s for the US.

Being unable to speak English doesn't mean the old naturalized citizen is stupid or illiterate. Some of them know more about American history and government than we do, just in a different language.

ssmorehouse Author Profile Page:

I have no problem with legal immigration. There is a process for it. It is expensive, time-consuming, and a bubrden on the immigrant. That is just fine. Those who come here illegally make it that much harder for the law abiding immigrant. The economic impact of illegals is staggering. We must provide education for their childen, hospital services for the uninsured, police protection and court costs for Americans who are injured by the crime and drugs that often accompany them. The estimate is about $10,000 per illegal family who is headed by a non-high school graduate. There is also the negative effect on wages by employment of illegals in jobs that Americans would take, at a reasonable wage, were they not here. Also, there is the flow of US Dollars, particularly southward as the illegals help support their families that do not reside in the US. The answer is to send them home, but help their countries develope the industries that will support them in their home countries. The cost to America would be far lower than allowing the illegal immigrants to remain.

francinelast Author Profile Page:

It's ridiculous to make comparisons between Europe and America. Europe is much older and it's history of immigration goes back much, much further. America is a relatively new country and was actually founded on immigration (very few in the US are descended from Native Americans).

Moreover, America has still got huge tracts of land and space for more people, whereas Europe is very, very crowded.

EgregiousPhilbin Author Profile Page:

You have indeed assimilated well: your display of typical American racism in your comments demonstrates that. As a native-born American, let me invite you to go back where you came from. We don't need any more bigots than we already have. By the way, the majority of immigrants today are from Asia, I believe. It seems to me that they have made a pretty strong contribution to the United States. More than you have, I would imagine. Please leave.

MaxiCooper Author Profile Page:

I am a European born female and I received my US citizenship in 2004. When I was sworn in, I was negatively surprised to see that in a hall of about 800 fresh new "Americans" less than a dozen were of European descent. Most of the legal immigrants were from third world countries, and a large percentage of those were old, ill, illiterate or disabled, and unable to speak any English. I applaud Lou Doubs for taking the issue of immigration, which I believe would lead to the decline of America as a world power in the not so distant future. The same way Rome declined after it was washed out by migrant tribes who conquered the Roman empire and settle in. This is a "peaceful" type of conquering; but conquering nevertheless. And a reverse of what made the country great in the first place. As of Muslim's invasion of Europe, blame part of it on the US for strongly supporting and lobbying for Turkey's EU accession. Turkey, a Muslim country situated in Asia, the antithesis and enemy of Europe for its entire history, whose only European stakes are, in truth, exterior things, such as fashion, cars and consumer goods. As a European immigrant to the US, I did everything in my power to assimilate the American culture which I admired and therefore wanted to be a part of. Let’s take my Muslim deli boy who lived in NYC for 15 years and hit on me each time I bought my morning coffee; he is a very nice guy. One day he told me that when he is going to get married he'll bring a bride from home and ask her to wear a hijab because "the eyes of other men on her will soil her." How can you live in NYC for 15 years and believe such an enormity? And if this is your deep belief why didn't you stay home where everyone shared your views? I believe ALL countries should stop granting asylum to people and populations who are unwilling/unable to assimilate people who only emigrate solely to enjoy economic advantages. In other words no more having the cake and eating it too...

Dirtdart1980 Author Profile Page:

Ha, Ha, Ask a jew or a gypsy how immigration friendly europe is.

sa08366 Author Profile Page:

As an immigrant, I think the US and Canada have been much more accomodative and accepting of immigrants than any european country. And yet the Europeans are so self-righteous and santimonious and critical of America which they perceive to be less liberal than them. Sure, there is some antiimmigrant violence in the US but Europe has a lot of hatred and intolerance towards immigrants..even the non-muslims which they never admit. Anti-semitism is not uncommon either. Eurocentrism and an unsubstantiated feeling of cultural superiority made them nasty and murderous as colonialists in centuries past. Now, the same feelings might be making them do things more covertly and by ganging up as the EU.

They should learn more from the US in other matters as well. Because all the europeans ever do is talk and talk...while the US thinks out of the box and acts. Even if some of them are harmful like the Iraq war, it mostly wants to and does good.

coldcomfort Author Profile Page:

1) OVERPOPULATION, OVERPOPULATION, OVERPOPULATION, we can't say it too much, because no one else will say it for us. And it's crazy for Western Europe to engorge its numbers through immigration. Especially of people who believe in having many, many children.
2) National identity. Yes, an important subject. Muslims especially, but other as well, have not and do not assimilate well into the culture of France, Germany, Italy, and even Britain. If those nations value what makes them unique, they need to take action.

All this is something America also needs to take stock of. It makes no sense to take into your country people being pushed out of their country, because it has overpopulated its bounds.

In America we are 300 million people and growing by the millions every month. . . . . . Our optimum population is somewhere between 150 and 200 million people. Which means, we, America, are grossly overpopulated.

Ombudsman1 Author Profile Page:

Really, this is not a thoughtful piece, it's simply one guy's opinion that it's vaguely racial to stop illegal immigration.

The situation in Europe is completely different, the author ignores that. But even there, they would be within their rights to stop immigration.

