Seeds Of Ethnic Cleansing Sprout In Europe - NPR

Lilleput

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Really? You seem to know a lot about my country. I take it you have spent months, if not years, living here.

I mean, if would like me to, I can dream up a thousand stupid stereotypes about Germany...

Isn't there still a lot of racism in the south?

.. Never been but that just what it seems like from the outside..
 

Jay

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Isn't there still a lot of racism in the south?

.. Never been but that just what it seems like from the outside..

It is there all over the country, all over the world. I myself think whites and blacks, to use a known example, get along a lot better in the South than in the North because people are more honest with each other. Up here it is more veiled.
 

MacGuffin

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Really? You seem to know a lot about my country. I take it you have spent months, if not years, living here.

I mean, if would like me to, I can dream up a thousand stupid stereotypes about Germany...

You have to explain how my remark about not all immigrants being fully integrated relates to national stereotypes, because I don't get how you came from the one to the other... :blink:
 

Whappeh

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It is there all over the country, all over the world. I myself think whites and blacks, to use a known example, get along a lot better in the South than in the North because people are more honest with each other. Up here it is more veiled.

I think thats largely true. Its odd to explain racial relations in some parts of the south.
 

Firecat

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Well, I'd like to point out that even in the USA many of the immigrants are not really integrated, but keep to themselves in "ghettos".

Are you referring to illegal immigration? This is the first i've heard of this.
 

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It's very late so I'll keep this short for now and perhaps expand it after a good nights sleep.

- Berlusconi is a bag of shit. A crook. Mafioso.
- Italy has a huge population of romanians, like 300.000. Most of them do nothing but steal, beg and cause havok.


Even here in my country we have quite a few of them. Last year, big big riots broke out cause a bounch of them beat up some old man and put him in a coma. It was in all the papers. What the govenrment did was replace their land (which did not have proper permits to build anything on it --pretty much worthless land) and the house that was built on it (illegaly) with a giant piece of land right outside the capital with all the bells and whistles. And as a bonus, theres a giant house already standing on it aswell. They're like a virus. They move in, make 16164171437436 babies, bleed out social service (they get some money for each kid) and do nothing all day. While they have thousands of euros in their wallets, their kids are running around naked and barefoot. They're a pest which should be erradicated. Loads of beggers flooded out cities. Organized begging.

I say deport them ALL. Bunch of maggots.
 

Hidden_Hunter

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It's very late so I'll keep this short for now and perhaps expand it after a good nights sleep.

- Berlusconi is a bag of shit. A crook. Mafioso.
- Italy has a huge population of romanians, like 300.000. Most of them do nothing but steal, beg and cause havok.


Even here in my country we have quite a few of them. Last year, big big riots broke out cause a bounch of them beat up some old man and put him in a coma. It was in all the papers. What the govenrment did was replace their land (which did not have proper permits to build anything on it --pretty much worthless land) and the house that was built on it (illegaly) with a giant piece of land right outside the capital with all the bells and whistles. And as a bonus, theres a giant house already standing on it aswell. They're like a virus. They move in, make 16164171437436 babies, bleed out social service (they get some money for each kid) and do nothing all day. While they have thousands of euros in their wallets, their kids are running around naked and barefoot. They're a pest which should be erradicated. Loads of beggers flooded out cities. Organized begging.

I say deport them ALL. Bunch of maggots.

Slovenia has to deal with anchor babies too :p
 

thedguy

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Well, I'd like to point out that even in the USA many of the immigrants are not really integrated, but keep to themselves in "ghettos".

I don't know how I ever survived in the US with out all this great knowledge from people who have never been here.

The Korean district near me could be considered a ghetto if you feel that $600K+ homes with 2 or 3 New BMW/Mercs parked in the driveway is ghetto.

The illegals coming in are even starting to spread out, as they are finding out that if they get away from the usual hot spots (chicago, LA, parts of tx) they can actually achieve the American dream.
 

phuckingduck

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*walks down to his local ghetto*

Who's gonna join me in some good ol' immigrant bashin?! YEEEHAW

Seriously, that's a horribly mis-informed perspective. Yes, some immigrant populations live in "ghettos" but I'd be willing to wager that it's far from reality for a lot of first generation American immigrants. If you came and saw how well populations like the Japanese or Chinese have been folded into just my local area, I think you'd be astonished. Even the Latino population has been well integrated, legal or not.
 

