Thursday, April 02, 2009


The Local reported Believers file quietly out of a mosque into the cold night in Rosengård, a neighbourhood at the centre of a heated debate over Sweden's failure to integrate immigrants amid reports that radical Islamists now control the area. "How does society expect us to integrate when we are so segregated?" asks Sami Touman, a 21-year-old mechanical engineer student whose family comes from Gaza.
How about moving to another area, and acting like a Swede.
.... Traditional Swedish names like Svensson, Larsson and Andersson have gradually disappeared from the metal buzzers, replaced to a large extent by the names of Muslim refugees who have fled conflicts in places like Iraq, Lebanon, the former Yugoslavia, Somalia and Afghanistan.
They leave home to get away from the violence, and the create violence themselves.
"When I first got here 15 years ago I had Swedish neighbours. Today, there isn't a single one left," says Anis, a 33-year-old of Bosnian origin who only gives his first name, as he eats a kebab at the large shopping centre that is Rosengård's main meeting point.
Maybe they moved because of the violent clashes caused by the "immigrant youths".
The neighbourhood found itself in the midst of a media frenzy in December following days of violent clashes between immigrant youths and police, and again in January after a government-commissioned report claimed a small group of radical Islamists had a stranglehold on the area. "Families who have just moved into the neighbourhood and who have never been particularly religious or traditional claim that they led freer lives in their home country than in Rosengård," the report said.
I would say go home, but the violence in Sweden was caused by Muslim youth, and you left home because of the violence there. Could it be that Muslim equals violence. Try embracing Christ.
.... While Sweden's official unemployment rate stands at around seven percent, nearly 40 percent of Rosengård working age residents are jobless.
Do they speak Swedish? Maybe that is necessary to get a good job.
"A lot of young people here are out of work... Their parents don't work, and they get their only social interaction in the Islamic milieu, which complicates integration," says Camara, originally from Guinea.
So what should Sweden do to eliminate the "Islamic milieu"?
"They spend their time speaking Arabic," he says, adding that "at heart they don't really want to be Swedish. They tell me so themselves."
Then why don't they move to a country where Arabic is the common language.
Even the imam (preacher) at Rosengård's largest mosque complains that some immigrant communities here are not as open as they should be to Swedish society. "That is a problem for us, for Europe, having some communities always looking to the past," says Bejzat Becirov, who gives his sermons in Swedish.
I am happy to hear that, but maybe they don't understand his sermons if they spend their time speaking Arabic.

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