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Del Grosso 1 Ryan Del Grosso Lt Colonel Dumond 4 November 2011 Integration of Muslims into France and the

UK: Security in the West An increasing number of Muslims in France and Great Britain continue to radicalize due to an inability of migrants to assimilate within local populations and their new culture. Terrorist attacks and identity issues resulting in civil unrest have been on the rise. Nations around Europe have been combating this issue since the 1970s and after this second generation of Muslims born in Western countries has become alienated due to social exclusion, unemployment and discrimination, they are looking for an identity, finding it in radical Islam, and seeking to make their political voice heard through terrorism. As the United States approaches its 10th year of conflict with the radical Islamist groups and other terrorist organizations it is important that a strategy be developed to thwart radicalization within the Western nations home borders. Through better immigration practices, France and Great Britain would be able to stifle radical Islamic terrorist cells within their borders and be able to attack the problem in a more focused region of the world while also building trust of Western ideals and general acceptance of Western nations within the global Muslim Community. In order to more effectively assimilate migrant Muslims into French and English culture and thwart radicalization practices, these nations must work to provide better economic opportunity for the local Muslim population, provide a sense of national identity within this new population of Muslims to rid of alienation factors, give legitimate recognition to the local Muslim population and religious leaders, and prevent radical Islamist groups from entering and teaching within the local Muslim Population.

Del Grosso 2 Before the solution of Muslim integration into France and Great Britain is discussed, it is important to define the problem and failures in past attempts to fully integrate Muslims. At the risk of over simplifying an extremely complex problem, it seems the reason that Muslims in France in Great Britain have had trouble with integration stems from identity issues within a young Muslim population and an increase in xenophobia towards those who practice Islam due to recent history with terrorist attacks. To believe that the problem with Muslim integration is a new issue would be false as Islam in Europe first emerged as a social issue in the 1970s when some European governments changed their immigration policies by closing their door to labor immigration and allowing family re-unification (Anspaha) . The large influx of the Muslim population into France and Great Britain causes tension between the native populations and the new found residents of the country. This example has been seen throughout history when large amounts of people immigrate to a new home just as Irish-Americans faced similar nationalistic hatred when they made their way to the United States. It seems that the fear of Islam is the main concern that citizens of France and Britain have with the new residents springs the harsh feelings and resentment that lead to exclusion of culture within these European nations borders. Many French and British citizens turn on the televisions to see the terrorist attacks in the name of Islam[which] create[s] an atmosphere of suspicion towards Muslimscausingislamophobia (a fear of Islam) (Anspaha). This conflicting view of Muslims creates a very isolated Muslim population that do not feel connected with their new home and this isolation leads to identity issues for many second generation Muslims living within the borders of France and Great Britain.

Del Grosso 3 The identity issues that stems from isolation of Muslim communities and people have led Muslims living within France and Great Britain to seek out their own place in the world. In a speech about Islamists and Muslim Integration, Maajd Nawaz (a former terrorist turned promotional speaker of democratization within Islamic states) argues that the identity crisis stems the creation of an Age of Behavior in which individuals no longer gain their identity from local ties, an ethnicity, or even a nation. Rather, Nawaz suggests that these isolated Muslims turn to ideas and narratives as the stem for their new identity in which they can use to model their behavior and path in this world. This search for identity usually will result in radicalization due to the roots and messages that Islamism teachers spread throughout the world. The original connection to Islam from these second generation Muslims (the first generation typically holds value in the nation/ethnicity that it left since they grew up in that culture and have identity within it), leads them to find radicalization and other methods to express themselves. This should be an extreme focus of France and Great Britain due to the fact that once Muslims realize they are not being treated as equals, these alienated Muslims ignore traditional channels of political participation and mobilization, and express their demands by another means, that is, terrorism. (Ansapha). France and Great Britain are two great examples to look at in how to possibly combat this problem and thwart terrorism in the future. The ways that France and Great Britain have dealt with the integration of Muslims into their societies have greatly differed. The reason that these two countries have taken different approaches is due to the importance that each places on individuality versus communal/cultural priorities. Ansapha explains that France maintains assimilation and a secular republic promoting citizenship as a primary tool, [while] the United Kingdom promotes a multicultural model, supporting liberal values and respect for cultural autonomy. The French people view the

