UN’s special rapporteur on racism, Doudou Diene, delivered a report last week in which he highlighted the growing Islamophobia in the world. The official claimed that anti-Islamic sentiments could be seen in many European countries. Such a statement seems to be rather surprising on the one hand. The European community is known for its propaganda of democracy, tolerance and the protection of human rights. However, reality may often prove the opposite. In general, it has already become a tendency for weakening Western cultures to come into confrontations with Islam.
The problem is not new. The Arab expansion was restrained on the Pyrenees, Western Christians organized crusades whereas the Ottoman empire made numerous attempts to expand its European borders. History shows that Europe managed to avoid the influence of Islam. However, the current situation has changed drastically. It is extremely hard for Europeans to find a common language with non-European cultures in spite of the fact that one of Europe’s basic values celebrates the equality of all humans.
It is not ruled out that a public campaign organized by authorities will prove that the level of crimes among Muslim immigrants is not that hard as it seems to be. The current state of affairs speaks of the opposite. Politicians follow the voice of the public trying to prevent xenophobic sentiments. However, if this issue can bring more votes then it is very hard for them to resist the temptation.
There is another problem. The number of Europeans who convert to Islam and get involved into terrorist activities has been growing recently. As a rule, people have the perception of terrorists as individuals of completely different mindset and culture. However, an attack may now come from the people who look and act like everyone else in this or that country. News agencies often report of natives of Britain, Germany, Denmark and other countries who converted to Islam and later were charged with terrorist activities.
This phenomenon may indicate another weak point of the Western civilization. It is very hard for many people to find themselves in the modern world of undermined social links. Islam is a tradition-oriented religion, which offers quite simply answers to people.
It seemed only a short while ago that democratic rules of the game would give an opportunity to eventually find a decision. On the other hand, the voice of the people of Europe does not speak of their own tolerance. For example, Switzerland plans to hold a referendum to ban the construction of mosques. Most likely, the politicians of this liberal country will not dare to cast the results of this referendum into question.
The West has a huge problem with the issue of human tolerance, but Western leaders prefer to turn a blind eye on the problem.
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov