The Looming Civil War in France

An estimated 1.2 million Muslims in France would prefer Islamic rule to the secular Republic. 28% of the Muslims polled believe Sharia law comes before the laws of France. This is the conclusion drawn from a poll published by the Institut Montaigne which says nearly a third of the estimated four million Muslims in France have “adopted a system of values clearly opposed to the values of the Republic.” That is a large ocean to swim in for the 15,000 potential Jihadists said to be living in the country.

The question is not the 46% who are “totally secularized without renouncing their religion” and are content to practice their religion without imposing it on others; this “silent majority” which progressives want to insist on. The important number is how many affirm they are “outside of this society,” who want to see the system and secular civilization destroyed and are willing to work towards that end. What is more troubling is half the Muslims in France aged 15 to 25 feel this way and, according to the study, they make up ten percent of that age group.

Fewer than a dozen Islamists have killed 240 people and injured hundreds more over the past year-and-a-half. So, the figure of 15,000 “security risks” given by Prime Minister Manuel Vals should be alarming, especially because, if you can say one thing about the “silent majority” of Muslims in France, is that they have been very silent indeed. Those the Institut Montaigne refers to as “the authoritarians” feel their allegiance is to their religion and that its enemy is the secular French Republic. For these people, especially among the youth, Islam is an identity and a battle cry.

The number that counts is not how many will do nothing, but how many will.

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On Thursday one mayor, Guy Lefrand, asked the Prefect of Police to expel all those in his town of Evreux, Normandy, who are listed in the ‘S’ files, that is those police consider a security risk. “I am angry,” he said. “I am obliged to exaggerate by demanding the expulsion because they don’t give me the perfectly legitimate right to know who is on the ‘S’ files.” The mayor says he is worried some may be working for City Hall are in a school but French law does not allow the police to communicate who is on the files without a court order.

The far right National Front party, which opposes immigration and multiculturalism, is jumping  on the security band-wagon and pointing to Evreux as a no-go zone. Evreux Mayor Lefrand refused to give the National Front permission to hold a meeting in a working class quarter of the town because the Director General of City Hall said “he is incapable of assuring the security of the event in the Quarter of La Madeleine,” according to Timothy Houssin, a local National Front activist.  The Director General, François Bovril, said they can’t use the Hall because there is a market there on Sunday and it would disrupt traffic “and the Prefect has been very insistent on security as far as traffic is concerned.” Bovril said they could use a Hall further from the city center.

As the campaign for next year’s elections heats up, so does the rhetoric concerning the place of Islam in France and the role of Muslims living here.

Two Recent Headlines:

How can we avoid civil war? (Le Figaro 9/14) Civil war threatens a sleeping France (Le Figaro 8/28)