Fitzgerald: Douce France

We first posted this piece by Jihad Watch Board Vice President Hugh Fitzgerald on dhimmitude in France at Dhimmi Watch in 2004. Over the last two weeks I have had many, many requests to repost it. Normally I don’t like to do such things, for if I start reprinting archived material there could be no end to it, and there is a perfectly good list of Hugh’s articles here (scroll down), from which any one of them can be easily accessed.

However, ultimately I decided to repost this piece, because it is not so much archival as it is more pertinent than ever. And this time, because of the weight of current events, I post it here, on the Jihad Watch side, rather than on the Dhimmi Watch side of this website. For a jihad is what — it is increasingly clear — France now faces and will face for quite some time to come.

Imagine that you are a cosseted member of the French elite. One child is doing the khâgne, aiming for rue d”Ulm. Another is now a politechnicien. You are very comfortable, working for the state. You and your spouse are journalists, or writers, or one of that vast tribe of people conducting “recherches” and life is comfortable, good, the way it should be. Yes, you do notice more and more Muslims about you as you walk, no longer in the banlieues, but in the center of Paris, or Toulouse, or Lyon. And you remember how uneasy you felt, four years ago, when you happened to be walking on the Cannebière in Marseille. You decided, then and there, that you would not return.

And you have friends who live in the south. And they tell you that the beurs — some call them maghrébins — make life hell for everyone. They attack French children on the way to school. They vandalize cars. They threaten, and do more than threaten, anyone who is still foolish enough to walk out wearing a kippah or a cross. Whole areas of cities in the south, as in the north, and east, and west, have become off-limits to non-Muslims. In the schools, the teachers have lost authority. They cannot even cover the subjects of World War II, the Resistance, and the murders of the Jews as the state prescribes; they fear, with reason, the violent reaction of the Muslim students.

And as the schools become more and more dangerous for non-Muslim students and teachers, with more time and resources devoted to discipline rather than to learning, French parents and would-be parents are now silently factoring into their childbearing plans the present value of the future cost of what, they see, will now have to be added: private school tuition. And that means, of course, that those French people will plan on smaller families. And they will also be factoring in the growing cost, paid by them, those French taxpayers, for the whole expanding edifice of security, the guards in the schools, the guards at the train stations and métro stations and airports and at government buildings everywhere, the costs of keeping the gravestones from being vandalized, the costs of protecting the synagogues and the churches, the costs for all those tapped phones and agents in mosques, and subsidies to lawyers and judges to hear charges and try cases against Muslims, and the costs of monitoring da’wa in the prisons (more than 50% Muslim).

But the Muslims are indifferent to expenses incurred by the French state. France is part of the world; the world belongs to Allah, and to his Believers. That doctrine has remained immutable for 1400 years. Imam Bouziane, the one they keep trying to deport, had 16 children by two wives, all living on the French state: a representative Muslim man. Over time, the difference between average family size of Muslims and non-Muslims steadily increases. And, over time, the education system continues to disintegrate. Right now, perhaps, you cannot see it. Your children go to the best schools, followed by the best lycées. You vacation in Normandy, or Brittany, or the Ile de Ré. And you do not take the metro often enough, or walk in the right districts, or work in the right factories or offices, to understand what tens of millions of your fellow Frenchmen now have to endure. You, for the moment, are still immune, still willfully unaware. You have spent the last few decades learning about the Muslim world from Eric Rouleau, and his epigones (after they silenced Peroncel-Hugoz, the one journalist who reported the truth) in Le Monde. You are deeply-versed in the constantly reported-upon, endlessly dilated-upon, perfidy of the mighty empire of Israel. You know what we have all had dinned into us: that the Arab Muslims are reasonable people, with clearly-justified grievances, grievances so reasonable and so limited in scope, that justice demands they be satisfied. Everyone agrees on the “solution.” It is called a “two-state solution” and of course it is a “solution” for otherwise, of course, it would not have been called a “solution.”

