The next time riots break out among Muslims in Europe, and the learned experts on television and in the Times and the Post start handwringing about the failure of European states to assimilate their Muslim minorities, remember this statement, and who made it, and how it was received.
"Erdogan cheered by 16,000 Turks in Cologne," from Expatica (thanks to all who sent this in):
Cologne, Germany -- A crowd of 16,000 expatriate Turks cheered Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan at a vast indoor auditorium in Germany on Sunday as he told them to resist assimilation into the West.
The political rally by Germany's biggest ethnic minority upset German politicians, who objected to a major public event on German soil being advertised on posters in Turkish only.
Erdogan indirectly addressed those concerns, saying it was right for Turkish immigrants to learn German and other languages so they could integrate, but wrong to abandon their Turkish heritage and assimilate.
"Assimilation is a crime against humanity," he told the crowd. Many Turks had travelled from France, Belgium and the Netherlands to hear his hour-long address in the shiny venue, the Koelnarena.
"I can well understand that you are against assimilation," he said. "It is important to learn German, but your Turkish language should not be neglected."
He said ethnic Turks abroad should be more confident in standing up for their interests, and should win election as mayors and members of European national parliaments....
Erdogan was lionized by other speakers at the event, organized by the Union of European Turkish Democrats, a group that supports his moderate Islamist AKP party.