Singapore Admits: We Can't Integrate Muslims...

Singapore’s presiding genius, Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew, on the failure of Muslim integration:

In the book, Mr Lee, when asked to assess the progress of multiracialism in Singapore, said: “I have to speak candidly to be of value, but I do not wish to offend the Muslim community.

“I think we were progressing very nicely until the surge of Islam came, and if you asked me for my observations, the other communities have easier integration - friends, intermarriages and so on, Indians with Chinese, Chinese with Indians - than Muslims. That’s the result of the surge from the Arab states.”

He added: ”I would say today, we can integrate all religions and races except Islam.”

He also said: “I think the Muslims socially do not cause any trouble, but they are distinct and separate.”

Not endorsing, not rejecting. Just noting. More here from the launch of the book: Lee Kuan Yew: Hard Truths to Keep Singapore Going.


The Spectator’s Rod Liddle bites back:

The chairwoman of the Conservative party (at time of writing, at least) Baroness Warsi made a speech in which she said that ‘Islamophobia’ had become ‘respectable’ talk at middle-class dinner parties, something which saddened and disturbed her. To which one must wonder — how do you know, love? Surely nobody would be crass enough to talk about how ghastly the Muslims were when she, a Muslim, was present at table, picking at her guinea fowl and looking embarrassed? If so, she deserves our apologies. Even if her speech, which was made to some people in Leicester, was perhaps the most intellectually muddled and facile speech I think I have ever read from a senior politician.

I should declare an interest. Warsi condemned the meeja for taking an adversarial and ‘shallow’ approach to Islam. She then held me up to ridicule for having made a speech from which the headline ‘Islamophobia — count me in!’ had been drawn. However, she hadn’t heard, or read, the speech I made, or asked what I had meant. Condemning a speech solely because of its headline strikes me as being the very apogee of ‘shallow’. My speech expressed a profound dislike of the ideology of Islam because it lends itself to a) homophobia, b) the subjugation of women, c) anti-semitism d) viciousness towards so-called apostates, e) authoritarianism and f) a somewhat medieval approach towards crime and punishment. And then there’s the barbarism of female circumcision, forced marriages and the notion that those who are not Muslims are not quite human, that their lives are worthless. These last three manifestations of Islamic thought are not universally present throughout the Islamic world, for sure. But the ideology facilitates them, offers them a weird sort of legitimacy.

(Thanks to readers Andrew and William of Malvern East.)