Italy: a journalist to follow

Magdi Allam, an Egyptian-Italian journalist, is now leading the debate about Islam in Italy. Nothing surprises him: Imams that use mosques as political podiums and incite their believers to hate and Muslim organization that practice double speak. In his columns in the newspaper Corriere della Sera he warns the Italians over and over of the influence of radical Muslims on the immigrant communities in Europe.

Allam takes offence at the attention garnered by radical Muslims. Media and governments make the mistake to consider extremists as spokemen for the Muslim communities, and therefore their status goes up. According to Allam it's like a new race is being created, the "homo islamicus", the super Muslim. Fanatics that make politics out of religion and prescribe the law for other Muslims. They make a job out of Islam and live of religious expansion.

A recent article of his ("Islam in Italy? All's well") comes out against a DVD about the intergration of Muslims in Italy, to be shown in Italian schools. The DVD puts an emphasis on multiculturalism and does not mention that the sharing of rules, values and a collective identity are essential for integration. Allam brings other points of interest in the DVD: its acceptance of Muslim values, such as the veil, without question. There is no problem with the fact that Islam forces women to cover their hair, only that Italian society prevents them from doing so. The mass media is blamed for demonizing Islam. There is no mention of the global terrorism. The problems simply stem from how society views Islam.

Sources: Elsevier (Dutch), Corriere della Serra (Italian and as translated by Google)

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