What Mattis doesn’t know… is killing.
How long will it take for the European ‘crisis’ to be re-framed as the new norm, and what are the potential consequences of that shift?
Transition, not crisis
When things go wrong, we generally tend to speak of crisis. Yet, the term ‘crisis’ refers to the ‘exceptional’, to a harmful turmoil that will sooner or later diminish to a parenthesis before returning to normality. Well, this is not the case anymore. The reality we live in is not a human rights crisis. It is a new era. It is a transition: nowhere as visible as in the collective condition of vulnerability that saturates global politics from Sub-Saharan Africa and South America to the Far and Middle East, Europe and Central Asia. Seeing the juncture as a transition, as a chain of causes and consequences, implies that we should conceptualise the ‘crisis’ as a meaningful movement away from and not toward democracy.
As Europe continues to grapple with growing Islamophobia fueled by a surging refugee crisis and Islamist terrorism, questions are increasingly being raised on whether Islam is compatible with European civilization. In order to address this subject and counter the growing intolerance on the continent, a coalition of NGOs, academics and activists decided to organize a summit in Sarajevo on the topic of Islamophobia.
Despite the city’s relatively low profile on the European radar, many answers to today’s vital questions appear to lie within the tolerant and multicultural city of Sarajevo. Hence, this was the chosen location for the first European Summit on Islamophobia, which took place from 24 – 26 June 2016.