And everything looks the way it always has looked: the linden trees, the river, the bridges, the réverbères, the étalage in the neighborhood boulangerie. Douce France, cher pays de mon enfance. At the end of the school day, chic mothers still congregate in little towns, or small cities, outside the school — this or that Ecole Jules Ferry — waiting to pick up their children. Here come the littlest ones, from Maternelle, running up now — just look at how small they are. And here are the CE1 group, with those huge cartables on their tiny backs. Run, run, run, to Mommy. Oop-la. And then the years of study, study, study marked by ever-larger cahiers — “cahier” and “cartable” are the words that identify French DNA better than Piaf or gauloises, isn’t that true? And now we will read the books, and study the subjects, set down so completely and precisely by the Ministry of Education. And now we are up to the final year, preparing for the Bac, with copies of blue-backed BALISES, guides to Les Châtiments and La Peau de Chagrin. And just look at the results listed in the newspaper: Claire-Alix has a mention très bien. Fantastic. Everything is fine, everything will always stay the same, whole countries cannot change. It’s not possible.

But it is changing, coming apart, quietly, slowly — let’s not look too closely, we mustn’t pay too much attention — the streets, the schools, the hospitals, the ability to speak the truth about things, about life as it is lived, la vita vissuta as they like to say in a neighboring country. Dominique de Villepin always knew there was nothing to worry about; he was born, after all, in Salé, next to Rabat, even spent a few years of his infancy there; of course he knows his Arabs, his Muslims. And surely Eric Rouleau, who for decades in Le Monde was the resident expert on the Middle East (he was so knowledgeable that he never had to so much as mention the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunna), surely he knew everything, didn’t he? And those French translations of Edward Said that denounced with such passion the Islamophobia, and those vicious cliches with which the blind and rotting West has always caricatured the Arab Muslim world. Oh, we have been so terrible to the Arabs, we colonialists, we French, we Westerners. And then there is the never-ending outrage of Israel, that running colonial sore. Of course, they have every right, those Muslims, to come here to France. We went to their countries once, now they come to ours. And they have every right to hate us, don’t they?

So now we have decided not to understand, and to cut all ties of sympathy to, Israel — and how did we ever have any sympathy for it in the first place, the way some of our parents did back in 1948 or 1956 or 1967? How could they not have seen what the “Palestinian people” had to endure? Hanan, Yasser, Said, Saeb, Aziz, Walid, Rashid, Mohammed — you have won our hearts and minds. Take us, do with us what you will.

No one will mention what is happening or what kinds of things we must begin to think about doing to save ourselves. No one of any decency. And whatever Le Pen and Megret say, we must say the opposite (except, of course, when they show their hostility to “the Jews”). Do not say those things, do not think them. Free thought is all very well in theory, but really — consider the consequences. Don’t dare to think outside that box brimming with idées reçues. Défense de penser au dehors du box.

No, everything will be all right as you stroll down the Avenue Paule-Anne. Those Muslims will never be a match for us. Why, just look at those legionnaires marching à pas lent down the Champs-Elysées, think of that string of desert victories. Inside our heads, it is 1930 and over here is the Exposition coloniale. You remember, tu t”en souviens, that painting by le Douanier Rousseau, don’t you, with the burnoosed Arab standing next to the black Senegalese? I have it right, don’t I? France will always be France. Nothing will ever change.

At a certain point, and despite everything that causes you not to see what is staring you in the face, you realize that something has gone irreparably wrong with your country, and you, and your children, are in danger of losing that country, down to every village and house, qui m”est une province et beaucoup davantage. And you do not know what to do, or how to explain this feeling to others, or in whom to confide your secret fears, or what can be done. It is so confusing, and so upsetting. You cannot vote for Le Pen. You cannot endorse “cowboy” Bush or those ridiculous Americans. You have no place to go.

And then you learn what Jacques Chirac — who now has a Muslim grandchild himself — and Dominique de Villepin, do not wish you to learn. For if you did, you might be very angry. You discover that 1 out of every 3 babies born in France today is a Muslim baby. And that means, in 20 years, one of every three 20-year-olds in France will be a Muslim twenty-year-old. And that means, twenty years after that, at present rates of reproduction, France will have a majority Muslim population. Where shall we hide the statues from Marly-le-roi? And the Venus de Milo? And what about all those paintings of animated life — all those portraits in the Louvre, and the Grand Palais, and the Musée Guimet down there in linden-lined Aix, and everywhere else in art-filled artful France, mère des arts, des armes, et des loix — that are absolutely forbidden according to the immutable strictures of the Qur’an. Should they be sent for safekeeping to those Americans across the seas? By then most of the Jews in France will have left, gone across the oceans for their own safekeeping, to Israel or to English-speaking Canada (they were worried about the Muslim population of Quebec, you see, which had been allowed to grow under the Province of Quebec’s policy of encouraging francophone immigrants, preferring North Africans to potential immigrants from Italy, Greece, Spain), and above all, to America. What luck those Americans have had. No more bequests to France by the likes of the Rothschilds, or Nissim Camondo. No more Donations from another Pierre Lévy. Enjoy the Kufic calligraphy; some find it endlessly fascinating.

