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France’s version of multi-culturalism up in flames


by Sunny on 2nd November, 2005 at 2:44 pm    

The argument that France’s version of dealing with ethnic minority cultures is better - i.e. calling them part of the Republic but not bothering to acknowledge them - is up in flames.

Clashes between angry youths and French police spread to at least six Paris suburbs Tuesday night, with police firing tear gas and rubber-coated bullets at street fighters who lobbed Molotov cocktails and burned cars and trash bins.

With unrest expanding through the northern suburbs of high-rise apartments that house some of France’s poorest immigrant populations, senior government officials were debating how to curb the violence during [today] morning’s weekly cabinet meeting.

Unsurprisingly some are making this into a a Muslim thing, but let’s leave that to the bigots right now.

For a bit of background - The clashes began last Thursday after two African Muslim teenagers were electrocuted to death in the northeastern suburb of Clichy-sous-Bois while trying to evade police. Local youth blamed the police’s heavy-handedness.

The wider implication is that the French model of integration, hailed by many on the British right when the country banned the headscarf in schools, is effectively up in flames. Many, notably Rod Liddle, said that calling them all part of the Republic and forcing them to be the same would solve all the problems. Some even called for a headscarf ban here.

Although French Muslims have generally accepted and lived with the ban, the idea that you can integrate ethnic minorities simply by calling them part of the country, yet ignoring them and casting them to the fringes of society, does not work. Only earlier this year did French television have its first non-white TV presenter read the news on primetime television.

The country does not count its ethnic minorities, which sounds great in practice if everyone is on a level playing-field, but also allows you to carry on discriminating without being caught out.
BBC story, NY Times, The Guardian.



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107 Comments   |  


  1. Sunny — on 2nd November, 2005 at 2:53 pm  

    And before anyone says anything - I will state I am very against the idea of rioting, and also acknowledge that much of the rioting must be down to criminal gangs.

    My point here is more to do with the (now redundant) idea that France has the right approach in dealing with its ethnic minorities and their cultures. I am still proud of the way Britain approaches these issues and stand by that.

  2. Bijna — on 2nd November, 2005 at 3:14 pm  

    November 1, 2005: France is burning.

    For most of the last week, there have been nasty riots in the Parisian suburb of St Denis, complete with fires and many casualties. This area is home to about 500,000 Moslems. Many largely Moslem suburbs of Paris, and other large cities, have become no-go zones for the police, and anyone who is not of Middle Eastern origin.

    Over the last three decades, generous social benefits and immigration policies have left France with a Moslem population of some five million (about eight percent of the population.) High rise housing for them was built on the outskirts of major cities. Most of these Moslems did not try to assimilate, and by maintaining their old country culture and language, they made it more difficult for their kids to get jobs. Among the old school customs practiced is attacking, and even murdering, girls who do not conform to a “Moslem” style of behavior.

    While jobs may be lacking, crime and social welfare payments are not. So people can live without jobs, and make a little extra with some crime on the side. But when you have a lot of people participating in, or just condoning, criminal behavior, you have a very dangerous place for outsiders.

    Officially, the government condemns this sort of “profiling,” but a look at crime statistics shows that high rates of robbery, murder and rape tend to coincide with Moslem areas. There are unofficial maps on the Internet, where French citizens can check about where not to get lost the next time they go for a drive.

    Meanwhile, the high crime rates in the Moslem neighborhoods has been spilling over into non-Moslem areas, and there has been a major outbreak of anti-Semitic attacks on Jews, and Jewish targets (synagogues, cemeteries, Etc.). It’s not only become embarrassing for the government, but it’s become a political issue.

    So the Interior Ministry has established special police units to try and reduce the crime rate in the Moslem areas. That has led to the recent rioting, arson, injuries, and advice by French traditionalists to just ignore the French Moslems. Leave them alone. Ignore them. Just like France has been doing for decades. Let the counter-terrorism police take care of any hotheads.

    But for the moment, the Interior Ministry is run by law-and-order types, and they are determined to at least own the streets in Moslem areas. So France burns.

  3. Bijna — on 2nd November, 2005 at 3:16 pm  

    Source: http://www.strategypage.com/

  4. Sunny — on 2nd November, 2005 at 3:21 pm  

    See, I saw that, and didn’t link it because it is such a biased article.

    Over the last three decades, generous social benefits and immigration policies
    Rubbish, what generous immigration policies?

    This area is home to about 500,000 Moslems. Many largely Moslem suburbs of Paris, and other large cities, have become no-go zones for the police, and anyone who is not of Middle Eastern origin.

    Rubbish, I was wandering around Paris suburbs when I was there and there wasn’t a single issue. Besides, there are plenty of African Christians there too.

    and by maintaining their old country culture and language, they made it more difficult for their kids to get jobs
    Rubbish. Sikhs and Hindus do just fine here in the UK doing the same.

    but a look at crime statistics shows that high rates of robbery, murder and rape tend to coincide with Moslem areas
    There are is also a correlation with economic deprivation and crime, and I bet the same applies to poor white-French areas.

    nd there has been a major outbreak of anti-Semitic attacks on Jews, and Jewish targets (synagogues, cemeteries, Etc.)

    But it forgets to mention that a lot of the anti-semitic attacks have been from French neo-Nazi groups, in the wake up of that nationalist who won plenty of votes a few years ago (forget his name).

    to just ignore the French Moslems
    As opposed to try and help them integrate into society.

    Generally a biased article full of holes.

