German Islam Conference avoid issue on Salafism

April 18


The Federal Ministry of Interior Hans-Peter Friedrich (CSU) has rejected the proposal of the Interior Minister of Lower Saxony Uwe Schünemann (CDU) to include the issue of Koran distribution by Salafist activists in the agenda for the upcoming Islam Conference.

Since the beginning of April, Salafist groups have been distributing free copies of the Koran in several German cities. Mr. Schünemann has called for an agreement against Salafism and proposed a strategic approach plan including anti-radicalization and prevention against Islamist Extremism and Terrorism. In his letter to the Federal Minister of Interior, he declares to expect Muslim associations to stand up united against what he calls an “instrumentalization of Islam”. Since the initiative of the former Minister Wolfgang Schäuble in 2006, domestic Security has become one of the main issues within other in the German Islam Conference.

Salafism continues to spread over Europe

Mohamed Merah, the alleged murderer of Toulouse was last year at a Salafi conference held in Catalonia. State Information Services alerted France counterparts about the visit and now the Spanish police are looking for what kind of connections and relationships Merah had with Spanish and European Salafists.

Islamist experts now insist that Al Qaeda is not a movement but an ideology. Omar Bakri[1] had also warned a year and a half ago in Tripoli during an interview with the Spanish news chain SER, “Open dialogue with Al Qaeda before it is too late, said Bakri. Al Qaeda is a phenomenon in which many people believe and you’d be surprised to know how many non Muslim people in Europe support Al Qaeda. People in Europe have not chosen to live in terror and Al Qaeda continues to spread it and continues to do what Islam brands: protect all Muslims from invasions “.
Bakri provides other data that was confirmed by the Western Information Services: the increase of the number of non-Muslims Salafis. They are converts who moved the objectives of Al Qaeda into their places of origin: United Kingdom, France, Italy, Spain and Germany.
The alleged murderer of Toulouse, Mohamed Merah, had French nationality but many Salafists marry nationals to obtain residence in parts of Europe. This is another of the modus-operandi that jihadists use to enter a country. The matter is concerning Spanish authorities as all Salafi leaders resident in Spain have permanent residence and work permit until 2014 because they married with Spanish women. The Minister of Interior is considering not renewing these residence permits and has already submitted several negative reports to the Ministry of Justice about permit renewal solicitations.

[1] Omar Bakri Mohammed, the radical cleric banned from Britain for glorifying terrorism; once nicknamed the Tottenham Ayatollah.

