France in FLAMES

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  1. #1
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    France in FLAMES

    Can somone tell me what is going on over in France? What the hell is up with the weeks of rioting? Is it somthing serious? the news over here is vague. If anyone from France could explain the situation, I'd appreciate it. I love that country, and hope it doesn't fall apart.

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  3. #2
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    Awake since four days but I'll try to tell ya what happen in France in plain English. So, apologies if I made mistakes ! Well, the actual stituation in France is not very good, in a social point of view, these last years. I'm sure you got some problems with getthos in America, it's the same in France ! Personally, I think it's not a racial question, but a social problem. And our gouvernement is probably the worst I ever saw in my all life (okay, only 26 years old !).
    They used repressive squad police forces AND keep people in the fear of Getthos, to keep in place with the absolute power, and increase security and policy. The total budget for national scolarship was 40 millions Euros in 2002-2003. The total budget for police squad was 80 millions Euros the same year ! You see what I mean ! Tension is growing up in Getthos as the repressive power get stronger. And people still afraid (thanks French media !).
    Untill that day, ten days ago, when two young people from the Ghetto (near Paris I think) found death, for escaping or trying to escape to the police. Nobody can tell if they were innocent or not. It was like light a cig near dynamite ! Quickly, all the getthos people start some riot actions ! (but only in Ghetto, for now !).
    It starts from Paris region and grow up in every town with some importance. My town too but it's quickly calm down, cause we got a fight between studiants and police squad every week (since one year)! It's not the same thing, but it's the same problem: repressive squad versus an over-exagerated fear !
    Obviously, it's too early too tell precisely if it's a massive riot or what ! I think you can compare it to the LA riot in 92 (Is that the good year ?). But I'm not sure of the really impact of this ! It looks less massive but I don't have the statistics in mind.
    I know that France made a lot of crits against america those last years (well, more versus G.W. Bush that America itself !). But, you know, this last days, I'm feeling ashamed to be French !
    Well, I hope I don't over-exagerate the situation, maybe some CA compatriots like Aleksi can tell you some more, more objectivly purpose, cause they are living in Paris !
    That's all for now...
    Hope it will have a solution, really !
    Peace...
    Julien ALDAY

    [EDIT: It's seems not really optmistic, but hey ! Life goes on and I can buy my bread without wearing a gazmask ! I'm sure this riots are really impressive, but the country don't fall appart ! That's why I compared it to LA '92 riots ! Hope I don't hurt/shock anybody, but don't worry: French dudes still here on CA !
    From France with love !]

    Last edited by Alday.J; November 9th, 2005 at 03:48 AM.
    Julien ALDAY
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    So i take it a social unrest with the lower class population is flaming up? I looked on google and I can't find any exact reasons aside from something close to racial inequality with government policies. Correct me if i'm wrong.

    Sounds bad in any event.. all I have been seeing on the news is football drama lately (my roommates are all about sports) so i wasn't even aware this was happening.

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  5. #4
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    Hi Lord Blue !
    I hope I understand correctly your reply ! Well, what can I say: Of course there's a racial problem in France. After WW2, we took people from our north africa's colonies (where my grand-ma, grand-pa and father born) to help to the re-building of our countrie. And then, simply forget them in the gethos (of course, it was racial !). But generation after generation the situation get harder and harder with people who don't have a job, don't have a "situation", consideration and/or respect (in my point of view, it's a social problem). Too much pressure and they saw that our gouvernement won't help them. Frustration and anger grow up.
    It's a bit complicated to explain.
    I'm a bit frustrated that my english doesn't fit to my thoughts. Hope a french dude can help me ! Untill that time, I'll try to sleep, take a coffee and take the time to translate you the news point by point (it help me to progress in english, I hope !).
    Try to do my best !
    Cheers !