  5. Bijna — on 2nd November, 2005 at 3:47 pm  

    >> generous social benefits and immigration policies
    > Rubbish

    In 50 years 8% of the population of France
    has become Muslim. That is a huge increase.
    For such large increase to happen, there must
    have been generous immigration policies.

    >> and by maintaining their old country culture
    > Rubbish. Sikhs and Hindus do just fine here

    But this is not about Sikhs and Hindus.

    If Sikhs and Hindus doing fine while keeping
    their culture, that must mean they have a
    nice, friendly culture.

    North African Muslims (Berbers) are quite
    macho. I know, because I live amongst them.
    They fight a lot to win “respect”.

    >> crime statistics [of Muslims]
    > same applies to poor white-French areas

    Which is nowhere denied. The article just
    observes that crime rates among Muslims
    are high which has lead to no-go areas.

  6. Sunny — on 2nd November, 2005 at 3:58 pm  

    In 50 years 8% of the population of France has become Muslim. That is a huge increase. For such large increase to happen, there must have been generous immigration policies.

    Not necessarily. France has close links with many of the African countries because of colonialism. So many of immigrants from those territories come to France for work. It does not apply easy immigration policies at all. In fact France has a closer link and a greater interest in all its former African territories than all the other former colonial powers.

    If Sikhs and Hindus doing fine while keeping
    their culture, that must mean they have a
    nice, friendly culture.

    Muslims in London are also included in this category. What this implies is that if the jobs are there, people of any culture can integrate the two. If the jobs are not there, some people take the opportunity to blame their culture when its more of an issue of lack of jobs and general economic deprivation.

    The article just
    observes that crime rates among Muslims
    are high which has lead to no-go areas.

    Its a false implication with no causality, that’s the issue. Crime is high in any area which is quite poor. To try and pin this on religion is biased and lazy journalism.

  7. Bijna — on 2nd November, 2005 at 4:52 pm  

    > Muslims in London are also included in this category.

    Because they are not Berbers.

    Berbers are mountain people. They live in clans in small fortress villages. All the time strifing with the other clans and the government. Men are warriors, women are obedient. Stealing is ok if its for the clan. Tax collectors get their throut slit. Government aid is rejected as it would influence their culture. Except for narcotics trade, there is not much outside contact and things are they same as they were 1300 years ago.

    Suddently they move to France or the Netherlands for work. But they keep their language and customs. The rest is in the article I posted, or should I say, the rest is history.

  8. DesiPundit » The France Way — on 2nd November, 2005 at 5:12 pm  

    […] Sunny is unhappy with France’s method of dealing with the ethnic minority problem (i.e. do not specially acknowledge them, just treat everyone as individuals). The method is ‘up in flames’, he argues, and has anecdotal evidence to back it up. […]

  9. Inders — on 2nd November, 2005 at 5:15 pm  

    Back to Basics…

    They are rioting because two kids died in an accident while running away from the police?

    What are the police meant to do ? Not chase people ?

  10. coruja — on 2nd November, 2005 at 5:28 pm  

    What you see is the various ways countries with a recent colonial past has tried to accommodate the people from their former colonies.

    I don’t think you can compare race relations in Britain to that of any other European country - the comments I hear from French and Dutch people living in London about ‘Muslims’ is the same stuff I heard when I was growing up about ‘Asians’ and ‘Blacks’. Britain is quite far ahead in that respect.

    The people causing the problems are Muslim because France had colonies in N.Africa. If they had colonies in the West Indies and India I’m sure it would be these people that would be rioting - as they undoubtedly would be the poorest and ghettoised.

    It seems to be that when you lose an empire you do your best to re-create the colonial situation in your own country - you import people for cheap labour without ever, initially at least, intending for them to be fully integrated. I mean you wouldn’t ever want them to marry your daughter would you?

    Basically you treat ‘black’ people like shit in your own country because historically you have treated them like shit in their own country. And then you wonder why they complain?

  11. Al-Hack — on 2nd November, 2005 at 5:29 pm  

    They are rioting because they feel the police treat them like shit and keep harassing them. We can’t even compare stop-and-search stats but I guarantee it would be much worse than black have in the UK.

    Because they are not Berbers.

    There is only one way to describe this theory - bollocks. I have a Berber mate, French Algerian, and they are pretty chilled out peeps. They do not call themselves Arabs, they smoke quite a bit of hash, many do, and don’t look down on drinking alcohol. The Muslim angle is bollocks, though LGF (no surprise there, Sherlock) is pushing that angle. But whoever accused LGF of having brains?

  12. Siddharth — on 2nd November, 2005 at 6:13 pm  

    Sunny:
    I’m unfamiliar with the Rod Liddle reference:
    calling them all part of the Republic and forcing them to be the same

    How did he suggest that would translate to the UK model of multi-cultarism?

    I ask this for the sake of completeness. Most of the time, the man just makes me hurl.

  13. inders — on 2nd November, 2005 at 6:20 pm  

    Even if you’re pee’d off from being stopped and searched… who runs ?

  14. Vikrant — on 2nd November, 2005 at 6:22 pm  

    Sunny and Bijna,

    I think the i think the answer lies somewhere in between.
    I’ve been to Paris this August, i’ve seen the squalor of French Africans (who are predominantly Muslims) firsthand. But they themselves are responsible for it. What opportunities will they have if they remain uneducated?Even if there is discrimination against them in educational institutions, anybody who wants to have education will get it no matter the odds.

