Our Norwegian correspondent The Observer offers the third and final part in his series of essays on the Left in Norway. In the current installment he examines the democratic deficit within the Muslim community, and the political establishment’s unwillingness to address this issue.
Islam in Norway
by The Observer
This is the third and final instalment in a three part series in which I examine left-wing media bias in Norway, the Left’s moral support for anti-democratic forces in the Middle East, and Norwegian Muslims, views on democracy and traditional Western values.
This final article will take a closer look at the Muslim community in Norway. We will try to paint a clearer picture of the values they represent, and find out how compatible these are with traditional Norwegian values. We’ll also examine whether there are any compelling reasons for Norwegian authorities to adopt a more critical attitude towards Islam.
In the first instalment, ‘Left-wing media bias in Norway’, I presented evidence that the media in Norway are biased in their portrayal of Islam, and that they are reluctant to write anything that could be construed as incriminating Islam following Islamic terrorist attacks, as opposed to the collective responsibility placed on the conservative, anti-immigration community in Norway following the 22/7 attacks in Oslo.
The enormous torrent of hate-filled rhetoric that was directed at the conservative community in Norway following the Oslo attacks constituted a complete change of tactics by the media. Traditionally the Norwegian media have always attempted to exculpate Muslims following Islamic terrorist attacks and they have always gone to great lengths to portray Islam and Muslim in a positive light after such attacks. This rule has been followed rigorously despite attempts by the Muslims themselves to find justification for such attacks, and despite numerous opinion polls indicating that many within the Muslim community condone such attacks. In Norway any attempts to link Muslims to terrorists attacks or to even hint that Islamic terrorists find validation in the Koran to carry out such attacks are feverishly dismissed as racism and ‘Islamophobia’ by the very same media which actively sought to smear members of the Norwegian conservative community after the Oslo attacks.
So let’s take a closer look at the Muslim community in Norway and attempt to determine whether there is any truth to the claim that Muslims living in the country are peace-loving, and that they embrace traditional Western values. In order to support or reject such a claim, it’s important to study the views and behaviour of the Muslims who live here, and to ascertain whether they change their views over time.
In this essay I intend to go back almost twenty-five years to find out whether such changes have occurred. We’ll also take a closer look at the values the leadership of the big Islamic organizations in Norway advocate, as they are the collective voice of the Muslim community. If we find strong evidence that suggest that they exhibit conflicting views on such issues as democracy and the legitimacy of terrorists attacks, then it’s reasonable to conclude that this is also the case with ordinary Muslims living in Norway.
The first Muslims arrive
Let’s go back to the beginning.
The first Muslims that arrived in Norway came in the late 1960s, and were young Pakistani males who showed up in Norway equipped with tourists’ visas and not much else. It soon became apparent that these Pakistanis had ulterior motives for coming here. They had not come to Norway for a holiday; they had come here looking for work. And after having circumvented the problem for some time, and no doubt after having been influenced by several harrowing newspaper reports over the miserable living conditions that these Pakistanis had to endure, it was the government of the time decided that these young men should be allowed to work for a limited period until they could afford to go back home to Pakistan.
However, events took a different turn, and the Pakistanis were eventually allowed to stay on permanently. In time they were also granted family reunification privileges. This was the catalytic event that started the growth of Islam in Norway. The second big wave came later on in the 1980s and 1990s, when Norway experienced another massive influx of individuals ‘fleeing’ from the Islamic world and wanting to settle in Norway under the pretence of being politically persecuted in their homelands.
But even though there has been a Muslim presence in Norway since the late 1960s, Norwegians weren’t really exposed to Islamic values until the late 1980s when Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa on the author Salman Rushdie, and the Muslim community in Norway started to express public support for the fatwa. This caused many Norwegians to take a less favourable view of the religion and its practitioners. The democratic nature of the Muslim community — or the lack thereof — became even more apparent when the publishing company, Aschehoug translated The Satanic Verses into Norwegian. This decision prompted the Muslims to stage huge demonstrations in which thousands took to the streets in Oslo and demanded that the book be withdrawn from Norwegian bookshelves, and that anyone involved with the distribution of the book should be punished.
