Archive for Paris

France: Young Muslim Woman Attacked, Threatened and Beaten in Islamophobic Attack

Posted in Loon Violence with tags , , , , , , , , on April 6, 2012 by loonwatch

In France a young Muslim woman was threatened, beaten and had her hijab ripped from her head. (via. Al-Kanz)

The below is a rough google translation and video of the victim speaking about the violent experience. The original is in French:

The CCIF (suit against Islamophobia in France) met S., a young woman struck and insulted, her veil ripped off in Juvisy-sur-Orge, near Paris. Treated as a terrorist and threatened by an armed individual, S. relates in the video below the story of the Islamophobic aggression.

Below is a copy of the complaint:

Feel free to contact the CCIF at the slightest Islamophobic aggression. The work done by the watch group since 2003 has, despite a strong desire to hide the reality, created awareness to many that Islamophobia is real.

Visit the CCIF: http://www.islamophobie.net

Muslim Savior of Holocaust Jews

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 21, 2011 by loonwatch

Muslim Savior of Holocaust Jews

CAIRO – Delving into untold stories of the Holocaust, a new film is shedding the light on heroism of Muslims who risked their lives to rescue Jews from the Nazi brutality.

“This film is an event,” Benjamin Stora, France’s pre-eminent historian on North Africa, told The New York Times.

“Much has been written about Muslim collaboration with the Nazis. But it has not been widely known that Muslims helped Jews.”

The film, “Free Man”, traces the heroism of the founder of the Grand Mosque of Paris in saving Jews from the Nazis.

It tells the story of Algerian-born Kaddour Benghabrit who rescued Jews in France from the Nazi brutality.

Benghabrit provided shelter and Muslim identification documents to scores of Jews to help them escape arrest by Nazi troops.

He also used the Grand Mosque of Paris to shelter more than 100 Jews from persecution.

Despite hiding Jews inside, Benghabrit used to give mosque tours to German officers and their wives to deceive them.

The movie premiered this week in France after four years of travel and research. It is also to be released in the Netherlands, Switzerland and Belgium.

According to Encyclopedia Britannica, the Holocaust refers to “systematic state-sponsored killing of Jewish men, women, and children and others by Nazi Germany and its collaborators during World War II.”

The commonly used figure for the number of Jewish victims is six million.

But the figure has been questioned by many European historians and intellectuals, chiefly French author Roger Garaudy.

Muslim Heroes

Stora says that there are many untold stories about Muslim heroism to save Jews from the Nazis.

“There are still stories to be told, to be written,” he said.

Director Ismael Ferroukhi says that he encountered many stories about Muslim heroism during the film making.

One account came from Albert Assouline, a North African Jew who escaped from a German prison camp.

Assouline said that more than 1,700 resistance fighters, including Jews, found refuge in the mosque’s underground caverns, and that the imam provided many Jews with certificates of Muslim identity.

The film comes almost five years after Robert Satloff, director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, revealed in his 2006 book, “Among the Righteous,” stories of Arabs who saved Jews during the Holocaust.

The book included a chapter on the Grand Mosque of Paris.

“One has to separate the myth from the fact,” Satloff told The New York Times.

“The number of Jews protected by the mosque was probably in the dozens, not the hundreds,” he said.

“But it is a story that carries a powerful political message and deserves to be told.”

Satloff recalled a 1940 Foreign Ministry document shown to him by the current mosque rector Dalil Boubakeur about the Nazi suspicions of the mosque’s role in sheltering Jews.

“The chief imam was summoned, in a threatening manner, to put an end to all such practices,” the document says.

The mosque’s role in sheltering Jews from the Nazis was explored by a television documentary tilted “A Forgotten Resistance: The Mosque of Paris” in 1991.

Another children’s book “The Grand Mosque of Paris: A Story of How Muslims Saved Jews During the Holocaust,” published in 2007, also highlighted the mosque’s role.

Ferroukhi, the director, urges the France government to take the film about the Muslim heroism to schools.

“It pays homage to the people of our history who have been invisible,” he said.

“It shows another reality, that Muslims and Jews existed in peace. We have to remember that — with pride.”

Tango in Paris with a Niqabi

Posted in Anti-Loons with tags , , , , , , , , on May 9, 2011 by loonwatch

A very interesting clip from a group called Red Rag Productions in which a Niqabi dances tango with her partner. It probably is a shocking clip for many to see as they consider Niqabis disenfranchised and inexpressive:

Probably not what you would expect on your morning commute to work!

Red Rag Productions describes itself as,

an independent film production company based in London. Red Rag is dedicated to making high quality documentaries and films on a range of controversial and contemporary issues, in particular those affecting minorities in European societies.