    BTW as for crime rate, one trip to Paris is enough to make one realise how safe is London. Its not a phenomenon restricted to Muslims.

  15. Vikrant — on 2nd November, 2005 at 6:24 pm  

    BTW Al-Hack LGF is just an American Conservative blog. Seriously what were u expecting from them?

  16. Siddharth — on 2nd November, 2005 at 6:31 pm  

    Vikrant: Where was I when you had the meeting that conservatism is synonymous with nasty, overt prejudice? LGF gives conservatism a bad name. If they were operating the same shit against Jewish people their ISP’s arse would be hauled into court by now.

  17. Vikrant — on 2nd November, 2005 at 6:35 pm  

    Vikrant: Where was I when you had the meeting that conservatism is synonymous with nasty, overt prejudice?

    Well i didnt say that for sure.

  18. Hugo — on 2nd November, 2005 at 6:45 pm  

    Long-time reader, first time poster etc etc. Not that it necessarily makes any difference, but it should be pointed out, I think, that French authorities currently deny that anybody was chasing the two electrocuted kids at all. Which makes me thing of Birmingham - rumours spread around a fairly isolated, insular community, and all hell breaks loose.

  19. Al-Hack — on 2nd November, 2005 at 7:19 pm  

    It’s that tired old argument isn’t it? Are the poor responsible for not educating themselves, or is the system responsible for being racist, thereby stopping them from pulling themselves out of poverty. Chicken or egg?

    One thing is certain, no one talked about the religion or the economic condition of the Irish in Northern Ireland a few months ago when they broke out into three days of rioting.

    Hugo - They say it was for somethign else, but did not deny the police were around.

  20. Steve M — on 2nd November, 2005 at 9:28 pm  

    Re. LGF, I don’t find the pieces themselves to be offensive but I find many of the comments despicable. I’m no lefty but it hurts my stomach to go there.

    As for France, it seems that there’s a serious problem of separation along the lines of ethnicity and race. In the UK many communities manage a fair degree of assimilation whilst retaining their own customs and religious and cultural integrity. Perhaps that’s what Sunny meant when he talked of his pride in the way Britain approaches these issues (but I hope he’ll tell me if it isn’t). We do have problems arising from the alienation of some members of our minority communities of course but not as bad as in France, it seems.

    Somehow the communities have to be brought together and this has to start with the community leaders clearly seeing the problems and being prepared to work to solve them. There are often difficulties in identifying the real leaders though, as we see in the UK. Those ‘leaders’ selected by the authorities don’t generally carry the respect of the communities they purport to lead.

    Anyway, that’s my take (FWIW). The issue is one of integrating into the society at large whilst retaining cultural identity. I guess that’s something that most of us who read this blog will understand.

  21. Geezer — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:16 am  

    If France “needs” these people (the rioters) why are so many of them unemployed?

    One reason for their discontent is that they know full well they are not “needed”. No wonder they are not happy.

    French people will have been wondering this week why they have to subsidise this group ad infinitum bearing in mind the social, economic and criminal costs involved (20 to 40 cars a night torched all this year for instance). I think a few more will be forgetting about the dichotomy of the French citizenist policy vs the British let-it-all-hang-out method and pondering more clear-cut effective real-world solutions. The nice way being to stop any more coming in and expel as many as possible. Lets hope they dont end opting for the nasty way. France is a country that sunk a Greenpeace boat and maintained its nuclear weapons testing in the teeth of world opinion. When they decide to stop pussyfooting around, well thats what they do.

  22. coruja — on 3rd November, 2005 at 11:03 am  

    May be in the future when European countries ‘invite’ cheap labour/citizens of their former colonies over they should insist these people be sterilised first.

  23. Indigo Jo Blogs — on 3rd November, 2005 at 12:25 pm  

    French reap what they sow

    I’m not a good graphic manipulator and never bothered to follow Linux Format’s GIMP course, but if I were, there would be a graphic on the right showing a French flag with the stripes burning, and a fist (mine) with…

  24. Bijna — on 3rd November, 2005 at 1:14 pm  

    I must correct myself, this has nothing to do with Berbers.
    For I see no difference between Paris and the Gaza strip.

  25. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:07 pm  

    LGF gives conservatism a bad name. If they were operating the same shit against Jewish people their ISP’s arse would be hauled into court by now.

    If they said those things about Jewish people they wouldn’t be true.

  26. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:12 pm  

    OP:
    Context is everything. If it were anti-Jewish blog, in the manner that it is anti-Muslim, they would say different, but equally disgusting, things about Jewish people.

  27. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:15 pm  

    Jewish people who stone rape victims, marry nine year olds? British Jews who blow themselves up on the tube? Jews who fly planes into buildings? Jews who strap explosives to ten year olds?

    Yes, if they got the chance, I’m sure they would. Just one problem though…

  28. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:20 pm  

    So the LGF is justified in your book then? For someone who has posted a comment somewhere to say that they learnt everything about Muslims from JihadWatch, I am not surprised.
    This would be analogous to someone saying that they learnt everything they knew about black people from a White Supremacist hate site.
    No shame, no shame.

  29. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:26 pm  

    I don’t think you are listening to OP are you?
    JihadWatch publishes facts.
    Hate sites publish just that - unsubstantiated hate.
    That doesn’t mean JihadWatch should be your only source (!!) but surely you’re not comparing them to whatever hate sites you have in mind…I’ve never visited them…

  30. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:36 pm  

    Nonsense. JihadWatch is a xenophobic hate site which publishes material that construes ‘facts’ to incite hatred. Its ISP should be notified.

