Why America Has No Muslim Ghettos

Since the recent terrorist attacks in Brussels, Belgium’s large concentration of jihadists and poorly integrated Muslim population have attracted global attention. Why, asks Jeff Jacoby, are such problems typical in Western Europe but not in the U.S.?

The United States has been far more successful at assimilating and integrating Muslim immigrants into American society and culture than has Western Europe. There are no Muslim ghettos here like those in Molenbeek [the Brussels neighborhood that produced most of the perpetrators of last week’s attacks] or the Paris suburbs, where authorities turn a blind eye to antisocial behavior and aggressive incitement by radicals preaching jihad. . . .

Muslims in the United States, like other cultural and religious minorities, have had no problem acclimating to mainstream norms. . . . For despite the rise of identity politics and the balkanizing pressures of multicultural correctness, America’s melting pot still works. Generations of Muslim immigrants have come to America to escape repression, poverty, or war in their homelands. The life they have made for themselves here has been freer, safer, more prosperous, and more embracing than the existence they left behind.

There are tensions, but not enough to keep most Muslims from fitting themselves comfortably into the American mosaic. . . . “Muslims in the United States,” [one study] found, “reject extremism by much larger margins than most Muslim publics” around the world. Americanization—E Pluribus Unum—is not only a key ingredient in the American dream. It also keeps us safe.

Read more at Boston Globe

More about: American Muslims, Belgium, European Islam, Immigration, ISIS, Politics & Current Affairs, Terrorism

To Save Gaza, the U.S. Needs a Strategy to Restrain Iran

Since the outbreak of war on October 7, America has given Israel much support, and also much advice. Seth Cropsey argues that some of that advice hasn’t been especially good:

American demands for “restraint” and a “lighter footprint” provide significant elements of Hamas’s command structure, including Yahya Sinwar, the architect of 10/7, a far greater chance of surviving and preserving the organization’s capabilities. Its threat will persist to some extent in any case, since it has significant assets in Lebanon and is poised to enter into a full-fledged partnership with Hizballah that would give it access to Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps for recruitment and to Iranian-supported ratlines into Jordan and Syria.

Turning to the aftermath of the war, Cropsey observes that it will take a different kind of involvement for the U.S. to get the outcomes it desires, namely an alternative to Israeli and to Hamas rule in Gaza that comes with buy-in from its Arab allies:

The only way that Gaza can be governed in a sustainable and stable manner is through the participation of Arab states, and in particular the Gulf Arabs, and the only power that can deliver their participation is the United States. A grand bargain is impossible unless the U.S. exerts enough leverage to induce one.

Militarily speaking, the U.S. has shown no desire seriously to curb Iranian power. It has persistently signaled a desire to avoid escalation. . . . The Gulf Arabs understand this. They have no desire to engage in serious strategic dialogue with Washington and Jerusalem over Iran strategy, since Washington does not have an Iran strategy.

Gaza’s fate is a small part of a much broader strategic struggle. Unless this is recognized, any diplomatic master plan will degenerate into a diplomatic parlor game.

Read more at National Review

More about: Gaza War 2023, Iran, U.S. Foreign policy