Spain: The European heart of Salafism

La Razon – 31 March 2012
Police forces explained to La Razon that Salafism is implemented in Catalonia. According to police source, Imams of this branch of Islam lead three mosques in Barcelona and Terrassa, whose leader Abdeslam Laarusi will surely be charged with inciting violence against women. ((In the lawsuit, submitted to the chief judge of Terrassa, the prosecutor of Hate Crimes and Discrimination in Catalonia, Miguel Angel Aguilar, accused the imam of inciting to violence against women in his sermons in the mosque of Terrassa. After making the necessary investigations and analyze the recordings of sermons, the Office has considered that Abdeslam L. “I would be taking advantage of its status as a religious leader within the Muslim community in Terrassa to utter clearly discriminatory posts that make vulnerable the principle of equality and the right to physical and moral integrity of women,” describes the complaint.
)) In Tarragona Salafi Imams alone control five mosques. Islamic terrorism in Catalonia seems controlled, but it is a latent danger. The numbers show it. According to La Razon, Catalonia has more than 400,000 Muslims and 20% of them follow the most radical precepts.
The leader of the Cultural Association Al-Hilal of Salt, Rachid Menda, ((Rachid Menda, Imam of Salt is aggregated to Salafism, in Spain, which preaches non-integration of Muslims in the “corrupt” Western society and allies also in the spread of the radical stream of Islam namely through the online dissemination.
Rachid Menda is has not yet attained age 30 and he is the Imam of Salt, which has 30,000 inhabitants where about 5,000 are immigrants of Muslim origin, most of them Moroccans.
In his radical discourse, Menda often leads to ask for the “Mujahideen” fighting in countries like Afghanistan and Iraq to the troops in Europe and America.
)) is considered one of the leaders of Salafism in Spain. All these data make Catalonia’s largest stronghold of Salafism in Europe.
Another significant fact is that one of the masterminds of the bombing of the Twin Towers and one of his executors, Mohamed Atta, spent time in Tarragona.
The Salafist imam of the mosque of Reus, Tabdelhamid Aim The Hyat, ((The Imam with more followers of Reus, Tabdelhamid Aim The Hyat, aligned with the current Salafi, has threatened to remove the Muslim population into the streets, “in the province of Tarragona” if the Government fails to rectify and remove fines upon North Africans immigrants who had incorrectly used a subside designed to promote their integration in Spain.The Hyat has appeared in various media as one of the more radical Imams working in Spain. Of Dutch origin, he frequents Salafi conferences that proliferate every year in Spain.
)) was denounced by moderate Muslims, who testified that he coerced and made them pay a “revolutionary tax” in the style of ETA.
He is not the only radical Salafist imam controlled by security forces. The more mediatic is Houzl Abdelwahab, ((Salafist Imam of the mosque of the Lerida Street Nord, Abdelwahab Houzi, known for its radicalism, has managed to bring together more than 3,500 Muslims to close the Ramadan. Speaking in Arabic, the imam of Lerida, which maintains frequent conflicts with local authorities, has managed to use the end of Ramadan to become a reference of Salafism in Spain, a current reactionary reformist shared by terrorist groups like Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.
Ana Ortiz, an analyst at Strategic Studies Group, described the presence of this fundamentalist stream in Spain:
“The common denominator of those who are supposedly involved in jihadist terrorism in our country responds to the profile of male, between 26 and 40 years, legal immigrants of North African origin. They are located in Madrid, Barcelona and Levante.
It should be clear that the vast majority of Moroccan immigrants, both in Catalonia and the rest of Spain, practice a more tolerant and open Islam than the Salafist groups.
The work of the new Imams that are settling in the area is to try to radicalize these groups to be locked in their community and their religion, and demonize any form of integration in society.
The police estimated that only in Catalonia there are between 12 and 15 Salafist mosques, considered very active.
The security forces claim that the modus operandi of these new Salafist Imams is to discredit the local imam.
)) Imam from the mosque of Lerida. He is accused by the police of having promoted a kind of “religious police” who controls the “good behavior” of every Muslim. Houzl frequently send messages in their sermons of hate for Spain and the West. He is accused by the police of physical abuse and polygamy. ((Lérida’s imam Abdelwahab Houzi is promoting the deployment of “religious police” in various municipalities, including Olot, similar to the one he created in the city under his fanatic preachings. He uses that police to monitor and, where appropriate, punish, even physically, those Muslims who do not meet his fundamentalist interpretation of Islamic law.
Mr Houzi has also defended polygamy and has made it clear he wants to take advantage of independentist parties to make Islamism grow in Catalonia. ))

Mohamed Mrabet Fahsi is the imam of the mosque in Vilanova (Barcelona) and spent seven years in prison. He was arrested in “Operation Jackal,” which dismantled a cell linked to terrorist attacks. The National Court accused him of funding jihadist networks and recruit young suicide individuals.

The Madrid regional television (Telemadrid) condemned for defaming an imam

Telemadrid, the public television of Madrid, has been condemned by a judge for having asserted, with no evidences, that the imam of an Islamic community had ties with terrorism. The television shall issue a public correction stating that the imam “does not preach Wahhabism nor Salafism, has never had contact or connection with al-Qaeda, has never recruited mujahedeen for jihad, nor has launched inflammatory messages against the West.”

Salafism in the Netherlands: Nature, Extent and Threat

Report Summary:

The study, conducted by the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES, UvA) in collaboration with the Central Bureau for Statistics, involved: 1) fieldwork in the Salafist community in the Netherlands, 2) network analysis of salafist organizations and 3) a survey among Dutch Muslims querying their degree of orthodox Islamic thought.

The study, conducted by the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES, UvA) in collaboration with the Central Bureau for Statistics, involved: 1) fieldwork in the Salafist community in the Netherlands, 2) network analysis of salafist organizations and 3) a survey among Dutch Muslims querying their degree of orthodox Islamic thought.

The report identifies the following findings:

Salafism from the Inside
-The core of salafist thought aims at a moral revival through strict interpretations of the Koran and Sunna which seeks to free these religious sources from innovation and guides all decisions in daily life. Salafis consider it an obligation to convert people to Islam. Salafism in the Netherlands is not a homogenous collection of thoughts, and is loosely grouped into the following categories:
(a) Pure religious salafis seek an ‘uncorrupted’ religious lifestyle and do not involve themselves in politics.
(b) Political salafis aim to actively improve the situation of Muslims in the Netherlands. Although they consider democracy to be inferior, they participate in the political system for pragmatic reasons. This is the most visible salafist group in Dutch society.
(c) Jihadi salafis consider it a religious duty to fight for Islam by any means necessary. This can include the use of violence.

