In this article from last November’s Citizen Times, Felix Strüning of the Stresemann Foundation discusses the tendentious use of statistical research to discredit any realistic discussion of the multicultural agenda.
Many thanks to JLH for the translation.
How Many Muslims Live in Germany?
by Felix Strüning
How the “unserious” research of the SVR (Foreign Intelligence Service) hinders necessary debates about Islam
The Sachverständigenrat deutscher Stiftungen für Integration und Migration (SVR) is going public with a special evaluation of its Integration Barometer 2014, which was finished already at the end of April. In it, the lobbying organization claims that the number of Muslims living in the country is vastly overestimated by the populace. However, rather than asking why this should be so, they conduct a polemic with exaggerations, omissions and arbitrary interpretations. A prime example of how the urgent debate about Islam as an ideology and the Muslims who are to be integrated here can be influenced, if not completely stymied, under the guise of the scientific approach.
The SVR press release of November 13, 2014 begins as follows:
“The number of Muslims in Germany is overestimated.
A special evaluation of the Integration Barometer shows that 70% of those asked overestimate the number of Muslims living in Germany. One-third of those polled even estimate the number at more than 10 million — even though it is only about 4 million. The gap between perception and reality can be narrowed with better information.”
Suppressed Facts: Proportional Increase in Number of Muslims Living in Germany
Even the title of the press release is dubious, suggesting that publicly available statistics are at fault. Only reading further do we discover that this was a poll which was not even typical of the German population (see below).
What is most problematic is that the number of Muslims cited as living here cannot have been true for a very long time. The number of “about four million” Muslims is from a study by the Federal Office for Immigration and Refugees (BAMF) made at the beginning of 2008. So five years have elapsed before the SVR Integration Barometer, during which the number of Muslims in Germany should have risen considerably. Thus, international prognoses on Muslim population development in Germany and the world  reveal a much stronger growth than among the native populations.
Add to this that, since the wars and unrest in the Arab-Islamic world, the number of refugees entering Germany has risen exponentially. And this implies a massive increase in the percentage of the population of Muslim persuasion. All facts which the SVR in its press release blithely swept under the rug.
Defective Method: Those Polled Live in Metropolitan Areas
It is also problematic that the polling was done in the heavily settled areas of Rhine-Ruhr, Stuttgart, Rhine-Main, Berlin-Brandenburg and Halle-Leipzig. With the exception of the last one, these are all regions in which the percentage of people with an immigration background — and therefore of Muslims — is clearly higher than the Federal Republic’s average of 20.5%. In Berlin in 2013, for instance, the proportion of people with an immigration background was 27%, in Stuttgart almost 30%.
When people in metropolitan areas believe that there are more Muslims living in Germany than is actually the case, that is a result of their everyday experience. The SVR should have used a poll representative of the present German population.
Islam Dominates Public Debate
The third defect is the interpretation of the misjudgment. Thus Dr. Cornelia Schu, director of the relevant research area in the SVR, has the press release state: “The obvious deficit in information that appears in the estimations indicates that there is a lack of knowledge about the diversity among the Muslims living here.” Aside from the fact that this conclusion is far-fetched (what do numbers and lifestyle have to do with one another?), where is the paramount, decisive question: Why are those polled so very wrong?
Could this be because Islam and with it the question of integration of Muslims is debated daily in the media? Because simultaneously hardly a question arises about discrediting the Islamic legitimization of violence, oppression of women or hatred of gays? The American journalist Christopher Caldwell wrote as early as 2009 that Islam is the most important religion in Europe because it receives the most attention from the media. And every representative poll shows clearly how great the ideological gap from Islam is perceived to be — and at the same time the acceptance of Muslims as devout.
Serious research into causes would be so much better from the SVR than this kind of distortion. But this kind of “research” was never about the causes of alleged biases and misinterpretations. From this perspective, what ought not be, cannot be. A fatal blend of facts and morals, in which dissents are not wrong, but evil (Islamophobic!).
|1.||Reference to an article in Citizen Times with the title “Muslim Population Development 1990-2030”