Let's get back to 6th grade social studies. For a country to be sovereign, the *KEY* test is whether or not it controls it's own borders and controlling the areas within its borders. If a state is being invaded, it is the right of the people represented by its government to control its borders by every means necessary. That is neither immoral nor illegal.

bushbudy Author Profile Page:

Illegal immigration is illegal. Immigration is fine. I have no problem with it. I do have huge problems with illegal immigration, and I am a liberal democrat. I do not support illegal mexican immigrants. I also do not support illegal chinese immigrants here on H1-B nor illegal Indian immigrants here on H1-Bs.

Let them immigrate on the normal mechanism.

dummy4peace Author Profile Page:

Although a democratic country can possibly be taken over by waves of illegal immigrants, it is still a peaceful process for the most part. If a country has a lower birth rate than what's needed to replenish the productive population, it may be necessary to bring in more immigrants to sustain the survival of the country. If the migration process is legal, the host country can select the makeup of their new nation. You can't blame the host country for being selective, though.

dummy4peace Author Profile Page:

Human migration in all times is a very complex process with many variables, but Mr. Lou Dobbs isn't broadcasting simply for his ratings, which he has got plenty. I wish he had run for presidency in 2008. I like a man, who can think independently. But that's just my personal view.

We are a big melting pot. Welcoming illegal immigrants is a slap against all law-abiding immigrants around the world. If illegal immigration is allowed in a democracy, you can take over another country much faster with the number of illegal immigrants sent into your target country. That is the danger any democratic country should avoid.

thoughts Author Profile Page:

Adding third-world level people to a first-world nation does not improve a nation, but instead increases its burden with an outside, unassimilable population. Each nation should continue its culture and heritage without handicap.

pauleche Author Profile Page:

I didn't answer your post because I didn't read it until now.

1) Nobody but you spoke about race. I dont care about the race of anyone since he is a good neighbor even if he don't share my nationality.

2) "you would like to see how in Europe we can manage to kick out the turmoil makers". It appears that, in my times, I was witness of what was called "ethnic cleansing" and believe me : you wouldn't see it !

3) It is you right to call me coward ( and riskless)even if you have no idea who I am, but that don't show the smartness you would like to spread with the tone of your post.

Finally, like it or not, racism is a form of scare, and I don't scare nor you neither any immigrant, I just expect a good behavior...period

abhab Author Profile Page:

B-PI defennds the Osmanli Turks thus:

“did not make sense to split N. Africa and the Middle East in ways that did not exist before, e.g. Kuwait from Iraq, Lebanon from Syria, etc.”
What they did was worse; they annexed the Iskandaron province of Syria and the Kurds province of Iraq as well as parts of Armenia.

“many (if not most) Algerians spoke French!!!! The Algerians had no such problems when the Osmanlis left. Turkish was not the language of “choice”,
That is because the Turks had not build a single school. They took out and never put in. They treated their colonies as a source of revenue to support the lavish lifestyle of their Caliph and his retinue.

“Osmanlis respected traditional/natural geographic and cultural boundaries, and maintained historical continuity.”
That is why they added the south of Sudan to their colonies because that was where the negroes from whom they hunted their black slaves . The European slaves they got by hijacking ships in the Mediterranean.

"insulting N. Africans’ intelligence and integrity.'
That might be your conclusion. I merely pointed out that Muslims see the world as only Muslims and “Infidels.” They put up with the injustices of a coreligionist and fail to see a virtue in the infidel.

DwightHCollins Author Profile Page:

" William456 Author Profile Page:
"Lou Dobbs is the only non partison commentator there is"
That's right, he gets a prize because his ideas are uniquely idiotic.
October 18, 2008 7:05 AM | Report Offensive Comment"

but not as idiotic as your comments...
a Lot of Americans think like Lou Dobbs...

khote14 Author Profile Page:

Countries in Europe are largely made up of racially and culturally homogeneous people, duh.

As a "typical" American - one of the many, many different kinds of "typical", I have european ancestry: English, German, French, and Irish; and Kiowa as well from both sides of my family.

It's not really useful to use the word "typical" to describe ourselves is it?

So comparing the typical European response to these issues with the typical American response is even less useful.

It appears the more technologically advanced cultures and countries in europe have reached a net stability in their own populations, while only the foreign-born immigrants are continuing to breed into net growth.

And these people do not assimilate, they are not interested in assimilation nor are they invited.

As a simple matter of cultural survival the European countries are going to have to make some less-than-kumbaya decisions regarding these issues.

So what's the answer?

There is no one answer, there are no good answers. But comparing the American ability to assimilate foreign born immigrants to the problems Europe experiences is just stupid.

BobThompson Author Profile Page:

If the issue of preserving national identity is very important to various European nations, then controlling immigration and insuring assimilation is critical to the process. Muslim immigrants frequently resist assimilation and maintain very strong ties to their home country, culture and customs and coupled with their high birth rate (and the Europeans low rate) this is anathema to preservation of European national identities. So, viola! If they don't assimilate, don't let them in, and if they don't behave, send them home.

SM33076 Author Profile Page:

Lou Dobbs is a propagandist intent on getting high ratings... no different than the nutty Fox people, except he is a little to the center... but a nut nonetheless.

fdcox1971 Author Profile Page:

The "nuanced" alternate reality that Progressives construct around themselves may be charming in bedtime stories and Disney cartoons, but it is extremely dangerous in the real world. The insistence that borders should be open and illegal immigrants should receive all the benefits and protections of citizens is absurd, particularly when those immigrants constitute a threat to the very societies that have "welcomed" them in. This has been aptly demonstrated in Europe where the Social-welfare state is in collapse, the countries are morally and culturally adrift, and to maintain Socialist expenditures in dying populations, Muslims have been allowed to immigrate at alarming rates. My dear Socialists, you cannot control the Muslims, they will work with you to bring down the West, as Osama bin Laden has stated, but in the end they will consume you as well.

