The Last Days of Europe

In The Last Days of Europe distinguished historian Walter Laqueur argues that Europe as we know it will cease to exist at some point during the 21st century. What will replace it is not likely to be pleasant.

Laqueur identifies a number of major problems but by far the most serious is the collapse of European populations. The birthrate is so low in countries such as Italy and Spain that by the end of the century Italians and Spaniards will be no more than a tiny minority in their own countries. The situation in Russia is even more disastrous.

The second problem, Muslim immigration on a vast scale, will magnify the catastrophic consequences of the demographic collapse. In some European countries the Muslim population is reproducing at three or four time the rate of the European population. The Muslim minorities have not assimilated and are not going to assimilate, and when they become the majority they are unlikely to benign rulers, especially given that Muslims in Europe tend to be more radical and more extremist that Muslims in the present-day Islamic world.

The most frightening thing of all is that Europe’s leaders have simply ignored these problems until now it is too late.

No-one, including Laqueur, has been able to come up with a plausible explanation for the demogaphic suicide of Europe. Laqueur can offer few suggestions for dealing with the problems he has outlined. The best he can offer is that Europeans might try appeasement towards their rapidly growing Muslim population although he admits that appeasement has never worked in any other situation and is even less likely to work in this one.

An extremely good although thoroughly depressing book.

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