“Many Muslims” want “a third Islamic attempt to conquer Europe … and they say this is the end of Europe." This statement was not made by anti-jihadism crusader Robert Spencer or Pamela Geller, but by a Catholic cardinal who could be the next pope.
Cardinal Christoph Schönborn (shown wearing cross), archbishop of Vienna, made the comments to mark the 333rd anniversary of the Battle of Vienna, in which European forces successfully repelled a 100,000-soldier-strong Muslim invasion in 1683. Sounding his alarm in a sermon at the Holy Name of Mary church festival at St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna on Sunday, September 11, the prelate lamented that the continent’s loss of faith has made it susceptible to foreign domination. As the Archdiocese of Vienna related (translated from German):
Cardinal Schönborn began his homily with the parable of the prodigal son who squandered his father's legacy. Looking at "our situation in Europe," the cardinal said, "We are a little like him. We have squandered the legacy that gave us our Christian heritage, we've squandered it. And now we wonder what Europe will look like ... [Europe’s Christian heritage], as it is already being felt as missing [by many people]. Not only economically ... but above all in human and religious matters. What will become of Europe?”
So we are imperiled by those who have squandered Europe's Christian heritage. Islamism could indeed be the beneficiary. Said Schönborn, "Will there now be a third Islamic attempt to conquer Europe? Many Muslims think that and want that, and they say this is the end of Europe."
The cardinal’s point is that dispensing with faith is like destroying an immune system. And “Muslims are like the common cold and leftists are like AIDs. It's easy to fight off a cold ... unless you have AIDS,” to quote social commentator Milo Yiannopoulos. In fact, reacting to criticism of his remarks, Schönborn later reiterated that it is faithless Europeans who are most culpable here. While “many Islamists would like to take advantage of our weakness,” he said, “they are not responsible for it. We are.”
Despite this, many secularists are shocked at his comments, with the Express characterizing the idea that Muslims would want to conquer Europe as incredible. Yet they may want to consider that just last year Dr. Mudar Zahran, a Muslim refugee living in the U.K., called the current mass Muslim migration into Europe the “Islamic Conquest of the West.” Moreover, said Zahran, “You read Arab magazines and Arab newspapers; they are talking about, ‘Good job! Now we’re going to conquest [sic] Europe.’ So it’s not even a secret.” Maybe not, but it certainly is news to Western media.
Of course, it’s entirely natural for people who strongly identify with a certain group to “look out for number one” and want to see its group achieve dominance. History bears this out. A motivation harder for secular Westerners to grasp, because of misunderstandings relating to it, is “conversion.” Far from being a purely “religious” phenomenon, conversion is actually a natural aim of most everyone. Think about it: Does Coke not wish to convert Pepsi drinkers into Coke heads? Wouldn’t the Democratic National Committee love to convert as many Republicans as possible? When secularists rail against proselytization, aren’t they trying to convert people to secularism or, at least, to a more “moderate” form of religiosity? In fact, corporations spend billions on the conversion attempts known as commercials, and virtually all debates, over things great or small, are endeavors in conversion. One might say that to be human is to “proselytize.”
Yet many people who readily understand why liberals and conservatives would seek converts and cultural dominance find it unfathomable that Muslims would do likewise. This is because of their projection and their faithlessness. They expect aggressive corporate and political attempts at domination because they can understand a monetary or ideological motivation. But faith is foreign to them. Instilled with the comparative-religion notion that “all faiths are equal,” they project this relativistic fallacy onto others. And with their emotions (which aren’t logical) dictating an unequal application of relativism and that religion truly is a matter of taste and not Truth, they view it not as principle but preference, not as fervor-worthy but flavor of the day. And who seeks to dominate chocolate lovers and convert them to vanilla-ism?
Interestingly, though, and as a testimonial to the inconsistencies of emotion-driven people, a lot of secularists have no trouble believing that many Christians would love to visit theocracy upon them. They also embrace the false notion that “most wars have been caused by religion,” but then can’t imagine how allowing millions of often zealous religionists into the West could cause war.
Returning to Cardinal Schönborn, what’s suspect is not his message but his math. The prelate alludes to two previous Muslim invasions of Europe, likely including the Siege of Vienna by the Ottoman Empire in 1529 with the 1683 Ottoman campaign. Yet that’s just the iceberg’s tip. After conquering two-thirds of the old Christian lands in the Mideast and North Africa, Muslim hordes invaded Iberia (now Spain and Portugal), crossed into Gaul (now France) and got within 125 miles of Paris before being repelled by Charles Martel at the Battle of Poitier in 732. Later, in 902, Muslims would conquer the then-Byzantine island of Sicily. Further inroads into the Byzantine Empire, efforts ultimately threatening Greece itself, helped prompt the First Crusade in 1096 (the Crusades, defensive campaigns designed to ward off Muslim aggression, have been grossly mischaracterized). Moreover, Muslims held Spanish lands for approximately 650 years, until 1492. And the Ottoman Muslims controlled Hungary for more than a century and a half, until 1699.
This helps explain why current Hungarian leader, Viktor Orban, so staunchly opposes Muslim migration into Europe. Also note that the 16th-century invasion of Hungary wasn’t just a matter of lands and plunder: The Ottomans told Hungarian sovereign Louis II that he could be safe — all he had to do was embrace Islam.
Yet today, as comic-strip character Pogo said in 1970 and as Cardinal Schönborn apparently agrees, “We have met the enemy, and he is us.” Far from trying to renew Christian faith, the West is attacking it. In most of the Occident, Christians are not only mocked and ridiculed but are charged with “hate speech” for criticizing Islam, are punished for not servicing faux weddings, and are threatened with career destruction for practicing their faith; Muslims, in contrast, are often given preferential treatment.
Harking back to an earlier point, note that Science Clarified has the following to say about AIDS-like illnesses: “Autoimmune diseases occur when the body's immune system loses the ability to recognize the difference between self and nonself” and attacks “its own tissues.” Having lost its foundational faith, the West has lost its sense of self. It simply doesn’t know where it’s supposed to end and the alien begins. And this, as Cardinal Schönborn has warned us, is where really begins the “end of Europe.”