William456 Author Profile Page:

"Lou Dobbs is the only non partison commentator there is"

That's right, he gets a prize because his ideas are uniquely idiotic.

coqui44 Author Profile Page:

Humans have, as per necessity, always move from place to place. It's natural.

If you don't want an 'excess' of migration, you must be an active citizen. Don't let your government meddle in other countries. That's one of the biggest causes of the immigration 'problem'.

Instead of allowing your government to, for example, keep Haiti in dirt poverty, which is the cause of Haitians migration to the USA, demand that your corrupt politicians stop approving economical warfare and despoliation on Haitians.

If you are tired of Cubans here, demand a stop to the economical blockade to Cuba, which is the reason they move here. The government uses the MSM to put you to sleep with the lullaby that they are escaping Fidel when the reality is that they are escaping the poverty created by our economical blockade.

It's like trying to swim without getting wet. You want to punish and ransack other countries but then you don't want to suck up the consequences.

Everything is interrelated in this planet. You invade a country and they move to your backyard.

What else do you expect?

segeny Author Profile Page:

Apparently the 'open borders bunch' (of whom Mr. Pena appears to be one) believes that there should be NO nations - and therefore no right to maintain one's culture, language and identity.

DwightHCollins Author Profile Page:

Americans should watch Lou Dobbs, the only show that shows America what their politicians are up to...
Lou Dobbs is the only non partison commentator there is...he blasts both sides and rightfully so...
Europe should step up their clean up of their countries...
the longer it lasts the harder it is...

MPatalinjug Author Profile Page:

Yonkers, New York
18 October 2008

There is no way, absolutely no way, the United States government--Federal and state collaborating--can do to expel 20 million or so illegal immigrants and their families who are now inside the country.

There is no way of identifying them accurately, finding them, arresting them, transporting them, holding them in warehouses, processing them, feeding them, attending to their health and medical needs, charging them in court according to the Rule of Law, trying them also according to the Rule of Law, providing legal counsel for them, and deporting them to their countries of origin.

This is "Mission Impossible" even for a big and wealthy country like the United States.

But there is one solution, a practical, sane, sound and humane solution, which has very good prospects of working in the real world and not merely in the abstract.

That is the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill which failed to pass the U.S. Congress the last time it was put to a vote because of certain provisions to which some lawmakers were unalterably opposed.

With certain needed changes and amendments, this Bill has a very good chance of getting reconsidered by the incoming Congress.

If Barack Obama is elected President--and his chances appear to be very good at this juncture--he will almost certainly push for the Congress revisiting this Bill and passing it.

There is no question in my mind that Barack Obama will sign the Bill into law.

Mariano Patalinjug

Dr_Gene_Nelson Author Profile Page:

Leave it to a Master's candidate to promote a globalist agenda. Immigration, at its heart is a "pocketbook issue." The news is that "overpopulation is good" - if you are a member of the economic elite (and can profit from the resulting labor gluts driving down wages - and from the necessaries of life being bid up.) Immigration to the US is now occurring on such a unprecedented, massive scale that it is causing dislocations in all labor markets from the lowest to the highest skilled. Think mortgage meltdown... Learn more at The job you save may be your very own.

usheen Author Profile Page:

"Recent anti-immigration sentiment contributed to the downfall of the proposed treaty to reform the EU in Ireland and the Netherlands".

Maybe this was so in the Netherlands but not in Ireland. The majority voted No because we would have lost some of our voting rights in Strasburg and more importantly we would loose our EU Commissioner.

Ireland is one of only two EU states that has an open door policy towards EU immigrants and also takes in one of the highest percentages of non-EU nationals in the World.

Although there are small pockets of anti-immigration in large urban areas that cannot be said of the rest of the country where both illegal and legal immigrants are treated with respect and provided for financially from the state as if they were Irish born.

Ireland is also the only country in the EU that has voted to allow immigrates, illegal and legal, to benefit from the same Social Welfare payments as all other Irish people.

If you taken the time to read any of the polls from the Nice Treaty Referendum in Ireland you would have noticed that nowhere was there any mention of anti-immigration being a contributing factor to the No vote.

tmaffolter Author Profile Page:

What's the surprise? European countries have many virtues, but pretty much without exception their policies and attitudes on immigration are not among them. I lived in a Turkish neighborhood in Grenoble, France in the early 1990s. (I am a "WASP") I learned a lot about French attitudes toward immigrants from that experience, and it was not good. Most Europeans fundamentally still see their countries in much more ethnic terms than we do, and the barriers (both formal and unformal) for immigrants are much higher than they are here. Nothing new here.

b-pi Author Profile Page:

To Abhab;

It is not appropriate for you to imply that N. Africans are stupid, as they would have to be in order to let the Osmanlis enslave and rape them systematically just because the “Turks are believers in Allah and His Prophet”.

