Great stuff from President Macron - Islamic precepts which go against French culture have no place in France
“We believe in the Enlightenment, and women have the same rights as men... People who think otherwise, let them do it somewhere else, not on French soil.”— James Bloodworth 🇫🇷 (@J_Bloodworth) October 31, 2020
Powerful comments by French President Macron 👏 👏 👏 pic.twitter.com/9jWBP0znJD
I found this paper particularly useful in understanding France's state of play.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The beheading of schoolteacher Samuel Paty, which occurred two weeks after a momentous speech by President Emmanuel Macron in which he unveiled a plan to defend French secular values against “Islamist radicalism,” marked the start of what might turn out to be an all-out war between France and the Islamic world, with Turkey’s Erdoğan leading the Muslim charge. By taking a stand against Muslim extremist violence and suppression of freedom of speech, Macron might find himself facing a new wave of Islamic terror.
On October 2, 2020, French president Emmanuel Macron made a momentous speech in defense of secularism. In the address, he unveiled a plan to defend French secular values against “Islamic radicalism.”
Two weeks later, on October 16, a French history teacher named Samuel Paty was decapitated in the street outside his school by an 18-year-old radical Islamist. The terrorist, a Russian-born teenager of Chechen heritage, succeeded in sending a deeply shocking message to supporters of laïcité, or French secularism: Islamic radicalism in France has no intention of going down without a fight.
The purported reason why the murderer, Abdoullakh Abouyedovich Anzorov, targeted Paty was that Paty had shown his students the cartoons of Muhammad published by the satirical paper Charlie Hebdo in 2015—images that prompted the invasion of the paper’s offices and massacre of its journalists by Islamist fundamentalists. In his speech prior to Paty’s murder, Macron had stated that France would not “renounce the caricatures”—in other words, France stands firmly in support of freedom of speech and will not be cowed by terrorism.
Macron’s speech was almost immediately followed by accusations from Muslims both at home and abroad that Macron is Islamophobic and racist. This furious response was especially strong in Turkey, as about half the imams in France are of Turkish descent.
In the October 2 speech, Macron attempted to be nuanced about how Islam and French secularism could be integrated. He unveiled a plan to defend French secular values against “Islamist radicalism,” adding that Islam was “in crisis” all over the world. He insisted that “no concessions” would be made in a new drive to push religion out of education and the public sector in France.
Macron said the measures were aimed at addressing the problem of growing “radicalization” in France and improving “our ability to live together.” He emphasized that “secularism is the cement of a united France,” but added that there is no sense in stigmatizing all Muslim believers.
Macron’s plan focuses on limiting foreign influence and investing in a new generation of French imams, with a certification process based in France. He categorized “Islamist separatism” as a “parallel society” that threatens France by holding sharia law above French law, which “often results in the creation of a counter-society.” Macron said the government will submit legislation in December 2020 designed to “reinforce secularism and consolidate republican principles.”
A meaningful act that went under the radar occurred on July 7, 2020, when a French Senate Inquiry Commission, headed by Jacqueline Eustache-Brinio, presented a report entitled “Islamist Radicalization: Facing and Fighting Together”.
The report describes the situation in France this way:
Islamist radicalism is not just about the issue of terrorism or transition to violent action, but also involves behaviors that can be peaceful and do not lead to violence. It may be the work of groups that advocate identity, withdrawal or entry into the associative and political world. …The groups that historically, like the Muslim Brotherhood, are active in France and seek to impose their views through networks of association seek recognition of authorities and, more recently, opt for integration in the electoral roll.
Faced with the rise of Islamism, the authorities have focused, since 1995, on the terrorist threat and the obstruction of violent action. This concern has resulted in the setting in place of a complete legal arsenal and the structuring of interior security services so as to respond to the threat. But the problem now facing French society has changed its nature: It is a multiform Islamist reflecting himself in all aspects of social life and tending to impose a new social norm by prevailing [upon] individual freedom.
Among the Commission’s main proposals, the following should be emphasized: