ANGELA Merkel’s decision in September this year to throw open Europe’s borders to allcomers will go down as one of the most disastrous political miscalculations of modern times.
The German Chancellor issued an open invitation to anyone from the jihadi hotbed of Syria – one of the most violent and chaotic countries on earth – to settle in Europe with no questions asked and without any effective security checks.
What could possibly go wrong? Well, following the atrocities in Paris, we may have an answer.
If you listened to the BBC and the Guardian you would get the impression that pretty much every single migrant queuing to get into Europe is either a brain surgeon, a consultant oncologist or a software engineer.
Those of us who pointed out that one or two jihadis might be slipping in alongside genuine refugees were derided as racists.
Some of us also pointed out that 90 per cent of the migrants, rather than being the most vulnerable and destitute as you might expect, appeared to be fit men of fighting age complete with designer trainers and the latest mobile phones.
If Syria is such a desperately dangerous place, how come these young men are perfectly happy to leave their wives and children behind? Again such salient observations were drowned out by cries of bigotry.
I recall TV footage of German people handing out sweets to migrants arriving at Munich railway station while an “impartial” BBC reporter screamed: “Welcome to Germany!”
Call me an old cynic, but I couldn’t help thinking: “You won’t be handing out sweets after the first bomb goes off.”
I hate to say I told you so, but it didn’t take long, did it?
Merkel has now realised her mistake and is rapidly trying to shut the borders and is bullying much poorer neighbouring countries to take “their share” of the migrants she invited.
But it is far too late. Getting on for a million migrants have reached Europe this year alone and tens of millions more will answer Frau Merkel’s call in the coming years.
So what should be done? First we should enable Syrians to stay close to their homes by providing comfortable, secure refugee camps so they can return to Syria once a political solution is found.
This, of course, takes vast amounts of money and it should be noted that no country in Europe has given more to fund the refugee camps than the UK. If other countries contributed as much as Britain, the situation could be vastly improved.
Second, we should accept genuine refugee families from the camps after careful and detailed security screening. Again, let’s note that a group of 100 Syrian refugees, mainly families, arrived in Scotland this week.
Third, the UK should not accept as refugees people who have already made it to Europe through the EU’s chaotic and porous borders. We should not be outsourcing our immigration and asylum policy to people smugglers.
In other words it turns out the British government, though much derided at the time, got it pretty much 100 per cent right.
As for Europe as a whole, the outlook is grim. It is often said that the majority of Muslims are peaceable people and the violent extremists are a tiny minority.
This no doubt is true, but it isn’t very reassuring. If just one per cent of the migrants entering Europe this year are jihadi extremists, it could mean that a significant number of trained killers are now in our midst. That adds up to a hell of a lot of potential atrocities like the ones we have just witnessed in Paris.
Throughout the last week people have been expressing “shock” at the events in Paris.
This happens every time the terrorists strike – 9/11, Bali, Madrid, Beslan, 7/7, Mumbai, Nairobi, Tunisia, Egypt – we never seem to lose the capacity to be shocked.
But in truth if you are shocked or surprised then you are not paying enough attention. Islamic extremists want to destroy us and will accept no compromise. They have declared war on Western civilisation and we are in a desperate fight for survival.
By dragging a Trojan Horse in through Europe’s borders, Angela Merkel has made that fight all the more difficult.
I hope I am wrong, but I am afraid Paris is not the last time the terrorists will strike.