Muslims pray in the street during Friday prayers near the
Poissonniers street Mosque in Paris December 17, 2010.
Photo Credit: Reuters/Charles Platiau
French President Nicolas Sarkozy declared last Thursday that multiculturalism has failed in France, joining a growing chorus of world leaders who have made similar admissions regarding Muslims in their countries as well (1).
Sarkozy, in his television interview Thursday, even went so far as to say that "our Muslim compatriots must be able to practise their religion, as any citizen can," but he noted "we in France do not want people to pray in an ostentatious way in the street."
Readers of my article Germans Have Had Enough of Muslims will recall German Chancellor Angela Merkel telling immigrants that multiculturalism in her country has "utterly failed", and that immigrants needed to do more to integrate - including learning (gasp) to speak German.
In my November article The UK Needs More Jews and Fewer Muslims I reported that the British have had enough of Muslim immigrants and as of this coming April will drastically limit (by 90% or more) the number of immigrants entering the UK from outside the EU.
The way I see this progressing is that we in the west will first limit Muslim immigrants, and then when we can't stand even a few coming in we will ban all new Muslim immigration, and then when we become utterly disgusted and frightened by those remaining in our lands, with their reproduction, abuse of social services, and criminality, we will enter the final and nasty stage, deportation of those who refuse to integrate, which is to say, we will get rid of the devout ones.
Here's the story behind the photo at the top of this article:
A call to prayer goes up from a loudspeaker perched on the hood of a car, and all at once hundreds of Muslim worshippers touch their foreheads to the ground, forming a sea of backs down the road.
The scene is taking place not in downtown Cairo, but on a busy market street in northern Paris, a short walk from the Sacre Coeur basilica. To locals, it's old news: some have been praying on the street, rain or shine, for decades.
But for Marine Le Pen -- tipped to take over from her father this weekend as leader of the far-right National Front party -- it is proof that Muslims are taking over France and becoming an occupying force, according to remarks she made last month.
Her comments caused a furore as she seized on the street prayers to drive home the idea that Islam is threatening the values of a secular country where anxiety over the role of Muslims in society has deepened in the past few years.
More than two thirds of French and German people now consider the integration of Muslims into their societies a failure, pollster IFOP said in a survey published on Jan. 5. In France, where Islam is the second-largest religion after Catholicism, 42 percent saw it as a threat to national identity.
"This has become a key political issue," said Frederic Dabi, IFOP's head of research. "Street prayers and the perceived growing influence of Islam are seen as impinging on French values of secularism, communal living."
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AFP via Google News, Multiculturalism has failed, says French president
"My answer is clearly yes, it is a failure," he said in a television interview when asked about the policy which advocates that host societies welcome and foster distinct cultural and religious immigrant groups.
"Of course we must all respect differences, but we do not want... a society where communities coexist side by side.
"If you come to France, you accept to melt into a single community, which is the national community, and if you do not want to accept that, you cannot be welcome in France," the right-wing president said.
"The French national community cannot accept a change in its lifestyle, equality between men and women... freedom for little girls to go to school," he said.
"We have been too concerned about the identity of the person who was arriving and not enough about the identity of the country that was receiving him," Sarkozy said in the TFI channel show.
British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Australia's ex-prime minister John Howard and Spanish ex-premier Jose Maria Aznar have also recently said multicultural policies have not successfully integrated immigrants.