They are currently working on a documentary on the lives of 4 Muslim women in three different European cities and the tensions involved with “a Europe often reluctant to come to terms with women who are asserting their Muslim identities.” Check out there website: Red Rag Productions.

Piss Christ Art Work Destroyed by Protesting Christians, What if they were Muslim?

Posted in Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , on April 21, 2011 by loonwatch

The famously distasteful artwork by Andres Serrano titled “Piss Christ,” caused quite a stir when it was first shown. Now Christians protesting the artwork in Paris have slashed the painting. Imagine if they had been Muslim? Does this mean Christianity can’t live with offense? Does this mean that Christianity is opposed to free speech?

Serrano Piss Christ Slashed

Angelique Chrisafis, Paris

April 20, 2011

ANDRES Serrano’s Piss Christ has been destroyed by Christians who broke into a French gallery and slashed the photograph after weeks of protests.

The New York photographer’s controversial work shows a small crucifix submerged in a glass of the artist’s urine.

It outraged the US religious right in 1987, when it was first shown. It was vandalised in Melbourne in 1997, and neo-Nazis ransacked a Swedish show by the artist in 2007.

The work has previously been shown without incident in France, but for the past two weeks Catholic groups have campaigned against it, culminating in hundreds of people marching through Avignon on Saturday in protest.

On Sunday morning, four people in sunglasses entered the gallery. One took a hammer from his sock and threatened security staff. A guard restrained one man but the others managed to smash an acrylic screen and slash the photograph with what police believe was a screwdriver or ice pick.

Last week the gallery complained of ”extremist harassment” by Christians who wanted the image banned.

The Archbishop of Vaucluse, Jean-Pierre Cattenoz, called the work ”odious” and said he wanted ”this trash” taken off the gallery walls. Saturday’s street protest against the work gained the support of the far-right National Front.

The owner of the work, Yvon Lambert, had complained he was being ”persecuted” by religious extremists who had sent him tens of thousands of emails. He likened the atmosphere to the Middle Ages.

French Culture Minister Frederic Mitterrand condemned the vandalism as an attack on the fundamental freedoms of creation and expression.

The gallery’s director, Eric Mezil, said he would keep the exhibition open to the public with the destroyed work on show ”so people can see what barbarians can do”.

Tariq Ali: Bernard-Henri Lévy Indicted!

Posted in Loon People with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 7, 2011 by loonwatch

An entertaining article by Tariq Ali. Bernard-Henri Levy certainly should be indicted in the mind of public opinion. I agree with most of the indictment though I would contend that Bernard-Henri Levy is not guilty of merely promoting “Zionism” which on its own may not be an indictable offense but of promoting “extremist Zionism” in which he apologizes for land grabs and racist state apparatuses within Israel. I wonder how the trial went?

Bernard-Henri Lévy Indicted!

(CounterPunch)

On January 28, activists belonging to the PIR (Parti des Indigènes de la République) are organizing a trial of Bernard-Henri Lévy in the old PCF/CGT stronghold of Saint Denis. Norman Finkelstein and myself are the only non-French who are giving evidence against BHL.  The trial will commence at 6.30pm at the Bourse du Travail de St-Denis. 9-11 rue Génin, Saint Denis. Metro  13 – Porte de Paris.

More of my views on Bernard-Henri Lévy may be found below, but first, the Indictment:

“Order for the  indictment of Bernard-Henri Lévy before the Assize Court, and for  his arrest:

We have determined that whereas investigation has established the following facts concerning the accused:

– His unrelenting promotion of imperialism and Zionism,

– His intellectual fakery, symptom of philosophical nullity amid the accumulation of capital and power,

– His leveling of false accusations and calumnies against Iran,

– His warmongering and advocacy of “humanitarian imperialism,”

– His aiding in the creation and promotion of SOS Racisme to smother autonomous immigration movements,

– His dissemination of false news likely to sow social and eligious discord between Christians and Muslims.

For these reasons, we rule that  there is sufficient evidence against Bernard-Henri Lévy that he  committed such acts, punishable under the Criminal Code, in regard to Articles 175, 176, 181, 183 and 184. We order the indictment of Bernard-Henri Lévy, to be lodged at the Court of Assizes of the department of Seine- Saint-Denis to be tried according to law.”

Executed in Chambers, December 18, 2010.”

