French dis-connection / ‘See no evil’ doesn’t stop terror (NEW YORK POST OP-ED) By MICHAEL WIDLANSKI 03/22/12)
NEW YORK POST
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French police’s dramatic pursuit of Mohammed Merah, an Islamic
radical, for Monday’s terror murder of a rabbi and three Jewish
schoolchildren should remind us here in New York and elsewhere that
Islamic terror hasn’t taken a holiday.
Even if the ACLU, the Obama administration and some other politicians
think that Muslims are being persecuted, events both here and abroad
show that there is no wave of hate crimes against Muslims, but rather
a continuing case of hate crimes against Jews and Israel.
We need to be aware of this continuing danger, even as our chattering
classes insist it’s all a figment of our imagination, a case of
Alert New Yorkers have noticed the NYPD stepping up its presence
around New York synagogues and Jewish schools recently, as Iran and
al Qaeda have both promised to escalate actions against Jews and
those who support Israel.
Over the past few weeks, Iranian-funded agents of Hezbollah have
attacked Israeli targets in India, Thailand and Kazakhstan, as Iran
itself speeds its program to build a nuclear bomb that will endanger
Israel, Jordan, Egypt, oil routes and America itself.
Yet our own intellectual elites have chosen to ignore this escalation
of Islamist terror, and instead target our own law-enforcement and
security agencies, demanding that they treat Islamic institutions
with kid gloves.
That same see-no-evil-hear-no-evil approach didn’t work in France,
which has suffered a tremendous escalation of violence by its own
Arab-Muslim community, much of it directed specifically against Jews.
There were 389 reported acts of anti-Semitism in France last year,
reports the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions.
The last decade has seen many riots by French Muslims, mostly from
the Algerian community. Notably, the 2005 riots saw 9,000 to 10,000
vehicles and about 300 buildings and stores burned down.
Yet French officials and the French press often behaved as if there
is no serious anti-Jewish or anti-French undercurrent to the
violence, while the police and security officials feel beleaguered
The French police admit they fear entering many Arab neighborhoods,
even in Paris. Officially there are more than 700 urban “no-go zones”
or zones urbaines sensibles. Thus about 8 percent of France´s total
population — some 5 million people — basically live in the realm of
Islam, while living in France.
French Chief Rabbi Gilles Bernheim said he was “horrified” at
Monday’s murders, which follow the killing of three soldiers in two
separate shooting attacks by a motorcyclist in the prior week, a
tactic widely used in Syria, Lebanon and Algeria. Police now suspect
Merah in all seven murders.
One of the most damning elements of the French terror spree is that
the terrorist was able to carry out his murderous attacks even though
he was under some form of French government surveillance. Merah had
contacted jihadist groups in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and yet he was
not apprehended, nor were his weapons confiscated.
This episode begins to resemble the Fort Hood massacre, where Major
Nidal Malik Hassan had contacted al Qaeda and “acted out” his radical
passions, yet was allowed by the US Army to continue in his position
and to carry a weapon with which he murdered 13 people.
Clearly, being politically correct is costing lives on both sides of
Just as clearly, the people of New York and New Jersey should be
giving unstinting support to our law-enforcement and security
officials in this regard — and ignoring if not denouncing the
continuous criticism from the chattering class, which can only
Michael Widlanski, formerly strategic-affairs adviser for Israel’s
Ministry of Public Security, is the author of the new book “Battle
for Our Minds: Western Elites and the Terror Threat.” (Copyright 2012
NYP Holdings, Inc. 03/22/12)
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