Meanwhile, Angela Merkel denounced Donald Trump's claims that crime rate has risen in Germany due to migration at a press conference with French President Emmanuel Macron, quoting Interior ministry federal crime statistics. The report, cited by Merkel, shows that overall crime fell by 9.6 percent last year, including crimes commited by non-Germans.
Sputnik talked about the roots of the migrant crisis in Europe with Professor William Mallinson, a former British diplomat and Professor of Political Ideas and Institutions at Guglielmo Marconi University.
Sputnik: What can you tell us about Angela Merkel’s meetings with the Italian prime minister and the French president in the past week? Do you think anything was accomplished?
William Mallinson: Not yet. I think she’s trying to save face. As a diplomatic historian I like to go back to the origin of things, let’s remember that in 2015 Angela Merkel in a public speech said that multiculturalism had failed and then only two years later she suddenly allows more than a million non-European people just to rush into Germany. I suppose for a very strange reason again for party political reasons.
At that time they probably needed a few extra hands, cheap labor and all the rest of it, but that has all come completely unstuck and she’s trying to save face. Another origin of this actually goes right back to Lisbon and the Europeans not being able to have a coordinated policy on immigration and when I say immigration I’m talking about immigration from outside the EU not internal immigration about which I’d like to speak as well later. And now of course years later we’re now having to pay the bill.
And now we’re reaping the benefits so to speak and we’re rushing along trying to do something. Another cause was the over-fast expansion of the European Union which has created the other kind of immigration problem, internal European Union immigration.
In other words, from the point of view of the Germans, the French, and the British, and the Italians, I am sorry I like the people, but there are a lot of less good Bulgarians, Romanians, Estonians, Latvians rushing in. And they’re just rushing in for economic reasons and they’re allowed to.
So all of this is because there was no proper European policy it was all itsy bitsy. And now very late in the day after much of the damage has been done they are trying to save face, at least the Italians are doing something. This has nothing to do of course with racism, that’s nonsense. That has to do very much with the fact that a people likes to remain, to keep its natural character and all this is now happening, crime rates are going up.
William Mallinson: Yes, on the one hand. On the other hand, this is very fundamental because it goes back to the psychological heart of the modern post-war German state because the Christian Social Union is a vital component.
Also remember that Bavaria has been more independent-minded historically within the German context, they are more conservative, they are more Christian and they also have a lot of industry down there and they are bearing part of the brunt of the mistaken exaggerated immigration policies of Angela Merkel in having let so many come in apart from the East Europeans which is good for the German economy because this is a story about greed and fast expansion.
So I think she’s going to have to give way, I think the CSU is serious. She’s going to have to give way in a face-saving manner of course so we don’t know the precise modalities of how they’re going to say no one can now come into Germany unless they’re genuine, etc. But I think she’s going to have to because it would be an earthquake in German politics if the CSU actually split from the CDU, it would be very amazing. I think she will have to but we don’t know how, we don’t know how this cat is going to be skinned.
William Mallinson: Correct. There are a lot of headless chickens running around at the moment and mistakes have been made from Lisbon and then Dublin onwards. Greece of all countries in less than three years took 800,000 refugees. A lot of those have gone onto Germany but there’re still over 50,000 in Greece in camps.
It’s frightening and Greece is a small country which wasn’t to blame for any of this. Italy also, huge numbers of people; also remember the Albanian problem, I remember 15 years ago a lot of Italians were up in arms, not about a few Roma gypsies but about the Albanian invasion, and huge increases in crime.
And then of course we have all the Africans and that’s the fault of mainly the illegal actions of NATO. So the Italians at last, have actually stuck their neck out. They say that all roads lead to Rome, things have gone too far. The Italians are being brave, it has nothing to do with racism or right-wing or left-wing, it’s to do with the survival of the natural and original characteristic of a European country.
The views expressed in this article are those of William Mallinson and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.