Network Analysis of Salafi Organizations
-It appears that the managerial salafist elite is isolated from more moderate organizations. At the time of the study, there was a movement at the formal elite level to develop an overarching organizational salafist network.
-13% of Islamic schools in the Netherlands are connected to a salafist organization, a strong overrepresentation given the size of the community.
-Note that political radicalization appears to take place outside of these organizations.
-Salafist organizations might be split into three categories:
(a) Organizations explicitly profiled as salafist, including some mosques.
(b) Organizations strongly influenced by salafist thought, and involved in institutional networks with other salafist organizations, but that do not themselves identify as salafist.
(c) Organizations which invite salafist preachers to lecture or teach.

Orthodoxy Among Turkish- and Moroccan- Dutch Muslims
-Survey respondents were cast into five ‘types’ (devout follower, devout pragmatic, critic, salafi pride, fanatic, and born again) based on their degree of religious practices, societal participation, political integration, connection to salafist organization and radical thought.
-According to the survey, those Muslims whose religious attitude structure resembles salafist thought are relatively older, less educated and have a higher chance of unemployment. 8% of all Dutch Muslims are orthodox; this includes 15% of Moroccan Dutch Muslims and 5% of Turkish Dutch Muslims.
-Sensitivity to radicalism and extremism is higher among orthodox Dutch Muslims. This group’s tolerance towards a multi-religious society is lower, they think that Dutch women have too much freedom, they politically participate less in society and identify less intensely with the Netherlands, and are more likely to see violence as a legitimate means for attaining religious goals.

Further, a research summary provided by the University of Amsterdam notes that “The researchers’ findings refute the argument that orthodox Islam is a political ideology that seeks to undermine Dutch democracy….The researchers conclude that there is no evidence of radicalisation within the salafist community in the Netherlands and that it poses no threat to Dutch democracy. Salafist organisations actually function as a buffer in that they reject violence. Radicalisation in the sense of active willingness to use violence takes place outside of the salafist organisations.”

Growth of Salafism in the Netherlands Slows

The growth of Salafism in the Netherlands has slowed, the intelligence service AIVD told Nos TV on September 8.

A 2007 report by the agency warned of the increasing influence of Salafist imams on Dutch Muslims, not because of a call to violence, but because they prevent the integration of Muslims by rejecting Western society. But now ” the growth [of Salafism] is stagnating. It is not leading to wide circulation, and that was in particular our concern,” says Wil van Gemert, director of interior security in the AIVD.

Van Gemert says the AIVD’s earlier worries were ungrounded. ‘Our biggest fear [was] that there was a broad forum where this growth could take place,’ he said. ‘But our main conclusion is that this forum no longer exists.’ The AIVD cites several reasons for the decreased growth of Salafism: local councils and leaders are more aware of the existence of such centres and are refusing financial support, and the Muslim community is also coming out against the movement.

Dutch terrorism-buster to launch probe into Salafism

BRUSSELS — The Dutch National Coordinator for Counter-terrorism (NCTb) said on Wednesday that it will launch a nationwide investigation into the spread of Salafism in the Netherlands. The influence of Salafism, an ultra-orthodox form of Islam, is growing in the Netherlands, the Dutch news agency ANP reported.

Radical Dawa Changing: The Rise of Islamic Neo-Radicalism in the Netherlands

Special thanks to the Islam in Europe Blog for providing this translation.

The Dutch intelligence service AIVD recently released a report on the development of Islamic neo-radicalism titled “Radical Dawa Changing, The Rise of Islamic Neo-Radicalism in the Netherlands” (Radicale dawa in verandering: De opkomst van islamitisch neoradicalisme in Nederland.). This report follows two previous reports by AIVD, one on the general situation of radicalism in the Netherlands and one specifically on jihadi groups. This is a partial summary:

The phases of Muslim radicalism

Muslim radicalism in the Netherlands has gone through a couple of stages and seems to be now starting off a new phase, which the AIVD calls neo-radicalism. These phases do not cancel each other out and there are still active members of each.

The first phase started off in 1980s, when both foreign jihadi and radical dawa organizations set up shop. Their goal group was the first generation immigrants, especially the Moroccans and they were generally very much connected to Saudi Arabia. The ties between the jihadis and dawa people were quite strong at this stage.