  31. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:44 pm  

    Sounds like you’re in rather big-time denial…but will settle for 3 examples of Jihad Watch lies…which is what I assume you mean by putting ‘facts’ in inverted commas.

  32. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 3:59 pm  

    So the LGF is justified in your book then? For someone who has posted a comment somewhere to say that they learnt everything about Muslims from JihadWatch, I am not surprised.

    I don’t go to LGF any more, because, although Charles’ postings are simply news, albeit selective, I don’t like the comments there. I learnt everything I need to know about Islam (most of it anyway) at Faithfreedom.org, not Jihadwatch, although Jihadwatch is a very good site too.

    Having lost any argument, Siddharth resorts to abuse and swearing. How grown up.

  33. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:01 pm  

    What is LGF?

  34. blue mountain — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:02 pm  

    www.littlegreenfootballs.com

  35. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:03 pm  

    OP: I don’t give a flying fart what racist blogs you read. And sorry to lose my temper, dealing with impressionable racist turds like you and yours always does that to me.

  36. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:06 pm  

    Siddharth - it is you who seem to be reading the racist blogs. I am not familiar with LGF but am still waiting for those examples of JihadWatch racism / lies.

  37. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:10 pm  

    Oh, and Siddharth, just remind me again, what race are Muslims?

  38. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:11 pm  

    Chris, don’t hold your breath. Now you know all the links, go study.

  39. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:13 pm  

    OP: The one you hate (darkies and muslim at that).

  40. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:14 pm  

    Good idea about the breath - I’d obviously expire long before you bothered to back up your assertions.

  41. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:15 pm  

    Chris: please do.

  42. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:16 pm  

    I assume you could keep this up all day?
    As OP says: “Having lost any argument, Siddharth resorts to abuse and swearing. How grown up. “

  43. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:17 pm  

    Chris, please feel welcome to have the last word. All racists do.

  44. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:20 pm  

    Ho ho ho!

  45. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:20 pm  

    Well JW publishes facts… even though some comments there are despicable with all those Conservative Christians & Hindutva people posting there. But over all JW is a balanced blog and some of its arguments, i must say are convincing. Cant say same about LGF though.

  46. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:37 pm  

    JW balanced?
    Vikrant - you must be a racist

  47. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:47 pm  

    hehe guess I am.. but not as half as my namesake at JW.

  48. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:50 pm  

    Is this a rationalist contempt for all religions or an anti-semitic blood-libel?

    If your answer is the former, then try reading a blog that spends its entire opus publishing material of this nature. Sooner or later, it will start to be anti-Semitic, whether you like it to admit it or not. Or you are in danger of being sensitised to anti-Semitism, which is worse.
    This is the nature of blogs like LGF, JW and FF.

  49. Kulvinder — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:57 pm  

    Sweeties, ‘facts’ aren’t as important as coherent and concise arguments. Jihadwatch, in my experience doesn’t and never has said anything of real interest. You are of course free to disagree but it gets more than a little annoying when petty tangential debates start taking place. Ill delete flame wars, attempts at starting flamewars, incitement to flamewar or indeed anyone who is generally shit.

    If you wish to discuss the merits (or lack thereof) of JW, LGF or whatever generic rant-blogs, do it elsewhere.

  50. Geezer — on 3rd November, 2005 at 4:59 pm  

    LGF anti-semitic - now I know you’re joking!

  51. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:02 pm  

    Kulvinder - sorry - all I can say is “he started it”!

    Siddharth - I’m not sure what the disgusting site you linked to has to do with JW??

  52. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:05 pm  

    Chris - I couldn’t have made the point clearer. Anyway, looks like you’re well on the way to de-sensitisation if you think JW is a fine blog and American Samizdat ‘disgusting’. Dry a good detox regime.

  53. pregethwr — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:06 pm  

    Sarkozy worries me, I thik he will win the presidential race by a landslide, I also think he has the most dangerous, and most persuasive brand of conservatism in europe at the moment.

    Makes David Cameron look very cuddly.

  54. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:09 pm  

    Well you’ve made an assertion rather than a point.
    I assume that you chose your tasteful link from that particular site because JW and the mysterious LGF do not go in for anything like it.
    When I asked for examples from JW I recall you told me to f-off.

  55. thabet — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:12 pm  

    One only needs to read one of Spencer’s publications to realise he is either a nutter, or someone who is milking the existing political/social climate in the US.

  56. coruja — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:12 pm  

    If you want to keep an eye on a particular group - demonise them and engender antipathy against them then you basically spend all your time listing all the negative bits of information you can find against them.

    Yes it is factual in the sense that it reports events across the world involving Muslim activity that they perceive as jihad - it is really based around their representation of jihad.

    I would hardly say it is a balanced view of the Muslim world.

  57. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:14 pm  

    Pregethwr - yes, very worrying.
    But is this not because the French elite have been in denial about the consequences of their own policies - consequences which the elite never, ever have to face themselves?
    Sunny’s point no. 1 is right - the British way has (so far) been better. But we need to be careful too.
    To pretend numbers don’t matter is not anti-racist, it’s just dumb.

  58. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:23 pm  

    well Spencer’s keeping a watch on Jihadists… anything wrong with it?