And as this newspaper article shows, the police in Norway decided to take these threats seriously:
Due to security concerns the book was printed at a secret location, and the police implemented various safety measures for the people involved with the publishing of the book. Because in the aftermath of the release unrest followed in several countries: threats, firebombing of bookstores, killings and violent demonstrations that ended in riots. In the period between February and May 1989 there were demonstrations in Oslo, Mumbai, Stockholm, Bonn, Bangkok, Karachi, Srinagar and Rotherham.
Here’s a chronological list detailing the events that took place in Norway:
|March 9, 1989:||CEO of Aschehoug and Bokklubben Nye bøker, William Nygaard, appears in the Oslo city court after having been sued by leaders of the Islamic Defence Council of Norway. Norwegian Muslims claim that the publication of the book The Satanic Verses is a violation of the blasphemy paragraph.|
|March 28, 1989:||The Prime Minister’s office receives telephone threats due to the authorities’ refusal to intervene and stop the release of the book. Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland confirms that she has received threats because of the book.|
|April 12, 1989:||The book is secretly shipped to bookstores throughout Norway. The original plan was to release the book in July, but because of safety concerns the publishing company decided to bring the release date forward. The police implemented various safety measures for the people involved with the publishing of the book|
|April 13, 1989:||Police officers are positioned outside Aschehoug main office in Oslo after the Norwegian edition of the book is released.|
|April 17, 1989:||Two bookstores in Oslo are damaged in two separate fires, which the police suspect were purposely lit. It is established that both bookstores had copies of the book, and the police won’t rule out the possibility that the fires could be linked.|
|April 25, 1989:||Islamic organisations and individuals demand that CEO of Aschehoug William Nygaard be jailed or fined for having published the book. They also demand two million NoK in restitution, and that Nygaard cover the cost of their lawsuit.|
The behaviour of the Muslim community in Norway in this case can hardly be described as democratic and enlightened. An organization or individual that actively seeks to punish someone for publishing a book they deem to be blasphemous raises some serious questions regarding its commitment to democracy. The reaction shown by these Islamic organizations clearly demonstrates that they don’t believe in freedom of speech, and it also demonstrates that they have a low regard for democratic principles. The fact that the authorities treated the threats so seriously would also tend to indicate that there was a genuine concern that the threats could turn into violence.
So why wasn’t there a strong response to the Muslim community from the media and the political establishment after this anti-democratic display?
Why weren’t the Muslims given the same treatment that any other autocratic groups would have received if they had exhibited similar behaviours?
Why was the political establishment so reluctant to criticize the Muslim community?
Did the authorities believe that it was only a tiny minority among the Muslims who held these despicable views?
Well if that was the case they were sadly mistaken. Approximately 3,000 Muslims took part in the demonstrations in Oslo, calling for the destruction of the book and the killing of the author. That’s not a tiny insignificant minority, that’s what most people would call a show of force. It’s also reasonable to assume that many of the Muslims who weren’t present at the demonstration supported the sentiments expressed by those who were there.
The Muslims never managed to physically harm Salman Rushdie, but on October 11, 1993, someone managed to harm the Norwegian publisher of the book, William Nygaard. While getting ready to go to work Mr. Nygaard was shot three times outside his own house in what appears to be a revenge attack for having published The Satanic Verses. The perpetrator was never caught, but it is widely accepted in Norway that the Iranian regime was behind this incident.
The failed assassination attempt shocked the Norwegian political establishment to its core. Norway was a relatively peaceful country at the time and gun crime wasn’t as common then as it is now. But was the assassination attempt on Mr. Nygaard really that surprising, bearing in mind that this scenario was exactly what the 3,000-strong Muslim crowd who marched through the city of Oslo four years earlier had advocated when they called for the murder of Salman Rushdie and anyone else involved in the distribution of the book? And also taking into consideration that several people around the world involved with the distribution of the book had already been killed?