The second stage started with the 9/11 attacks, when foreign organizations were banned or dismantled due to the War on Terrorism. The Dutch groups became more autonomous, also because their followers broke away from their original inspiration and became convinced that Islam was oppressed and threatened in the Netherlands. Radical groups grew, but were also fragmented and amateurish. Youth got radicalized on their own, through the internet, a tool which grew very fast in this period. There were dozens of radical Islamic sites in Dutch alone. The ’coolness’ of the ’radical lifestyle’ attracted people who were not ’true’ radicals.

In addition, there were other groups that used Islam to excuse nihilism, escapism, vandalism and criminality.

The 9/11 attacks and the Murder of Theo van Gogh and the political discussion that ensued forced the dawa groups to come out against violence and to distance themselves from the Jihadi groups. The Jihadis, on their side, saw the dawa movements as ’giving in’ to the infidels. The dawa groups did not call for going on jihad abroad, but did not condemn it either.

In this second stage, radical preachers appeared who were more involved with the local state of affairs.

Now a third stage is apparently starting, with new Muslim radicals coming up on the scene and questioning the way things had been done in the past. These radicals want to work in a more organized manner and they reject the individualization of the past, where everybody did whatever they wanted. Their main goal is to slowly build up a broad base for radical Islam and with that build up their movement. In order to build a powerful movement they do not turn only to those who feel alienated and frustrated but to other groups as well, and to each they come with an appropriate message.

The internet is now the most widely used tool, as well as charismatic preachers. However, these groups are still very much fragmented and do not come with a unified dawa message.

They reject terroristic violence, as that will hurt their long term goals, but they do not rule out, for example, street violence without loss of life.

Other groups

When turning the general Muslim population they face competition from groups that call for combining strict adherence to Islam with taking part in Western society (eg. Egyptian TV preacher Amr Khaled). Groups elsewhere in Europe also affect Dutch Muslims. These groups include those striving to publicly express Muslim identity (eg. Tariq Ramadan) and for political emancipation (local Muslim parties taking part in elections).

Other competition are Muslim groups who are secularly oriented and the ex-Muslim associations. There are also groups who reject Western society but do not attempt to change it.

The radical dawa groups set themselves up as the representatives of true Islam. Muslim interest groups led by such radicals are then approached to solve problems in the Muslim community, even if they do not really have many followers. Muslims who do not support them fear coming out against them openly as they are then labeled infidels and enemies of the Muslim community.

The dawa groups deal with the competition in two ways. Through “intolerant isolationism” which means building up spaces of Muslim enclaves (both physical and in the media/internet and education) run by the laws of Sharia. A second method is “anti-democratic Muslim activism”, which aims to remove the ’reprehensible’ democratic order from the public sphere.

Though the radical groups reject terrorist violence, they are checking out other public and secret undemocratic and democracy-hindering tactics. These tactics have been used by radical Muslim groups in Muslim countries for quite some time. Some of these tactics have already been practiced in the Netherlands on a small scale, such as intimidating people in the Muslim community not to take part in the democratic society and to show loyalty to Islam. Some tactics have been considered such as taking over political organization, disturbing social harmony by spreading conspiracy theories and false rumors or setting up their own law system in their neighborhoods through intimidation.

Radical dawa in the Netherlands is led by political Salafists, but there are other active movements such as Hizb ut-Tahrir, Tablighi Jamaat and Muslim Brothers.

The estimates of the AIVD and other intelligence services is that about 5% of religiously oriented Muslims are susceptible to radicalism, and of those 10% actually radicalize and then they tend to go for the jihadi movements. The dawa groups aim for the original 5%.

The report then goes into a more in-depth analysis of the history of both Salafist and non-Salafist groups in the Netherlands. I might summarize this in the future, depending on if there’s interest in it.

Security risks

What kind of security risks do these groups pose?

The AIVD explains that a democratic order is built in two dimensions. The first is the vertical dimension (citizen-government) meaning a democratic constitutional state that includes things such as the separation of powers and freedom of opinion and religion. The second dimension is the horizontal dimension (citizen-citizen) meaning a public society that includes social cohesion, stability, active citizenship and respect for plurality.

The Dutch government sees security in the broad sense, not only to provide physical security but to also provide social trust, a social atmosphere in which citizens can live together peacefully, regardless of religious, ethic or political differences.

In characterizing the risks there are two issues: the good functioning (even to some citizens) and the continued existence of the democratic order.

Do the radical groups have the power to effect such changes, and what opposition do they face?