    I’ve seen its Hindutva guys who’ve become favoured whipping boys here. For starters they dont go on preaching “World without Pakistan”, i think it was Savarkar who first put forward two-nation theory. Moreover almost all Indians have accepted Pakistan as an independent country. Isnt is hypocritical of you guys. When you here demonise Hindutva guys with some basically made up points nobody accuses you of xenophobia. But when somebody tries to keep a watch on Jehadis you go on screeming “racism”,”xenophobia”. Isnt is hypocritical? Spencer has proved (i personally checked all the references in his his book) that modern jehadis do indeed take inspiration from certain portions of Koran and Islamic history. Yes Bible may have violent verses but we dont see Christians blowing up people because of that.

    Another thing i noticed here is equating Hindus with Muslims . HFB is compared to MCB. Well i dont agree with HFB. But unlike MCB it doesnt support terrorists nor scream about the “human rights abuses” (both real and imaginary) of Hindus in Muslim countries.

  59. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:25 pm  

    I believe AL-Hack has already pointed out the stupidity of saying JW and LGF are not biased on anothger thread, there is no point re-doing it. Maybe it could be a topic for a new thread.

    Either way, the language that JW and LGF indicates to anyone with an ounce of brain their biased slant and all the rest of it. Just stating “facts”, however one-sided does not automatically construe you are unbiased. That is pure naivety. The Islamists also use the facts for their propaganda purposes, but only the ones that support their own cause.

    Anyway, with regards to the original thread, I’d laughing more than anything right now. All those people who kept saying France had the correct way of dealing with things…. where are they hiding now?

  60. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:27 pm  

    well Spencer’s keeping a watch on Jihadists… anything wrong with it?

    Except he thinks all Muslims are Jihadists and that anyone who works with them is a Dhimmi. ;)

  61. thabet — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:28 pm  

    But no one thinks that Hindutva is the prime example of what “Hindus really think” or are an example of the “ideal Hindu”. Whereas, Spencerites believe “jihadis” are what Muslims are meant to be like; if they reject the “jihadis” they’re simply lying.

  62. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:29 pm  

    Those people I assume were referring to enforcement of secularism in state institutions / headscarf bans etc.
    (NB that aspect of what they do may still be a good idea)
    They (like me I admit) had no idea exactly what went on in the Parisian suburbs…

  63. thabet — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:32 pm  

    All those people who kept saying France had the correct way of dealing with things…. where are they hiding now?

    They’re probably unhappy the French haven’t shot dead any of the rioters yet.

  64. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:33 pm  

    Sunny,
    Earlier on in the thread I asked you about that Rob Liddle. But you cruelly ignored me, so I’ll ask again.

    I’m unfamiliar with the Rod Liddle reference:
    calling them all part of the Republic and forcing them to be the same

    How did he suggest that would translate to the UK model of multi-culturalism?

  65. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:35 pm  

    But no one thinks that Hindutva is the prime example of what “Hindus really think”

    Exactly. The Hindutva lot are ridiculed even in India and are a minority. But no one cares about them because there is no international angle with a white person being hurt. Spencer is a one-agenda donkey.

  66. Bijna — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:36 pm  

    > Except he thinks all Muslims are Jihadists
    > and that anyone who works with them is a Dhimmi.

    As you put it: rubbish.
    Below is an interview with Spencer.

    http://www.intelligencesummit.org/news/RobertSpencer/RS100705.php

  67. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:37 pm  

    But no one thinks that Hindutva is the prime example of what “Hindus really think” or are an example of the “ideal Hindu”.

    Try telling that to Pakistanis.

    Anyways the reason most people dont believe Hindutva isnt the prime example of what Hindus think is because most Hindus themselves have distanced from that ideology and publicly condemned it.

    Whereas “moderate” Muslims are yet to tackle Jihadism amongst them. Most Muslims wont condemn terrorism that happens in Kashmir. Ofcourse in the name of “freedom struggle” killing kaffirs and ethic cleansing is permitted isnt it? All those equating with Kashmir with Palestine are idiots. Indian misdeeds have been grossly exagerated whilst Jihadist masquerade as “sepratists” and “freedom fighteres”.

    Most Muslims in the world dontinue to bray about Bosnia,Palestine,Kashmir et al. but they dont spare few words for whats happening to non-Arabs in Sudan, Kashmiri Pandits,Bangladeshi Hindus,Christians in Indonesia.

    Muslims might go on sermoning the world on secularism but pray tell me, save for Turkey which other Muslim country is secular? Even Malaysia has anti-non-Muslim laws. Hindus would talk about Hindutva and the damages they’ve done to secularism but i dont see Muslims talking about lack of secularism in Saudi Arabia,Pakistan,Iran…

  68. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:39 pm  

    And Sunny no need to berate Spencer that guy knows his thing. Hes got a degree in Islamic studies. Hes not some quack out there to make money.

  69. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:41 pm  

    Anyways the reason most people dont believe Hindutva isnt the prime example of what Hindus think is because most Hindus themselves have distanced from that ideology and publicly condemned it.

    Only because their brand of sectarian politics got them (the BJP and allies) thrown out of power in the last election. But their visceral beliefs remain as do most of their ideaology. Nothing has changed apart from some overtures to the Pakistan regime, which failed to ring true anyway.

  70. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:45 pm  

    Well lets look at the Pakistani side. One reading session of “Pakistan Studies” is enough to make a Hindu throw up.
    Infront of the glaring historical revisionism from Pakistan, “Saffronisation of History” looks mild indeed.

    Those who forget history are condemned to relive it.

  71. Steve M — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:47 pm  

    Siddharth makes a good point here.

