Wednesday, June 29th, 2016

John Derbyshire discusses assimilation — and absimilation:

The English word “assimilation” derives from the Latin prefix ad-, which indicates a moving towards something, and the same language’s verb simulare, “to cause a person or thing to resemble another.” You can make a precisely opposite word using the prefix ab-, which marks a moving away from something. Many immigrants of course assimilate to American society … Many others, however, especially in the second and following generations, absimilate …

Of the four men held responsible for the London terror bombings of July 2005, three were English-born. (The fourth immigrated at age five from Jamaica.) In December 2008, writing in PajamasMedia.com, terrorism expert Patrick Poole noted that many U.S. citizens of Somali origin were leaving the country to train as terrorists in Somalia …

Assimilation, absimilation: If you let great numbers of foreigners settle in your country, you will surely get both.

Omar Mateen was second generation, and he absimilated away from American culture, Derbyshire notes:

Mateen Senior, first name Seddique, became a naturalized citizen in 1989 after coming to this country from his native Afghanistan in the early 1980s. I haven’t been able to discover what kind of visa he came in on. The leading possibilities are: (a) he came as a refugee, via the United Nations and our own State Department, or (b) he was performing some service to the U.S.A. against the Soviet forces then occupying Afghanistan, or (c) some close relative of his — or some person he persuaded to swear he was a relative — was performing such services, or was a refugee, and Mr Mateen got in on the family-reunification boondoggle.

It wasn’t likely an employment visa. Mr Mateen has been making a living selling life insurance since 1991. I don’t recall there being any critical shortage of life-insurance salesmen in the early 1980s.

Bearing in mind possibility (b) above, it’s possible that Mateen, Sr. risked his life to assist the U.S.A. with policy objectives in Afghanistan. This was the Cold War, remember; and as I remind younger listeners and readers, the Cold War was a very big deal, with nuclear annihilation in play. The Mujaheddin fighting the Soviets in Afghanistan were our allies. Islam was not at that point committing acts of homicidal lunacy in Western countries.

So it’s possible that Mateen, Sr.’s admission to the U.S.A. was justified even by the very strict Radio Derb standards — which, just to remind you, would allow permanent settlement to spouses and dependent children of U.S. Citizens, certified geniuses, persons who’ve performed some meritorious service to U.S. policy goals, a few Solzhenitsyn-type high-profile dissidents, and nobody else at all.

It’s possible, but is it likely? Not really. Quote from an authoritative website:

Prior to 1978, only about 2,500 Afghans lived in the United States. Between 1980 and 1996, more than 32,000 were admitted as refugees, along with 40,000 under regular immigrant visas, most as part of the family reunification program.

Afghan Immigration, immigrationtous.net (See also Encyclopedia of North American Immigration, By John Powell)

That’s 72,000 Afghans, exceedingly few of whom, I imagine, put their lives on the line for U.S. policy goals under the Soviet occupation. And it goes without saying that of those 32,000 refugees from the Soviet occupation, very few — quite possibly none at all — returned to Afghanistan when the occupation ended in 1989.


  1. Yann says:

    Time ago, I was in a quite serious relationship with a girl who worked doing sociological reports for the government. She had been working in France for a while. Back then, sociologist already knew that new generations were moving away from western culture.

    I remember we had a conversation about this. She explained it to me as some identity issue. New generations born in Europe didn’t feel European, and they needed to find their identity. Deepening into Islam provided some strong and widely shared identity. This was happening to new generations in France.

    This conversation took place about 15 years ago.

    That has been happening for a long while and it was known. It has been no surprise.

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