Del Grosso 4 immigrants that find their way to France as having the responsibility to become, well, French! The expectation is that the recently moved in immigrants will shed their past traditions, cultures, and fully embrace the French identity. This assimilation tied to harsh views towards FrenchArabs that find their origins in the Algerian conflict creates a hostile environment in which many French citizens simply do not want to be associated with these Muslim immigrants and vice versa. As a result, the French style of immigration which aims at the assimilation of immigrants into French society, the principle of mono-belonging, has proved to be not working (Reitsma). As this system of assimilation continued and failed, French Muslims have been treated as second class citizens where more and more the words immigrants and foreigners became synonyms for words like criminal, clandestine, and delinquent (Reitsma). This great feeling of resentment towards Muslims by the French people has led increasing movements towards radicalization and the threat of continued violent revolts occurring within French borders results in a polarized nation which is a extremely volatile and dangerous environment. Therefore, the French must look towards another way to properly integrate and work alongside their Muslim immigrant fellow citizens. English attempts to integrate Muslims into a British way of life has also been a struggle throughout the recent decades due to disparity in socio-economic status, a lack of being able to identify with the liberal values that Britains hold, and the feelings of a lack of respect for the practicing of Islam within Britains secular borders. Polls of UK Muslims towards their nonMuslim Britons are extremely revealing in attitudes within the country as Economic integration, whereby Muslims enter work, earn wages and pay taxes just like their fellow citizens, is equally important; in this, both the United Kingdom and France have failed (Atlantica). This figure helps to show that the barriers to immigration is largely a two player game that will require work

Del Grosso 5 from both sides of the fence. Muslims within Great Britain have a large gap in economic status due to lack of Muslims ability to gain professional jobs within the UK, in fact the unemployment rate for Muslims is 15 percent, which is approximately three times higher than Christians and Hindus (Reed). This lack of employment leads to resentment that in turn has the ability to encourage these unemployed Muslims to radicalize and express their need for employment in forms outside of the political realm that they feel will be legitimate in their lack of representation within government. Muslims within Great Britain have led a life of segregation by settling in very specific areas and this concentration of their population has led to social exclusion which in turn limits their ability to feel truly like British citizens. Within the UK Muslims are disproportionately represented deprived inner city areas and so their social exclusion is arguably exacerbated by area affects (Reed). This social exclusion through geographical means only further isolates the Muslim population and ignites feelings of resent as well as the absence of ties to the state, Muslims will turn to the next level identifier they have of Islam. This complex and diverse Muslim population sees religion [as] a very important part of many UK Muslims and has played an increasingly influential role in how they define themselves (Reed). This identity hold on Islam is not a bad thing from a religious perspective but rather it has led to a driving force of increased feelings of exclusion within the British system. This extreme emphasis on religion with little support from the United Kingdoms government to fully recognize and respect the practice of Islam as it has with Christians has led to a sizable minority of young Muslims feel[ing] that the British government is doing little to protect their religious freedom (Reed). The potential for this resentment to turn these young

