In early 2008, one of the Church of England’s most senior bishops, Pakistani-born Michael Nazir-Ali, warned that Islamic extremists had created “no-go”areas across Britain too dangerous for non-Muslims to enter. His politically incorrect concern sparked a firestorm of denial and criticism. The Muslim Council of Britain, for example, dismissed it as the Bishop’s “frantic scaremongering” and “intolerance.”
But in August 2011, Soeren Kern at the Hudson Institute documented the proliferation of such no-go zones throughout Europe – autonomous Islamic “microstates” under Sharia rule (having rejected their host countries’ legal systems), where non-Muslims must either conform to the cultural, legal, and religious norms of fundamentalist Islam or expect to be greeted with violence. As Daniel Pipes puts it, “a more precise name for these zones would be Dar al-Islam” – the House of Islam, or the place where Islam rules.
England, Sweden, Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands – in every European country with a large Muslim immigrant population, the story is the same: Islamic supremacists refuse to assimilate into the Western melting pot; instead they carve out a foothold in a neighborhood, and then, through intimidation or outright violence, push out the infidels whose failed secular values are no longer acceptable. Even public services such as police, firefighters and ambulances are often driven out of such neighborhoods with stones, bottles, or bullets. Lacking the political and cultural will to assert control in areas that in some cases have become urban war zones, the authorities have simply retreated and abandoned them. As Germany’s Chief Police Commissioner Bernhard Witthaut confesses:
"In these areas crimes no longer result in charges. They are left to themselves. Only in the worst cases do we in the police learn anything about it. The power of the state is completely out of the picture."
In Britain, where there were already some 85 Sharia courts in operation as of August 2011, an Islamist group called Muslims Against the Crusades (MAC) has launched an ambitious campaign to turn twelve British cities into independent Islamic states. These cities include Birmingham, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, and what MAC calls “Londonistan.” In the Tower Hamlets in East London – or as the Muslims there refer to it, “the Islamic Republic of Tower Hamlets” – imams known as the “Tower Hamlets Taliban” issue death threats to unveiled women, and gays are attacked by gangs of young Muslim men. The neighborhood has been littered with leaflets announcing, “You are entering a Sharia-controlled zone. Islamic rules enforced.” It was in East London, moreover, that the Islamist Abu Izzadeen challenged former Home Secretary John Reid by saying: “How dare you come to a Muslim area?”
In France, there were some 751 so-called Sensitive Urban Zones (ZUS) as of August 2011. The nature of the ZUS, and chaos like the nightly burning of cars in Paris, are topics that the French media largely downplay in order to avoid accusations of racism or "Islamophobia."
As of 2004, an estimated 5 million Muslims were living in these ZUS. There is barely a single French city that lacks at least one. In Paris and other French cities with a high percentage of Muslim populations -- like Lyons, Marseilles and Toulouse -- thousands of Muslims make their presence felt by blocking streets and sidewalks for Friday prayers. Some mosques have begun broadcasting sermons and chants of “Allahu Akbar” via loudspeakers into the streets. Local authorities sit on their hands rather than confront this “occupation without tanks or soldiers,” because they are afraid of the situation escalating into violence in the streets.
The Dutch government has released a list of forty “no-go” zones in the Netherlands. In Brussels, Belgium -- which is twenty percent Muslim -- police have to patrol with two police cars, so they can protect each another from hostile locals. And yet the multiculturalist mindset is so deeply entrenched in Europeans that it is the police who are expected to avoid offending cultural sensitivities: Officers, for example, who frequently are targeted with rocks by Muslim youth, have been ordered not to drink coffee or eat in public during the Islamic month of Ramadan.
In Sweden, which an imam there has labeled “the best Islamic state,” whole patches of the city of Malmö – which is more than 25 percent Muslim – are no-go zones. There and in Gothenburg, Muslim teenagers have been burning cars, attacking emergency services, throwing.stones at patrolling officers and temporarily blinding them with green lasers.
And where such zones have not been officially established, the process is underway. In Italy, for example, Muslims have been commandeering Rome’s Piazza Venezia for public prayers. In Bologna, Muslims have repeatedly threatened to bomb the San Petronio cathedral because it contains a fresco which depicts the Islamic prophet Mohammed being tormented in hell.
According to Soeren Kern, these dangerous enclaves are “the byproduct of decades of multicultural policies that have encouraged Muslim immigrants to create parallel societies and remain segregated rather than become integrated into their European host nations.” Indeed, as the scholar of Islam Robert Spencer has put it, what the Islamic supremacists want is not merely a place at the table – equal rights under the law, as previous minority groups have sought in civil rights movements – but their own separate table, utterly distinct from the manmade laws of infidels.
Adapted from "The Rise of Islamic No-Go Zones," by Mark Tapson (August 31, 2011).