Europe: No need to worry about Islamization

Muhammad is the second most popular name for newborn boys in Britain if you add together the various spellings. In the Seine-St-Denis suburb of Paris, Mohamed is number one. In the four biggest Dutch cities in 2005, either Mohamed or Mohammed came top.

Facts such as these have led some pundits to forecast the Islamicisation of Europe - a future "Eurabia". Bernard Lewis, a scholar of Islam, cited the immigration from Muslim countries and relatively high birth rates of immigrants as trends that mean "Europe will have Muslim majorities in the population by the end of the 21st century at the latest".

Most academics who have analysed the demographics dismiss such predictions.

Jytte Klausen, a professor of politics at Brandeis University who studies European Muslims, says: "It's being advocated by people who don't consult the numbers. All these claims are really emotional claims." Sometimes they are made by Muslim or far-right groups who share an interest in exaggerating the numbers.

Nominal Muslims - whether religious or not - account for 3-4 per cent of the European Union's total population of 493m. Their percentage should rise but far more modestly than the extreme predictions.

That is chiefly because Muslims in Europe and in the main "emigrating countries" of Turkey and north Africa are having fewer babies. "Nobody knows how many Muslims there are in Europe," says Ms Klausen.

Few European states ask citizens about religious beliefs. Estimates based on national origins suggest that 16m nominal Muslims live in the EU. There are about 5m in France, 3.3m in Germany and 1.5m-2m in the UK.

"Berlin is a Muslim city, Paris is a Muslim city, and even Madrid or Turin to some degree ," Jocelyn Cesari, an expert on European Muslims at Harvard University, has said.

The EU's most Islamic country is Bulgaria, where 1m Muslims account for about one-seventh of the population.

But the birth rates of Europe's Muslim immigrants, though still above the EU's average, are falling. The fertility rate of north African women in France has been dropping since 1981, say Jonathan Laurence and Justin Vaisse in their book, Integrating Islam. "The longer immigrant women live in France, the fewer children they have; their fertility rate app-roaches that of native-born French women."

At the last count, Algerian women living in France averaged an estimated 2.57 children, against 1.94 for French women overall.

The decline in birth rates is more dramatic in north Africa itself. Women there use contraceptives more and have babies later than they did. In Algeria and Morocco 35 years ago, the average woman had seven children. According to the United Nations, it is now 2.5 in Algeria (about the same as Turkey), 2.8 in Morocco, and falling in all of them.

The US Central Intelligence Agency's World Factbook has even lower estimates of Algerian, Tunisian and Turkish birth rates: below France's rate and below the replacement level of 2.1 children per woman. Emigrating countries are no longer exporting high birth rates to Europe.

Northern Europe has experienced a rebound in fertility.Several countries have introduced policies - such as more generous parental leave and better childcare - to encourage people to have babies.

France's birth rate is near the replacement level of 2.1. The UK's fertility rate is at its highest since 1980, thanks largely to older or immigrant mothers - only a minority of whom were Muslims. The number of babies born in Germany has rebounded since the post-war low recorded in 2005. Cash incentives appear to have helped, but birth rates in southern and eastern Europe remain low.

The US National Intelligence Council predicts there will be between 23m and 38m Muslims in the EU in 2025 - 5-8 per cent of the population. But after 2025 the Muslim population should stop growing so quickly, given its falling birth rate.

In short, Islamicisation - let alone sharia law - is not a demographic prospect for Europe.

Source: Financial Times (English)

See also: What about the Europeans?


Anonymous said...

Surely you are not telling me that the whole western society is scared of one name “Mohammed”?

The western world (especially UK) ruled around the world which history is evident but at that time even though the UK imperial power was opposed forcibly no one really gave a hoot as to what the occupied civilisation did. However now, people coming over to the west with a common name are shitting the living day-lights out of a nation (or part of the world) which once almost ruled the world?

Is this some news or what…? Keep up the good work infidels and kafirs, only by attacking Islam can Islam find ways to stay sharp (not that it needs it but will have an excuse to).

Anonymous said...

One name can send a shiver down the spine if you know what that name is capable of. Just imagine if the most popular name in Europe was "Adolf". Scary eh?

Critical_Thinker said...

Esther, speaking as a former muslim, you have the most neutral blog out of all that I've seen on the subject of "Islam in Europe". This is a good article refuting the dumb claims of an "muslim take over of Europe" by the far right, naive, anti-muslims. Keep it up mu friend.

"Just imagine if the most popular name in Europe was 'Adolf'"

So you're comparing the Islamic prophet Muhhamed to Adolf Hitler? Ignorance at it's finest.

Esther said...

critical thinker,

Thank you. This article refutes the claim of a "Muslim takeover of Europe", but it also brings some of the problematics of the discussion. Muslims are not likely to be a majority in Europe, but what about the cities? Cesari, who says that Berlin and Paris are "Muslim cities" is not a right wing fanatic.

Same goes for birthrates. The birthrate of second generation Muslim immigrants is lower than that of first generation immigrants, and might even be closer to the European average, but there are constantly more and more 1st generation immigrants moving into Europe.

As for Muhammad or Adolf, I think the idea is not to compare the two but to point out that a name can sometime be more than just a name. In fact, that is the reason so many Muslims name their sons Muhammad.

Anonymous said...

While this article exposes some of the alarmism concerning Europe's future as alarmism, it is unable to refute the central point of the demographic thesis; namely that Europe is Islmazing. At the very most, this article demonstrates that it's not happening quite as fast as we think.

Nevertheless, one major point the article misses is that European Muslims are far younger than European Natives are. In other words, 10% in France is going to be 20% very soon, not only by more Muslims being born, but by more Europeans dying.

I think the underlying problem is that Muslims are not being "integrated". Real integrated can only occur with assimilation. The multi-cultural states of Europe have done very little to integrate their Muslims. The result in Britain has been 2nd generation Britons blowing themselves up in the subway. The result in France has been "youths" rioting. The result in the Netherlands has been murder. The European governments are essentially funding segregation, they are paying for multi-culturalism and the separate institutions of Muslim Europeans.

It's no wonder that Muslims immigrate to Europe hoping for a better life and their kids become radical. That is literally the exact opposite of assimilation. But of course Europe is all about being nice. As a Sweedish politician said "We should be nice to them, so when they're the majority they'll be nice to us."

Anonymous said...

"Europe: No need to worry about Islamization"


They are such a minority and we are seeing disrespect towards Western culture.

Snake Oil Baron said...

"So you're comparing the Islamic prophet Muhhamed to Adolf Hitler? Ignorance at it's finest."

Name a policy that was different between the two. They both hated Jews and blamed them for everything. They both ordered them to be killed wherever they were found. They both despised people who claimed to go along with their doctrine just to stay safe but refused to fight the good fight. They both formed religions which centered around themselves. They both loathed the concept of individualism and personal rights seeing their subjects as possessions of the state. They both silenced critics and ruled their communities by fear. They both created economic systems which could only be maintained by plunder.

Ignorance is not looking in to a subject in the least but feeling suitably informed.