Remember the old days, when white people traditionally attacked black people ? The Observer does, but says that this no longer reflects reality.
" ... stories about violence in school come as no surprise to Modqtar and Mustafa, nor to their Asian counterparts. Their school lives have been punctuated with fights and aggression, some involving knives, many more without. Often gang clashes are sparked by unfounded rumours. One 'riot' began because of a whisper that a Somali boy had beaten up an Asian girl.
This is not just indiscriminate violence between frustrated youth. It is a new form of vicious racism that breaks down the traditional notion of white on black violence. Now there is hate and distrust between ethnic groups: white, Asian, Afro-Caribbean, African and those from the Middle East."
But surely, we're a nation of immigrants, so this can be nothing new. I'm sure there was friction between the Huguenot and Flemish communities.
"Comments once associated with far-right white groups can now be heard among the long-established immigrant communities."
But the Huguenots said bad things about the Irish when they came over. And the Irish said bad things about the Jews.
"Rob Beckley, the spokesman for the Association of Chief Police Officers on police and faith community issues, said that a form of inter-ethnic violence had developed, with newly arrived immigrants the most targeted and most vulnerable.
'There is at least one incident a week of serious disturbances based around schools among groups, sometimes inter-ethnic, sometimes gangs. It is an issue significant enough to merit substantial police intervention on occasion.'"
This is just moral panic. If you look at a typical Victorian school you'd see there were frequent stabbings and gang fights.
"Beckley, also assistant chief constable of Hertfordshire, said that some school-based gangs were adopting an aggressive stance based on religious and cultural identities."
So ? It's always been that way. I remember at primary school that the C of E kids couldn't walk past St Peter's Catholic Primary without being ambushed by the Junior Warriors of Christ The King, whose punches and kicks would be punctuated by cries of 'that's for St Wulstan !' or 'you martyred John Wall !'.
I don't know what the Observer's up to with this sensationalist reporting, which has a distinctly tabloid feel to it. The problem with such reports are that a reader might conclude from this that multiculturalism isn't working that well. And that would be ridiculous.