    Last edited by Alday.J; November 9th, 2005 at 04:37 AM.
    Julien ALDAY
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    I've seen interviews from the ghettos where they mention that its close to impossible to get a job if you have an arab sounding name or live in specific areas. Norwegian media have been focusing on years of failed integration politics as a cause to these problems. If thats correct? i dont know for sure.

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    BATTLE OF ALGIERS...rent it...right now...NOW

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    Okay, I'm back and try to be more precise: IT'S NOT CIVIL WAR IN FRANCE, BUT THERE'S A LOT OF RIOTS IN THE GETTHOS AREAS ALL OVER THE COUNTRIE !!! If I can't sleep tonight, I'll take some time to translate some French informations about the situation here !

    @ Slash: It's exactly the kind of situation they lived in France ! Your informations sources are correct, Slash. Now, you can understand what I mean by social problem. Our politics tell us "no ! no ! There's no racials problems, no integration's problems, we are "la France", countrie of man's rights, blablabla !" And frustration and anger grow up in Getthos areas.

    @ Raspar Capac: I love the fact you seems a "tintin" 's fan. Plus I know you're armenian, am I correct ? But I can't understand what you mean by this "BATTLE OF ALGIERS...rent it...right now...NOW". Would you, please, be more precise...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alday.J
    But I can't understand what you mean by this "BATTLE OF ALGIERS...rent it...right now...NOW". Would you, please, be more precise...

    This from my good friend mr. Amazon:
    One of the most influential films in the history of political cinema, Gillo Pontecorvo’s The Battle of Algiers focuses on the harrowing events of 1957, a key year in Algeria’s struggle for independence from France. Shot in the streets of Algiers in documentary style, the film vividly recreates the tumultuous Algerian uprising against the occupying French in the 1950s. As violence escalates on both sides, the French torture prisoners for information and the Algerians resort to terrorism in their quest for independence. Children shoot soldiers at point-blank range, women plant bombs in cafés. The French win the battle, but ultimately lose the war as the Algerian people demonstrate that they will no longer be suppressed. The Criterion Collection is proud present Gillo Pontecorvo’s tour de force—a film with astonishing relevance today.

    my two cents...
    as always....the actions of a colonial country in the past always will come back to haunt them...for example, what the US did on behalf of the UK in Iran in the 50's under the guise of "anti communism" = hatred of the west, 911...etc,etc...I am in now way condoning these acts.. but when people have absolutely no HOPE for the future...they resort to extreme measure.This is human nature.

    Last edited by Rascar Capac; November 9th, 2005 at 02:56 PM.
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    Ive heard that theres alot of trouble finding jobs, almost exclusively in the mid-to-lower class teenagers. They feel cheated out of work, and want their equal opportunity, but nobody wants to hire them. Hopefully this will all be over soon, civil unrest anywhere isnt usually a good thing.

    To quote thursday:
    We all sing the songs of separation
    And we watch our lives bleed out through our hands
    That's how it was on the first day
    When we saw Paris in Flames

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alday.J
    Our politics tell us "no ! no ! There's no racials problems, no integration's problems, we are "la France", countrie of man's rights, blablabla !" And frustration and anger grow up in Getthos areas.
    .
    So this riot is precipitated by a long history of inequality and neglect?

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    I can imagine it is scary, live day after day without any perspective for the future....

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    also france has a crazy mandatory 2-3 month vacation....where mostly everything (ie shops and businesses close down for the summer)...

    someone verify if i'm mistaken...

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    i heard it has spread over to germany and swizerland ... but these riots were VERYVERYVERY small...nothing to fear...thers more deavastation at a normal demonstration...but i thought someone could be interested to read that.

    I hope noone of our French members is in Danger or was in some

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  15. #14
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    Sorry for the delay, guys, but I'm glad to read your comments !

    @ Raspar Capac: Hi dude ! I quote this:

    "as always....the actions of a colonial country in the past always will come back to haunt them...for example, what the US did on behalf of the UK in Iran in the 50's under the guise of "anti communism" = hatred of the west, 911...etc,etc...I am in now way condoning these acts.. but when people have absolutely no HOPE for the future...they resort to extreme measure.This is human nature."

