January 10, 2019 Special Dispatch No. 7840

Saudi Journalist: If Muslims Despise The 'Infidel' West, Why Are They So Eager To Live There?

January 10, 2019
Saudi Arabia | Special Dispatch No. 7840

In his July 8, 2018 column in the Saudi daily Al-Jazirah, Muhammad Aal Al-Sheikh slams Arab and African Muslim immigrants who choose to live in the West and even risk their lives to reach it, yet express hatred and contempt towards the West and regard it as infidel. He criticizes in particular the ingratitude of mosque imams in Europe, some of whom are immigrants themselves, who abuse the democracy and free speech in their host countries by inciting against the West. In light of this, says Aal Al-Sheikh, the European right's opposition to immigration is justifiable, for it is only natural to oppose the influx of immigrants who are "steeped to the bone in a culture of hostility and hatred."

The following are excerpts from his article:[1]  

Muhammad Aal Al-Sheikh (image:

"Immigrants cast themselves into the waters of the Mediterranean knowing full well that the chance of reaching their destination, the northern shore, is slim. They nevertheless risk [the journey], taking advantage of the instability in Libya, which has become the [immigrants'] point of departure on their way to the European paradise. But what is strange, and perhaps even embarrassing, is that, if you ask them about the infidel West, they will spew curses and invective, call it ignorant, and [express] contempt for it. So why do they cast themselves into its bosom and risk their lives to reach it? I truly fail to understand this reasoning, which is so warped, rotten and paradoxical that it seems sickening and ridiculous at the same time.

"The embarrassment becomes even more acute when one hears certain mosque imams in Europe, some of whom are foreigners and immigrants themselves, abusing the democracy and free speech that are granted to everyone [in those countries] by becoming expert at directing curses and invective at the infidels using [various] skillfully-phrased expressions.

"When the populist right in Europe demands to stop and fight immigration, even by means of military force, this evokes cries of outrage from the Arabs and Muslims there. They accuse those who make this demand of racism and hatred for the other, and – most ludicrously – [claim] that the West is undemocratic. Let me say this loud and clear: I do not blame [the Europeans]. In fact, if I were European, I would not hesitate for a moment to oppose this immigration and reject these people, whose culture is based on the duty to hate the non-Muslim, and examples [of this] in their heritage are numerous and varied... The Arabs, and especially the extremist Muslims among them, are steeped to the bone in a culture of hostility and hatred.

"These conflicting sentiments – of hatred [for the West], but [a willingness] to risk one's most precious possession, one's life, in order to live among those hated societies and enjoy the comfort, security, stability and prosperity [they offer] – require a psycho-social investigation... Some people justify [this attitude], saying that [the Europeans] are racist xenophobes and are enemies of Islam and the Muslims. [But] for the sake of reason and honesty, put yourself in their place. Would any Arab country open its doors wide to Christian foreigners and [even] allow them to work in it? The answer is definitely not. So why do you demand that others treat [you] differently than you treat them?...

"All that is left to say is that the wave of populism currently sweeping the Western societies is justified, since it is [simply] a response in kind..."


[1] Al-Jazirah (Saudi Arabia), July 8, 2018.

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