The radical dawa groups do not currently threaten to topple the democratic order, but it is legitimate to say that they currently pose a risk to the system’s functioning for some citizens, especially Muslims who do not adhere to the Salafist philosophy.

The risk of adverse affects are as follows:

(a) contributing to undermining support for a democratic order by some Muslims (especially pertaining to the horizontal dimension)

(b) contributing to the polarization of society by preaching against homos, Jews, Shiites, secular Muslims and the ’enemies of Islam’ (ie, most of Dutch society)??

(c) preventing Muslims who think otherwise from exercising civil rights – by calling them apostates either directly or indirectly. A website of the as-Soenah mosque, for example, called Ehasan Jami an incestuous weasel who is furious at Islam for not allowing him sexual contact with his mother and sisters.

(d) preventing non-Muslims from exercising civil rights – by using a very intimidating and threatening tone against those considered “enemies” of Islam.

(e) preventing women from exercising civil rights – by preaching for protecting and even saving women’s honor and for limiting women’s activities, and by practicing that in their own circles.

(f) preventing homosexuals from exercising civil rights

(g) enforcing their own legal system in an informal and secret manner – for example, trying to enforce Sharia personal law. For example, some Salafist mosques have contracted Muslim marriages without registering them. This can also lead to practical legitimizing of polygamy.

(h) checking out ways of secretly opposing and upsetting the democratic order – for example, by saying Muslims in the 2006 elementary elections may exceptionally vote, for specific people, in order to thwart the ’enemies of Islam’.

(i) secretly influencing government policy and entering the social middle field – for example, dawa organizations are active in advising municipalities on how to fight crime and dropouts among immigrant youth, or guiding immigrant women. In some cases organizations (secretly) related to Salafist mosques got government subsidies for guiding criminal youth back to society. The aim of the government was achieved in the sense that these youth left crime and improved their school scores, etc, but they also took on an anti-democratic Salafist way of thinking. Radical dawa organizations pose as the representatives of the Muslim community and try to control contact between the authorities and the community. Another such influencing was seen in the case of a Tilbug female teacher who was fired for not willing to shake hands. The woman was ’sent’ by the Tilburg Salafist mosque, which can be seen here trying to introduce ultra-orthodox Islamic rules

(j) breeding ground for radicalizing to violence – for practical reasons, radical dawa rejects violence in the West, but it is not possible to make a clear distinction between jihad and radical dawa, especially not for the individual:

– Radical dawa has an intolerant, isolationist, anti-democratic and anti-Western message that can lead to violence.

– Dutch Muslim terrorists regularly visited Salafist mosques, though they were radicalized further in other ways.

– Radical dawa repeatedly claims that the West is attacking Islam, which leads to see the West as an enemy.

– They reject violence now, but it’s unclear how that would continue if tensions rise, for example by violence against Muslims or a terror attack, since they do justify violence.

– It’s unclear how much the rejection of violence is not done out of pragmatic reasons. Much like in Muslim countries, radical dawa organizations may have splinter groups who do openly support violence.

The continued growth of dawa groups

The continued growth of radical dawa depend on the following:

(a) the continuation of professionalizing and whether they would manage to prevent breaking up due to ideological, ethnic and personal differences. The important questions are who will lead the movements, what their status will be within the Muslim community and how much charisma they would have.

(b) opposition in the Muslim community – though moderate Muslims have trouble today voicing their opposition, opposition may grow by people who realize the radical dawa message is asking too much sacrifice and does not make life better. Leaders who do not follow their preachings might also bring about opposition.

(c) internalizing the radical dawa doctrine

(d) availability of competing non-radical doctrines

(e) polarization between Muslims and non-Muslims – the more conflict, the more both groups are likely to “toe the line” and support the ’group interest’.

(f) expansion of the radical dawa community – will youth attracted to radicalism continue on with it in adulthood and will there be a second generation that grows up with the radical dogma.

Possible risk-developments

Possible developments for risks on the long term: the radical dawa organizations currently have an adverse effect especially on Muslims who think differently. However, they do pose a danger to the democratic order.

In the vertical dimension, they can bring about a growing number of Muslims who do not follow the authority of the Dutch government. An ’ethnic counter-response’ might also be dangerous to the democratic order. In the horizontal dimension, inter-ethnic and inter-religious relations may worsen due to the activities of groups and the reactions to it. The cohesion and solidarity of society can lead to growing suspicions between parts of society and even to violence between Muslims and non-Muslims.