    I don't know this is human nature (but I understand your point of view and respect it !). It's just a shame that social problems blow up in riots everywhere... without the help of a governement who crits war on Irak ! The repressive forces (of our governement) is not a solution. They applyed some laws for the first time since Algiers wars (true !). "Curfew", am I correct with that word ? If you understand this, you'll understand all the unfair of our governement ! [thanks for the movie ref', man, I'll check it soon !]

    @ Advocate of Fate, Jeri and Art Addict: You are right about the situation here, guys. It looks more simply like that, but seems true !

    @ bRyaN: "also france has a crazy mandatory 2-3 month vacation....where mostly everything (ie shops and businesses close down for the summer)..."

    [A bit out off-topics, Bryan]
    Sorry, Bryan but you're wrong on one point: YES ! French people got something like one-two months vacation each summers, and it's turn to people like me (I mean, without a goddam job as Illustrator, in my case !) to work... as seasonnal worker (what I did last summer... I mean, EACH summers since I'm 16 !). If you are in some place where everything is close, you're in the wrong place, dude ! That's for the precision ! Cheers, man !

    @ corky13: I didn't know that's happen to overs countries ! [Edit:Ho, thank you but don't worry ! I'm sure every CA french members are allright ! You're kind, man !]

    Last edited by Alday.J; November 9th, 2005 at 09:21 PM.
    Julien ALDAY
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  16. #15
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    Are these militant police the morons who wear the black army uniforms? I remmember those guys pulling over cars RANDOMLY to search. They looked like Gustapo police in black. Are they the CRS?

    I found this article:

    As the night falls, the "troubles" start.and the pattern is always the same. Bands of youths in balaclavas start by setting fire to parked cars, break shop windows with baseball bats, wreck public telephones and ransack cinemas, libraries and schools. When the police arrive on the scene, the rioters attack them with stones, knives and baseball bats. The police respond by firing tear-gas grenades and, on occasions, blank shots in the air. Sometimes the youths fire back.with real bullets.

    These scenes are not from the West Bank but from 20 French cities, mostly close to Paris, that have been plunged into a European version of the intifada. How did it all start? The accepted account is that sometime last week, a group of young boys in Clichy engaged in one of their favorite sports: stealing parts of parked cars. Normally, nothing dramatic would have happened, as the police have not been present in that suburb for years.

    The problem came when one of the inhabitants telephoned the police and reported the thieving spree. The police were thus obliged to do something.

    Once the police arrived on the scene, the youths.who had been reigning over Clichy pretty unmolested for years got really angry. A brief chase took place in the street, and two of the youths, who were not actually chased by the police, sought refuge in a cordoned-off area housing a power pylon.

    Both were electrocuted. Once news of their deaths was out, Clichy was all up in arms. With cries of "God is great," bands of youths armed with whatever they could get hold of went on a rampage and forced the police to flee. The French authorities could not allow a band of youths to expel the police from French territory. So they hit back.sending in Special Forces, known as the CRS, with armored cars and tough rules of engagement.

    Within hours, the original cause of the incidents was forgotten and the issue jelled around a demand by the representatives of the rioters that the French police leave the "occupied territories." By midweek, the riots had spread to three of the provinces neighboring Paris, with a population of 5.5 million.

    But who lives in the affected areas? In Clichy itself, more than 80 percent of the inhabitants are Muslim immigrants or their children, mostly from Arab and black Africa. In other affected towns, the Muslim immigrant community accounts for 30 percent to 60 percent of the population. But these are not the only figures that matter. Average unemployment in the affected areas is estimated at around 30 percent and, when it comes to young would-be workers, reaches 60 percent. In these suburban towns.people live in crammed conditions, sometimes several generations in a tiny apartment, and see "real French life" only on television.