As for the false enslavement and rape story…

Ottoman rule over over the N. African lasted for centuries (longer than the USA has existed, and the Soviet Union managed to survive despite having the KGB and its military power). Given the example of the Lawrence of Arabia, it is almost certain that the N. African countries could have made things very uncomfortable and, even impossible, for the Osmanlis, and more easily since they were even farther from Osmanli’s center of power (Balkans and Anatolia) than Arabian countries, which meant it would have been exponentially more difficult to suppress rebellion for independence, disobedience, etc. Plus, I am sure the Europeans, right next door to N. Africa, would have been very pleased to help separatists inside the Ottoman Empire. After all, this is what the Europeans did in the Balkans and Arab lands later on… before “opening up their societies” (Boy, are not N. Africa and the Middle East enlightened! Yeah, Abhab, you really know what you are talking about!)

There is no record of systematic and long-term oppression by Osmanlis in N Africa, just as there is no evidence of any mass reaction from the N. Africans to the Osmanlis. The native languages, religions, customs, etc. survived in tact. Did Serbs, Greeks, Macedonians, Bulgarians, Arabs, Algerians, etc. find themselves somewhere else, speaking Turkish and Muslim when the Osmanlis disapeared off the map?

So, if the Africans do not even remember the Osmanlis, let alone complain about them, it has more to do with the fact that they lived through European “openness” and “public works projects to build infrastructure”, etc. for self-serving purposes.

Osmanlis probably feel like a picnic to N. Africans after European colonialism.

Comparing the Osmanlis to Europeans and then finding the Europeans better is like suggesting that Hitler had done better in achieving the European unity EU has been struggling to achieve clumsily over 50+ years!!!

If you want to compare the Europeans and the Ottomans, try these facts on size:

The first post-French Algerian president had to address his fellow Algerians in French because he could not speak his (no longer) native Arabic and many (if not most) Algerians spoke French!!!! The Algerians had no such problems when the Osmanlis left. Turkish was not the language of “choice”, they were very well capable of speaking their native language. A similar contrast can be found from India to Rwanda, where the colonizer Europeans shredded the native cultures and ties to introduce permanent and extreme divide-and-conquer.

Also, the Osmanlis did not introduce arbitrary, artificial divisions in local communities and regions with arbitrary ruler-edge boundaries and brand-new puppet states “designed” to just to stifle other countries (the example of Kuwait and Iraq is especially telling) with extreme imbalances in access to natural resources and trade routes (just look at the world map, a reasonable person would see the evil thinking that went into the colonial borders). Osmanlis respected traditional/natural geographic and cultural boundaries, and maintained historical continuity. It did not make sense to split N. Africa and the Middle East in ways that did not exist before, e.g. Kuwait from Iraq, Lebanon from Syria, etc.

But, you won’t get any of this, will you Abhab? So, go on spewing hatred on and insulting N. Africans’ intelligence and integrity.

RudeIsraeli Author Profile Page:

Europe's history has been as brilliant as it's been cruel- why should Europeans be shamed into perpetual guilt? Has any other empire's been less violent?

RudeIsraeli Author Profile Page:

Why would Hayder knowingly speed and put himself in danger while driving to see his mother- knowing how much she would be hurt by any mishap??? The entire incident seems highly suspicious for many reasons.

eclecticelder Author Profile Page:

If the Europeans allow immigrants into their countries, who will work in their "third world" colonies in the future? Now that AIDS and starvation have depleted the populations in the countries they long to serial rape, they need "those people" to stay right there! That way they can engage in gang-rape or engage with a child prostitute or have sex on the beach while they vacation, sweat fanned away by brown hands.

MaryJessel Author Profile Page:

PS to the person who whined about "Algeria, Morrocco and every country in Africa being overtaken by Europeans", perhaps you are unaware of the fact that the North African states sent slave ships to Europe for three centuries to kidnap European Christians for their slave pens? More than 1.5 million European Christians were taken into slavery over that time period. Look it up, they were called "Sally raiders" in England. Male captives were worked to death buiding palaces for the Sultans and the women were sent to the rape pens known as "harems." Every wondered why there are people with green eyes living in Morocco today? Maybe you should study some history sometime -- the French first invaded Algeria to stop the Algerians from sponsoring slave raids against Europe.

MaryJessel Author Profile Page:

No, Europeans have not been watching Lou Dobbs. They've been watching their own backyards, watching their daughters and sisters being gang-raped, watching their children and old folks being beaten and harassed on the streets of their own cities for the "crime" of having white skin, watching their cities burn with "car-be-cues" every night, watching their suburbs and train systems blown up with bombs, watching their churches and cemetaries being torched for the "crime" of displaying Christian crosses and symbols. BTW Europe took in many of their "immigrants" as "asylum seekers," and gave them every lavish welfare benefit known to mankind. Few of Europe's Muslims actually work -- they are given lavish handout after lavish handout, yet still burn with hatred for their benefactors. What the Europeans got in response to their massive welfare largess to alien horders was rape, murder, and terror. To those here gloating that they are getting what they deserve because of their past history of colonization, I would ask -- what colonies did Norway or Sweden or Finnland have? Yet all those countries are being culturally -- and literally -- raped by the oh-so-innocent "immigrants." And let us not forget, that Europe was the target of brutal and constant unprovoked Islamic warfare, genocide and slave-raiding for centuries. How do you think that Turkey or Albania got to be Islamic? Colonization and brutal warfare and slave-taking. And for those who keep talking about the Holocaust, please. If there's another Holocaust in Europe it'll be committed by the Muslims, not the natives. The Muslism are already getting off to a pretty good start, which you would know about if you bothered to regularly read the European press. Just google "Kriss Donald" or "Mary Anne Lenighan" for starters.

abhab Author Profile Page:

DCGRL says:
“How do you think the Moroccans, Algerians and every country in Africa (with the exception of Ethiopia) felt about Europeans taking over their countries and stealing anything of value?”