Strategies against Islamic neo-radicalism:

As long as dawa groups do not incite to violence, they are protected by freedom of religion and expression. this causes the democratic paradox – using democratic means to bring about the fall of democracy. However, the democratic order is more than ’majority rule’ and also includes inalienable civil rights. From this point of view, democracy can protect itself. The European Court of Human Rights has already decided that governments may act against group who use democratic means to undermine democracy, if there’s an acute threat.

Judicial action against non-violent intolerant and anti-democratic groups has been done in the Netherlands only in extreme cases and it is generally seen as better to use non-judicial means.

Isolationism in itself does not threaten the democratic order, but intolerant isolationism does pose a threat. This means: exclusivity (discrimination and incitement) and parallelism (having your own laws above state laws). The authorities can work against exclusivity and paralleism, but the dawa organizations spread it sneakily and secretly and the current preaching is protected by civil rights.

The governments policy focuses on prevention and repression. Repression means preventing the growth of dawa organizations by preventing subsidies etc. It is generally agreed that this can be effective if it’s used in a restricted manner, as otherwise it brings about feelings of discrimination and encourages radicalization.

The security threat of Muslim radicalism has gone through both absolutism and relativism. Until recently headlines of Muslim radicalization were seen as a stage in the emancipation of Dutch Muslims. Now such headlines are seen as an immediate threat from all Muslims. This absolutism was caused both by Muslim propaganda, but also by Dutch politicians and leaders who spread doomsday scenarios. Both Muslims and non-Muslims have less trust in the government, with each side feeling that the authorities are not doing enough against the other side (Islamic radical, or anti-Islamists).

Conditions for effective strategies against neo-radicalism:

(a) keep things in proportion – do not subordinate the democratic order to the effectiveness of the approach.

(b) keep in mind the diversity of the Muslim community – see Muslims as individuals and citizens, pay attention to other movements in Islam, realize that about 1/3 to 1/2 of Muslims in the Netherlands do not act from a religious agenda.

(c) prevent polarization by developing government policy – Differentiate between ’hard core’ radicals and ’hangers-on’. Avoid doomsday scenarios (Muslim radicals often overestimate their power). Do not paint the other party as ’the enemy’ as that helps them mobilize forces, direct action only against the ’hard core’. Work away from the limelight. Break away from polarizing slogans.

(d) limit accommodating dawa groups – realize that most Muslims are moderate and are bothered by the dawa groups. Refrain from seeking advice from these groups. Prevent one group or person from taking over contact with the government, seek diversity and keep in mind that some religious representatives might have double agendas. Refrain from (financially) supporting projects which discriminate between sexes etc. Do not support any initiatives or project which exclude other groups.

(e) start dialog with as many Muslim groups as possible – involve not only with liberal but also non-radcial, orthodox Muslims in the debate about social activities and the values of society, democracy and pluralistic society. Be alert that dawa groups often use ’facade-politics’ and do not support any project related to radical dawa mosques or centers.

(f) try to reinforce trust in the democratic order – support initiatives within the Muslim community that serve as a moderate counterweight to radicalism. Try to build up renewed public trust in the buoyancy of the democratic state and open society.

“More radical Dutch Muslims: report”

Terrorism, Islamism, Salafism in Europe: Are They Connected?

The recent arrests in Frankfort again raise the specter of Europe’s terror hitting the U.S. or Americans overseas. You are cordially invited to a discussion on the arrests in Germany and Denmark the character of European Islamism with Jocelyn Cesari, Visiting Associate Professor of Islamic Studies and Director of the Islam in the West Program at Harvard University and Jytte Klausen, Professor of Comparative Politics at Brandeis University . Robert S. Leiken, Director of the Immigration and National Security Program at The Nixon Center, will moderate.

How should we understand the detentions in Frankfort and Copenhagen? Did they arise from post-migrants or from international networks or both? What are the relations among Islamists, Salafists and Sufis in Europe? What attitudes do different denominations hold toward jihad and toward integration? What is the current status of jihad recruitment in Europe ? We are happy to have two distinguished experts speak about these topics:

  • Jocelyn Cesari is the editor of the recent “Encyclopedia of Islam in the United States” and author of “When Islam and Democracy Meet: Muslims in Europe and the United States.”
  • Jytte Klausen’s “The Islamic Challege: Politics and Religion in Western Europe” was published by Oxford in 2005 and is forthcoming in a second paperback edition.
  • Please RSVP by email to For further information, please contact Steven Brooke at (202) 887-1000.