Perhaps it’s a sign that a true European Union is forming among the people of Europe and not one for the political elite. The Muslim terror attacks in Paris are causing the anti-Islamization movement PEGIDA in Germany to grow, with the previous number of protesters expected to expand from 18,000 as a result.
According to a report in a German publication:
Germany’s new anti-Islamic PEGIDA movement plans to rally again on Monday, with analysts expecting its ranks to swell by thousands following this week’s bloody jihadist violence in France.
The leaders of the so-called “Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the Occident” have asked marchers to wear black armbands and observe a minute’s silence for “the victims of terrorism in Paris”.
Many observers of the rise of the far-right populist movement in the eastern city of Dresden now expect it to seek to make political capital from the massacre at the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and its bloody aftermath.
Fears over the events probably “will buoy currents of the vague xenophobia that exist in this country”, Everhard Holtmann of Halle-Wittenberg University told the Handelsblatt business daily.
“The Islamophobia syndrome, on the crest of which PEGIDA rides, could in fact gain strength.”
PEGIDA has voiced a wide range of grievances and railed against diverse enemies, not just Islam and asylum-seekers, but also the media and a political elite whom they accuse of diluting Germany’s Christian-based culture with multi-culturalism.
Launched in October with a march of just 500 people, it has since swelled rapidly, stirring anguished debate in a country whose dark history makes expressions of xenophobia especially worrisome.
Chancellor Angela Merkel deplored the rise of PEGIDA in a New Year’s address, saying its leaders have “prejudice, coldness, even hatred in their hearts”.
As the German people – primarily in Dresden – continue to make the case for Islamophobia, the political elites like Merkel are actually siding with the same forces the Nazis did. Ironically, in a clear case of projection, she’s actually blaming PEGIDA for doing it.