I get really tired of hearing accusations as the one above, directed against European countries who colonized the Middle East and North Africa for few decades during the twentieth Century. You never hear Muslim citizens of those countries complain about the Turkish enslavement of the Arab people for over four hundred years. That is because the Turks are believers in Allah and His Prophet and those others are not. At least those Europeans opened your societies to the World and built your modern infrastructures and modern state institutions. What have the Turks done to you and yours besides using your young men as fodders in their many wars of aggression and taxing you back into the Stone Age? All that during the time Europe moved from the Dark Age into the Industrial Age. The least you should do is be thankful to those who liberated you from a 400 years nightmare called Osmallis.

zendrell Author Profile Page:

A country exists to ensure the safety and security of their people. A country is not there to accept every Tom, Dick and Harryette who decides to enter; especially radicals, murders, criminals, non-working blood sucking leeches (only here in AMerica are our citizens the actual blood sucking leeches)/

All I can say is good for the European countries, we need to follow their example.

cintronlourdes Author Profile Page:

Has the EU Been Watching Lou Dobbs?

No. Europeans have ALWAYS being rougher and less tolerant to the immigration problem, long before Dobbs was hired by CNN to spew hatred.

arjay1 Author Profile Page:

Roberto Peña: “What began as a debate over undocumented immigration is turning into a debate over the merits of immigration, both legal and illegal, and leading to calls of preserving national identity”

Why should that not be an issue? Below is a listing of the top Gross National Income (GNI) per capita and a quick check will show that most of them are under attack by immigration processes that undermine the well being of the birth citizens. Except for Canada, a decade long immigration population change of 6% percent might lower the GNI by $4000. Note that Switzerland, San Marino, Denmark, Iceland, and Luxemburg have had very little alien population increases in twenty years and that is the reason the birth citizens enjoy the high GNIs they have. The United States, Belgium, Ireland, Italy, Spain,and England all have serious alien occupation problems and their quality of life, as the author points out, has deteriorated.

Why should occupying a space in a country where its citizens (preferably documented) have worked hard automatically confer the rights of citizenship there? Why should the citizens of any nation be subject to ‘laws’ such as those of the ICC when those ‘laws’ are created by extreme minorities that are not elected by any constitutional covenant, European or American?
182___ Belgium_______Western Europe______ 31 549
_______ Hong Kong (SAR, China)__ Asia____ 32 292
183___ Austria________Western Europe______ 32 962
184___Switzerland____ Western Europe_______33 168
185___ Canada_______North America_________34 444
186 ___San Marino____Southern Europe_______34 600
187___Denmark______Northern Europe_______34 718
188____ Iceland_______ Northern Europe_______35 686
_______ Bermuda_______North America________*36 000
189____ Ireland________Northern Europe_______40 003
190____ United States___North America_________41 557
191 ___Norway_______ Northern Europe_______41 941
192____ Luxembourg____Western Europe_______66 821

Sources: IMF -- International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database, April 2005
(*) CIA The World Factbook (covers countries not mentioned by the IMF, information may refer to 2004 or earlier.)

live_from_moscow Author Profile Page:

If it's universally agreed that all peoples have the right to national self-determination, then it applies to all peoples, including the sovereign nations of Europe. The people of Austria have a right to limit or curtail immigration entirely if they so choose, just as the people of Morocco or El Salvador or Bhutan do.
Objecting to immigration that endangers the continuity of one's culture is no more "un-European" as it is "un-South Asian" or "un-Africa."

Dcgrl Author Profile Page:

This article and discussion are ridiculous! Europeans colonized almost the entire world or stole land from the indigenous people. Where do you think the US comes from? How about Australia? How do you think the Moroccans, Algerians and every country in Africa (with the exception of Ethiopia) felt about Europeans taking over their countries and stealing anything of value? The “first world” is built on what was stolen from what is now called the “third world” and it’s still going on. I’ve lived in Europe and Morocco. I say screw the Europeans. They are getting exactly what they deserve. What goes around comes around. In addition, the birth rate of “indigenous Europeans” is very low. Who will pay for all of Europe’s lavish benefit programs?

I wonder if, in the future when they are in the majority, Europe’s former colonial subjects will construct a European Museum? After all, there is the Native American Museum on the mall in Washington, DC. It’s interesting to think about how the millions and millions of people who were here first ended up in a museum. The arrogance of Europeans their off shoots is amazing.

jheubusch Author Profile Page:

Well, here's a piece Lou Dobbs ought to read for his own good. Your readers as well. It's call the "Europeanization of America", and you can find it at

Ahi2001 Author Profile Page:

Pauleche, you wrote:

It must be clear that I can't care about the so call resentment these people can feel because I dont alloud them to act the way they want in MY country.
Now, threating my children or my grandchildren, far away to scares me, gives me a better reason to kick these intruders out of "my town"!


