Sunday, June 17, 2007

Multicultural Terror

Alisdair Palmer has an excellent piece in the Sunday Telegraph on the report by the Commission on Integration and Cohesion into 'the dissemination of extremist ideologies' in Britain:

You search in vain for insights into the nature and dissemination of extremist ideologies, let alone for any form of practical solution to the dangers those ideologies present. There is just a lot of blather about the definitions of integration and cohesion, the difficulty of achieving either of them in practice, and the complexity of the various government agencies supposed to be involved in promoting them.

La-la-la is about the sum of it. Some of the commissions' recommendations are almost touching in their naivete. For example, they suggest that newly arrived immigrants be given "Welcome Packs" that explain the limits of acceptable behaviour in Britain. A spokesman for the commission suggested that "the packs may say that we like to queue at the post office and we don't really like spitting in the street". There is nothing about how, in Britain, one of our "core values" is that we're not too keen on a father who, in order to protect what he believes is his family's "honour", garottes, smothers or stabs his daughter 23 times because she wants to choose her own husband; that we do not believe that a son who is homosexual should be murdered; or that Jews are pigs, Christians are cross-worshippers, and Hindus deserve death.

The commissioners decided to create a fantasy Britain, one in which there aren't any significant differences in the ways different groups believe it is acceptable to behave. Its vision of happily co-existing cultures whose problems mostly stem from the fact that they are not given the right help by Government officials, has about as much in common with the reality of community conflict in Britain as the films the Soviet Union used to make about the paradise of plenty created by communism.

In one way, you can't blame the commission for that: the fantasy has been the basis of our collective response to mass immigration for at least the past 30 years, and probably longer. So, for example, the police have expended a great deal of effort to ensure that they did not recognise "honour killings" when they came across them. Dead women murdered for daring to have a relationship not approved by their family have been categorised as "suicides" or "stranger murders", but not as what they are, which is victims of the patriarchal culture in which they were raised. La la la.
Palmer makes an insightful point about our failure to recognise the unique nature of our free culture:

The central fantasy has been that immigrants from very different cultures to our own share our commitment to tolerance, personal freedom and the separation of politics from religion that has evolved in this country over the past 300 years. There is an astonishing arrogance at the heart of that attitude: it is as if no other culture could possibly have anything like the hold over an individual that ours does, so that as soon as anyone comes into contact with our liberal, secular values, they must automatically convert to them and make preserving those values their highest priority.
He goes on to enlighten us about the history of Shiv Malik's article in this month's Prospect magazine:

it is an indication of our collective reluctance to face up to the facts Mr Malik so clearly articulates, that his article has been published only in the relatively obscure Prospect. His research was commissioned by the BBC, but the BBC didn't want it, and did not commission a film based on it. Mr Malik was told that his conclusions were "anti-Muslim", a perfect example of the attitude which guarantees that the root causes of home grown terrorism are never addressed.
The conflict between our culture and one that insists a father is obliged to kill his daughter if she marries outside her tribe, or which says that democracy should be forcibly replaced by theocracy, is a conflict for which there cannot be a compromise solution. In that sense, the jihadists are right: our secular, tolerant, individualist society is irrevocably opposed to their values. We will not prevail in the struggle until we, too, recognise that fact, and do everything we can to confront and expose the cultures that deny the individual's right to pursue his or her own conception of happiness. That, however, is precisely what we are not doing. Government policy still seems based on the myth of multiculturalism: denying that the conflict is real. The Government has not even found the heart to ban Hizb ut-Tahrir, the group that openly recruits Muslims to violent jihad. It may even be on the receiving end of a government grant.


USpace said...

Good on, these people are barbaric, if it is their culture, it is barbaric and inferior...

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
fathers may kill their daughters

if they feel dishonored
like when she dates the wrong boy

WalterBoswell said...

Hizb ut-Tahrir, the group that openly recruits Muslims to violent jihad. It may even be on the receiving end of a government grant.

But this would be easy to prove, no?

Good post by the way.

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