MacGuffin

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So you wanna say that "Chinatown" or "Little Italy" or "Little Russia" and the likes are just myths from American movies or what? Oh... and then there were the German "colonies" in the USA the 19th and early 20th century, where German was the spoken language - at least until WW I... Surely also a myth. And isn't it strange, that the place were folklore and traditions of the former home countries are kept alive the most, is among the descendants immigrants to the USA or South America? The descendants of German immigrants are responsible for a lot of the stereotypes, by the way, because they keep traditions alive that don't exist here anymore.

But I admit that the word "ghetto" was probably chosen wrong. What I meant is that many immigrants keep among themselves at first, because they feel safer when they have people around them who share the same culture and speak the same language.

It's the same here in Germany, which in spite of what many politicians say, is also an immigration country. After all, 5 million Turks live here alone and we have a lot of immigrants from Russia and other countries of Eastern Europe. Some of the older generation haven't learned more than rudimentary German yet, even if they are here for decades, because they just keep among themselves.

Immigrating is one thing, really adapting into the new country is another. In many cases that happens not before the first new-born generation.

I really have no idea what problem you have with me saying such obvious things.
 

Firecat

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Ha! There are "Chinatowns" and "Little Italy's" in many cities and countries. You made it sound, yes by using the term "ghetto," that immigrants were somehow being forced into such neighborhoods as well (for whatever reasons) And you also said that "most" immigrants lived in such places, I don't think that's accurate either. Many years ago, you would be right. But it's changed now. "Chinatowns" and "Little Italy's" are different.

And one can't expect an immigrant with a poor background can come to the United States and automatically "live the American dream"...and if immigrants (and non-immigrants) want to live among people that are similar, more power to them.
 
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MacGuffin

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I never said "most of them" and I certainly wouldn't imply that, but at least we cleared that up now.
 

Firecat

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I never said "most of them" and I certainly wouldn't imply that, but at least we cleared that up now.

I'm sorry, that was an error on my part.

I think some might find it easier to be around people (and things) that are familiar to them, which could be an explanation for Chinatowns etc. I think it adds to the diversity of the nation, whether or not it benefits those living there by not fully integrating them with mainstream America is debatable.
 

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The vast majority of the people in these enclaves are first-generation immigrants, and only a few families, usually owners of established businesses, stay around after the second or third generation. They act pretty much as go-betweens between the country of origin and full-ish integration into American society. Speaking as a second-generation immigrant, we tend to regard them as a great place to get authentic ethnic food, and to satisfy our parents' desire for them to keep in touch with our culture, but never as a serious place to live or settle down. In that regard, any judgment of European ethnic enclaves must hinge on the behavior of the second generation, and whether it integrates into the mainstream culture or stays isolated. The American dream isn't just to get rich, but to learn English and "become an American", with the cultural and political implications as well as the financial. Do immigrants have the same guiding principle in Europe?
 

MacGuffin

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I can only speak for my country and there I have to say that integration does not work as good as it could. A lack of German language skills is one of the main reasons for unemployment among the young generation of immigrants. They talk to each other in the language of their country of origin and basically keep to themselves.

But isn't it an issue in the USA, too? I mean I heard that in some regions Spanish has become a second language.
 

Labcoatguy

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But isn't it an issue in the USA, too? I mean I heard that in some regions Spanish has become a second language.

That's a difficult one. Of course whenever immigrants clump together, they speak their own language, so the speaking of Spanish by itself is not problematic. Those Americans currently learning Spanish usually do it either for school requirements or to deal with the first-generation immigrants that weren't likely to become fluent in English anyway. If they refuse to eventually learn English, or, more crucially, teach the second generation English, then we have a problem. Thus far the lure of the "American dream" is strong enough that the second generation of Hispanic immigrants is learning English and integrating pretty well. The point is that Spanish as a second language is not alarming in itself. When it becomes the first language, then we can start worrying.
 

Ottobon

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But isn't it an issue in the USA, too? I mean I heard that in some regions Spanish has become a second language.


In some cases you see this, its particularly bad near the border of Mexico, but as you get go north you usually find much harder working Immigrants, all the ones i work with know enough english to get by, and they live in decent apartments. Its like you said, people here like their traditions and stereotypes.


get decent (western) clothing no problem. if on the other hand they choose to (their stick to their tradition...GET THE FUCK OUT!
I always get the impression most Europeans are ashamed of their stereotypes/heritage, and equally hateful towards others. I'm sorry but if you truly dislike people keeping their traditions and wearing what they want then you can GTFO, thats easily the most hateful thing i've read in a long time. I would put that disregard for heritage as one of the top 3 things i hate about Europe, hell maybe its #1.


because they keep traditions alive that don't exist here anymore.