At first, I thought I should not respond to your post, since your ugly and words of cowardice speak for themselves. However, I then thought that:

1) I should remind you, that it was not they the immigrants who made the threat against your grand/children, but I who said they will not be kind to them if you are not kind to them now. Presumably, if you are reading the Washington Post, you are in no position to remove anyone from your town, because you are likely in the US. Even if you are in Europe, I'd like to see you try.

2) You and your other fellow Europeans have a choice: you can reject and be discriminatory toward your immigrants whether legal or illegal, or you can do the self-preservationist and intelligent thing which would be to welcome them, but make them respect the laws of the land. It is not as though it is too late, or you are being 'forced' to return to your ugly, racist roots. You have a choice. Regrettably, at the present time, in my view you are choosing poorly.

3) I think it is interesting and deliciously ironic that Barack Obama, a half-Kenyan and a man with a middle name such as Hussein has such high ratings in Europe (the highest in Switzerland in a poll conducted today). Would continental Europe ever vote a half-Kenyan or a man whose middle name is Hussein anywhere into office, least of all Switzerland where campaign posters of three white sheep kicking a black sheep off the field abound? (see How come, then Europe is clamoring for Barack Hussein Obama to be the US president? Can someone explain? Even the self-loathing, Muslim-hating Somali-born Ayaan Hirsi Ali had to be stripped of her Dutch citizenship as a sitting cabinet member. Even her virulent Islamophobia did not insulate her from such an indignity. Perhaps the younger generation of Europeans write better than Pauleche and also are less racist. I do hope so,for the sake of their next generations, 'European' and 'immigrant' alike.

There is greater strength in diversity, not in homogeneity. Were it that Europe could embrace that. And every other country in the world, for that matter, including even more ugly places like the UAE who have even more racist policies.

design1 Author Profile Page:

Here’s something else for you to chew on AHI2001. My town of origin is the capital of the EU. I left it 10 years ago. I am myself an immigrant – a legal one, one who started from scratch all over again, worked hard and played by the rule tirelessly to get where I am today.

Who are you to give people’s words your own interpretation on such a provoking tone? The reason for my two questions was to play devil’s advocate – nothing more, nothing less. The answer to your questions is in STEGMAN’s 4:30pm posting. I could’ve not said it better myself. As for Albania, yes it is a European country and this highlights how complex immigration issues are. Europe also has to deal with tremendous flows of population from less developed countries within its own border. As SLATS5999 said, immigration is way too big a topic to be summarized in a short article and a few postings.

jd5024 Author Profile Page:

An amazingly naive column. The European attitude toward immigration--legal and illegal--has always been negative. Read a history book, Pena. Any history book.

And your point is...?

bigdaddyLA Author Profile Page:

It's ironic, all the immigration problems that Europe is experiencing, given the fact that historically the Europeans were the first immigrants, invading and taking over countries all over the world. So now the wave of immigration washes back over their own countries. It's the law of unintended consequences, really.

slats999 Author Profile Page:

I agree with T Bone and his first statement. I also think that the issue is extremely different than in the US because of the issue of space. It's the elephant in the living room that no one ever acknowledges. Of course the US can accommodate more immigration than Europe because we have so much more space. I knew after 9/11 that immigration was going to be a HUGE problem in Europe because of the space issue. Space and assimilation. Europeans have a much much stronger cultural identity than Americans. In some ways, they are far less inclusive than Americans, in other ways, they are far broader and less automatically judgmental. It depends on the individual and the situation. It's too complicated an issue to be resolved in an article and a comment.

I recently had to call various London hotels and I must say it was strange to not speak to one native English born person.

liam358 Author Profile Page:

It is no more "un-European" to be against illegal immigration than it is "un-human."

This writer, as is so, so tiresomely typical of those of his ilk, ignores the distinction between legal immigration and illegal immigration. But this kind of dishonesty from illegal immigration advocates is so habitual that they're probably incapable of noticing it.

In any event, to be against illegal immigration is simply human. As someone pointed out, human migration has been going on for thousands of years. A pattern that has been repeated over and over again is that a stronger or more numerous population displaces or wipes out a weaker and less numerous one. So naturally, when an established population perceives a different population entering its territory in high numbers, a kind of self-preservation instinct kicks in. High-minded types might deplore this instinct as primitive or atavistic, but that doesn't change the fact that it's there.

So who is "morally" right? Those who resist extinction, or those who demand it?

Is it racist, xenophobic, nativist not to want to see one's culture and people replaced by another? Maybe, but it's also ineradicably, biologically, anciently human.

kermit5 Author Profile Page:

I think the author has visited a different Europe than most. Europe is hardly "immigrant" friendly, even among EU nations.

Luciana1 Author Profile Page:

This seems to me like a very "European" not "un-European" approach. There is a lot of cultural nationalism and xenophobia in Europe and of course historically there was quite a feeling of superiority to other, non-"European" nations as well. European anti-Americanism has some strains of racism, xenophobia and nationalism as well, it's not all just due to Abu Ghraib. Haven't you ever heard of the idea, expressed by more than a few Europeans, that Americans are just "losers" because we are, many of us, descended from European "losers" who were not able to be successful in Europe? Like Jews and younger sons and poor people and the like. So the "best" Europeans stayed behind in Europe and the losers had to go to the US where they constructed an inferior culture. European cultural nationalism, xenophobia and feelings of superiority to outsiders are still pretty powerful.

Ahi2001 Author Profile Page:


I stand corrected but please don't hide behind my error. If you're not calling for such desperate measures, you sure seem to be sympathetic to or unsurprised by such desperate measures, without explaining why you would consider the situation so desperate?

