Female Genital Mutilation arrives in the West with immigrants

We’ve written on several other occasions about female genital mutilation but not lately, so when I saw this blog with a lengthy detailed article (including lots of links so readers could delve into the topic further) I decided it was time for a refresher on FGM.

There has been a huge increase in the numbers of women in France seeking plastic surgery. These women are not looking for face lifts, liposuction or breast enhancement – they are looking to have their sexual organs reconstructed after having been circumcized in primarily Islamic countries. Unfortunately, this also indicates that female genital castration is still occurring. One suspects that this surge in genital reconstructive surgery is also found in other western nations with high immigration from Islamic countries.

“In recent years around 2,800 women who immigrated to France from Africa or second generation immigrants, of the age group between 18 and 50, have turned to hospitals and centres in Paris and Nantes funded by national welfare to have their genitals reconstructed, devastated by the practice of female genital mutilation (FGM).”

We have heard that FGM is increasing in the US, but I don’t know if anyone is yet seeking surgery.

You think we have refugee problems now??

The always-pessimistic writer who calls himself Spengler today has an even more gloomy article than usual, called The Failed Muslim States to Come.  (The original Oswald Spengler wrote The Decline of the West, so you can see why this writer chose that pseudonym.)  He begins:

Financial crises, like epidemics, kill the unhealthy first. The present crisis is painful for most of the world but deadly for many Muslim countries, and especially so for the most populous ones. Policy makers have not begun to assess the damage.

….As I commented in the late autumn, the world is not flat, but flattened (see Asia Times Online, October 28, 2008), leaving the economies of the largest Muslim countries in ruins. It is hard to forecast the political fallout, for when each available choice leads to a failed state, it is a matter of indifference which one you adopt. As state finances crumble, states will become less important, and freebooters will seize the stage.

He goes through the various countries, especially Iran, Pakistan and even Turkey. There’s too much to summarize; here’s a sample:

Pakistan’s military-age population is far greater than those of other Muslim military powers in the region. With about 20 million men of military age, Pakistan today has as much manpower as Turkey and Iran combined, and by 2035 it will have half again as many. Half the country is illiterate and three-quarters of it subsists on less than $2 a day, according to the World Bank. That is to say that Pakistan’s young men are more abundant as well as cheaper than in any other country in the region. Very poor and ignorant young men, especially if their only education has been in Salafi madrassas, are very easy to enlist in military adventures.

The West at present is unable to cope with a failed state like Somalia, with less than a tenth as many military age men as Pakistan, but which nonetheless constitutes a threat to world shipping and a likely source of funding for terrorism. How can the West cope with the humiliation of Pakistan’s pro-American president and the inability of its duly-constituted government to suppress Islamist elements in its army and intelligence services? For the moment, Washington will do its best to prop up its creature, Zardari, but to no avail.

Here is Spengler’s conclusion:

The lights are going out across the Middle East; states are failing, and it is not in the power of the West to make them whole again. All the strategic calculations that busied policy analysts and diplomats are changing, and the West has a very short time to learn the rules of a new and terrible game.

It looks like terrible poverty is coming all over the world, and especially in the Muslim countries. If even a few of these become failed states like Somalia, look for all kinds of attacks on western countries in search of loot — Somali piracy writ large.  (I wonder which will take precedence — jihad or surviving.)

And think of the millions or perhaps billions of new refugees. Even if the developed countries of the world survive the financial storm intact, there won’t be enough money in all the world to care for those who will be looking for subsistence. There are bound to be mass movements of needy people into other countries, with who knows what result?

Do you trust the Obama administration, including Hillary Clinton’s State Department, to institute a refugee policy that responds rationally to the coming disaster? I don’t.

Somali and other immigrants hit by recession in Kansas City

We’ve been writing about the decline in employment for refugees all over the US as the recession progresses.   I don’t know how we are going to manage the 80,000 new refugees projected for FY09.

Here is a story from Kansas City that caught my eye.  Now immigrant-owned businesses are suffering.

On a Thursday evening, Cabdul Barrow sits in the dimly lit Somali restaurant and waits for customers.

Usually at this hour at Towfiq Restaurant in Kansas City’s Northeast area, African immigrants who work late shifts come in for a meal of goat meat and rice or just a cup of green tea.

These days, the restaurant is quiet. [Maybe they have followed the lead of their Somali brothers from Minnesota and have gone off for terrorist training in Somalia?]

“Kenyans, Sudanese, Ugandans, they all come here,” said Barrow, 42. “But there have been a lot of layoffs, and that’s why business is slow.”

In this recession, immigrant business owners and operators such as Barrow, a native of Somalia, face the challenge of expanding their customer bases beyond their communities to stay afloat.

The Northeast area — bounded by the Paseo and Interstate 435, and Gladstone Boulevard and Truman Road — has seen the bulk of the Kansas City area’s new immigrants and refugees, including families from Somalia, Sudan, Burundi, Mauritania, Ivory Coast, Cuba, Myanmar and Vietnam.

If you are wondering how do all these refugees find the capital to even start a business, you should know that the Federal government gives special loans to immigrants to start a business (here).   There are even shariah finance compliant loans to help Muslim immigrants in particular (see Jump Start here).   Hmm, have any of these loans contributed to the banking crisis?   Follow daily information on Shariah Finance at Shariah Finance blog here.

Back to my story.   Big Somali community in KC:

The city’s 5,000 or so Somalis make up one of the metropolitan area’s largest refugee populations. Businesses such as Towfiq, near the corner of Brooklyn and Lexington avenues, are the heart of the Somali community.

Who helped them get to Kansas City?

When they open their own business, most of their products are geared toward their community,” said Martin Okpareke, a refugee employment training manager at Jewish Vocational Services, which has resettled 650 refugees in the last three years, including 487 in the Northeast area.

If you read the Jump Start link above, note that it is these non-profits who administer the loans, not the federal government (we, taxpayers,  just give the money).   I don’t know if Jewish Vocational Services has any such loans, but other volags (non-profits) do.

All of this, creating these ethnic neighborhoods, is encouraged by the local Chamber of Commerce.

The effort to help immigrant- and refugee-owned businesses expand has become a priority for the Northeast Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, which envisions the Northeast area becoming an international market for Kansas City, a place where families can sample foreign foods and other products.

Now, what will the Chamber do with neighborhoods of unemployed immigrants?

By the way, we have heard through the grapevine (but have nothing in writing so far) that the Muslim Brotherhood’s US headquarters is in KC.

For new readers,  the State Department has suspended a portion of the refugee resettlement program because widespread fraud was discovered primarily among refugees from Africa.

How many Somali refugees were admitted to the US in the last 25 years?  Go here.