I’ve always regarded BHL as a comic figure. On the two occasions — in Berlin and New York– that I’ve shared a platform to debate him he reminded me of a puffed up peacock in heat (hence, I thought, the permanently unbuttonedbhlshirt). In France, however, more than a few citizens find him more sinister than comic. He is the Republic’s most visible and most vain mediatic intellectual. A veritable Tintin no less. Ready for adventures whenever he’s needed to strike a pose. Kabul falls to NATO. Off goes Tintin and returns to inform us that in order to help the Afghans he has launched a new magazine in Kabul.  Its name?Nouvelle Kabul. Of course. How could it be anything else. This was in 2002, but every Afghan I’ve asked swears on the Koran that no such magazine exists, not even in Kabul’s fortified green zone. Was it pure fantasy? Possible. The dividing line between reality and non-reality is never clear when Tintin is involved. I got a strong whiff of this when I reviewed his appalling book on the Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl that was largely fantastical. I wrote at the time:

“He has written a strange hybrid of a book about his adventures in Pakistan, a country whose language he doesn’t speak and whose people he seems to hate, despite the last-page invocation of a ‘gentle Islam’, firmly placed in the medieval period and counterposed to the ‘madmen of Peshawar’… Half fiction, a quarter speculation, one-eighth film script (with BHL as himself?) and one-eighth regurgitated newspaper articles, this book gives narcissism a bad name. Is there anything of value in it? I searched in vain, hoping that his ‘diplomatic connections’ might have helped out with some previously unknown facts. Nothing. Given the absence of real content, style becomes all; and it is pure pastiche. At times, ‘my dear Sartre’ is invoked for no apparent reason, except to make it clear that Lévy is the only true heir. At another point, he is reminded of his old tutor at the Ecole Normale:

‘Latent homosexuality. Or, if not, perhaps no sexuality at all, pleasure is a sin, the purpose of relations with a woman is to procreate. Omar [Pearl’s assassin] . . . has probably never slept with a woman . . . he is a 29-year-old virgin. Is this the key to the psychology of Omar? . . . Asexuality, and the will to purity that goes with it, as possible sources of the moral standards of the religion of fundamentalist crime? . . . But I remember, I cannot help but remember, a great French philosopher, Louis Althusser, still a virgin at 30 and who . . . No. Out of bounds, precisely. Because truly blasphemous. And too flattering to Omar.’”

There is nobody quite like him in the States or elsewhere in Europe. Hitchens, in healthier times, could have come close to this status had he been provided a regular column in the NYT and a book show on one of the networks. CH would have had many an advantage, since unlike BHL he can both write and read, though ill-health, sadly, has meant a confused imagination such as detecting a ‘moral core’ in Tony Blair and flattering Ben Ali, the toppled despot of Tunis.

His dominant media position makes BHL a powerful enemy of the Left, of the kids in the banlieues, of anyone who dares question Israel’s moral superiority to everyone else, but especially its victims. He supports most of US policies abroad. Unsurprisingly he arouses a great deal of anger, hatred and contempt.

On  January 28, activists belonging to the PIR (Parti des Indigènes de la République) are organizing a mock trial in the old PCF/CGT stronghold of Saint Denis. Norman Finkelstein and myself are the only non-French who are giving evidence against BHL. It should be good fun. Nobody is quite sure whether Tintin will be in Paris or entertaining the King in his huge villa in Morocco … he should beware the Maghreb now. The times they are a-changing.

Tariq Ali’s latest book “The Obama Syndrome: Surrender at Home, War Abroad’ was published by Verso last fall.

 

Marine Le Pen Poll Rating Shock for French Politics

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , on February 6, 2011 by loonwatch

Marine Le Pen is very anti-Muslim.

(hat tip: Europeans Against Islamophobia, a new Facebook page. I suggest everyone Like the page.)

Marine Le Pen poll rating shock for French politics

(BBC)

An opinion poll suggesting far-right leader Marine Le Pen could win the first round of next year’s presidential election has caused a shock in France.

The survey for Le Parisien newspaper puts the National Front leader, who took over from her father Jean-Marie in January, ahead of all other candidates.

It gives her 23% of the vote, 2% ahead of both President Nicolas Sarkozy and Socialist leader Martine Aubry.

However, some analysts question the accuracy of the online poll.

Online surveys are arguably less reliable than telephone polling, and Le Parisien’s poll assumes Ms Aubry will be chosen as the Socialists’ candidate, while the party has yet to decide.

Jean-Marie Le Pen was the shock runner-up in the first round of the 2002 election, only to be massively defeated in the second against Jacques Chirac.

Unwise to ignore

Nonetheless, for the new far-right leader to be ahead of both President Sarkozy and Ms Aubry is an astonishing result, the BBC’s Hugh Schofield reports from Paris.

A story on the website of the left-of-centre daily Liberation says “politicians are hesitating between prudence and panic after the poll”.

