A Europe of many faiths and ethnic backgrounds is a fact of life. Here are 5 ways to make it work better
(London, February 15, 2007) In this week's issue, TIME's Jumana Farouky writes, "The real issue facing Europe is multiculturalism using that word not as a policy option, but as a fact. The world contains over 5,000 ethnocultural groups, and technology, cheap airfares and the global economy have scattered them around the planet, in countless combinations. Since the immigrant waves in the '50s and '60s, European nations have been looking for different ways to blend different people of different cultures into successful, peaceful societies. All had the same goal: a society that gives equal opportunity and equal respect, regardless of race, creed, color or faith. Forty years on, that society still doesn't exist."
But multiculturalism is with us to stay. So the question is how to make it work for Europe. This isn't about at least, not just about stamping out Islamic extremism. This is about the day-to-day interactions of a diverse Europe at work, in school, on the streets.
TIME highlights five ways in which Europe can turn its multicultural reality into something which enriches the continent rather than tear it apart:
Save the veils: A U.S.-style hands-off approach keeps church and state separate, but still gives the faithful a space in mainstream society: lift statewide bans on the veil (and all other religious symbols), but leave decisions on dress codes to individual institutions and organizations.
Get a better view from the top: A detailed ethnic breakdown isn't just essential to understanding what citizen's need now it's also the only way to predict what they will need in the future.
Push people up: Instead of relying on sweeping national policies and laws aimed at all minorities, schemes tailored to groups within groups can better match the right people and the right jobs.
Make immigration smarter: If Europe can improve its policies on immigration, then maybe Europeans will improve their attitudes.
Think locally, act locally: Successful, long-lasting integration takes place in community clubs and children's play groups, bake sales and block parties.
Read the full story online at: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1590190,00.html
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Story online at: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1590195,00.html
Niall Ferguson Reveals How Vladimir Putin is Using Oil to Rebuild Russia's Power
"You can say what you like about Russian President Vladimir Putin although you'd be well advised to keep it polite but he has certainly re-established his country's credibility as a great power," writes Niall Ferguson. "When I saw him speak at the recent international Conference on Security Policy in Munich, the Russian President gave a striking impersonation of Michael Corleone in Then Godfather an embodiment of implicit menace… Like Michael Corleone, Putin aspires to be a businessman. His Russia is an energy empire, sitting on more than a quarter of the world's proven resources of natural gas, 17% of its coal and 6% of its oil… Quite simply, Russia is the only major power that has an interest in high energy prices. It is therefore the only major power with no interest in Middle Eastern stability," writes Ferguson
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