But even though members of the political establishment were shocked by this assassination attempt, it didn’t deter individuals in the Norwegian Muslim community from defending the fatwa issued by Ayatollah Khomeini with unabated force. And no apologies were demanded from Muslims by the Norwegian media or Norwegian authorities for holding such reprehensible views, and no apologies were ever given. In an interview with the Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet on 26.09.1998, on the tenth anniversary of the release of The Satanic Verses, a spokesperson for The Islamic Council Norway (the biggest Islamic organization in Norway), Zahid Mukhtar expressed continued support for the death penalty. And in his capacity as spokesperson for the largest Muslim organization in Norway, it’s fair to assume that he only reflected the views of the people he was representing:
The fatwa against Rushdie can only be reversed by Islamic jurors, and he should meet the ayatollahs in Iran halfway. Rushdie should confess his sins and be tried in an Islamic court, even if this means that he could receive the death penalty.
Comments like this severely discredit Norwegian authorities’ claim that the Muslim community in Norway is just as opposed to violence and intimidations as the rest of us. By scrutinizing the Muslim community honestly, and judging them solely on the views and positions they hold, the only conclusion that can be drawn is that they don’t believe in normal democratic principles, period. In fact, it’s ludicrous and very dishonest to even hint that someone who wishes to kill another person for having offended his or her religion should be classified as a peace-loving and democratic person.
The Islamic Council Norway, by the way, represented more than 80,000 members in 2009 and it also received substantial government subsidies.
Zahid Mukhtar also appeared on Norwegian national TV in 2004 and expressed similar anti-democratic views when he voiced sympathy for the murder of Theo Van Gogh on the Norwegian current affair program Holmgang. On that occasion Mukhtar stated that:
“I can understand that an incident such as the murder of Van Gogh can take place after a provocation of such proportions. But at the same time I’m saying that there are no legal provisions to take the law into your own hands and do something like that. We are encouraging all Muslims to refrain from committing such acts. But at the same time I can understand that for some people it was just too much to tolerate.”
When pressed by the interviewer what he meant by lack of provisions, Zahid continued:
“I’m talking about the Sharia laws, and the Sharia laws are very clear that one has to follow the laws of the nations where one resides,” Zahid said.
What Zahid Mukhtar is saying here is simply that there aren’t any provisions within the Norwegian legal system that would permit anyone to kill Van Gogh. However, he’s not saying that it is morally wrong to kill Van Gogh, and this gives us a much clearer picture of the values that Muslims and their spokespersons in Norway hold.
So far I’ve listed three separate incidents in which Muslims in Norway have expressed their willingness to have individuals they believe are guilty of offending Islam killed. Zahid Mukhtar has gone on record twice, expressing the desire to have Salman Rushdie killed, and expressing sympathy for the killing of Theo Van Gogh. Again it’s necessary to point out that in his capacity as spokesperson for the biggest Islamic organization in Norway, Zahid Mukhtar simply reflects the views of the other members of the organization, eighty thousand of them, to be exact.
Upon hearing these comments, Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg felt compelled to implore Mukhtar to retract his statements, as Stoltenberg felt that Mukhtar’s statements would portray the rest of the Muslim community in Norway in a less than flattering light. Notice here that Mr. Stoltenberg acknowledges that Mukhtar acts in his capacity as an official spokesperson.
“It has devastating consequences for Muslims in Norway when their spokesperson expresses sympathy for the horrible murder that occurred in the Netherlands. Such attitudes make it so much harder to combat racism and xenophobia. I’m a strong proponent for a society where different religions and cultures can co-exist, but I absolutely do not condone violations of basic human rights. The right to live and the right to express oneself freely are part of those basic human rights, and when they are violated we need to have a zero tolerance policy,” says Stoltenberg.
Mr. Stoltenberg equates criticism of Islam and Muslims with racism. He claims that statements like the one made by Zahid Mukhtar severely damage the fight against racism and ‘Islamophobia’ in Norway. A more correct assertion would be that such statements give Norwegians a better insight into the twisted ideology that espouses such values. Mr. Stoltenberg’s statement also gives us a good insight into the mentality of the political establishment in Norway, and it explains why the political establishment is so reluctant to criticize Islam. They deliberately refrain from doing so because they believe it will create a massive backlash against Muslims in the country, and that it would be detrimental to the political establishment’s efforts at creating a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society in Norway. Mr Stoltenberg clearly stated here his and the government’s intentions in this regard.