Del Grosso 6 Muslims to radicalize and become Islamists is a great danger to the security of the UK and the Western world. The environments within France and Great Britain of high Muslim populations that do not feel connected to their country has come to a crossroads and if radical improvements are not made extremely soon, the French and British could begin to see the terrorist attacks they have experienced in the last decade in increasing fashion. The remedies to more appropriately address the issue of integration of Muslim culture into western ideal societies must rely on both sides reaching an understanding in several areas. The governments in these countries must break down borders to upwards social movement and give legitimacy to the Muslim people. One way that this can be done would be to create more opportunities and outreach to local populations of Muslims for employment as the labor force within these two countries is dwindling. Through employment, Muslims in their new nations can feel more like part of the country as economic integration, whereby Muslims enter work, earn wages and pay taxes just like their fellow citizens, is equally important; in this, both the United Kingdom and France have failed. (Atlantica). The key in this step is to provide a means for Muslims to become more functioning members of British and French society that would allow for the geographical seclusion (largely a result of this economic disparity) to be eradicated and the large centers of urban dwelling Muslims to reach out their influence and ability to be influenced to more of the country in which they reside. This would allow for more of the native population within these countries to gain more understanding and perspective by exposure to the Muslim community at large and would help eradicate the racial stereotypical boundaries that have before made the possibility of integration seem to be an extreme barrier.

Del Grosso 7 In order to appropriately integrate Muslims in France and Britain there must be recognition of Islam as being a legitimate religion within a highly secular region of the world. The French and the British governments are notoriously secular and one particular ruling in France has created much tension between the population of Muslims residing in France and the French government. A ban of the hijab, an Islamic head scarf, was placed on all members of public schools. This decision by the French parliament caused outcry among the Muslim population because the symbolism of the Islamic headscarf was a key issue for two reasons: the place of women in Muslim society and secularism (Maillard). While many Muslims understand the divide between church and state, this ruling left many questioning their identity and role within their new homes. They felt as if the French government would deny them their ability to practice their religion. Since Islam is a way of life and many Muslims felt that indeed their very way of life could be threatened by the government, radicalism prevailed as the tragic kidnapping of two French journalists by the Islamic Army of Iraq in August 2004 was specifically aimed at the abolition of the French law (Maillard). This particular law grew mistrust and set the French government back many years in accomplishing its goals of successful Muslim integration. The balancing of this secular policy in Western nation must be balanced by allowing Islamic representation and understanding to be applied at political levels. The map below shows the distribution of population and percentages of current Muslim in Europe. It is of importance to note that the majority of Muslims have chosen to reside in the United Kingdom and France. While these percentages of population are relatively small, the influence and power of this respective population are growing and the distribution of these population leads fears of lost national identitiesgaining ground across Europe (Archick).

Del Grosso 8 This idea of a population gaining political influence and national prominence spells conflict yet also a message of possible cooperation on the horizon.

Figure 1: Percentage of Total Population and Population of Muslims in major European countries. (Acquired from Congressional Research Service)

The conflict in both the United Kingdom and France stems from the issue that many natives feel that the European way of life will be held in the balance of this struggle between Islam and traditional Western ideal. This argument holds some weight as the ever increasing population will try to influence the ideals and goals that are important to them that all minorities wishing to coexist in their new found nation pursue. The fear also rides on how this new Islamic population will want current French and British governments to deal with Islamic issues in the

Del Grosso 9 Middle East. Mainly the conflict focuses around a possible Islamification of Europe (Archick). However, there is another side of this argument which views the increasing Muslim population in these epicenters of Europe as a positive light and not the doomsday opinion that most nationalist rhetoric exclaims. These political experts view the influx of Muslim population rather as a means to stimulate the job market through the influx of capable, educated laborers who will in the end find their identity in their host nation. Most experts aim this not so much through the integration of a proper recognition of Islam (and typically associate the Islam vs. Christianity debate as a never ending cycle) but rather more to economic and social disparities rather than religion (Archick). The implications of integrating Muslims into the Western cultures of France and the United Kingdom are an extremely important factor when considering the security of both their homelands as well as the security of the United States. Since the influx of Muslims into the United Kingdom, the threat of radicalization and terrorism has been rampant. Ever increasing amount of attacks on the citizens of the country has been at the forefront of all major news organization and as the war in Afghanistan rages on the threat of violence at home in retaliation has been a main security dilemma. These issues have pervaded France as well with many terrorist attacks focused on civilian population and riots of outcry against social issues with France have been occurring within the region over the past 10 years. All of the cultural, sociological, and identity issues have led to the support of these radical Islamic groups that have taken hold within the Muslim communities in France and Great Britain. These radicalization and the ability to thwart radicalization is at the forefront and the driving force to make integration a feasible means for Muslims moving into the country.