For the moment, you allow yourself to believe that something will come up. Most likely, all those Muslims will simply convert. I mean, they do that, don’t they, quite easily I’m told. Of course, why didn’t I think of it, that is exactly what will happen. The situation is always saved in time. Just like during the war. Nothing to worry about. Nothing.

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  1. says

    >a href=””>Is La Pen Running France

    ASHINGTON, DC, United States (UPI) — The person who seems to be running France at this moment of extraordinary crisis, with a 12-day state of emergency formally declared by the government Tuesday, is the right-wing extremist leader of the Front National, Jean-Marie Le Pen.

    He demanded a week ago that the prefects, the state-appointed governors of the French provinces, be authorized to impose curfews in their districts. This has now been done.

    He demanded that the 1955 law on closing all public places in a defined district, first passed during the Algerian War, should be dusted off and re-applied. This too has been done.

    Le Pen demanded the call-up of gendarme reservists (in France, they come under the authority of Defense Ministry) and this too has been done.

    He routinely uses the word ‘racaille’ (rabble, or scum) to describe the disaffected Muslim youth of the soulless tower blocks of France`s banlieues, and now the minister of interior, Nicolas Sarkozy (himself descended from Hungarian immigrants),causes an outcry by deploying the same term.

    His party`s policy statement puts in pride of place ‘re-establish law and order.’ President Jacques Chirac, in his statement to the nation Sunday night after an emergency Cabinet meeting, said: ‘Restoring public order is the absolute priority.’

    Le Pen`s demand for ‘repression based on zero tolerance’ was echoed by Sarkozy`s latest statement, that ‘prevention, which is indispensable, should not exclude repression, whenever it shows itself to be just and necessary.’

    Le Pen campaigned in the last regional election in 2004 for a return to apprenticeships at age 14, to give unemployed youth the prospect of jobs. This too has now been done by the embattled conservative government that seems to be dancing to Le Pen`s tune, even as it resists the sweeping mass deportation of illegal immigrants and felons that Le Pen demands.

    Le Pen`s slogan for the past 20 years — ‘France, love her or leave her’ — has now been taken up by the rather more respectable right-wing of French politics. The nationalist lawmaker Philippe de Villiers, member of the National Assembly and leader of the Movement for France, is now using the slogan ‘France — you love her or you quit.’ And in saying he stands for ‘the de-Islamization of France,’ de Villiers is now the echo of Le Pen.

    Jean-Marie Le Pen is an extraordinary figure in French politics, aged 77 but as feisty and combative as ever, announcing a new mass demonstration for Monday evening at the Palais Royal in the heart of Paris — in what looks like a very direct provocation to the angry young men of the burning suburbs.

    Born in Brittany, the orphaned son of a fisherman, he came to Paris just after World War II as a law student and pugnacious anti-Communist, always ready to fight ‘the reds.’ He joined the elite paratroops of the Foreign Legion after the humiliating defeat of Dien Bien Phu in Vietnam, and fought in Algeria. He brought — and lost — libel writs against two French publications that claimed he had been a torturer at the notorious Villa Susini, and he has never hesitated to justify the use of torture against terrorists.

    Briefly elected to parliament for the short-lived Poujadist movement in the 1950s, he then fell on hard times and started a company selling ‘historical’ records, mainly of military marches and speeches. He was fined for promoting an album of Nazi marching songs that said Hitler`s movement was ‘on the whole popular and democratic.’

    Ironic if it takes the Le Pens to save Europe from itself.

    Neither the ensconced privileged capitalist right can or will do it (too busy caving into Arab labor,money and markets) and the oh so sensitive left is not up to it, with their penchant for viewing events in the light of racism, classism and economic deprivation.

