The Muslim immigrant’s dilemma

In her book A God Who Hates, Wafa Sultan, born in Syria, talks about Muslim immigrants she has met in the United States.   These immigrants have a dilemma. For instance, Islam says they should not work for infidels, but they do.  This causes a big frustration.

She has spoken to immigrants who hate America, but (in one case) fool their employer into thinking they love America.

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, born a Muslim in Somalia, talks about Muslim immigrants too, this time in Holland.  Her book Infidel, is disturbing. Originally religious, she noticed that this infidel country, that Muslims should reject, made for better lives and was better run than the places “we came from.”  She says

We were all facing the same confusion.  We had always been sure that we, as Muslims and Somalis, were superior to unbelievers, and here we were, not superior at all.  In day-to-day life, we didn’t know how the cash machines worked or that you had to push a button to order the bus to stop.. Many people’s….reaction was to create a fantasy that they as Somalis knew better about everything than these inferior white people…”His breath smells of pig.  He’s only a bus driver.  How dare he think he can tell me how to behave.”

Ayaan had seen the same defensive, arrogant attitude in people who immigrated to the city from the rural areas in Africa.  “here in Holland, the claim was always that we were held back by racism.”  (though one Muslim told her that “if you tell a Dutch person it’s racist he will give you whatever you want.”)

Ayaan earned money as a translator for Muslim immigrants to social service organizations.  She heard some terrible stories, for instance, the story of a raped woman, whose resulting child was thrown into the fire by a Hawiye soldier, who forced this woman to watch the baby burn.  She translated for all sorts of people, including a man who had been a torturer back in Africa.

Ayaan says that Dutch tolerance of immigrant ways resulted in cruelty.  She said “little children were excised on kitchen tables…Girls who chose their own boyfriends…were beaten half to death or even killed.”

Immediately after the 9/11 attacks on America, Ayaan saw news footage of Dutch Muslim kids celebrating.  This disturbed her greatly.  She says that Mohammed Atta, the hijacker’s leader, used the prayer every Muslim utters when he is dying: he asks Allah to stand by him as he comes to Him.  “I read it and I recognized it…This was not just Islam, this was the core of Islam.  Mohammed Atta believed  that he was giving his life for Allah.”  She says that many Muslims feel the way he did, and if they had the courage to do what he did, they would have written the same letter.  Even she might have, at an earlier period of her life.

She says that “Infuriatingly stupid analysts” wrote reams of commentary on the attacks.  Islam was supposedly a religion of peace.  “These were fairy tales, nothing to do with the real world I knew.”  Analysts wrote about poverty causing extremism, or Western decadence offending Muslim immigrants, or colonialism etc.  They also blamed the blind support of America for Israel.  But Ayaan says of this explanation:

I myself, as a teenager, might have cheered the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks, and the Palestinian dispute was completely abstract to me in Nairobi.  If the hijackers had been nineteen Palestinian men, then I might have given this argument more weight, but they weren’t.  None of them was poor.  None of them left a letter saying there would be more attacks until Palestine was liberated.  This was belief, I thought.  Not frustration, poverty, colonialism, or Israel: it was about…a one-way ticket to heaven.

Ayaan spoke out, and eventually, Somalis from Italy, from Scandinavia, and from Holland were phoning her father and warning “Hirsi, if you don’t do something fast to rein in your daughter, she is going to be killed.”

Reading all this, it is interesting to see Obama nominate Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense, a person who tends to believe that our problems with Muslims have to do with support of Israel.  Even President Shimon Peres of Israel came here and said the 9/11 attacks were about Israel.  Many people think this way, some of them quite influential and powerful.  But Ayaan Ali shows, they are wrong, they miss the problem.

As for the religion of peace idea, there is the story of American Prosecutor Andrew McCarthy, who was prosecuting a terrorist in the US, and decided to read the Koran to show the man how wrong he was about his own religion.  To McCarthy’s great surprise, the man knew his religion all too well.

The Muslim immigrant’s dilemma can, in my view, either be solved by rejecting the ideals of the West, or the ideals of his religion.  If he stays here and believes firmly in Islam, then he can resolve the dilemma, as the Moslem Brotherhood advocated, by engaging in “‘sabotaging’ its [Western Civilization’s] miserable house by their hands … so that … God’s religion [Islam] is made victorious over all other religions.”

At this point, I should make the usual disclaimer that many Moslem immigrants are fine upstanding patriotic people. I’m sure that’s true, but the testimony of people who actually know Moslems, have lived most of their lives as Moslems, and have honest conversations with Moslem immigrants, should not be ignored.

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