On the basis of this opinion poll of 1,618 people, Ms Le Pen would automatically qualify for the second round run-off with one or other of the two mainstream party leaders.

In 2002, Jean-Marie Le Pen achieved second place, not first, in the first round, and his poll ratings were never as high as his daughter’s are now, our correspondent notes.

Marine Le Pen, 42 , has proved a canny successor to her father.

Where he was a brash provocateur with a devoted but clearly circumscribed following, her trump card is a kind of woman-on-the-street ordinariness which potentially has an even wider appeal among working and middle class voters, our correspondent says.

She has been at pains to junk some of the more overtly offensive aspects of the National Front’s programme.

She is riding high on the sense of dissatisfaction that is not so much a wave as a permanent condition in France, our correspondent says.

As this poll suggests, there is in the country an entrenched appetite for anti-establishment, curse-on-all-your-houses populism – which the mainstream parties would be most unwise to ignore.

 

Oumma.com: International Conference Against Islamization

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , on January 7, 2011 by loonwatch

A report from the French website Oumma.com. (Hat tip: Abraham al-Ahmad). The report was originally in French, and so the translation is not the greatest, if anyone has a better translation send it over.

The gist is that Oumma sent one of their journalists to the “International Conference against Islamization” that was held in Paris. They learned about the developing cultural cross spectrum of Islamophobia and how it is a reflection of majority opinion in France.

The New Face of Islamophobia

They say they are Islamophobic and proud. Who are they really? Umma attended the “international conference against Islamization” that was recently held in Paris. Meeting with the organizers and supporters of the radical trend that is increasingly influential in public opinion.


Islam is a threat: a feeling that is now accepted by nearly all French people, according to a survey released by Le Monde . Beyond the necessary questions about the responsibilities-of-both sides for such a negative perception, the identification of the protagonists instrumentalizing this sentiment is already possible. Ummah will soon publish a lengthy multi-media investigation (written, audio and video) showing the emergence and manifestations of Islamophobia in France. The “international conference against Islamization,” held December 18 in Paris is just the tip of the iceberg behind this gathering, we come back, parallel to its description on the connections of this diverse movement with parliamentary right, left, feminist, right-wing ultra-Zionist but also, more surprisingly, with think-tanks and U.S. collaboration. In addition, we discuss how journalists, quietly sharing the same beliefs, prepared through their actions and their visual tests, the ideological terrain on which this motion was seconded.Finally, and most importantly, the investigation tells us how these Islamophobia propagandists claimed a position for themselves strategically for the presidential election through the next convention of the National Front and tactical support to Marine Le Pen.

As an illustration of the story that is soon to be posted by Umma, here’s a video clip, made at the end of the day Audience: This is my encounter with Christine Tasin , member of Riposte Lay and co-organizer of the gathering.The courtesy shown by those responsible for this event to the media in general and Muslim Ummah in particular, has not overshadowed so far, here or there, some tension in our discussions with the stakeholders.

After eight hours of speeches focused on Islam and the “grave danger” that it presents the spirits of the participants was particularly heated, as shown by this clip. If Christine Tasin kindly agreed to answer my questions, he did not fail at the end of our brief conversation, to speak to me as if I was the spokesman of the French Muslim Council, with recurrent expressions like “if you, in Islam, you change this or that ….” The most revealing of the atmosphere that will show to be ultimately deleterious was the unexpected crowd of true fans, applauding at the end of the interview. One of them, particularly vehement against me, apologized after filming the movie.  Then he wanted to ask about the media for which I made my report, however, confusing and L’Humanite Ummah, man, from a “communist family”, refused later to give me his first name, because, he says, he “works in a ministry.”

Neither fascist nor brave

 

Since the “Aperitif sausage” of June 18 which I also attended to speak to various actors of this movement which was a huge ratings success on December 18, a cartoon double, including which fell many of my colleagues, seems pointless: the men and women who make up this emerging force in French politics are neither fascist nor clowns. There are amongst them some who are nostalgic for Benito Mussolini, visceral racists, or eccentric, however this would be a serious journalistic error to reduce all their activists, and especially their supporters to such a label. On this point, I have not so far shared the feeling that the journalist Elisabeth Levy, speaking off with colleagues, found that it was only “good people” at times, stigma obsessional contempt insidious cultural condescension returned regularly in the words of this speaker or that member of the public. But rather than demonize, like the radical Islamophobes, or dilute, the attempt by Ummah in the coming time will simply be to understand this phenomenon to better relate the dangers and challenges addressed, not only to French Muslims, but also to the national community as a whole.