Del Grosso 10 The possible threat to the United States, if these issues are not settled within France and Great Britain, could very well mean easier access to the United States due to lack of necessity for travel visas for incoming British or French citizens. These second generation, disillusioned Muslims from France and Great Britain (French and British citizens with passports) looking for identity and finding it within radical Islamist movements seeking to exact jihad against the United States could have the ease of mobility to infiltrate the US and attack. Also the communication and recruiting technological advancements that a radical Islamist would have access to in these developed European countries could lead to the easier spread of their jihadist message to American Muslims and potentially create homebrewed problems for the United States. With the right positioning of leaders within the Islamic community, proper avenues for the employment and social mobility of Muslims living in France and Great Britain and recognition from the country that it must help and aid the identity of being French or British will be key in determining their success. The outlook is slightly promising as both Great Britain and France are attempting to recognize and integrate Muslims at the highest levels of lawmaking and politics. The creation of various groups such as the French Council of the Muslim Faith and Great Britains Prevent has aligned themselves with the goal of settling the problem of how to combat the identity and economic crisis of being a Muslim in Europe. There is no one right answer to solving the integration and both groups will solve their troubles in ways unique to their culture. Look to France continuing to strive for economic reform as a way to bring in Muslims to the French secular culture. Great Britain will solve its problems by attacking the source of radicalization by attempting to address religious aspects of this global war on terrorism and bring Islam practices and culture into better understanding. Either way both countries must understand

Del Grosso 11 that as long as the support for wars which are largely seen as religious by Islam followers, many of their efforts have the ability to be swayed by conduct in those theaters. If Muslims properly integrate and establish their identity more along the lines of their nation and not their religion within France and Great Britain, the United States security interests will be much better as they will be able to focus their strategic radical terrorist fights out of the major powers of Europe. If not, the United States will have to combat radicalization on many fronts and will have lost a battle in the war on terrorism.

Del Grosso 12 Work Cited and Consulted

Anspaha, Katrine. The Integration of Islam in Europe: Preventing the radicalization of Muslim diasporas and counterterrorism policy. Johns Hopkins. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Sept. 2011. Archick, Kristin, Paul Belkin, and Christopher Blanchard. "Muslims in Europe: Promoting Integration and Countering Extremism." Congressional Research Service: n. pag. Federation of American Scientists. Web. 3 Nov. 2011. Atlantica, Oxford. "The Integration Of Muslims In Europe." Forbes 24 Feb. 2009: n. pag. Forbes. Web 3 Nov. 2011. Azzaoui, Mounir. "Similarities in Difference: The Challenge of Muslim Integration in Germany and the United States." AICGS Issue Brief: n. pag. AMERICAN INSTITUTE FOR CONTEMPORARY GERMAN STUDIES. Web. 14 Sept. 2011. Inglehart, Ronald, and Pippa Norris. Muslim integration into Western cultures: Between origins and destinations. Harvard International Studies. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Sept. 2011. Maillard, Dominique. "The Muslims in France and the French Model of Integration." Mediterranean Quarterly 16.1 (2005): n. pag. Project Muse. Web. 3 Nov. 2011. Nawaz, Maajid. "A global culture to fight extremism." July 2011. Technology Entertainment and Design. Web. 4 Nov. 2011. Reed, Jodie. "Young Muslims in the UK: Education and Integration." IPPR: n. pag. Bibliothek de Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung. Web. 3 Nov. 2011. Reitsma, Piter. "Migrant policy and Muslim integration in France and the Netherlands." University of San Sabestian: n. pag. Migrans Intergracio. Web. 4 Nov. 2011.

Del Grosso 13 Documentation: C1C Ross Fleming reviewed my paper for grammatical errors, formatting, and general content. C1C Rachel Thomas also reviewed and read my paper to ensure grammar and general content.