By Tom Segel, firstname.lastname@example.org
Harlingen, Texas, May 20, 2004: Living next to the Texas-Mexico border gives one a different view of life than is experienced by most Americans. On one side of the Rio Grande are millions of Mexicans willing to risk anything to cross that ribbon of muddy water. North of the riverbank is another population made up of citizens, legal residents and undocumented workers. Ethnically, 90% of this population is Hispanic.
If you remove the divisiveness of politics and ask people how they view themselves or those around them, most will say they are Americans. Many will say they are Texans. Few, if any, claim allegiance to Mexico or any Latin American country.
The culture here is also unique. From food to festivals we all call it Tex-Mex. The richest in culture, customs and traditions of both nations have been blended into a way of life, which might seem strange to some, but proves to be very rewarding for those of us who make our homes in the Rio Grande Valley.
Now view this cultural assimilation by both Hispanic and Anglo along the U.S. border with what exists in countries experiencing immigration by Muslims:
France has seen a large Muslim immigration, primarily from Algeria, Senegal and Mali. These people have never been totally accepted by the French citizenry. The Muslim population is estimated at 4 to 5 million in a country of 56 million people. The country has seen an explosion of mosques, with numbers now in excess of 1,200. With a growing resentment toward the immigrants, these mosques increase the anxiety about Muslims felt by the French Christian community. The large number of young Muslims who claim no allegiance to France, but instead claim to be Islamists further heightens this anxiety.
France does have a radical Muslim problem. This militant version of Islam is not being imported, but is increasingly homegrown. It includes not only Muslims on the fringe of French society, but hundreds of highly educated and westernized French Muslims who are becoming intoxicated with the holy-war ideology being preached throughout western Europe. When asked, most will deny any involvement or assimilation into French culture.
Muslim immigration to Germany has been primarily from Turkey. Since 1990 there has been an increase in Muslim asylum seekers from Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan. This has grown that immigrant population to about 2.5 million.
In Germany, Muslim youth are following an Iranian concept, which is known as “the new holy-war community of believers.” It recognizes no national or ethnic identity. It even shows disdain for traditional Islamic values. This new doctrine is one, which The Weekly Standard calls, “a belief that suicide and murder become sacred acts of believers who want to bring about a purifying Apocalypse.”
Holland has seen a thirty-year experiment in trying to develop a tolerant multicultural society fail. Government officials claim their worst mistake was to encourage Muslim children to speak Turkish, Arabic or Berber in elementary school, instead of Dutch. The result: 850,000 Muslims who have failed to assimilate into the nation¹s culture, import spouses from their home countries, are creating militant enclaves, actively preach Jihad, and work to built a terrorist networks in this nation of only 16 million people.
Our most important ally Great Britain has not been immune to a growing Muslim presence. In 1951 there were only 23,000 Muslims in the country. Fifty years later that figure had expanded to 2 million. In addition to a documented Muslim immigrant population made up primarily of Pakistanis, Indians and Bangladeshis, there has been a large influx of undocumented Arabs and Somalis whose numbers are disputed.
That these are true asylum seekers is suspect. They have been seen by the thousands in mosques listening to anti-western Islamic rhetoric. It is known some are taking lessons in making incendiary devices and other weapons of terror. Even France, with Muslim problems of its own, has warned Britain that many of those it is sheltering under the asylum system are terrorists.
According to http://frontpagemag.com, French intelligence services have even provided the names of known terrorists living in Great Britain and told the British which mosques these terrorists attend. Nothing has been done and Britain¹s Muslim problem continues.
Currently there are about 23 million Muslims residing in Europe. Of course, these are not all fundamentalists. In all fairness in must be noted that many Muslims have become westernized. By accepting western values and lifestyle, they have also made themselves targets to the more militant of Islamic factions. There is major conflict between the new western approach to life and what those who claim to be Islamists demand. Those Muslims who adopt western ways are also the enemy in the eyes of fundamentalists.
Islamic fundamentalist hatred of all things western is something which baffles both Europeans and Americans. This hatred is a rejection of western civilization, not only for what it is, but also for the values it professes. Among the Islamists, those who promote or accept this life style are enemies of God.
In Islam the war between good and evil has both political and military dimensions. By their philosophy, according to Bernard Lewis writing in Atlantic Monthly, “If the fighters in a war for Islam, the holy war in the path of God, are fighting for God, it follows that their opponents are fighting against God. And since God is in principle, the sovereign, the supreme head of the Islamic state, then God as sovereign commands the army.” Lewis goes on to write, “The duty of God¹s soldiers is to dispatch God¹s enemies as quickly as possible to the place where God will chastise them, that is to say, the afterlife.”