    We can campaign against injustice and fight for freedom or human rights. However we must be careful. If we spend much time trolling through the sewer, we ain’t going to come out smelling of roses.

    It is only when we can look at a situation without racism that we can see the truth. Surely we must all be constantly vigilant that we don’t allow ourselves to become desensitised - not just to anti-semitism but to all racism.

    And just an aside, OP - We all know that there is racism against Muslims. We live in times when reasonable people of all races and religions must take particular care not to fan the flames of hatred. For you to ask in that context, “what race are Muslims?” is beneath you. Please examine it.

  72. Steve M — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:50 pm  

    In my post # 71 I was referring to Siddhart’s post #48. This thread is really flying.

  73. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:50 pm  

    Dude,
    Islam is not a race.

  74. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:54 pm  

    Islam is not a race. Therefore Muslims are not a race.

  75. Steve M — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:55 pm  

    Yes Vikrant, I understand that Islam is not a race but would you deny that prejudice against Muslims exists?

  76. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:55 pm  

    Whereas “moderate” Muslims are yet to tackle Jihadism amongst them.

    Hmmmm… I think the silent majority is there, but they have yet to develop the infrastructure to tackle it. Partly that is because the west strengthens the hands of the Islamists by playing into their agendas.

    Most Muslims in the world dontinue to bray about Bosnia,Palestine,Kashmir et al. but they dont spare few words for whats happening to non-Arabs in Sudan, Kashmiri Pandits,Bangladeshi Hindus,Christians in Indonesia.

    Again, I agree but the hypocrisy is everywhere. I don’t know anyone apart from orgs like Amnesty International (and myself and Arif that is :D ) who view all conflicts with the same principles. The Hindus, Christians, Jews, Sikhs etc all obsessed with looking at their own agendas. This is nothign new.

    Bijna, thanks for the link. It just confirms what I already said.

  77. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:56 pm  

    Bigotry is bigotry, whether towards a race or a religion. I think that is what Steve M is trying to imply.

  78. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 5:57 pm  

    Steve M : no-one can object to what he says about the link he posted (on #48). Trouble is he doesn’t seem to differentiate between that obviously scummy site and JW.

  79. Vikrant — on 3rd November, 2005 at 6:03 pm  

    Sunny we all have our own agendas but arent Hindus themselves the mostvociferous opponents of Hindutva. Staying silent is as good as supporting jihadists.

  80. Siddharth — on 3rd November, 2005 at 6:08 pm  

    Samizdata is a ’scummy site’ and JW is good and pure as the driven snow.
    ha ha!

  81. Chris — on 3rd November, 2005 at 6:30 pm  

    No - but you produced your link from that site rather than from JW. Please show us the JW equivalent!

  82. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 6:44 pm  

    arent Hindus themselves the most vociferous opponents of Hindutva. Staying silent is as good as supporting jihadists.

    Agreed, and disagree. There are movements to challenge the latter, but like I said, infrastructure takes time. The govt makes it worse though, with their obsession with community leaders IMO.

  83. Steve M — on 3rd November, 2005 at 6:54 pm  

    The govt makes it worse though, with their obsession with community leaders IMO. - Sunny

    You’re right but what are their alternatives?

  84. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 7:22 pm  

    You’re right but what are their alternatives?

    Simply have a much wider range of voices and representatives who have different points of view.

    IMO the same problem applies to the Hindu and Sikh communities. In both cases a narrow range of self-styled leaders, who come from conservative religious backgrounds, speak for everyone.

    One of the reasons why we’ve set up Pickled Politics of course :)

  85. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 7:47 pm  

    A religion is a set of beliefs. If some of those beliefs are unpleasant - for example human sacrifice - it is not bigotry to dislike them.

    A religion may contain some aspects that it is right to dislike, for example, second class status for women.

    Race is something nobody can help. To dislike someone on grounds of race is bigotry.

  86. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 7:56 pm  

    So I take it you dislike Judaism and Christianity too because of passages in the Old and New Testament which talk about homosexuals, and their attitudes against women?

  87. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 8:47 pm  

    There simply is not as much of it, proportionally. In the New Testament there is next to no violence and loads of peaceful stuff. In the Koran it is the other way round. In the Old Testament there is a fair amount of violence, but it is historical accounts rather than instructiuons for all time.

    However, even if the teachings of Christ were as violent and misogynist as those of Mohammed, that would not negate my assertion that religion is a set of beliefs and race is an immutable characteristic.

  88. Sunny — on 3rd November, 2005 at 11:27 pm  

    OP - I assume then you’re very well versed and have read the Qu’ran extensively?

    Because you seem to be making excuses here. Either the mysogny and violence is there, or it isn’t.

    Just saying it is not practiced or is historical accounts is you trying to shift your stance since the same applies to the Qu’ran.

    And yes, religion is a set of beliefs that can be rejected or accepted. But it is still being bigoted to hate or reject someone because of a label without getting to know them first.

  89. Old Pickler — on 3rd November, 2005 at 11:49 pm  

    But it is still being bigoted to hate or reject someone because of a label without getting to know them first.

    I totally agree about that. You should always get to know someone and never reject them on the basis of a label.

    Believe it or not, you can intensely dislike Islam and like individual Muslims. Alternatively you can like and approve of Christianity but dislike any individual Christian.

    But to dislike ‘blackness’, ‘brown skin’ or whatever is just bigotry because it precludes getting to know anything about the individual.