The two examples you provide are of people booing a national anthem and the majority of one ? Is that a reason Well, in soccer matches across Europe, black people are booed at and people make monkey noises. What desperate measures does that provoke? The second is that North African Muslims should become the majority in your town (which is probably happening in very few towns to begin with). Why is that a cause for desperation? That has happened in the US in many towns and hasn't brought down this country or even weakened it. Why is Europe so insecure about it's own fragility?

Also, I think it is interesting that you place Albanians with other non-Europeans. Albania is a part of Europe. Why include Albanians? I think I know why, but wonder whether you have the integrity to explain what I can wager is a rather undignified bias.

utznpt Author Profile Page:

When I was in Denmark last year, I was astonished to hear early 90's American music from the iPods and mp3 players of the ethnic teens. What was more astonishing was that they were listening to "Tupac Shakur", "N.W.A.", and the "Notorious BIG"...
In my youth, (before the internet), these artists were being played on MTV and the radio and I thought that it was just a fad. What I came to realize is that these artists are iconic and albeit I don't agree with their messages, I could immediately understand the teens disenfranchisement...
Europe has a large problem on its hands with acclimation of the indigenous population and the migrants from other parts of the world. Of course it stems from the importation of labor due to the erasure of working aged men during the 1st and 2nd World War.
I think that their strict Naturalization policies are creating a huge vacuum of people caught between two cultures and is only helping to exacerbate the situation by allowing Extremists, (fueled by this dis-connect), to recruit more people to their alarming cause...
Its a Catch 22...

Ahi2001 Author Profile Page:

I'm sorry, STEGMAN, you're the one who doesn't get it:

1) Towns are not 'owned' by one kind of people or another. It is possible to co-exist peacefully, but harder to with racist and attitudes of what is authentic and indigenous.

2) You mention war. If that is what you want, that is what you will get. But since you will be fighting millions of your own citizens or guest workers who are a different color and religion (precisely because they are a different color and religion and you are insecure about your ownership of what you presumptively thought was yours, though human migration is a natural part of our history), you will end up with another holocaust. And this time, you will need to kill more than 6 million.

3) Alternatively, you will need to organize ghettos (which effectively has already happen), and maybe even prevent 'them' from breeding with each other to keep 'their' population down.

4) Bring on the war, STEGMAN, but remember: the US ain't gonna bail you outta this one. We don't have the money for another Marshall Plan. Can your bigoted but culturally self-obsessed kin afford such a war?

design1 Author Profile Page:

For your information AHI2001, half of my family was killed during WWII – and they were not Nazis. I did not write “call” but “generate” desperate measures. Nuances go a long way in life, and education starts with the ability to read and write properly, and to express oneself with dignity no matter how much you disagree with someone else’s opinion.

dwatson01 Author Profile Page:

I don't think the European concern about illegal immigration has anything to do with the Holocaust, although I understand the appeal of comparing anything you don't like to that tragic event. I think Mr. Pena is being just a little sloppy in his portrayal of the issue and many commenters are reacting in a similar vein. There may currently be a debate on the value of immigration, legal and illegal, in the EC, but the overwhelming concern in Europe, as in the US, is not with legal immigration, but with excessive *illegal* migration and its effects on the receiving country's economy and society. It should surprise no one that large-scale illegal migration envokes distress, and we have seen it all over the world. In S. Africa there were deadly riots against foreign workers earlier this year, and of course we have seen nothing like that in the US or the EC. This is a complicated issue that deserves some honest conversation, but it is foolish and irresponsible to simply dismiss the legitimate desire to control your borders and ensure that the liberal democratic values of your country are protected as racist or xenophobic. It is also foolish to adopt the position that any and all immigration in any context is always good or that immigrant populations are always victims.

stegman Author Profile Page:

AHI2001 writes:

"And secondly, if the majority is North African Muslim, I'm sorry you bigot, but it's no longer 'your own' town."

Then that is a PROFOUND problem. If you don't think Europeans have a right to have a serious problem with North African Muslims taking over their towns and their nations, then you just don't get it.

This is precisely the issue over which wars are fought.

doom_of_cthulhu Author Profile Page:

Why is it that Europeans are always held to a higher standard than other groups? It's about time that Europe realized that they have profoundly important choices to make with regards to immigration... particularly in light of the profoundly negative impact immigration has on the societies in Europe. Personally, I think it's been a profound mistake to try to treat people from former colonies as 'French' or 'British' just because they speak the same language. Cultural differences run profoundly deep and it's unreasonable to expect people to become European when they're not European. Instead, we now see vast migrations of Muslims moving to Europe instead of staying in their own countries. This would be less problematic if they weren't also expecting Europeans to change THEIR cultural values to those of the immigrants. Would non-white countries tolerate this? Would you see the Chinese making room and changing their culture to accomodate whites? I doubt it.

Europe is not America. If you want diversity, move to the U.S.

Ahi2001 Author Profile Page:

This article on the whole has it right. I'm surprised that Europe has not learned from it's ignominious history and unclean hands with the holocaust. All they have learned is to transfer their xenophobia and hatred from Jews to blacks and Muslims. I would not be surprised if immigrants are put in concentration camp-type environments before deportation (remember: the Serbs used concentration camps not long ago).

