Monday, January 12, 2015

Paris Rally: Turning Point in Terror War?

1.6 million marched in Paris; elsewhere in France another 1.4 million rallied

Huge Show of Solidarity in Paris -Liz Alderman & Dan Bilefsky

More than a million people joined over 40 presidents and prime ministers on the streets of Paris on Sunday in the most striking show of solidarity in the West against the threat of Islamic extremism since the Sept. 11 attacks.

Responding to terrorist strikes that killed 17 people in France and riveted worldwide attention, Jews, Muslims, Christians, atheists and people of all races, ages and political stripes swarmed central Paris beneath a bright blue sky, calling for peace and an end to violent extremism.

The Interior Ministry described the demonstration as the largest in modern French history, with as many as 1.6 million people.

[W]orld leaders joined the march in a solemn line. They moved slowly, clasping arms to show solidarity with the victims. The crowd roared in approval. [T]he United States was represented by its ambassador to France, Jane D. Hartley.

Many in Paris expressed a sense that it was an unprecedented moment — one that could represent a turning point amid rising concerns about a clash of civilizations.
[New York Times]

Kerry Says He’ll Fly to France - Michael R. Gordon

Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Monday that he would fly to Paris at the end of the week in a gesture of support for the French government’s struggle against terrorism.
Mr. Kerry added the visit in part to answer criticism that the United States had sent only an ambassador, not a higher-ranking official, to a mass rally in Paris on Sunday that drew leaders from 40 countries.

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. was in Paris on Sunday to attend an international meeting of law enforcement officials, but did not go to the rally. Jane D. Hartley, the United States ambassador in Paris, participated in the march.
[New York Times]

Israel Welcomes European Jews - William Booth & Ruth Eglash

Israeli leaders said that they would welcome with open arms French Jews who fear for their safety in the wake of attacks by Islamist extremists in Paris last week.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and members of his cabinet linked arms with French politicians on Sunday during a march in Paris to commemorate the 17 people killed in three days.

Netanhayu drove home the point that Israel serves as a "front line" against Islamist militant groups. "They might have different names - ISIS, Boko Haram, Hamas, al-Shabab, al-Qaeda, Hizbullah - but all of them are driven by the same hatred and bloodthirsty fanaticism."  
(Washington Post)

Abbas far right; Netanyahu far left

Abbas at Paris Kumbaya March - Jonathan Tobin

Abbas, who was given an unusually prominent place in the front rank of the march symmetrically balancing the presence of Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu on the other side of French President Francois Hollande, carried a great deal of baggage in terms of his own association with terrorism and fomenting of hate against Jews.

The instinct of the news media is to embrace Abbas's presence there along with that of Netanyahu as proof that the march was a transcendent kumbaya moment that will mark a turning point in the struggle against terror and anti-Semitism. But the question more sober observers will struggle with is whether Abbas's poor record on these issues does more to undermine progress than the symbolism did to advance it.

[R]ather than standing in unity with the world against terrorism, Abbas signed a unity pact with Hamas terrorists last year, an act that blew up the peace talks Secretary of State Kerry worked to keep alive. But even more than that, Abbas has in recent months personally incited his people to commit acts of violence as part of an effort to falsely convince them that the mosques on the Temple Mount are in danger.
Indeed, had the Charlie Hebdo and kosher market murderers committed their acts in Israel, there is little doubt that Abbas would have honored them by naming a square or some edifice after them.
[A]ny good that might come from the symbolism of Abbas being there also reminds us that it will take more than one rally, however impressive it might have been, to defeat Islamist terror. What France and the world need to do to defeat terror is to acknowledge that the problem lies not so much in the few who commit these acts but in the vast number of people in the Muslim and Arab worlds that either rationalize or support such acts. Progress will come not when Mahmoud Abbas marches in Paris but when he stops supporting it at home.  Until then, inviting him to such events only undermines the purpose of the rally.
[Jewish World Review]

Sharansky: Time Running Out for Europe - Raphael Ahren

After Islamist terrorists massacred 12 people in the heart of Paris, Jewish Agency head and former Soviet Prisoner of Zion Natan Sharansky said, "We're not building our aliyah strategy on tragic events. We're building it on the fact that there is this place in the world called Europe, where Jews are feeling increasingly uncomfortable." Sharansky predicted more than 10,000 French Jews will move to Israel in 2015 - breaking 2014's record of 7,000.

"If France and the other Western nations will not fight quickly and strongly for reestablishing the civilization of liberal nations, Europe is in danger," he said. "The exodus of Jews, as many times in the past, is the first harbinger, a warning of where it goes."

"It was an ideological decision of this post-modern Europe that all cultures have the same values and therefore we cannot demand from them to change, to betray their culture for the sake of ours." Large parts of France's huge Muslim immigrant community don't feel loyal to the liberal values of society, he asserted. "Multiculturalism...created inside the society of a proud liberal nation a society of people who believe they can really challenge freedom of speech by terror."

France's error was to give citizenship to millions without demanding that they share French values, and it made this mistake because it believes that values are something relative. 
(Times of Israel)

Europe Has Acquired an Internal Muslim Colony - David Frum

As the political scientist Robert Leiken has written, "[W]estern Europe now plays host to often disconsolate Muslim offspring, who are its citizens in name but not culturally or socially. In a fit of absentmindedness, during which its academics discoursed on the obsolescence of the nation-state, western Europe acquired not a colonial empire but something of an internal colony, whose numbers are roughly equivalent to the population of Syria."

It is from these populations that ISIS has recruited hundreds of jihadists for its war in Syria and Iraq; it is from these populations that radical imams recruit domestic terrorists.

Sociologists estimate that at least 50% of French prisoners come from the roughly 7% Muslim minority. A plurality of French Muslims (46%) and a crushing majority of British Muslims (81%) considered themselves Muslims first, identifying with their respective European nations only to a secondary extent. Half of British Muslims wished to see Iran gain a nuclear bomb. 


Nigeria Needs ‘Same International Support’ as France
- Phyllis Chesler, PhD

Nigerian Catholic Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama has called for “the same international support to tackle Boko Haram as France has received since it was hit by Islamist attacks last week.”

I wonder whether or not the massive march and show of support in France against Islamic terrorism is the beginning of the democratic West’s resistance to Islamic terrorismor merely a symbolic and momentary “illusion.”

Will the massive show of solidarity in Paris lead to legislation that closes national borders, deports those on no-fly lists, deports radical imams at radical mosques, together with their radicalized followers in mosques and in prison, and deports those who have traveled to Iraq, Syria, and Yemen for jihadi training? Will it lead to legislation that also abolishes the no-go” zones–the kind of hostile, separatist Muslim-only neighborhoods in which French Jew Ilan Halimi was tortured by groups of Muslims for three weeks before he died? Will France pass such legislation, as well as enforce it?

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