Belgium: 'Muslims are better integrated than Jews'

Belgium: 'Muslims are better integrated than Jews'

Belgian P Magazine interviewed SP.A. politician SP.A. Selahattin Ko├žak (NL) on integration policy. Following are selected segments:

Q: Do you think that Muslims are better integrated than Jews, who seldom commit crimes?

A: "Absolutely! Your article from several weeks ago about the way in which Jews have closed themselves off from the rest of our society, doesn't that say enough? I was shocked by it. Especially by the way in which they silence their own people. It's unfair that you can't criticize Jews in the least without being accused of antisemitism. Michael Freilich (editor of Jewish magazine Joods Actueel), is in my view a much more dangerous figure than Abu Imran (leader of Shariah4Belgium). He does nothing else than sifting every day through all the papers, looking for one slanted word about Jews, so he could respond very offended. He does his job very well, because he naturally draw all Jewish readers behind him. But he also creates 'we-them' thinking."

"The Jews still live off one of the greatest crimes in the history of mankind, but the Holocaust is still 65 years ago. You and I weren't responsible for it, period. You can, for that matter, wonder what's the difference between the Holocaust and that they're doing in Palestine. That is also mass murder. They salivate about apartheid, but they are building a wall and settlements on land that isn't theirs. And in our society they've really also built a wall around themselves. Although I understand that they have an enormous trauma and therefore dread foreign people."

"But it also has to do with cents. A community that has enough money, can withdraw from the majority. You see that all over the world. A community that isn't as rich, is doomed to integrate, and I mean that positively."

Q: Our integration policy is currently unsuccessful, but it's getting worse due to our disastrous asylum policy. Belgium gets per resident, the third most asylum requests, while two thirds of Belgians think the country is full.

A: "Of course. You can drop dead from the number. The number of asylum seekers is much higher than people who come for marriages. A lot more efforts are needed in the countries where the asylum seekers come from. We drum up Clouseau and all our other stars for a big aid campaign for Haiti, but for Pakistan we do nothing. And there three times as many people were affected. That is hypocritical. It's not the fault of the asylum seekers that we must pay them 500 euro a day if we can't give them a dignified shelter and have to receive them in hotels. It's we who make the laws. It's our judges who make such judgments. It's our lawyers who avail themselves for the asylum crisis. Ensure a shorter and much clearer asylum procedure. Not stricter. I'm not joining in with the populist demand of right-wing parties to sharply cut those figures. They're not looking at people but at figures. You must simply build a number of clear and fair mechanisms where fewer people will turn to us because they'll know in advance that it's futile."

Q: "Dedecker thinks that asylum-seekers win the jackpot here, because they can immediately profit from our welfare system. Whoever hadn't contributed, doesn't have that right. Don't give them welfare for a month and the asylum flow will quickly dry up, he says.

A: "Will he simply dump families with children in the cold in the street, then? They are not animals, those who come here, and those we want as quickly as possible to put out. He's acting as if it's garbage that you must quickly throw out or you get rats in the house. Dedecker should be ashamed of himself. But it is true that we should make measures to make us less attractive for asylum seekers. Because now we're promoted by human traffickers as a country which is a piece of cake to get inside. But you shouldn't do that with war-language."