Is Islam behind the Cologne attacks?

The attacks against women on New Year's Eve attacks in Cologne have triggered a debate about the causes of this sexual violence. Some blame Islam. Is misogyny down to religion?

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The Times (GB) /

Misogyny not exclusive to Islam

The New Year's Eve assaults on women by migrants were more the result of cultural background than religious beliefs, the conservative daily The Times contends, nonetheless demanding zero tolerance for misogyny:

“Certainly many versions of Islam entail a status for women that amounts to a doctrine of inferiority. But the same is true of, say, Orthodox Judaism. And readers will recall the appalling recent instances of gang rape in India. It is not so much a problem peculiar to world faiths as a characteristic of lagging, misogynistic cultures. ... Cultures that teach the inferiority of women, even under the hypocritical guise of 'protecting' or 'valuing' them, are lesser cultures. In those respects, if they're in our countries, they need to assimilate.”

Jurnalul National (RO) /

Male refugees will cause problems

Romanian journalist Mircea Barbu points out in the daily Jurnalul National that the New Year's Eve attacks in Cologne emphasise the need to not hide behind political correctness in the debate:

“The attacks highlight an important detail: that the majority of refugees are men. A study by US scientist Valerie Hudson based on figures compiled by the International Organisation for migration show that 66.26 percent of the over one million refugees who have arrived in Europe are men - most of them young and unmarried. Such an imbalance, Hudson writes, will cause serious social problems - for the refugees and society. ... We are dealing here with a social paradigm that was previously unknown to modern Europe, and if we don't set our usual political correctness aside now we risk not only opening the gates for people who we want to see as different from what they really are, but also for our own familiar demons - for totalitarianism of the masses.”

Jutarnji list (HR) /

Muslims are the new Jews

Muslims in Europe are increasingly being pushed into the role of the Jews in the fascist societies of the 1930s, observes writer Miljenko Jergović in the liberal daily Jutarnji List:

“Muslims are the Jews of today's Europe. At the start of the 20th century the mayor of Vienna Karl Lueger announced that the Jews from the East represented the biggest threat to our way of living. The word 'Ostjude' [Eastern Jew] became an insult and threat all over Europe. Isn't something similar happening today? Except that this time it's not about the Jews but about Muslims and Arabs? When Muslims attacked defenceless white European women on streets and squares on New Year's Eve, the tabloids immediately proclaimed a new phase of fear and panic. Readers were paralysed with fear without realising that old legends were being revived. One of the legends of the 1920s and 1930s was the tale of Jews attacking respectable Christian women with the goal of dishonouring them. ... Such legends are poison for Europe.”

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Göteborgs-Posten (SE) / 12 January 2016
  Islam's perception of women encourages sexual attacks and hinders immigration (in Swedish)