This article is an exceptionally well-reasoned antidote to the prevailing notion that Muslims in Europe are committing jihad murder because Europeans are so very, very mean to them.
“Europe’s Muslims hate the West,” by Leon de Winter, Politico, March 29, 2016:
The first reaction to the Brussels massacres among postmodern European intellectuals was predictable: What did we, Europeans, do to them, our Muslims? How could followers of a religion that is proudly called “the religion of peace” commit these kinds of atrocities?
People like Peter Vandermeersch, the Belgian editor-in-chief of Dutch newspaper NRC-Handelsblad, and Belgian writer David Van Reybrouck, both accomplished intellectuals, argued that Belgium must have done something terrible to deserve this. Their line of reasoning: The terrorists’ fury must be a reaction to their inhumane treatment at the hands of the West.
So, we blame ourselves in order to remain blameless. Safer to blame our own societies and socioeconomic conditions than to blame the religious and cultural concepts with which terrorists poison their own minds.
According to reports, the unemployment figure in Brussels’ infamous Molenbeek neighborhood — now referred to as the jihadi hothouse of Europe — is 30 percent. This is a relatively high figure in Western Europe, but not unusual in southern European countries or the Arab world. There is poverty in Molenbeek, but that poverty is relative. There is no starvation, no homelessness, no lack of medical infrastructure, no lack of schools.
Compared to average living standards in Morocco or Egypt, the average living standard in Molenbeek is comfortably middle-class. Like in any other Western European country, many Belgian institutions and organizations offer support when families need housing, food, education, and health care. Opportunities for success, and to study and become a respected member in society, are countless compared to those that exist in many immigrants’ countries of origin. Still, there is deep resentment among the younger generations of immigrant Moroccan families.
Immigration into the Netherlands from Morocco and Turkey is an expensive phenomenon for the taxpayer: In the modern welfare state immigrants are more dependent on the welfare state than the average citizen. Because of a lack of higher education and the lack of non-skilled jobs, immigrants absorb a higher part of unemployment and social security payments than the average citizen. As a group, they receive more money than they pay in taxes. They also show up much higher in crime statistics than their numbers would justify. There are many success stories, but there are also disappointing trends. Like radicalization. And the situation in Belgium is even worse.
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There is no question that unemployment is much higher among Muslim immigrant communities than among the general public. There are two possible explanations.
The first goes something like this: The Belgian people are terribly xenophobic and anti-Moroccan, and deny their Moroccan neighbors opportunities to succeed in life. But if this were the case, the theory can be applied to every Western European country, as unemployment figures for Moroccan and other Muslim migrants across Europe are remarkably higher than average. This would indicate that European xenophobia has reached unbearable levels. Why would Muslims choose to stay in societies that showed such deep disrespect for their migrant population? Because they realize that an unemployed citizen in a European welfare state run by infidels has a better material life than an employed citizen in pious Morocco?
The notion that Moroccan-Belgians suffer from widespread exclusion, discrimination, and suppression is ridiculous — and yet completely acceptable among the politically-correct crowd. Life in Belgium is exceptionally good and safe for migrants — if they are willing to integrate into their new cultural environment, if they are willing to act as individuals, study with passion and openness, and accept the secular system of the West….