The statement made by Mr. Stoltenberg in this case is also completely contrary to the reaction from the political establishment in Norway in the aftermath of the 2011 Oslo attacks, when the political Left systematically targeted anyone who had ever dared to write anything negative about Islam. The Left feverously attempted to incriminate those they perceived had contributed to the creation ‘Breivik the terrorist’. Honest and law-abiding individuals who had never in their lives advocated violence were all of a sudden the targets of a massive smear campaign, and unlike Zahid Mukhtar — who indeed expressed sympathy for terrorism on several occasion — these conservatives were indirectly blamed for the Oslo attacks.
Another prominent character in the Norwegian Muslim community, the leader of the Islamic Association of Oslo Basim Ghozlan, expressed similar horrific views when he justified the use of suicide attacks:
“Suicide attacks are legal, provided the enemy is killed and no innocent people are targeted. If the war is legal from an Islamic perspective, and if there are no other means of attacking the enemy, then sacrificing your own life is acceptable,” Ghozlan wrote in a comment at Islam.no
Notice the nuances here that the media deliberately tried to downplay or were too ignorant to notice. Ghozlan said that the using suicide attacks was accepted practice, provided the war was legal from an Islamic perspective. The Koran categorically states that it is the duty of all Muslims to wage war on the unbelievers. When he said that innocent people can’t be killed, it’s reasonable to assume that he used the Koran’s definition of innocent people, namely the believers. Basically what Ghozlan was saying was that suicide attacks are a legitimate way of targeting non-believers.
Bashim Ghozlan was also in the media spotlight in 2009 when he refused to denounce infamous statements made by Yusuf al-Qaradawi in 2009 in which Qaradawi stated:
“Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the Jews people who would punish them for their corruption…The last punishment was carried out by Hitler. By means of all the things he did to them — even though they exaggerated this issue — he managed to put them in their place. This was a divine punishment for them…Allah willing; the next time will be at the hand of the believers.”
Bashim Ghozlan told Dagbladet:
“I do not wish to comment on those statements. I know Qaradawi as a respected religious scholar and we watch his TV programs. But I do not wish to comment on his political statements.”
If Bashim Ghozlan was appalled by these statements, which most sane people would be, he would have categorically distanced himself from such vile rhetoric and condemned it. These despicable statements both condone previous genocides and express the desire to commit future genocides. By refusing to distance himself from them, Ghozlan has already indicated that he doesn’t find them offensive. He doesn’t believe that the pogrom in the past perpetrated against the Jews and potential new ones in the future perpetrated by the hands of the Muslims is ‘such’ a bad thing. It’s sad to think that these are the people that the political establishment in Norway incorrectly labels as ‘peace-loving’ and ‘democratic’.
But this wasn’t the only controversial view that the Muslim leadership advocated. The Islamic Council Norway was also unwilling to oppose death penalty for homosexuality, because the answer of this question hadn’t been finalised by the European Fatwa Council, which is headed by none other than Qaradawi. The very same vile anti-Semite who expressed the desire to eradicate the Jews of the face of the planet:
The leader of the Islamic Council Norway, Shoaib Sultan, confirms that the matter is still being looked at by the Fatwa Council, and that they don’t know when they’ll get an answer. Sultan does not wish to comment on the statements made by Qaradawi, and referrers to the leader of the Islamic Council and its leader Senaid Kobilica, who also doesn’t wish to comment. Kobilica refers to Basim Ghozlan, leader of the Islamic association of Oslo.
Another example of the Norwegian Muslim community’s unwillingness to embrace traditional Western values occurred in 2006 during the Mohammed cartoon crisis, which resulted in worldwide Islamic riots and several dozen fatalities. The artist who drew the cartoons has been the victim of Muslim revenge attacks since then, and today has to live under 24/7 police protection.
