Tempi – 12-2005

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About terrorism and the loyalty of Muslim immigrants to the Italian State. Most of the media avoid the core of the problem: loyalty of Italian Muslims or Muslim residents and their Muslim household to the Italian nation and its laws. One fringe of Muslims in the world is motivated by the objective of re-establishing the caliphate and the purity of original Islam. In Europe 20 or30 years ago, the European citizen did not know the prin- ciples of Islam, or if so, only vaguely. In the last thirty years Islam has been im- planted in Europe with both good and bad, helped by certain particular political forces of ours.

Some voices (including Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini in 1990, in Noi e l’islam) have warned of the contrast between the two cultures that might arise with the arrival of millions of people with customs and traditions clearly contrary to European laws. We have even protected individuals sought after in their own coun- tries for undermining the stability of those places. The majority of Muslims in Italy are of Middle Eastern origin and have found in our democracy, a guarantee and a freedom that they didn’t have in their countries of origin. The question is: do they want to live in the West importing customs, traditions and worship as practiced in the Arab countries? Evidently a distinction must be made between official Islam, Muslims and fundamentalism. But what message do mosques and, Italian Islamic centers propose faced with pro- blems such as: religious freedom, mixed marriages, the willingness to observe thelaws of Italy, and the will to live together. Mosques and centers continue to teach a traditionalist Islam that views the Western (alias Christian) way of life as contrary to Islam and therefore proposes for the West to Islamize. Potential situations of conflict arise from that demand to be addressed with the necessary awareness to maintain an institutional and social order open
to cultural pluralism within the framework of a value system legally defined; it is desirable that all the social components, even immigrants, adhere to.

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