A growing number of European nations are adopting bans on Islamic women wearing burkas, nijabs or any kind of facial covering. In my view, there are two very distinct reasons for these bans. The first link and second link offer details about the implementation of Austria’s new “burka ban” which also includes prohibitions against many kinds of non-Islamic facial coverings in public places. The first link mentions that some of the nations having or implementing burka and facial covering bans are Belgium, France, Germany, Switzerland and Bulgaria in addition to Austria. Notice that these nations fall into two general groupings. Switzerland, Austria and Bulgaria are in a bloc that do not want more Islamic immigration into their nations and burka bans are an effort in those nations to either deter immigration or compel assimilation of immigrants into the established culture if they do come. However, Belgium, Germany and France are, arguably, the three most pro-EU, pro-immigrant nations in the EU. Why are they banning burkas as well?
I think the answer lies in an effort by the pro-EU, pro-immigration nations to implement facial recognition surveillance systems throughout their nations and, eventually, the entire EU itself. You will notice in these links that besides Islamic facial garb for women, the bans also forbid facial scarves, masks and face painting. In other words, these bans forbid anything that would/could obscure the ability of facial recognition systems to identify, monitor and track individuals throughout national and transnational CCTV systems. Anything which covers facial characteristics would or could defeat facial recognition systems, and having one’s face obscured would make it hard or impossible to identify and track individuals via facial recognition technologies. Therefore, some of the “burka bans” are not necessarily anti-Islamic, but are intended to make it hard (or even illegal) to try to defeat facial recognition systems.
One cannot blame just the EU or European nations for a widespread effort to implement facial recognition systems in public places. This effort is truly going global. The third link reports that it is the United Kingdom–the nation leaving the EU– which has the most advanced facial recognition system in Europe and perhaps in the world. The fourth link reveals that Russia is rapidly deploying facial recognition technologies in Moscow and other locations in their nation. The fifth link adds that the USA is rapidly installing facial recognition technologies at its borders and airports under President Trump’s border security initiatives. Clearly, facial recognition surveillance systems are rapidly on pace to be installed globally at some point.
This development brings up the clear clash between the need to prevent terrorism and illegal immigration on one hand, and safeguarding privacy concerns on the other hand. As global terrorism becomes worse and more people die from terrorist attacks at locations popular with tourists or party-goers in many nations, the need to catch terrorists and prevent terrorist attacks is trumping the need for privacy concerns. It is easy to see why this is happening. Ask yourself this question: If a terrorist cell was threatening to detonate a terrorist bomb in a site where you were living or traveling, would you want the law enforcement agencies to focus on saving lives by catching the terrorists or would you prefer listening to a debate about privacy concerns? If we ever, God forbid, have a credible nuclear threat by terrorists, you can be sure that everyone will want police agencies and Interpol to be able to pool their facial recognition records to try and identify all possible suspects and their whereabouts to stop a truly-horrific terrorist attack.
It is very much a “brave new world” that we are entering. It was also prophesied to occur in the Bible during a period of time called the “latter days,” “time of the end,” etc. As I have pointed out in a number of previous posts, Revelation 13 foretells that a global governmental system is coming that will be able to very closely monitor the world’s people. Revelation 13:16-17 specifically focuses on the fact that this global system will monitor and control individuals’ financial transactions on a global scale. That will require today’s modern digital technologies to implement, and such technologies are rapidly being invented and deployed. If global financial transactions will be monitored and controlled, it makes sense that people’s movements and whereabouts will be monitored as well, and that can easily be accomplished via global deployment of facial recognition systems. As these links make abundantly clear, such surveillance and tracking systems are now being rapidly deployed in many nations already.
These developments confirm that we are, indeed, living in the biblically-prophesied latter days, and that momentous events lie in our future as major biblical prophecies head toward fulfillment with accelerating speed. For related reading on these topics, I recommend my articles, Are We Living in the Biblical Latter Days? and Christian Rights and Responsibilities.