Norway was affected by these incidents due to the actions of a small Norwegian periodical called Magazinet, which decided to publish the cartoons. This led to the attack on the Norwegian embassy in Iran and the attack on Norwegian soldiers in Afghanistan by a large mob of armed Afghani civilians. Norway was also strongly condemned by Islamic nations and by Muslims living in Norway for having laws guaranteeing freedom of speech, which allowed Magazinet to print these cartoons.
One would assume when taking all of these factors into consideration that the Norwegian Government would defend Vebjørn Selbekk, the editor of Magazinet and make it obvious to Muslims that in Norway freedom of speech and freedom of expression are rights that we’re not willing to compromise on. But, sadly, that was not the case. The Norwegian Government sided with the Islamic nations and practically forced Selbekk to make a humiliating apology for having exercised his obvious right to express himself freely.
This is just another incident which clearly exemplifies the undemocratic nature of the Muslim community, and its inability to reconcile its views with modern Western democratic principles. And there is no way that the political establishment wasn’t able to see this undemocratic side. It wasn’t simply hatred directed at Norway from beyond its borders; it was also hatred directed at the country from inside its borders, from members of the Norwegian Muslim community. Several Islamic organizations in Norway actually filed police reports against Vebjørn Selbekk for having printed the cartoons:
The organization Al-Jinnah Foundation is suing Selbekk and the periodical Magazinet for blasphemy.
“But this is also treason,” says Khalid Mohammad.
“He has damaged Norway’s reputation abroad. The publication of the cartoons has resulted in injured Norwegian soldiers in Afghanistan. Our thoughts are with them,” Khalid says.
Mohammad also adds that Selbekk has made life difficult for Muslims in Norway, and that they feel unsafe.
This incident took place just over a decade after the assassination attempt on William Nygaard. But even so the political establishment yet again failed to criticize the Muslim community for advocating views and values that ran contrary to Norwegian and Western values. Instead the Government tried to convince the Norwegian people that we have to exercise our freedom of speech sensibly. In other words we shouldn’t use our freedom of expression to offend Islam. And once again we get a glimpse into the world of double standards exposed by the very same establishment that chastised Norwegian conservative commentators in the wake of the Oslo attacks.
But this wasn’t the end of the Mohammed cartoons controversy in Norway. Things flared up again when the Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet decided to publish a cartoon depicting Mohammad as a pig in 2010. This led to more Muslim demonstrations. And this time specific threats were directed at the Norwegians because of ‘perceived’ insults. Again, this was done by members of a community that Norwegian authorities portray as democratic. One of those present at the demonstration was Mohammad Mohyeldeen, who stated that:
“When are the Norwegian government and media going to understand the seriousness of this? Maybe not until it’s too late. Maybe not until we get an 11 September on Norwegian soil. This is not a threat, but a warning.”
What is worth noting here is that Mohyeldeen was able to utter this threat without being corrected by the other Muslims who were present at the demonstration. No one in the crowd tried to stop him or to criticize him for making these threats, which raise the questions whether the other Muslim were in agreement with him. The fact is that several thousand Muslims were appalled and moved to demonstrate to get their message across when Dagbladet printed the cartoon, but the same individuals did nothing when these threats were made against Norway. This would indicate support for Mohyeldeen’s statement, which again lays bare the undemocratic nature of the Muslim community in Norway.
It’s also worth mentioning that more than a 1,000 taxi drivers in Oslo decided to strike as a result of Dagbladet’s decision to publish the Mohammad cartoon. This strike had a crippling effect on travel in the city, as the majority of the taxi drivers are Muslim.
The episodes mentioned above are just a few out of many, but they are incidents that should really have prompted the political establishment in Norway to change their attitudes towards the Muslim community. It cannot be denied that the Muslim community in Norway espouses an ideology that is hostile to Western values and that many of its members hold views that are deeply offensive to people who cherish democracy.