    The French used to flatter themselves for the success of their policy of assimilation, which was supposed to turn immigrants from any background into "proper Frenchmen" within a generation at most. Assimilation, however, cannot work when in most schools in the affected areas, fewer than 20 percent of the pupils are native French speakers. In some areas, it is possible for an immigrant or his descendants to spend a whole life without ever encountering the need to speak French. The result is often alienation. And that.gives radical Islamists an opportunity to propagate their message of religious and cultural apartheid.

    Some are even calling for the areas where Muslims form a majority of the population to be reorganized on the basis of the "millet" system of the Ottoman Empire: Each religious community (millet) would enjoy the right to organize its social, cultural and educational life in accordance with its religious beliefs. In parts of France, a de facto millet system is already in place. In these areas, all women are obliged to wear the standardized Islamist "hijab" while most men grow their beards to the length prescribed by the sheiks. The radicals have managed to chase away French shopkeepers selling alcohol and pork products, forced "places of sin," such as dancing halls, cinemas and theaters, to close down, and seized control of much of the local administration.

    President Jacques Chirac and Premier de Villepin are especially sore because they had believed that their opposition to the toppling of Saddam Hussein in 2003 would give France a heroic image in the Muslim community. That illusion has now been shattered. It is now clear that a good portion of France's Muslims not only refuse to assimilate into "the superior French culture," but firmly believe that Islam offers the highest forms of life to which all mankind should aspire.

    So what is the solution? One solution, offered by Gilles Kepel.is the creation of "a new Andalusia" in which Christians and Muslims would live side by side and cooperate to create a new cultural synthesis. The problem with Kepel's vision, however, is that it does not address the important issue of political power. Who will rule this new Andalusia: Muslims or the largely secularist Frenchmen? Suddenly, French politics has become worth watching again, even though for the wrong reasons.

    Amir Taheri is editor of the French quarterly Politique internationale.

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  17. #16
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    Are the CRS like Gestapo ?

    NO ! CRS have bad reputation because they do the dirty job. They happended to be violent, but a riot is always violent.
    In such extreme case, I think you can't ask the police to calm down the rioters without hurting anyone. Some policemen were schocked, others lost a hand etc... I'll add that in France, CRS don't use guns, but Flashball (not sure of the name), a weapon whose "bullet" is a soft big ball. what you risk is to be punch out, not killed.

    There is a ghetto problem, more than an immigration problem. You put the ghetto's population in a normal city, and there is NO problem (it has been done). The problem is EXCLUSION.

    I think it's important to repeat 1 or 2 things about Islam.
    - Integrism only concern a MINORITY, most of french muslims are normal citizens that respect french laws.
    - Islam was, and still is able to be VERY open minded. If nowadays we know so much about astronomy, greek philosophy (Platon, Pythagore...), this is thanks to muslims, who copied and kept carefully this intellectual patrimony while christians were burning it.
    It's no preach for Islam, I precise I come from a catholic family.

    And to end with, FRANCE IS NOT IN FLAME.

    ____________

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    C O M I C B O O K A R T I S T

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    now angry mob mentality's no longer the exception, it's the rule
    and im startin to feel a lot like charlton heston
    stranded on a primate planet
    apes and orangutans that ran it to the ground
    with generals and the armies that obeyed them
    followers following fables
    philosophies that enable them to rule without regard

    there's no point for democracy when ignorance is celebrated
    political scientists get the same one vote as some Arkansas inbred
    majority rule, don't work in mental institutions
    sometimes the smallest softest voice carries the grand biggest solutions

    http://www.fatwreck.com/empee/50155.mp3

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  20. #19
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    Thanks for the links LaPalida. So who are the black army looking police in Paris? I still don't know where they get the right to stop and search cars / people at random? They were definately armed with mpg's.

    These guys: http://www.worldpress.org/images/110...afatHovers.jpg

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