Over the past week, we have watched from afar as France burns. It has been an interesting topic of conversation around here as many feel an odd sense of satisfaction, not at the destruction or the fate of people who are injured or killed in the violence, but that the country that has most represented pro-Palestinian/Arab and anti-Israel sentiment over the past 5 years is now seeing its own home-grown Islamic violence.
Many have argued repeatedly as the scourge of Islamic terrorism has spread from Israel, to the US, to the heart of Europe in London, Spain and France, that if only 'we' could solve the Israeli-Arab conflict the terrorists would be appeased and the violence would stop. If there was ever any validity to this specious claim, it has now been put to rest. There is no Western country that has shown a more pro-Arab foreign policy over the last 30-40 years than has France. No country that has welcomed more Muslim immigrants (now numbering 10% of the entire population of France). But, after five years of ignoring Arab/Muslim violence against Jews and Jewish institutions in France the rooster has now come home to roost. These same 'immigrant youth' who have been burning synagogues and attacking Jews have now turned their ire toward the rest of France. The mainstream media has seemingly ignored the role that radical Islam has played in the spread of this violence, instead focusing on unemployment and dissatisfaction of not being part of the great French ideal of "liberte, egalite, fraternite". It appears that when it comes to 'brown' and 'black' immigrants to France at least the 'egalite' and 'fraternite' are conveniently forgotten. However, the working-class suburbs of Paris and other major cities which are home to six million African-Muslim immigrants have been ignored by French authorities who have been replaced by fundamentalist Islamic imams who have been allowed to spew hate from their mosques and via the internet in a lawless, no-mans land. That hate has now found a new target and it is France itself. If the 'home-grown' terrorists of the 7-7 subway bombings in London didn't wake the West to the dangers of Islamic fundamentalism, then maybe the burning of France will do the trick.
Israelis are feeling strangely vindicated as the French authorities are shooting rubber bullets and tear gas and imposing strict curfews in an attempt to quell the riots. These are tools that have been used in Israel in our own battles against violence and terror and have always been harshly criticized by France and other countries of Europe.
We can only hope and pray that these type of incidents will bring the Western world around to one mind regarding radical Islam and its dangers. May we all be spared and further terrorism and violence and we, hopefully, wake-up to a new and more peaceful reality.