How many in Somalia, and in this Somali neighborhood, never thought it would get this bad? How many more deluded themselves that Sharia, once implemented, wouldn’t include any of the nastier practices?
Those who dismiss concerns about Islamization in the West are also those who would insist it could never really get so bad. The problem is, it does, and we have witnessed locales like Bosnia, Chechnya, and even Britain in the era of Sharia courts suddenly surprised at the number and power of the “extremists.” “In Kenya’s capital, Somali immigrant neighborhood is incubator for jihad,” by Sudarsan Raghavan for the Washington Post, August 22:
NAIROBI — Behind the blue gates of his Islamic school in Nairobi’s Eastleigh neighborhood, Ahmed Awil cannot escape his country’s civil war.
Schools and mosques where extremist views are taught are reshaping this Somali immigrant community that for years has lived peacefully in the capital of this predominantly Christian country. Moderate imams now compete with hard-line preachers pushing a strict interpretation of Islam. Bookstores sell anti-Western literature. Residents speak fearfully of militant spies, and children like Ahmed are taught to praise al-Shabab, an al-Qaeda-linked militia, for waging jihad in Somalia against the U.S.-backed government.
“My teachers tell us al-Shabab is fighting for our religion and for our country,” said Ahmed, a skinny 11-year-old who fled Somalia after al-Shabab fighters slaughtered his neighbor and tried to recruit him. “Sometimes they ask us if we would like to go there and fight.”
Eastleigh, a run-down enclave where tens of thousands of Somalis live, has become an incubator for Islamic extremism, Kenyan officials and community leaders say. It has also emerged as a micro-battlefield in the war on terrorism, attracting American funds.
“What most worries me is that this extremist ideology will continue to grow,” said Dualle Abdi Malik, the director of Fathu Rahman, a moderate Islamic school. “We have to confront it before it is too late.”
Somali immigrant communities across the Horn of Africa and Yemen have come under greater scrutiny since twin bombings last month targeted World Cup soccer fans in the Ugandan capital of Kampala. Al-Shabab asserted responsibility for the attacks, its first major international operation since it rose to power several years ago in Somalia.
Members of al-Shabab, which in Arabic means “The Youth,” and other Somali militants freely travel to Nairobi to raise funds, recruit and treat wounded fighters, according to U.N. and Kenyan security officials. Somali-American jihadists have met contacts in Eastleigh before heading to Somalia to fight with al-Shabab.
“Eastleigh is a copy of Mogadishu,” said Mohamed Omar Dalha, Somalia’s social affairs minister, referring to the Somali capital. “Everything that happens in Mogadishu happens in Eastleigh, except the fighting.”
Fertile ground for radicals
At the al-Huda Islamic bookshop, a closet-sized stall nestled near one of Eastleigh’s radical mosques, several youths browsed the fare on a recent day. Koranic tomes pack the shelves. Recordings of lectures and debates that glorify the neighborhood’s radical Somali preachers are sold openly.
“Our religion calls on us to kill everyone who does not believe in Allah and his Prophet Muhammed deeply,” Abdulrahman Abdullahi, a black-clad imam, declares in one DVD. […]
What kind of inflammatory literature would endorse such an open-ended call for violence against non-believers? Oh, wait:
Qur’an 9:5: “So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.”
At the Ansaaru primary school, where Awil attends classes, boys and girls study biology, chemistry and geography. In religion class, they are taught that it is every Muslim’s duty to “liberate” Jerusalem and its sacred al-Aqsa mosque, Awil and three other students said.
Sometimes, the students said, the teachers show them video clips of jihadists fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia.
“They tell us that al-Shabab hates Western countries like America,” said Zakeria Omar, 11, a student. “And that it is all right to cut the throats of every citizen of these countries.”…