  90. Al-Hack — on 4th November, 2005 at 12:45 am  

    So OP, going by what you’ve just said, and in the interests of being fair… would we be right in assuming you also dislike Christianity and Judaism, but have no problems with Christians and Jews?

  91. Old Pickler — on 4th November, 2005 at 1:11 am  

    That does not entirely follow fromm what I said. I judge individual Christians, Jews and Muslims on their merits. Some I like, some not. Regarding the religions, I prefer Christianity, then Judaism to Islam. A major factor in that is the treatment of women, since I am one.

    I am also conservative politically, but sometimes prefer individual left wingers over individual right wingers.

    Skin colour is profoundly irrelevant. Nearly all the people I have ever hated have been white. But I can’t stand Darcus Howe, who is a vainglorious twat.

  92. Mokum — on 4th November, 2005 at 1:19 am  

    Oops! The html was all wrong in my previous post. When will you set up a preview button? Trying again:

    Wow, Sunny, you pick the soft and fluffy topics, don’t you :-)

    The bitterness brewing process:

    * A poor economic situation (for the country as a whole, not just immigrants)
    * Social tensions that spring from that situation
    * French identity crisis as globalisation wallops la gloire (this makes lashing out at others all the more likely)
    * a history that is horrific on both sides (massacres of immigrants in Paris and civilian French colonists in Algeria, just 40 odd years ago)
    * racist cops (oh yeah) (anyone seen La Haine?)
    * angry 2nd/3d generation kids who don’t feel either French or Algerian
    * making some of them turn to radical Islam (as in radical, not as in Islam itself) for identity, and so rejection of all others, even their nominal fellow Muslims
    * and others still just to be plain old jerks, without a radical imam in sight

    I could go on, but I guess I’m already in enough trouble to start with.

    I hear similar stories here in Holland all the time. Untangling this mess is going to be very difficult.

    I think you and I could easily agree about many of the right things for the authorities to do. The hijab ban, for example, was, for me, petty and stupid.

    What I’d ask is for you to see how perfect the storm is, including, for want of a less inflammatory word, cultural issues. I don’t think you give them enough weight and are sometimes too quick to find fault with government systems rather than complex disasters with every root cause under the sun.

    Dutch bluntness: France has lots of Vietnamese immigrants facing all the same problems, right up to shared awful history. Why don’t they riot?

    This could get worse. Rather than tackling the legitimate issues, France might only crack down harder, in all the wrong ways. Making the storm even more perfect, with lots of help from the jerks in the banlieues.

    Both sides must change.

  93. Sunny — on 4th November, 2005 at 2:07 am  

    Heh, I think this might be the first time I agree with you entirely Mokum ;)

    OP - I assume you prefer Christianity not on the basis of the actual New Testament but because of how Christians behave now. Christians in Eastern Europe for example are still very sexist and mysoginistic.

  94. Mokum — on 4th November, 2005 at 2:21 am  

    It won’t be the last, if I can help it. There are some interesting stories in Holland. If I can, in the months to come, I’ll bring you more. Original and 100% Islamic (radical itjihad faction), inshallah.

  95. Old Pickler — on 4th November, 2005 at 2:24 am  

    I assume you prefer Christianity not on the basis of the actual New Testament but because of how Christians behave now. Christians in Eastern Europe for example are still very sexist and mysoginistic.

    I prefer Christianity to Islam because I prefer the peaceful message of the New Testament to the violent, misogynist message of the Koran. The practioners of each, their skin colour, their behaviour is neither here nor there.

  96. Kulvinder — on 4th November, 2005 at 8:01 am  

    I prefer Christianity to Islam because I prefer the peaceful message of the New Testament to the violent, misogynist message of the Koran

    Speaking as someone who isn’t particularly religious its always lol amusing when people who are very much inclined that way get into a penis contest.

  97. peter — on 4th November, 2005 at 9:19 am  

    Jihadwatch is a great site bringing the truth about Islamism to people in the west. It is a corrective to most of our public discourse, which is led by ‘Religion of Peace’ do-goodniks who, for entirely noble reasons, are still trying to sell us the lovely mirage that is the Interfaith tea party.

  98. blue mountain — on 4th November, 2005 at 3:55 pm  

    Sunny I would like to know whether you think VS Naipaul is a donkey or not.

    I want to what do you think about these articles by Razi Azmi.

    The state(s) of the Ummah
    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_3-3-2005_pg3_2

    The elusive Ummah — II
    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_10-3-2005_pg3_2

    Succession in the Ummah — III
    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_17-3-2005_pg3_2

    The historical Ummah — IV
    http://www.dailytimes.com.pk/default.asp?page=story_24-3-2005_pg3_2

    Do you think these are all lies ?

    Why do converts to Islam become hostile to their previous faith and cultures ? Why do Iran refuse to recognize Navroz?Why do Pakistan allow people to steal bricks from Harappa and Mohenjodaro sites?Why do Pakistan Neglects it’s pre-islamic architectural sites like Taxila?Why do Afgans thinks that Bamian Budhhas and all other Budhhist sites are works of Satan?

    Why do a Western educated person like Imran Khan instead of embracing tolerance and secularism become a rabble rousing friend of the Mullahs and spews venom on the West where he spent most of his life and which has donated most generously to his hospital?Is it all oppurtunitism and hypocrisy to typical of South Asian politicians?

    Why do Bangladesh become an enemy of India?Why do Bangladesh become a radicalized muslim country within a span of 10 years ?

  99. Bijna — on 4th November, 2005 at 4:19 pm  

    A member of the Religion of Peace has
    entered a Paris bus, poored fuel over
    a handicaped woman and set her on fire.

