The event was marred when an imam referred to other Muslims who attended the service as “infidels” for praying inside a church.But the biggest problem is, unquestionably, the fact that dozens of the community’s members have joined an internationally recognized terrorist organization, with many more convicted of aiding and abetting it. Cloud, which has been described as having “long been an insular community closed to outsiders,” has seen “GO HOME” spray-painted on a halal grocery store and hundreds of petitions against the construction of a new mosque.The most recent American Community Survey, completed in 2012, estimates that there are 32,000 Somalis in Minnesota.This number is almost certainly too low, due to residual suspicion of the government within the Somali community.The experience built up by these public-private partnerships, which began with the arrival of Saint Paul’s Hmong community in the late 1970s, made the state uniquely suited to absorb the massive influx of Somalis that began to enter the U. when their country’s ongoing civil war broke out in 1991.Usually, the organizations involved attempt to settle refugees in places where their community already has a foothold in America.In 1991, the only Somali community to speak of was in San Diego, but local VOLAGs were eventually overwhelmed by a combination of the unexpectedly high number of refugees and California’s sluggish economy.
What would cause Somali-Americans to leave Minnesota—a state that has, for the most part, accepted them with open arms—to fight for a terrorist organization that heralds America’s destruction?Some community leaders believe the number may be as high as 100,000.Despite Minnesota’s generous policies and the economic opportunities available, however, life is not easy for the local Somali population.Word spread to San Diego, and over the next few months, dozens of families made the trek to Minnesota, attracted by the state’s high minimum wage, low unemployment, and cheap cost of living.
Minnesota’s economy boomed in the 1990s, growing twice as fast as its population.
Spliced between personal testimonials and images of urban warfare are shots of the Minneapolis skyline, the University of Minnesota campus, and the interior of the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport.