Hugh Fitzgerald posted a 3,300-word piece at JihadWatch.com responding to a news item about Thomas Strothotte, president of Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg, Germany, advocating that all school children learn Arabic until 12 or 13 years of age; Fitzgerald called this a sign of “civilizational surrender.”
But I went to the source of the news item in Die Welt and tweeted the news item in exactly the opposite way, noting that 94 percent of respondents answered negatively to a straw poll asking, “Should the Arabic language become a compulsory subject in Germany?” (“Sollte Arabisch in Deutschland zum Pflichtfach werden?“)
That the mildly-conservative Welt-reading public with near-unanimity rejected Strothotte’s suggestion seems to me far more newsworthy than the original suggestion.
More neatly than anything else I can think of, this contrast between Fitzgerald’s and my reporting points to the divergence between two fundamentally different ways of seeing the West’s evolution vis-à-vis Islamism: one focuses on the statements and actions of a diminishing elite appeasement faction; the other follows the increasingly strong negative response by the population at large.
Yes, Islamism is making advances. But anti-Islamism is growing more rapidly and so, I predict the latter will prevail.
by Daniel Pipes
Nov 24, 2013
updated May 13, 2016
As non-Muslims come to understand the Islamist challenge, anti-Islamic sentiments in the West are increasing, probably at a faster rate than Islamic practices. As anti-Islam trumps Islam, (I have concluded) opinions “will grow yet more hostile to Islamism over time. In this way, Islamist aggression assures that anti-Islamism in the West is winning its race with Islamism.”
Correct prediction? To keep track, this weblog entry documents the course of Western public opinion on a bundle of topics connected to Islam, including democracy, immigration, jihad, Shari’a, and women. To start with, two polls:
Germany, as reported by the Institut für Demoskopie Allensbach in November 2012:
- 56 percent: striving for political influence
- 60 percent: revenge and retaliation
- 64 percent: violence
- 68 percent: intolerance toward other faiths
- 70 percent: fanaticism and radicalism
- 83 percent: discrimination against women
In contrast, only 7 percent of Germans associate Islam with openness, tolerance, or respect for human rights.
France, mostly from early 2013:
- 67 percent say Islamic values are incompatible with those of French society
- 70 percent say there are too many foreigners
- 73 percent view Islam negatively
- 74 percent consider Islam intolerant
- 84 percent are against the hijab in private spaces open to the public
- 86 percent are favorable to strengthening the ban on the burqa
- 55 percent: stop immigration from Muslim countries
- 63 percent: no new mosques
- 64 percent: the arrival of immigrants from Muslim countries does not benefit the country
- 68 percent: there is enough Islam in the Netherlands (a view shared by a majority of voters from all political parties)
- 72 percent: pass a constitutional banning Shari’a law
- 73 percent: a relationship exists between Islam and recent terror acts in Boston, London and Paris
- 77 percent: Islam does not enrich the country
Australia, from the Roy Morgan Research Ltd in October 2013 and reported today:
- 38 percent: a growing Islamic population and Islamic immigration are bad for Australia
- 44 percent: strong, clear link between Islam and terrorism
- 50 percent want the Shari’a banned
- 53 percent: ban the burqa from public spaces
- 57 percent: Concerned about Islam in the world today
- 70 percent: Australia is not becoming a better place because of Islam.
Comment: Negativity toward Islam is much less pronounced in Australia than in France, Germany, and the Netherlands. Will it stay low or increase over time? I expect the latter. (November 24, 2013)
Canada, from the Leger Marketing polls asking whether Western and Islamic societies are “irreconcilable” finds the following believe they are:
- 63 percent of Protestants
- 62 percent of Jews
- 60 percent of Catholics
- 46 percent of the non-religious
- 42 percent of Muslims
(March 26, 2015)
Many countries: The Pew Research Center finds that “Extremism Concerns Growing in West and Predominantly Muslim Countries: Worries Especially Widespread in Western Europe and U.S.” (July 16, 2015)
United States: A Chicago Council on Global Affairs survey finds that the rise of ISIS has causedAmerican concern about Islamism to jump 15 percentage points over the 2014 survey, returning to near the post-9/11 levels. (September 15, 2015)
France: Asked in a survey by the Journal de Dimanche about the marriage of a child to various partners, Muslims came in last, with
- 52 percent frowning on a son marrying a Muslim woman
- 56 percent against a daughter marrying a Muslim man
(January 31, 2016)
Germany: Infratest dimap reports that:
- 72 percent fear a terrorist attack in Germany.
- 60 percent say that Islam does not belong in Germany (up from 47 percent in 2010).
- 58 percent criticize the established political parties (the CDU/CSU, SPD, Greens, Left and FDP) for not taking the problem of radical Islam seriously enough.
- 52 percent worry about immigrants too much increasing the influence of Islam on Germany.
- 44 percent fear that the refugees will too much change the German way of life.
(May 12, 2016)