My attention was drawn to the story entitled Poll shows Muslims in Britain are the most anti-western in Europe in The Guardian a few days ago by my mother who sent the article to me, asking me what I thought. Essentially, the poll shows that while non-Muslims in the UK generally have similar attitudes towards Muslims as in the rest of Europe, the Mulsims resident in the UK are more vehemently anti-West than in other countries:
the poll found that British Muslims represented a “notable exception” in Europe, with far more negative views of westerners than Islamic minorities elsewhere on the continent
Secondly, a quick Technorati search allowed me to stumble across this blog entry from Judeosphere, detailing how the UK’s attitudes towards Israel and Palestine have remained resolutely more pro-Palestine than attitudes in France and Germany after the victory of Hamas.
So what’s actually going on here? I have to say I am quite perplexed by this. There have been no notable flashpoints against the Muslim communities in the UK, no effort to force bans on headscarves for example. Attitudes of non-Muslims have remained generally constant, even after the London bombings. Economically, Muslims are not well off in comparison to society in the UK overall, but the same economic predicament equally applies to France and Germany. Has Britain’s laissez-faire approach to integration of minorities backfired? Or is it to do with the origins of the Muslim communities – in Germany for example, the majority of the Muslims resident are of Turkish descent, but in the UK come predominantly from Commonwealth countries.