Friday, January 12, 2007


If You Want
To Visit Europe -
You Better
Get Over
There Soon



It's much later than you think. Demographic trends in Europe are such that much of Western Europe will no longer be the "Europe" of your romantic dreams in just a couple of decades:


Say Goodbye to Europe
By Michael Freund


The Muslim takeover of Europe is happening more quickly than people think.
In my column below from the Jerusalem Post, I highlight the demographic decline of traditional Europe and contrast it with the rapid growth of the continent's Muslim population.


This trend has far-reaching consequences for the US and Israel, and it is time that our decision-makers start taking it into account as they plan for the future.

If you ever wanted to see Paris or Rome before you die, but haven't had a chance to do so, you might want to hurry. Soon enough, most of what we now think of as Western Europe will be transformed into a branch of the Muslim world, which is sure to make it an even less welcoming place for Americans, Israelis and for Jews.

That, at least, is the unpleasant, yet entirely unavoidable conclusion to be drawn from Europe's headlong demographic drive toward oblivion.

Think I'm exaggerating? Consider a few cold hard facts.

According to a recent report by the Rand Corporation, "Across Europe, birth rates are falling and family sizes are shrinking. The total fertility rate is now less than two children per woman in every member nation in the European Union."

Needless to say, demographers consider a birthrate of 2.1 children per family to be the replacement level at which a society's population size remains stable. Barring large-scale immigration, anything less means decline and dissolution.

A research study published last year in the International Journal of Andrology found a similar trend, concluding that, "Fertility rates have fallen and are now below replacement level in all European Union (EU) Member States. In the 20-year period since 1982," it noted, "most EU Member State countries have had total fertility rates continuously below replacement level."

At the bottom of the list are Spain, Italy and Greece, where birthrates hover around just 1.3 per couple, leading some forecasters to suggest, for example, that Italy's population could shrink by one-third by the middle of the century.

Others, such as Germany's 1.37, the UK's 1.74 and Sweden's 1.75, aren't all much better.
The figures are so bad that in many European countries, the total number of deaths each year has actually begun to exceed the number of births.


Indeed, the Council of Europe's 2004 Demographic Yearbook warned that, "for Europe as a whole, more people died in 2003 than were born." In 1990, said the yearbook, "three countries - Germany, Bulgaria and Hungary - had negative natural growth for the first time. By 2002, it was negative in fifteen countries."

LAST YEAR, after the publication of statistics revealing that 30 percent of German women have not had children, Germany's family minister, Ursula von der Leyen, caused a stir when she said that if her nation's birth rate did not turn around, the country would have to "turn out the light." And while Europeans may be busy everywhere but in the bedroom, the Muslim populations in their midst are proving far more expansive.

As columnist Mark Steyn points out in his must-read new book, America Alone, "What's the Muslim population of Rotterdam? Forty percent. What's the most popular baby boy's name in Belgium? Mohammed. In Amsterdam? Mohammed. In Malmo, Sweden? Mohammed."

Last month, the UK Daily Telegraph reported that, "Mohammed, and its most common alternative spelling Muhammad, are now more popular babies' names in England and Wales than George."

This, said the paper, using typically British understatement, "reflects the diverse ethnic mix of the population."

But that "mix," so to speak, is rapidly changing - and not in traditional Europe's favor.

ISLAM, BY all accounts, is the fastest growing religion in Europe, spurred by immigration and high fertility rates. According to projections by the US federal government's National Intelligence Council, the continent's current Muslim population of 20 million will likely double by 2025.

And as Bruce Bawer noted last year in While Europe Slept, "Already, in most of Western Europe, 16 to 20 percent of children are Muslims…within a couple of generations many [European] countries will have Muslim majorities."