Monday, November 14, 2005

Notes on the violence (part 3)

Comment in the FT (12 Nov) on the violence in France. Their leader says the biggest frustration for the rioters is the French model which 'teaches that every citizen of the republic must be absolutely equal and able to exercise his full rights, but as an individual, and not as member of some religious or ethnic group.' Christopher Caldwell says that France must not abandon its model and warns against Muslim groups developing private agendas, 'setting up parallel social-service structures in poor neighbourhoods' (a la Hamas or Hezbollah). The violence has been less in Marseilles, where according to its mayor, 'the strict division of church and state under a 1905 French law has been blurred.'

Jack Lang is quoted from an FT interview earlier this year: "Sarkozy will be his own worst enemy. He goes over the top. [...]  He is intelligent [...] He is brave. But you sense he is a little foolish. It is a paradox that this man you is minister of security will create a sense of insecurity."
Update: BBC Radio 4 on Sunday evening, 'in a change to our scheduled programmes',  had a profile of Nicholas Sarkozy.
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The neo-conservative project of democracy for the Middle East is coming under pressure from from people who are, well, just plain conservatives and anti-Islamists. Daniel Pipes said that it was senseless to distinguish between the Muslim Brotherhood, which renounces violence, and extremist groups. "They are all part of a radical utopian movement."

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