TRIBUNE :France must not fall into the trap set by terrorists”

October 30, 2020

It’s a tribune.Β This is a serious moment, he will not leave our memories.Β Samuel Paty, professor of history and geography, was murdered by an Islamist terrorist. In Nice, another despicable crime was committed. These monstrous acts are intended to sow hatred and terror.

This time, however, calls for unity were not enough to limit tensions within French society. In a democracy, debate is desirable after such events. But since the tragedy of October 16, some, sometimes even within the government, have embarked on the path of anathemas and delusional accusations. They take the heavy responsibility of weakening the country in the face of terrorists by pitting the French against each other. Would the murderers and those who encouraged them have already won?

There is an urgent need to mobilize together around secular and republican principles. If we fail, radical Islamism will have won, with the extreme right, a decisive victory by making the religious question, and more specifically Islam, the linchpin of French politics, at the expense of social, ecological and democratic emergencies. Worse, it will have installed lasting seeds of civil war.

To move forward, it is first important to recognize the shortcomings of the past. How many attacks on secularism and freedom of expression and teaching went unanswered? How many appeals for help ignored, whether they come from teachers and other public service workers in the face of deteriorating working conditions, or from residents of working-class neighbourhoods in the absence of the state, especially in the field of security? How much discrimination against Muslims or those who are supposed to be discriminated against?

Inadequate resources

Clearly, the government believes that radical Islamism could be effectively combated without at the same time combating racism, discrimination and the social and urban rifts of abandoned territories. He also pretends to ignore the existence of forces within Islam, in France and elsewhere, ready to fight deadly influences. This lack of a global vision always gives a symbolic victory to radical Islamists. It has long favoured their implementation.