Another thing worth noting is that the Muslim community in Norway are highly organized, and that they often speak with one voice. The authorities in Norway will concede if pressed sufficiently that there is only a tiny minority of the Muslim populace that exhibit undemocratic views, but evidence suggests that the opposite is true. Both during The Satanic Verses protests and the two Mohammad cartoon protests the Muslim community managed to muster several thousand people, which would tend to indicate that these protests were not spontaneous displays of displeasure, but rather staged occasions of political and religious dissent.
The behaviour of Muslims in Norway
So far we’ve focused on statements made by members of the Muslim community. In order to get an even better idea of the democratic disposition, or lack thereof, within this group, it’s essential that we also take a closer look at the actual behaviour of its members. Although political rhetoric can be quite revealing, and there’s no question that it helps us to get a glimpse of the democratic character of a person, we must also take a look at their behaviour to get a fuller picture.
Let’s look at the most obvious evidence that would indicate a different behaviour pattern: crime statistics. According to official data published by SSB (Statistisk sentralbyrå) Muslims in Norway are more inclined to commit crimes than ethnic Norwegians. While the number of crimes committed by ethnic Norwegian is 27 out of 1000 the same numbers for non-Western immigrants (majority of Muslims) is 55 out of 1000 which means that Muslims are twice as likely to commit crime than ethnic Norwegians, which confirms that Muslims have a lower regard for law and order than ethnic Norwegians.
The data released by SSB also shows that non-Western immigrants (mostly Muslim immigrants) are over-represented in violent crime statistics, including in assault rape incidents, which have skyrocketed in Norway over the last decade.
The fact that Muslims are over-represented in assault rape cases would tend to indicate that they have a lower regard for women than the average Westerner, and there is evidence to back up this claim. In Oslo newly released figures indicate that 70 percent of all domestic abuse in the capital is perpetrated by non-Westerners. Another claim that brings weight to the assertion came in 2006 when reports presented by special investigators working for the UDI estimated that more than two thousand young women of non-Western ancestry in Norway were forcibly married between 2004 and 2006. Forced marriages are common in Muslim countries, so it’s reasonable to assume that the majority of these young women were indeed Muslims.
Now sit back and take some time to think about this fact. To force a person to marry a complete stranger is one of the cruellest things that anyone can do to another human being. Choosing a partner is a crucial life decision. It will to a large extent determine the level of happiness that this person will experience. It will also determine the future of his/her children, and what opportunities are made available to the individual. To take this choice away from someone is cruel beyond words, and there is absolutely no place for it in a civilized society.
The people who perpetrate these crimes have absolutely no respect for the most basic human rights, so how can the authorities allow it to happen? Prime Minister Stoltenberg was quoted earlier in this essay saying that controversial statements made by Muslims could jeopardize the work of combating racism and xenophobia. Does he also believe that publishing less desirable facts about Muslims also increases the level of ‘Islamophobia’ in Norway?
Failing to criticize this gross abuse of human rights is highly disrespectful towards the victims of this practice. Claiming that the people responsible for such abuse are just as democratic as any other ordinary Norwegians is a punch in the face of the victims. A more honest description would be that Muslims who engage in this kind of cruelty view women as a mere commodity, which can be traded in order to obtain certain benefits, such as money or a permanent residence permit. And realising that this is a common practice within the patriarchal Muslim community in Norway gives us a better understanding of why Muslims are over-represented in Norwegian assault rape statistics.
And when we analyse all the statistics and facts that are available to us, it appears that violence is more commonly accepted within the Muslim community in Norway than among the rest of the population. In 2007 an imam in the city of Drammen (approximately 40 kilometres west of Oslo) was arrested by police after reports of children as young as seven being physically abused at various Koran schools in the city. The imam was accused of beating the children with a cane if they failed to recite verses from the Koran correctly. This abuse took place over a period of several years at three different Koran schools in the city before the police eventually intervened. I’m not even going to mention what would have happened if this abuse had taken place in a Norwegian school and the children were beaten because they failed to correctly recite various passages from the Bible. Needless to say it would have been a media bombshell. However, the news about the Imam in Drammen wasn’t a big news story at all and it hardly generated any media attention.
