“Here is the new France, the one which is emerging, the one which is beginning, the one of the future. You the inhabitants, Islamic or not, of the housing projects, you are the future of France, you are the rising generation, the one which will save this country from ruin…”
- President Francois Hollande in a speech to residents of an immigrant ghetto before France’s 2012 national election
French President Francois Hollande was probably correct when he told the Muslim inhabitants of one of France’s suburban ghettos (known as “banlieues”) they were “the future of France.” This community’s high birthrate and his socialist government’s pro-immigration policies will see to that. But if last Saturday’s rioting in the center of Paris is anything to go by, that future will be a bleak and scary one of Clockwork Orange-type violence. And, contrary to the Hollande’s statement, this “new France” will not save the country from ruin, but rather lead to it.
Last weekend, for the second weekend in a row, the French public watched in exasperation while the city that represents the heart of their country and culture to the world was defiled yet again by several thousand rioters of mostly North African and Middle Eastern origin. Demonstrating, allegedly, against the Israeli offensive in the Gaza Strip, over several hours and often to shouts of “allahu akbar” the rioters smashed store windows, burned vehicles and subjected the forces of law and order to a hail of bottles and rocks, injuring a dozen police officials.
“It was war, in the middle of Paris, in the city that receives the most tourists in the world,” said one upset storeowner, whose shop windows were broken, to the French newspaper Le Figaro the next day. “Why isn’t there a (government) minister here this morning to say that these guys who smashed everything are going to go to prison?”
During another “pro-Palestinian” demonstration the previous weekend, rioters had even attempted to attack two Parisian synagogues. But these failed assaults only served to display the protest’s true motivation, which was anti-Semitism and Jew-hatred rather than opposition to Israeli policy. Besides the synagogue attacks, the demonstration’s anti-Semitic overtone was also more than evident in the slogans the rioters were yelling, which included such civilized gems as “death to the Jews” and “Hitler Was Right.”
“[H]atred for Israel and for Jews has become a major component of the identity of French of an Arab or African background; it is the cement of the second generation,” said Gil Mihaely, founder and director of Causeur, a French magazine dedicated to intellectual debate.
Mihaely states the recent Paris demonstrations, “without a doubt,” are about “hatred of Jews and not the taking of a political position.” He cites the fact these rioters do not demonstrate and become violent about the 200,000 Muslims killed in the Syrian or other ongoing conflicts as further proof that the Paris riots were primarily about anti-Semitism.
“I believe that these demonstrations betray a profound need to identify oneself as an adversary of Israel and of the Jews,” Mihaely said.
The anti-Semitism was so evident in the first protest that French authorities banned last weekend’s second, anti-Israel “manif,” as the French call a demonstration. Nevertheless, several thousand people still gathered to wreak havoc and express anti-Jew hatred, the rioters somehow believing that attacking police in France and sacking a part of central Paris will bring peace to Gaza. It is interesting to note no such rioting is occurring in Islamic North African countries, where many ‘manif’ participants have their origins.
Besides the acts of anti-Semitism and destruction that occurred in their greatest city, law-abiding French citizens were more than disturbed by the fact that a prohibited demonstration actually was able to take place at all. To them, this signals a frightening weakness, even a powerlessness, on the part of President Hollande and his socialist government, from which planners of future, violent mayhem will expect to profit. The French government appears incapable of getting these “residents …of the housing projects” to obey the law. Rather, it is the people of Hollande’s “new France” who were dictating to lawful authorities by holding the banned demonstration, telling government officials, in essence, that they are “prohibited from prohibiting.”
Many French were also put out that so few rioters were arrested after so much violent lawlessness. From the demonstration that saw the synagogues attacked, only five people were turned over to the courts, charged with “violence against security forces” and “rebellion.” One of their number was acquitted of the violence charge but was jailed for four months for “rebellion.” The others had yet to have their day in court.
Last weekend’s riot saw 44 arrested, of whom only 19 were kept in police custody.
Some in France regard these numbers as disgraceful, especially when one considers that in 2013, French security forces arrested about 1,000 people protesting at different demonstrations the Hollande government’s pro-gay marriage law. With their children present “in the thousands,” these protesters behaved like angels compared to last weekend’s criminals. Nevertheless, at one anti-gay marriage demonstration alone, in central Paris where the recent anti-Semitic riots occurred, police arrested 293 people.
“Police determined to clear the area seized unarmed people and used brutal violence to force them into vans,” stated one report. “They were taken to police cells where they were left in dirty conditions for as much as 17 hours without charge and access to lawyers.”
It’s a shame that such firmness wasn’t shown towards those gathering for last Saturday’s illegal demonstration before any destruction of private property took place and streets were torn up for projectiles to throw at and wound police.
Besides the small number arrested, the sentences the rioters are expected to receive are already a topic of ridicule among those unhappy with the government’s tepid response to the law-breaking. People can’t understand, for example, why one rioter, as mentioned, received only four months in jail for his violent actions, while a member of the populist National Front Party was sentenced recently to nine months and fined $100,000 for stupidly and inexcusably comparing on Facebook France’s justice minister, who is black, to an ape.
But the discrepancy in numbers concerning those arrested in the recent anti-Semitic riots and last year’s anti-gay marriage law demonstrations is probably a reflection of the political interests and beliefs of France’s ruling Socialist Party. And most likely the same holds true concerning the different sentence lengths meted out to the rioter convicted of “rebellion” and the person who made the asinine, racist comparison.
On the socialist list of unpardonable crimes, racist and anti-gay beliefs probably rank number one and two, and are greater sins in some socialists’ eyes than attacking synagogues and ransacking central Paris. Besides, as indicated in the quote above from Hollande’s 2012 pre-election speech, French socialists regard the Muslim citizens of France’s banlieues as their ideological, and voting, constituency, which may also account for the lenient treatment rioters receive.
“We are encountering in the left of today (the view of) immigrants as being the new face of the group charged with carrying out the downfall of history,” said French philosopher Robert Redeker.
Redeker states immigrants, both legal and illegal, the youth of the banlieues and Roma have replaced the native French proletariat as the socialist weapon to transform French society, because French workers, not being revolutionary enough, were not up to the task. Interestingly, Redeker adds leftist promotion of immigration is also the punishment the Left “inflicted on the proletariat for having failed in its historic duty.”
This socialist partiality for the Muslims of the banlieues was also evident in Hollande’s statement about the synagogue attacks. While he stated he would not tolerate anti-Semitism, Hollande also said he does want the Israeli-Palestinian conflicted brought to French soil. This reprehensible equating of Israel with the terrorist organization Hamas was probably made with his party’s Muslim constituency in mind.
But Hollande’s opposition to Jew-hatred on the one hand and catering to the Muslim vote on the other will not keep the peace. While he tells France’s national Jewish council he supports it in its fight against anti-Semitism, the Socialist Party is pro-Muslim immigration. This is a recipe for disaster. The only hope for France’s future, if there still is one, is to restrict such immigration and adopt a tough, zero-tolerance policy toward all civil disturbances, especially those of an anti-Semitic nature.
If the current situation continues, one only has to look at what happened to the Jewish communities in Islamic countries after the Six Day War in 1967 to predict the fate of France’s 500,000 Jews, Europe’s largest Jewish community. Under severe persecution, their members were forced to flee North African and Middle Eastern states, never to return.
And since Holland and his fellow French socialists do not appear to want to learn from history, then this tragic historical lesson is doomed to be repeated in “the new France,” of which he and his fellow socialists are so proud.
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