Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Unwanted in Denmark

A quick glance at a map of Europe will tell you that Denmark falls between Germany and Sweden. But, you probably knew that already. You might not have known it, but Denmark has demonstrated a decidedly less welcoming attitude toward Muslim migrants.

For all I know, it might have something to do with the fact that the Danes have closely observed the effects that migrants are producing in Germany and Sweden… and have decided that they do not want any of that in their country. This tells us that Europe is increasingly being divided between the Western countries that are being destroyed by their migrant populations and the Eastern countries that have successfully kept the migrants… along with their rape culture, their criminal gangs, their misogyny, their homophobia and their anti-Semitism… out.

The Danes have accepted a certain number of migrant refugees into their country, but it has strictly segregated them from the rest of the population. It is apparently trying to persuade them to leave. It is not allowing them to live among the Danes, to work among the Danes or to feel comfortable in Denmark. According to Nicholas Mirzoeff in the Nation (via Maggie’s Farm) the country’s policies are markedly intolerant and ought to change. He has painted an awful picture of desolation, the better to gin up international pressure on Denmark.

It will be interesting to see if it works. In the meantime, Denmark has made it clear that it will not accept unassimilable migrants into its communities and its cultures.

Think of Denmark and you probably conjure up a mix of mid-century design, hygge, and people riding bikes. But as viewers of the noir TV series The Bridge know, it’s also a country marred by institutional xenophobia. Denmark has a network of camps and detention centers for asylum seekers. It has legally defined ghettoes, meaning urban areas with populations of “non-Western immigrants.”

But while something is clearly rotten in the state of Denmark, it’s far from an exception in Western politics. What’s happening in this former bastion of liberalism is the normalizing of white hostility to immigration. Denmark is building on Australian and Israeli tactics to form a new strategy: to disappear the refugee from society.
The Danish immigration minister Inger Støjberg has said that she intends to make conditions for people in the asylum system unbearable.And if my recent visit to Sjælsmark Detention Center, outside Copenhagen, is anything to judge by, she’s succeeding.

Sjælsmark contains people whose applications for asylum have been rejected but cannot be returned to their country of origin (technically “non-deportable rejected asylum seekers,” according to EU law). The upscale suburb has no shops or other amenities for the detainees. It is suitably remote from the city, nearly two hours by two buses and a train. By car, it’s just 30 minutes, but no one has a car.

He adds:

If the Danish settler colony once wanted to extract labor from its colonial subjects in the Caribbean, Africa, and Asia, all it wants now from their descendants is that they go away. To that end, Sjælsmark residents cannot work or claim benefits. They are not allowed to cook, to have furniture (other than a bed, one table, and hard chairs), or to decorate their rooms. No carpets or rugs are allowed. There is no television or Internet service. Residents live in cold, spare rooms with very high ceilings. Having committed no crime, the asylum seekers are nonetheless being punished.

So, Eastern Europe, Australia and even Israel have adopted draconian and not-very-pretty ways to persuade migrants to return to their home country. Or else, to seek asylum elsewhere. But not in Denmark.

Increasingly, Western cultures are dividing according to whether or not they are willing to welcome migrants. Having seen up close the results of Angela Merkel’s open arms policy and the situation in Sweden… Denmark has chosen to put up a wall.


Freddo said...

The average European citizen probably thinks "sounds good, let's also do that here". Of course the opinions of the average citizen are carefully kept out of the various state sponsored news entities.

Anonymous said...

For ages, the Danes have been very strict about being Danes. In 2016, their Queen, Margrethe II, put it like this:

Queen Margarethe II said it was “not a law of nature” that asylum seekers automatically integrated into society and called on Muslim groups to do more to help new arrivals understand Danish society.

The Queen, who is one of Europe’s most respected and long-serving royals, said politicians needed to “put their foot down” and strictly uphold the country’s principles of democracy and gender equality in her unprecedented rallying cry.


Speaking about the cultural values some migrants bring with them, she said: "We cannot pretend that it wears off by itself. It won't. Many of us thought that people who come to a strange place are a kind of a blotting paper that absorbs everything new.

“The task becomes harder, however, when so many people having various backgrounds and a particular religion arrive at once. They risk isolating themselves regardless of their will.”

Sam L. said...

The Queen knows.

Concern said...

I think you need to look a little bit closer into the Australian system. It is not draconian by any stretch of the imagination and certainly in no way comparable to the Danish ghettos.

Anonymous said...

"Intolerant" Denmark, the one country that managed to save its Jews from The Holocaust.

Strelnikov said...

"But as viewers of the noir TV series The Bridge know"

Viewers of a fiction series "know" something about the country in which it is set? Gee, foreigners must know all about the US from such quality programming as "Three's Company" and "Roseanne".

Joseph Morroco said...


Explains the Gilets Jaunes in France.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if their history of getting almost all the Jews out during WWII makes them more sensitive to the antiSemitism of the Muslim invaders? There are national myths that strengthen or weaken a nation. Do the Danes remember WWII and vow never again?
Or does it go back to their remote history of warrior raiders getting paid Danegeld and not willing to do the same?
I have no idea, but glad the Danes are standing up to themselves.

wheels said...

'Gee, foreigners must know all about the US from such quality programming as "Three's Company" and "Roseanne".'

Several years ago, I visited relatives who live in Adelaide, Australia. After hearing a few strange comments about the US, I asked how they got those impressions, and discovered that their knowledge came from watching "The Simpsons."