Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Divide and conquer

National Review's Stanley Kurtz on the real risk from a breakup of Belgium --

So the move to partition carries powerful economic lessons as well. If Belgium does break up, Brussels, the capital of Europe, could become an independent city-state. It would also be the first Western European state with a Muslim majority. What an extraordinary story.

No source is given for the claim (an Amazon link to a book doesn't count). There's no obvious source on the web either, although various places attribute related findings to one sociologist's extrapolation from official data sources, using a disputed technique. But isn't it odd that Flemish people would have spent all this time fussing about an emerging Francophone Brussels when the real issue is, allegedly, its takeover by Muslims?

Incidentally, another indirect source for the claim seems to be a reference to the most popular baby boy's name being Mohammed. There are some fairly obvious problems with that one, not least that most common does not equal majority.

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