a very large proportion of immigration was in accordance with the family reunification program. The original economic migrants, principally from Morocco and overwhelmingly male, were felt to be suffering from loneliness.
So it gave the political class
a nice warm and fuzzy feeling inside (a bit like that experienced in the gullet after a shot of whisky) to let immigrant labourers be reunited with their families—in the Netherlands.
and suddenly 11% of the population, much of it economically inactive, was of immigrant origin.
Unfortunately, Dalrymple notes,
those who had the warm and fuzzy feeling—which included the knowledge that they were not repeating the less than glorious record of their country during the Second World War—did not bear the consequences. But they felt good about themselves.
was poured multiculturalism. Its object in the Netherlands was the opposite of, or at least very different from, what it became. Moroccan economic migrants were originally encouraged to maintain links with their homeland and continue their cultural practices so that when they became surplus to the Netherlands’ requirements for cheap unskilled labour—that is to say, of pensionable age or sooner if there were an economic downturn—they would be able to reintegrate easily back into Morocco. As Goethe said, however, grey is theory, but green is the tree of life.
For many years, Dalrymple writes,
the political class and much of the educated middle class refused to see that there was a problem—not only because it did not obtrude much on their personal lives, but because they had created it, and they would have to lose their ethical virginity if they tried to do anything about it.
molten lava has a habit sometimes of breaking through the placid surface of the earth. The rise of Pim Fortuyn was the tremor and his murder, as well as that of Theo van Gogh, the eruption.
Fortuyn has found a successor in Geert Wilders, who
is accused of incitement to hatred and discrimination. But it is quite clear that he has done no more in regard to Islam than, say, an anticommunist might have done in claiming that the implementation of communist doctrine inevitably leads to tyranny.