I am appalled at the thinly disguised racism and bigotry of "Design1" who talks of a 'desperate' situation and calls for 'desperate' measures! I would not be surprised if your parents or grandparents sent their Jewish neighbors to the gas chambers or sending the Roma to camps to reduce the crime rate. You write, "What would you do if the political majority of your own town was in the hands of North African Muslims?" Um, maybe your lack of education is an impediment, but what other majority is there if not political (read: numberical)? And secondly, if the majority is North African Muslim, I'm sorry you bigot, but it's no longer 'your own' town.

The horror, the horror! It's really too late. And the more you and your racist European kind take such desperate measures, the more resentment you will engender among those North African Muslim French citizens and they will not be kind to your children or grandchildren.

xylifyx Author Profile Page:

To be accepted in a european country, it is not enough to be a productive member of society. You need to adapt to the culture and language of the locals.

Furthermore the welfare states has minimised poverty, people are not used to seeing large groups of people in an underclass and don't like to see it.

The cocktail of foreign looks, alien culture, alien religion and an underclass appearance is something that is a huge barrier to overcome. This will probably take several generations.

There is similarity to the situation of the african americans in the US. They have their own culture and identity with underclass stigma attached to it.

Oct2008 Author Profile Page:

Lou Dub's only subject is immigration! that is funny even these days he blames the crash in the wall street because there too many illegal immigrant in main street!

avalonwitch Author Profile Page:

Go Europe! Kick out those anti-European immigrants! We Americans should do the same--kick out the anti-American immigrants. The antis are the people trying to take over and push out the people at home--NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND.

tbone4719 Author Profile Page:

Uneuropean? Are you kidding me? The europeans have always had more trouble than the U.S. in dealing with immigrants, especially assimilating them into their culture. These issues go back decades in most of the major European countries. The issues have taken a harder slant in recent years as immigration has amped up, islamic terrorism has become more prevalent and violent, and the EU has made cross-border migration easier than it was before. But the underlying issues remain the same. Europena nations still define themselves by bloodlines and herritage far more than Americans ever have, and because of that they have a far harder time dealing with immigration than we do. Just look at Germany and their trouble dealing with their sizeable Turkish minority. Even after the horrible lessons learned during the Showa, Germany still defines Germaness based on bloodlines, which is why Russians of German descent, who themselves speak no German but have the right genes, are able to get German citizenship far more readily than people of Turkish descent born in Germany, who speak fluent German, who understand and identify with German cultural practices.

design1 Author Profile Page:

It is rather disappointing to see such superficial statements coming from an SAIS student. Immigration in Europe today is the result of a 50+ year process that has resulted in a desperate situation. Desperate situations generate desperate measures. Immigrants in Europe do not become Europeans, they remain first and foremost Moroccans, Nigerians, Albanians, Algerians, … What would you do if immigrants in the US would massively start booing the National Anthem before a Sunday football game? This happened in Paris last week! What would you do if the political majority of your own town was in the hands of North African Muslims? This is a reality in some European places today. Please do your research before talking about “startlingly un-European” responses. And by the way, the US is certainly NOT immune! You may not see the consequences of illegal immigration today, but your children and grandchildren will.

Lolo2 Author Profile Page:

This article's main conclusion is precisely the opposite of its title: the EU has been the sole reason immigration policies have stayed "un-Dobbs-ian" in Europe.

It is true that national politicians in Italy, Austria, the Netherlands and Denmark (among others) have increasingly sounded alarmist tones about immigration. But it is precisely because the EU imposes certain basic principles that these national tendencies have been reined in. Italy will likely fail to deport large masses of Romanians, Austria will not be able to espouse xenophobic policies, and no European country can toughen its own immigration policies unilaterally.

The EU itself (as noted in the article) is in the forefront of guaranteeing basic rights to immigrants across the continent. It is working on an EU "blue card" to enhance legal immigration for skilled workers, and is the only bulwark against anti-immigration voices in national governments.

Using national examples to say that the EU is watching Lou Dobbs is like using examples of hardline candidates in state legislature races in New Mexico to argue that the US as a whole is espousing anti-immigration policies.

rusty3 Author Profile Page:

The Europeans are exhibiting a bit of common sense in the face of a ceaseless flow of people. I would love to see the US put the needs and well being of its own people ahead of the desires of employers for wage slaves.

Then (why not?) it would also be nice to see a federal government that used tax policy to encourage employers to keep jobs in the US.

marine2211 Author Profile Page:

Hardyw is too right! Since when has any Europeon country been open to foreigners? Many the time I have traveled to various countries in Europe and have had to show my passport at each entry port. This article is just another not very subble anti-American slam. I do not appreciate it. As a matter of fact, count me as one citizen who does not give a flying fig what any Europeon thinks about us.

RdRunnerxx Author Profile Page:

I am just glad there is no mention of Lou Dobbs in all of this other than the title. European immigrants are far different than U.S. immigrants who are less religious and have no problem to assimilate into the American way of life. We need not worry about immigration here. We need worry about "Outsourcing" our jobs to other countries.

HardyW Author Profile Page:

I guess I don't see anti-immigration as un-European at all, they are the original closed border society aren't they?

PostGlobal is an interactive conversation on global issues moderated by Newsweek International Editor Fareed Zakaria and David Ignatius of The Washington Post. It is produced jointly by Newsweek and, as is On Faith, a conversation on religion. Please send us your comments, questions and suggestions.