Like what? This just sounds like the type of shame that kinda gets my blood boiling. Nothing personal, but what traditions do you speak of?
 

argatoga

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I think most immigrants in America assimilate pretty quickly. My Dad for instance is a third generation immigrant and I can say he is pretty well removed from the Greek and Croatian cultures of our turn of the century immigrant ancestors. Hell my mom is a first generation immigrant and she is pretty well assimilated (though she does hail from an English speaking country so culture wise there isn't a great difference).
 

BlaRo

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my view, still writing in "we"-form though:
we aren't realy racist, everyone can come over, no matter what they look like, but they HAVE TO LIVE BY OUR RULES AND OUR HABITS

if they get a house, get a job, get decent (western) clothing no problem. if on the other hand they choose to live in campers (like the gypsies), not have work, stick to their tradition...GET THE FUCK OUT!

There's a difference between living by the rules, paying taxes, living in a proper abode as opposed to mindlessly squatting, and not mugging or raping people as in what the Gypsies aren't doing...and sticking to the traditions and culture of an immigrant's mother country like 99.9% of law-abiding immigrants do anyway. The way you wrote that, it's easy to see how that could be misinterpreted as a racist tirade against all immigrants.

Why should they be forced to change their habits entirely? Following laws and paying taxes is one thing, but forcing people to assimilate just draws more cliche comparisons to Nazism and racism in general. I trust you're not as dumb as that passage makes you look. ;)

P.S. First-generation immigrants, my parents and I, and I say we've adopted to Western traditions well enough.
 

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DOMES AND MINARETS?

Not in My Backyard, Say an Increasing Number of Germans

By Jochen B?lsche

The planned construction of over 180 mosques in Germany is mobilizing right-wing xenophobes but also an increasing number of leftist critics. They fear the Muslim places of worship will facilitate the establishment of a completely parallel society.

The issue at hand wasn't the construction of a missile base or a new nuclear power plant. Yet the media reported "turmoil" and an "enraged" audience in a school auditorium in Ehrenfeld, a district of the German city of Cologne. The mood was almost comparable to that of the protest gatherings once held against nuclear missiles or reactors.

Instead the outrage was directed at a huge mosque planned for the area. Still, the words used by the project's opponents called to mind the protests of earlier times. "The minarets even look like missiles," railed one woman. A man said the mosque's dome reminded him "of a nuclear plant."

Ill will over mosques like the one being built in Cologne is spreading rapidly throughout Germany, often to the surprise of local politicians. For a long time the establishment of Muslim prayer rooms provoked little protest, housed as they were mostly in residential buildings, shops and back courtyards. Recently, though, there has been an increasing number of acts of protest, some violent. Molotov cocktails were thrown through mosque windows in the Bavarian town of Lauingen; Christians set protest crosses inscribed with "Terra christiana est," or this is Christian land, on the grounds of a mosque in Hanover; and construction trailers went up in flames in the Berlin district of Pankow.

The anti-Islam protest movement has also begun to spill over into city politics. In Cologne, for example, the extreme right anti-mosque initiative Pro Cologne captured five local government seats in recent elections. Now the group is aspiring to enter the national scene as Pro Germany, together with other like-minded organizations, some from the far-right fringe. Their approach follows the example of populist Dutch politician Pim Fortuyn, whose anti-immigration party garnered a surprising degree of support before he was murdered in 2002.

In Germany there is also a market for these "single-issue parties," suggests trend researcher Adjiedj Bakas, who himself emigrated from Surinam to the Netherlands. In the populous Ruhr Valley region of western Germany the Voter Initiative Recklinghausen (whose acronym "WIR" is the German word for "we") has found resonance with its message. The group claims it is fighting against "creeping Islamization," and is allied in the local government with the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU), one of Germany's major political parties. WIR members say they aren't alone in their opposition to Islam and their concern "that in 20 years in Recklinghausen, as in all large German cities, the majority of the residents under the age of 40 will be Muslims." "Discomfort is already spreading in some parts of the city," says Georg Schliehe, a WIR representative on the local city council, "but policy, public authorities and scholars downplay the problem."

This burgeoning sentiment against mosques has no doubt been strengthened by the Islamist murders and suicide attacks that have also afflicted European cities in recent years. Some Muslims like Imran Sagir, director of a property development company specializing in mosques, say they can understand German citizens' fears. When you hear on the news about crimes committed in the name of Islam," he says, "who can blame people who don't want a mosque in the neighborhood?"

