Remix Rewind: A weekly review of our top stories

German incompetence, EU corruption, and one local victory. Everything you need to know from last week… differently.

author: Thomas Brooke

The economic powerhouse of Europe this week proved itself to be nothing but a husk, a nation governed by a chaotic coalition of progressives no longer capable of leading by example.

We are, of course, talking about Germany, which saw on Monday the resignation of former Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht following a litany of PR disasters and, frankly, incompetence.

The SPD politician blamed her demise on the German press, but those with any sense will rightly attribute her fall from grace to the numerous failings in military policy on her watch, which included multiple blunders in Bundeswehr procurement contracts, major malfunctions of military equipment, and insufficient and indecisive action taken regarding the conflict in Ukraine.

Despite being handed a €100 billion war chest to improve Germany’s armed forces in February of last year, several press stories unveiled the extent of the rot within the German military, including a leaked classified report last month, which claimed Germany was barely capable of fulfilling its NATO obligations. Throw in revelations of whole squadrons of Puma tanks being deemed unfit for action and reserves of heavy-armored Leopard battle tanks needing to be “completely rebuilt” before being sent to Ukraine — a process German arms manufacturer Rheinmetall confirmed could take up to a year — and it becomes ever more clear why Lambrecht was relieved of her duties at the German Ministry of Defense.

You would think after such a dismal performance, Germans would be united in backing the right person for the job — competence over ideology and all that. Sadly, the German Greens didn’t see it that way and started throwing their toys out of the pram after hearing her successor would be, wait for it… a man. Heaven forbid that at a time of crisis, Chancellor Scholz’s electoral pledge of a gender-equal cabinet be temporarily thrown out of kilter. It’s not like there’s a war on Europe’s doorstep or anything…

Outrage over the appointment of new Defense Minister Boris Pistorius wasn’t the only lefty lunacy on show across Germany this week, far from it. Authorities continued to enforce a court-mandated eviction order by removing far-left squatters from the village of Lutzerath, due to be flattened to enable the expansion of the Garzweiler coal mine. Naturally, the head of the loony cult, Greta Thunberg, sensed a PR opportunity and visited the site. She also made numerous media appearances in which she slammed the “very hypocritical” German Greens within the federal coalition for approving the lignite mine’s expansion, and called Germany one of the world’s worst polluters. There’s nothing better than some Green-on-Green action.

Thunberg later appeared to be arrested by German police on Wednesday, with images showing her being escorted away from the coal mine site circulated on social media. Thunberg used the images to ram home her rhetoric of police brutality in Lutzerath. However, longer video footage released later that day told a different story. Thunberg can be seen calmly posing with the officers before she was led from the protest by police, with critics saying the whole event appeared to have been staged. How dare you!

As newspaper columns continued to be filled with news from Ukraine, the global elite’s World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, and the latest self-indulgent extract from Prince Harry’s autobiography, what should be one of Europe’s biggest talking points continued to fester under the surface: the rise in illegal immigration.

Data published by Frontex this week revealed the Western Balkan migratory route overtook the Mediterranean route from North Africa into Italy last year to become the busiest pathway to Europe. Approximately 330,000 illegal border-crossings into the European Union were detected in 2022, the highest figure since the migration crisis of 2016 and an increase of 64 percent from the previous year. And that’s just the ones we know about.

More than 145,000 migrants attempted to use the Balkan route from Serbia into Hungary last year, skyrocketing by 136 percent over 2021. Frontex also confirmed what we already knew, that 80 percent of new arrivals are not women and children fleeing war zones, but adult men. Ukrainian refugees were excluded for the purposes of Frontex’s report.

Speaking on Thursday, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s chief adviser on internal security announced more than 5,500 illegal border-crossing attempts had been recorded at Hungary’s external border already this year, with authorities arresting 50 people smugglers to date. He warned that smugglers are gaining the upper hand as criminal networks operating in neighboring countries are coordinating to take the hugely profitable business model to new heights.

A spokesperson for the Bulgarian prosecutor general revealed on Tuesday that illegal migrants are paying up to €10,000 each to be smuggled across the Turkish border, through Bulgaria and up to the country’s western border with Serbia.

Despite an “action day” on Monday by Bulgarian authorities and Europol resulting in the arrests of 92 suspected people smugglers, the prosecutor general’s spokesperson told reporters “the penalties given for facilitating illegal migration are extremely low,” and most of those arrested would likely only receive suspended sentences.

Despite the reluctance of Europe’s mainstream media to give the issue of illegal immigration the air time it deserves, a majority of Europeans consider it to be an incredibly pressing matter. Polling data published this week by the Budapest-based Századvég Foundation revealed almost four in five respondents (78 percent) are concerned about the continuous influx of illegal immigration into Europe, while a smaller majority of 56 percent think it’s important to preserve Europe’s Christian heritage.

It was typically respondents in countries that have had more progressive governments in recent years who were the most concerned by ongoing illegal immigration, including Sweden (78 percent), Germany (75 percent), France (73 percent), and the Netherlands (68 percent). No doubt their concerns will fall upon deaf ears…

At the heart of the European promised land, the corruption scandal at the European Parliament rumbled on this week after a tax advisor to the EU legislature was detained on corruption charges on Wednesday. The scandal has seen the perceived do-gooders of Europe become the subject of ridicule by European conservatives who have often been chastised by Eurocrats over how they choose to govern their own sovereign nations.

Former Polish foreign minister and MEP for Poland’s ruling conservatives, Witold Waszczykowski, predicted that nothing will change in Brussels in the aftermath of Qatargate, while Polish President Andrzej Duda told reporters in Davos: “Instead of lecturing others, they should tackle the need for the rule of law in their own ranks.” Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, who never misses an opportunity to take a pop at the European elite, quipped: “If they continue like this in Brussels, soon enough MEPs will be behind bars to form their own football team.”

Meanwhile, several disturbing reports across Europe showed the difficulties many nations are experiencing as a direct consequence of decades-old liberal migration policies. The trial began in Dortmund of three Syrians and one Ghanaian national accused of gang-raping a 13-year-old girl and sexually abusing her 13-year-old friend last year. Meanwhile, a 27-year-old Syrian national was arrested in the western German state of North Rhine-Westphalia after reportedly throwing a teenage girl onto the train tracks at a railway station.

An Algerian migrant, known as the “most active thief in Paris,” was sentenced to just three years in prison on Tuesday by the Paris Criminal Court. On the same day, a Syrian national who had claimed asylum and resided in the Netherlands since 2019 was arrested by Dutch authorities after evidence came to light suggesting he had been one of the Islamic State’s top security chiefs during the terror cell’s infamous rise to power in the Middle East.

“It is suspected that from his position at IS, he contributed to war crimes that the organization committed in Syria,” the Dutch public prosecutor said in a statement.

In a week in which a German-Iranian commentator celebrated the “dying out” of ethnic Germans and claimed “migrants will probably inherit this land” in reference to Germany and wider Europe, one victory was reported in a small village in France. There, the local government’s plan to settle up to 70 refugee families was withdrawn after mass protests from local residents.

Finally, if we can give you one piece of advice based on this week’s news, try not to be on the same side of the political debate as Maggie Chapman, a politician for the Scottish Green Party who, in a car-crash interview earlier this week, suggested that governments should “explore processes” that could see children as young as eight be allowed to vote and legally change their own gender. We hope we can all agree such a view is frankly absurd and worthy of a visit from the men in white coats.

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