  2. says

    Le Pen is in every respect intolerable, beyond the pale, and there should be no attempt to link him to either Philippe de Villiers, or to Sarkozy.

  3. says

    Le Pen is in every respect intolerable

    A bit more detail please? I could do a Google search, but I know that a few paragraphs is as effortless for you as breathing. :-) Thanks

  4. says

    The problem with Le Pen is that I think he has a naked hatred of all foreigners and lumps all non-european immigrants together, and that repels me. I respect his military past, he was a para in Algeria and he did serve under the excellent late General Massu, probably modern France’s finest senior officers. But as a politician I believe he is a vain unqualified bafoon, and will only attract the gutter elements in society. But I could be wrong, after all I get most of my information from the BBC.

  5. says

    Hugh> Le Pen is in every respect intolerable, beyond the pale, and there should be no attempt to link him to either Philippe de Villiers, or to Sarkozy.

    Hugh’s article is an absolutely brilliant piece of work.

    Unfortunately, when an intolerable situation exists and a backlash ensues it generally goes to the opposite extreme.

    However, it is disconcerting to find that the people here that are so knowledgeable and among the few that really understand what is going on to be rather complacent about doing something about it. When our way of life is threatened and we are facing a violent enemy with no limits, how would you suggest that we respond?

  6. says

    The situation was/is so bad in France for the Jews that a Jerusalm Report piece a few years back quoted many Jews who voted for Le Pen . . . but they kept it quiet=). Hugh’s piece nails the Paris nail on the head. I must say I don’t share in the joy that some express . . . the more I think about it. France is part of the noble heritage that formed our democratic traditions. Let us not forget they gave military aid to Washington in the revolutionary war . . . and gave us that beautiful gift . . . The Statue of Liberty. It seems they have fallen so far . . . can they pick themselves up again?? I truly hope so.

    What they need to be is a viable canidate on the right to arise who understands what we are dealing with. Come to think of it, we need one here as well. Is it me, am I a right wing wack job, or is the only politician here who gets it is Tom Tancrado. I hope he runs for the Pres.

    The greatest perversion of the Iraq adventure . . . other than 2000 of our very finest killed and countless more maimed(only to be spit at by the Iraqis when they one day will leave) . . . is the fact that it is such an attention diverter from what’s at stake. Did Scooter lie with Cheney winking? What did Rove know? Is Fitzgerald done with his investigation or will more heads role. The Democrats are on the upswing . . . MEANWHILE the enemy of our western culture grows unchecked in our midst. When we have 10 percent of our own population Islamic, will this create a critical mass as it has in France? We as a country need to keep our eye on the ball . . . what is happening in France could happen here.

  7. says


    I think quite a few of us would hold our noses and vote for the National Front if there was no viable alternative.(but not admit our choice to friends or colleagues. There is a certain snob factor) And your right the threat is very real, within a couple of generations, if current demographics in France persist, that fair land will have a Muslim majority.(Oh boy happy times ahead! and what will happen to our residence secondaires!) I just hope these riots galvanize some patriotic Frenchmen into action(like having more children)

  8. says

    Bittersweet essay from Hugh for someone, like me, who was raised in a Francophile culture. Everything he says echoes in my memory–and I’m grateful for his acknowledgement of high French culture in another thread–, that is Montaigne and La Fontaine and Hugo and Corot and many, many others–forgotten in the mainstream of academia, or punished by PC into irrelevance.
    Hugh helps all of us understand exactly what we will be losing in a Muslim-dominated world.

    I’ve seen the decline of France for the past three decades. I had an unusual source of newspapers and magazines, smuggled in under the totalitarian radar. In this country, after graduate school, I’ve come to realize France, thru fashionable yet disingenious, crooked intellectual enterprises, has deconstructed herself to death.

    France’s 20th century intellectual thugs, i.e. Lacan and Foucault and Derrida and Baudrillard and Deleuze, and Irigaray, and all those other degreed conartists exposed by physicist Allan Sokal, and all of their American copy-cats and profiteers, like Stanley Fish and hordes of pushers/manadarins and slaves in the cultural studies industry, are morally responsible for what’s happening in the world today.

  9. says

    Time to send in those spies we don’t have and change the targeting codes on Frenchies missiles.
    That way when the French roll over as they allways do the ismorists can blow themselves up!