A few points are worth making here.
The fact that is that it was an imam who punished the children, and that it took place at several schools over an extended period of time, would tend to indicate that it was an accepted practice, and that means that the leadership and the parents were had no problem with it. The type of abuse that the children in Drammen had to endure is also compatible with the abuse suffered by children in mosques and Koran schools all over the world.
We’ve also seen examples of violent clashes inside Mosques in which knives and baseball bats have been used. In 2006 several Muslims entered the Central Jamaat-E Ahl-E Sunnat Mosque in Oslo armed with hammers and knives, which they used to assault members that belonged to a different faction within the mosque. At the time the Central Jamaat-E Ahl-E Sunnat was the biggest mosque in Norway.
A similar brawl took place outside the mosque during a funeral in 2008. According to police reports, approximately thirty people were involved in that altercation.
All of these episodes, combined with the opinions expressed by the leadership of the big Islamic organizations in Norway, give us an insight into the mentality of the average Muslims residing in the country. When we start putting the pieces together, the picture that emerges shows us that members of the Muslim community have values and views that are at odds with those of the majority population. And the fact that Muslims keep showing up in the media for all the wrong reasons indicates that the behaviour displayed by them as a group is pretty static.
Another example which underscores this point emerged in 2010 in Grønland, a predominately immigrant neighbourhood of Oslo. Several Muslim men in the area had formed their own sharia-like police force, whose sole responsibility was to ensure that anyone who visited the area complied with Islamic dress code and conduct. Women who didn’t wear hijab were verbally abused, and gay men were targeted if they were seen holding hands.
This essay is drawing to a close, but before I quit, two other incidents that show the undemocratic nature of the Muslim community in Norway should be mentioned.
The first is the taxi-driver scam in Oslo, which uncovered a business of mafia-like proportions. At the conclusion of the investigation in the late 2000s, more than 2,500 individuals, the overwhelming majority Muslims (three out of four were Pakistanis), were found to have pocketed NoK 625 million in undeclared income. At the same time, several of the individuals involved had received welfare benefits totalling of more than NoK 100 million. It is believed that a great portion of the money was smuggled out of the country to Pakistan.
The other concerned the so-called “Gaza riots”, which occurred in Oslo in early January 2009. Muslim youths went on a rampage over the Israeli military offensive in Gaza, and caused damage worth several million NoK.
These two prominent examples show Muslim behaviour which is totally at odds with traditional Norwegian values and behaviour.
However, despite the extremely undemocratic behaviour exhibited by Muslims in Norway, there is very little negative media scrutiny of the community. The political establishment constantly attempts to tone down any criticism.
It’s worth noting that Norwegian Christians are not being accorded the same treatment. Conservative Christians in Norway — i.e. individuals who don’t accept the official socialist government’s interpretation of the Bible, and who reject homosexuality and abortion, etc. — are referred to in Norway as ‘Mørkemenn’, literally meaning ‘the dark men’, or as Christian fundamentalists. This derogatory term is meant to silence the opinions of this group, and it is often used in newspaper articles and public discourse. It’s the equivalent of calling someone a Nazi in a debate over immigration. Unlike their Muslims counterparts, Christian conservatives are also always asked to explain their views and opinions by supporters of the Left. Sadly, Islam does not face the same demands, which is a sign of intellectual dishonesty.
This pattern of exculpating dark forces in Norway — which is exactly what Islam is — will not be able to continue indefinitely. Sooner or later something will have to give, and when it does all the emotions that have been held in check by the very strict use of propaganda and political dishonesty will no longer have any effect.
I believe that we will see major political and ideological changes in the next few decades in Europe. The sad part is that the tumultuous times that are ahead of us could have been avoided if the elected representatives of the European peoples had been able to show more integrity and moral courage.
When the Norwegian authorities tell us that Muslims in Norway are peaceful, hardworking, and democratic, they don’t really have any hard evidence to back up this claim. As a matter of fact, there is ample hard evidence and empirical data that can be used to refute all of their claims. The authorities’ arguments are basically empty shells, and will eventually collapse.