Wolfgang Huber, the head of Germany's Protestant Church and bishop for the states of Berlin and Brandenburg, names what he sees as one important cause for the increasing unease. He says there is an "obviously large-scale initiative" on the part of Islamic organizations to show their presence in as high-profile a way as possible and in as many places as possible. No fewer than 184 new mosques, some with domes and minarets, are currently being built or planned throughout Germany. That's considerably more than the 163 existing traditional mosques (along with around 2,600 prayer rooms mostly hidden within secular buildings).

And that appears to be only the start of an expected wider European mosque-building boom. One organization alone -- Ahmadiyya, a movement seen as an outsider community within Islam that the respected German weekly Die Zeit described as "something like the Jehovah's Witnesses among Muslims" -- has introduced a "100 mosque plan" for Germany.

Currently 25 percent of these projects have been completed.

More often than in the past, Muslim communities nowadays are trying to include Middle Eastern style minarets in their building projects. It's an addition that is rousing greater protest -- no matter where the mosque is getting built in Germany. "As soon as the foreignness is cemented in a structure like a mosque, the problems just multiply," says Christoph Dahling-Sander, the Protestant church's representative in the city of Hanover for matters concerning Islam.

There have been some notable exceptions, though. Residents in the far northern town of Rendsburg in the state of Schleswig-Holstein kept their famous northern German composure and a majority accepted the construction of a large mosque. But as a rule, when building plans for mosques become public, neighbors immediately mobilize with a laundry list of concerns about why they will be bad for the neighborhood. They fear parking shortages, plunging property values and noise pollution. Hoping to maintain a veneer of political correctness, local politicians with the traditional parties play down these concerns. But by doing so, they just create even greater opportunity for grassroots groups like the citizens' movement Pro Germany.

"Where this kind of gaudy Middle Eastern building goes up, with a dome and minarets, the next thing will be an application to the authorities for permission to do the call to prayer," a passage on the Pro Germany Web site reads. It's visions like this that are leading more and more Germans to see the construction of mosques as the expression of a "kind of land grab," observes Claus Leggewie, a political science professor at the University of Giessen in the western state of Hesse.

This impression is aggravated not only by right-wing agitators but also, according to Leggewie, by careless or sometimes even deliberately provocative statements by Muslim builders. Many seem to think like Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. In words spoken in 1997, Erdogan made mosque construction seem like part of a strategy of Islamization: "The minarets are our lances, the domes our helmets, the believers our army."

The names of some of the newly built mosques aren't exaclty in harmony with the reassuring "Islam is peace" slogan. Religious scholar Ursula Spuler-Stegemann at Germany's University of Marburg, among others, criticizes the fact that mosques are named after warlords like Fatih Sultan Mehmet, conqueror of Constantinople. "That can only be an agenda," she believes. "These Muslims don't just want to show their presence here, but also to strengthen and expand it."

Statements made by intellectuals like Spuler-Stegemann, who has also said that, "Islam has a problem with violence," underscore the fact that criticism of mosque construction is no longer exclusively the domain of mindless xenophobes. And it would be a mistake, offical representatives on immigration issues from Germany's states warned a recent joint convention, to sweepingly dismiss mosque critics as being right-wing extremists.

In the case of the controversy over the mosque planned for Cologne's Ehrenfeld neighborhood, the right-wing Pro protesters have indeed been pushed into the margins. Their complaints have been drowned out by more high-profile statements coming from prominent leftists and liberals including German Jewish journalist Ralph Giordano, women's rights activist Alice Schwarzer and investigative reporter G?nter Wallraff, who have all spoken out against the mosque. Representatives of Germany's large churches have increasingly added their voices to the criticism as well. The "dishonest dialogue" with Islam described in SPIEGEL's pages in December 2001 -- in which church representatives simply ignored scandalous and unbearable aspects like persecution of Christians, discrimination against women, toleration of terror and "honor" killings for the sake of harmony -- is now a thing of the past.

In place of the "fairy tale that we're all 'children of Abraham'," in the words of Leggewie, the churches are now making an effort not to entangle themselves in finding contrived common ground with Islam. Instead they are trying to find areas in which they differ -- and this applies particularly to the construction of mosques.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,565146,00.html

Yes, yes, yes, I do realize that spiegel is a shithole of a newspaper.....
 
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