The tendency of many Muslims to become more religious once they arrived in Europe was also on display in a new documentary series, “False Identity,” by Arabic-speaking journalist Zvi Yehezkeli, who went undercover to report on the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood in Europe and the US. In Germany, he encountered two young Muslims from Syria, who came to Germany via Kosovo, where they received help from a “British Islamic organization”. They had left Syria as secular Muslims, but on the way to Germany they lived for a year in Pristina, Kosovo, where, according to Yehezkeli, “Muslim Brotherhood organizations are active in helping refugees while turning them into devout Muslims. Ahmed and Yusuf arrived [in Germany] already praying five times a day”.
According to Ahmed:
“When I left Syria, mentally I felt more relaxed. The Islamic charity organization played an important role in this. Look, the first time you meet them they start helping you. You sit, you stare at them, they pray in front of you and here I am a Muslim, studied the Quran, yet don’t pray. Suddenly I find myself alone asking, Why shouldn’t I pray like all others?”
Yehezkeli asked them what their dream is. “The vision is an Islamic state — Islamic society,” said Yusuf, “Muslims will prefer sharia rule. But the vision for twenty years from now is for sharia law to be part of Germany, that sharia will be institutionalized in the state itself”.
In contrast to the growing religiousness of Muslims in Europe, Christians are becoming less religious. In a study of young Europeans, aged 16-29, published in March and based on 2014-2016 data, the author, Stephen Bullivant, a professor of theology and the sociology of religion at St Mary’s University in London, concluded:
“With some notable exceptions, young adults increasingly are not identifying with or practicing religion… Christianity as a default, as a norm, is gone, and probably gone for good — or at least for the next 100 years”.
According to the study, between 70% and 80% of young adults in Estonia, Sweden and the Netherlands categorize themselves as non-religious. Between 64% and 70% of young adults consider themselves non-religious in France, Belgium, Hungary and the UK. The most religious youths were to be found in Poland, where only 17% of young adults defined themselves as non-religious, followed by Lithuania with 25%.
Young Muslims like Yusuf and Ahmed from Syria say they want to spread Islam by converting Europeans, also known as dawa. They are themselves perfect examples of having been at the receiving end of dawa — becoming devout Muslims through the Islamic organization in Kosovo and now engaging in dawa themselves. “I will pick them one by one — I will start with people around me. They will listen. If every Muslim would do the same in his surroundings, it can happen with no problem,” said Yusuf. Asked if the Germans might resist dawa, he said:
“You don’t confront him [the German] with force, you do it slowly… There will be clashes, but slowly the clashes will subside, as people will accept reality. There is no escape; every change involves clashes”.
Given young Europeans’ lack of a religious identity and the vacuum left by the departure of Christianity from the lives of the majority, one has to wonder how sturdy their ability will be to withstand such attempts at proselytizing. Europe will still exist but, as with the great Christian Byzantine Empire that is now Turkey, will it still embody Judeo-Christian civilization?
Another of the episodes of False Identity, a 5-part documentary chronicling the findings of a journalist who went undercover as a Muslim at mosques and in Muslim communities. This one focused one Europe.