Islam is more than religion. It is also the politics or Muslims and the platform on which Muslims base their militancy. As this radical version of the faith has grown, it has destroyed the culture of a great people. Once leading the world in art, science and education, militant Islam has reduced every land where it flourishes to that of a Third World country. It has triggered more warfare than any faith. As a quick exercise try to think of two or three wars raging in the world that do not involve Islam.
Muslims in America have found open hostility since the events of September 11, 2001. Some leaders of the Islamic community have been urging Muslims to return to the countries of their origin. Other leaders have been urging the establishment of stronger Islamic communities here in the United States. While traditional Islamic law states Muslims should reside in their own lands, it also concedes that Muslims may live in non-Muslim lands as long as they fulfill their religious obligations.
Observers see the Muslim community as being very conflicted because of the pronouncements by its own leadership. Increasing the conflict is the fact that Muslims born in the United States are more open, more tolerant and less sectarian. This creates divisions, which have detrimental effects within these closed communities. Regardless of being U.S. born or immigrant, all Muslims in America share similar views on international Muslim politics, the hypocrisy of United States foreign policy, and negative media reports about Muslims.
Viewed from the western perspective, Muslim immigration into the United States is becoming a concern. Islam is the fastest growing religion in the nation. In just over thirty years, immigration from the mid-east has changed from being about 15% to 73% of immigrants being Muslim. From a small number in the 1970s, the mid-eastern immigrants have grown to an estimated 2.5 million.
Within this body of immigrants we have already found terror cells, terror finance operations and those who support fundamentalist ideas. We have also seen that that Muslim support of America¹s War on Terror has been weak at best. There have been a few letters to newspapers, sound bites on television news and interviews where Muslim leaders go through the motions of expressing sorrow at the loss of 3,000 innocent lives or words of encouragement of the people of America. Missing has been any real expression of outrage at any terrorist act.
Now our own government, in an attempt to be politically correct says, “We are not at war with Islam. We are at war with terror!” A nation cannot be at war with an “outcome. “. Terror is an outcome of militant Islam.
With all of these things unfolding, there is now even a movement to modify language. We are being told that it is not a preaching of Islam to hate. They even tell us that Islam really means “peace.” This is a new definition by any stretch. What Islam means is “submission.” It is the objective of Islam to have all non-believers submit. If they will not do so willingly, they will be forced into submission.
We cannot speak for those countries in Europe, but there is one thing all Islamists should quickly learn about America: it does not submit to anyone.
ADDENDUM: READER RESPONSE
“I agree the French Muslim situation is a model for what's happening in the Islamic world, but the math is lousy. There are 4 - 5 million Muslims in France - total pop 61 million = 6.5 - 8.1 %, not 20%. They constitute about 8 times the Jewish population, not 10. To get to a majority would mean an increase from 5 million to about 40 million in 25 years. The web is too powerful a checking tool.
“There is also a North American connection, since Quebec also has an exploding Muslim population arriving via France. Quebecers love them cause they speak French. Ahmed Ressaam came that way (LA airport
terrorist captured near here).
“He arrived in Montreal with a phony passport, and outstanding warrant and deportation order against him in France, but was released the same day, and immediately paid $550/month by the government, and even re-admitted after going to a bin Laden training camp for 9 months. He set up a terrorist cell and participated in numerous criminal activities to support himself. Quebec also has become a center for Islamic demonstrations against for example appearances by Jewish or Israeli politicians.
“Both of these places, overwhelmed perhaps by their blind love for all things French, have inoculated themselves with cancer. Cancer is a terminal disease.”
Bob Bogash, Snohomish, Washington
“Though the figure 5 million (Muslims) may not seem large when viewed next to the populations of countries such as Indonesia, it still represents almost twenty percent of the people in France.” - Tom Segel.
“This would not appear to be true because the population of France is over 60 million, and 5/60 yields but 8.33%.
“Was Mr. Segel misquoted in some way? I have been asked about this issue by so very many people that I would very much like to have an opportunity to have Mr. Segel's response. This could be helpful in establishing the validity of the other points he has made in this and other articles.”
Tom Adcock, McLean, VA
Ed Note: The latter was also sent direct to Tom Segel.