  100. Bijna — on 4th November, 2005 at 4:56 pm  

    Yahoo: Why paris is burning

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nypost/20051104/cm_nypost/whyparisisburning

  101. Arif — on 5th November, 2005 at 5:34 pm  

    We don’t really know what is fuelling the riots in France. I have theories, but they are no better than anyone else’s.

    The interesting thing for me is to see what discourses emerge most powerfully from it - as people will want to use any controversy to bolster their own world-view. It will give a clue as to where the French ruling classes wants to go and which groups have the strongest voices in opposing them.

    Will it be “blame the Muslims”, “blame the Government”, “Blame the ideology of secularism”, “blame the media”, “blame the rumour-mongers”, etc etc….

    My guess is we will be looking for solutions and supporting analyses which keep us feeling righteous. And maybe this is happening on this thread. What do we really know?

  102. Bikhair — on 7th November, 2005 at 3:39 am  

    Binja,

    Now why would the member of the “Religion of Peace” pour gasoline on a woman and set her on fire when in the “Religion of Peace” you can neither punish the living with fire or cremate the dead with fire? Maybe this jerk off was watching too many Bollywood films before he went on his crime spree.

    Perhaps you should compare text with actions than open your gaping mouth. Oh but thats right, because Islam isnt a Western religion it neither deserves our respect or an indepth survery because after all how complicated and indepth can the religion of the A-rabs be?

    That reminds me since I have read the Torah, or at least the first five books of the bible I should become a rabbi. Its gotta be that simple.

    Yes Yes Yes, Old Bikhair is here to enlighten and be annoyingly sarcastic but she doesnt know for how long.

    Shabot Shalom!!!

  103. Bikhair — on 7th November, 2005 at 3:45 am  

    Peter,

    What the hell is Islamism? The Sharia doesnt use such terms to describe crack crazy Muslims perhaps you should open up your Islamo-glossary because you are gonna confuse the very few people on planet Earth who actually have the knowledge to speak about such matters. R. Spencer not included.

    BTW tell that dumb bell to stop referring to Umdat as Salik or The Reliance of the Traveller to explain every things Muslims do, the “Wahhabis” will be infuriated to be associated with such sufi garbage.

  104. inders — on 7th November, 2005 at 3:52 am  

    Islam is a western religion

  105. Bikhair — on 7th November, 2005 at 3:53 am  

    Old Pickler,

    “I prefer Christianity to Islam because I prefer the peaceful message of the New Testament to the violent, misogynist message of the Koran.”

    I prefer Islam to Christianity because I prefer to truthful message of the Quran to the falsehood of the New and Old Testament.

    OP next time your government wants to invade another country of Darul Islam please think of your peaceful New Testament and stay the hell out of our countries unless you are invited like in the case of Saudi Arabia during the first Gulf War.

    “The practioners of each, their skin colour, their behaviour is neither here nor there. ”

    In Islam it is a bit different. We are taught, in theory, that our actions are a dawah, a call to Islam ,so for that reason we should have the best of manners unless we must take a different course of actions depending on the circumstances. That shouldnt be too unreasonable.

    BTW Old Pick, when you were going on your tirade about Arabs over there on Blogistan, why werent you thinking about, “The practioners of each, their skin colour, their behaviour is neither here nor there.” “Race is something nobody can help. To dislike someone on grounds of race is bigotry.?”

  106. Bikhair — on 7th November, 2005 at 4:06 am  

    Vikrant,

    “Dude,
    Islam is not a race.”

    I’ve given this fact, that Islam isnt a race, alot of thought. I have come to the conclusion that because so many consider Islam and Arabs synonymous it might as well be. People dont treat Islam, its theology, its history, its language, etc. as serisouly as they do Christianity or Judaism because it isnt apart of the Western narative. That seems very racist to me, because if Islam were associated, not with the Arab or the Oriental, but with the Westerner of the White man, perhaps it would be treated differently. Maybe there wouldnt be so many people who have read the Quran, albeit in Englsih, and wouldnt consider them experts on the religion, and the Arab pysche. Its about respect. That same respect, not to be confused with affection, is given to the Western traditions, which convinces me that while most want it to be an ideas thing, the sentiments that lie beneathe are very racial and ethnic.

  107. peter — on 7th November, 2005 at 11:00 am  

    You may have “given it a lot of thought” but you haven’t come up with a hill of beans, have you? A small percentage of the Islamic people in this country are Arabs, so your idea that anti-Islamic feeling is down to some anti-Arab idea is so much steaming caca. Anti-Islamic feeling is a response to the highly aggressive nature of ‘the religion of peace’ and Islamism, which as you very well know is a term used widely to describe so-called ‘radical’ or political Islam.

    “That seems very racist to me”…”People dont treat Islam, its theology, its history, its language, etc. as serisouly as they do Christianity or Judaism because it isnt apart of the Western narative.”

    Poor deluded diddums! The reality is that Islam is treated with far more tolerance in non-Islamic countries than vice versa. Thailand, Pakistan, Saudi, Egypt, Indonesia - every day there are (under-reported) hate crimes against Christians and other religious minorities in Islamic majority countries.

    So perhaps this “Western narative” of yours, which you find so blameworthy, is in fact responding to the hate and contempt emanating from your authoritarian religion. After all, Buddhism and Hinduism - two religions avowedly outside the “Western narative” - are treated with respect in the West as they allow far more leeway for co-existence.

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