The Mediterranean isle of Sicily has long been a lily pad for those who seek to hop between Africa and Europe. Over the millennia its ownership has changed hands between conquering Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans, Greeks, Vandals, Ostrogoths, and Muslim Arabs, the latter of whom ruled Sicily from 831 to 1072 AD. Before Christians reclaimed the island, its Arab rulers burned all churches to the ground and kept the native inhabitants in a state of quasi-slavery and constant persecution.
Historically speaking, it’s understandable that the island’s residents would be a mite touchy about invaders.
As recently as 2006 nearly 98% of the capital city of Palermo’s residents were of Italian descent. But a massive recent influx of (pick one) migrants/refugees/conquerors from Northern Africa—some estimate that 1,000 new arrivals are dumped on this small island of five million every week—has graphically altered Palermo’s demographics to the point where many neighborhoods in the city are fully one-quarter non-Italian.
Muammar Gaddafi warned back in 2010 that if European leaders didn’t aggressively begin repelling African immigrants, Europe would turn “black”:
We don’t know what will be the reaction of the white and Christian Europeans faced with this influx of starving and ignorant Africans….We don’t know if Europe will remain an advanced and united continent or if it will be destroyed, as happened with the barbarian invasions.
Gaddafi is of course dead, but his prophecy becomes more vividly alive every day. It is here in Palermo—which the mayor calls “the Mafia’s doorstep”—where African gangs are beginning to challenge La Cosa Nostra for criminal supremacy.
And according to several sources, the Sicilian Mafia has “declared war” on the African infiltrators. And judging from news reports, the government and media are siding with the Africans.
The first shot in this reputed war occurred in dramatic fashion a few weeks ago in broad daylight when a wannabe Italian mobster shot a Gambian refugee in the head.
Poring over several news accounts, I could find no explanation why someone fleeing The Gambia needed to wind up 2,500 miles away in Sicily. But what I was told again and again is that the victim was “an innocent Gambian man.”
In case you didn’t hear me the first time, this man was merely “an innocent Gambian refugee.” He was a hapless “innocent Gambian migrant.” A poor helpless “innocent Gambian man.” He was “innocent,” I tell you. Innocent…even though at least one account depicts him willfully engaging in a violent altercation with the Italian street thug who later allegedly grabbed a gun from a nearby building and came back to shoot the “innocent” combatant through the head.
I find it remarkable that so many news writers—none of whom were at the scene of the shooting—felt the need to shout the African man’s innocence from the rooftops. And every Sicilian official who was quoted expressed contempt for the Italian Mafia but uttered not a negative word about the burgeoning African gang problem.
Either way, the Gambian migrant survived.
After four days in a coma, 21-year-old Yusapha Susso—roundly proclaimed innocent by the press, despite the fact that no one seemed to be alleging that he was guilty of anything—emerged to make the following comments:
This won’t change me. My feelings can never change. I want to stay in Italy. Physically I am feeling better, but I am very emotional. It was a miracle. My parents are Christian and I’m a believer.
Palermo Mayor Leoluca Orlando also appears to presume that the Gambian is 100% innocent and that shooter Emanuele Rubino is 100% guilty. He also chides native-born Italians for being on the wrong side of history and bitterly clinging onto their demographically doomed Italian identity:
In the past, when the Mafia was more powerful, it prevented any immigrants from entering the city. Until I was 30 years old, I never saw an African or Asian in Palermo….
Palermo is no longer an Italian town. It is no longer European. You can walk in the city and feel like you’re in Istanbul or Beirut….Palermo is a Middle Eastern town in Europe. It is a mosaic city and we are happy about that….
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