BACK STORY with DANA LEWIS

Free Speech In France and Terror

November 05, 2020 Dana Lewis Season 2 Episode 19
BACK STORY with DANA LEWIS
Free Speech In France and Terror
Chapters
3:25
Anne Guidicelli
24:07
Rokhaya Diallo
BACK STORY with DANA LEWIS
Free Speech In France and Terror
Nov 05, 2020 Season 2 Episode 19
Dana Lewis

In France, several terror attacks sparked over the debate of republishing Satirical Cartoons of the Prophet Muhammed.   

For most people in France the cartoons have come to symbolize freedom of speech.  
The Government has ordered the arrests of dozens of moslem extremists. 

France has been condemned by several Arab leaders and Turkish President Erdogen has lashed out at Macron. 

In this Back Story with Dana Lewis we speak to Anne Guidicelli.   She runs International Intelligence Cluster and consults on security issues.   

And, an interview with Rokhaya Diallo . She is a prominent anti racist campaigner. 

 

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

In France, several terror attacks sparked over the debate of republishing Satirical Cartoons of the Prophet Muhammed.   

For most people in France the cartoons have come to symbolize freedom of speech.  
The Government has ordered the arrests of dozens of moslem extremists. 

France has been condemned by several Arab leaders and Turkish President Erdogen has lashed out at Macron. 

In this Back Story with Dana Lewis we speak to Anne Guidicelli.   She runs International Intelligence Cluster and consults on security issues.   

And, an interview with Rokhaya Diallo . She is a prominent anti racist campaigner. 

 

Speaker 1:

Not all people are, let's say agreeing with such a satirical cartoon , uh, but the, or agree for freedom of expression.

Speaker 2:

Hi everyone. And welcome to another edition of backstory. I'm Dana Lewis , French president Macron is about to crack down on radical Muslims. After several attacks in France, a school teacher , Samuel Petty was recently beheaded for showing children cartoons of the prophet Muhammad and talking to them about free speech. A Muslim man who carried out the attack was later shot by the police. Then in niece , a woman was decapitated and two others h ad been killed during a knife attack inside the N otredame Basilica church. The mayor of n i said the, h is L amel fascist assailant didn't stop shouting A lawak b ar, even under medication after being shot and arrested countries have condemned friends for arresting dozens of Muslims, some of cold for boycotts of French goods. Turkey's president E rewhon made an explosive speech saying Macron n eeds some sort of mental treatment. What else is there to say about a head of state who doesn't believe in freedom of religion and behaves this way against millions of people, of different f aith living in his own country. He said France condemned air to one's remarks and recalled its ambassador, the French foreign minister denounced the quote hateful and slanderous propaganda against France, unquote, any accused Turkey of quote, showing a wish to fan hate against and among us unquote. And then a few days later after everyone's comments in Vienna, Austria 22 injured with knife and gunshot wounds and four killed a member of ISIS is shot dead by police nine minutes into his attack. And as I speak to you from London, the government here has raised at security alert to the highest level warning attacks here are likely, okay, just a little more background in case you don't know these satirical cartoons of the prophet Mohammed published in the Charlie Hebdo magazine in France also sparked attacks in 2015, they left 17 dead. The three gunman in two attacks were shot by the police as t he TV correspondent. I covered those attacks a nd the nation rallied around Charlie Hebdo in support of free speech, but this time it's a bit different in this backstory. We talked to an expert on secularism in France and why this is a free speech issue and Judah c ellie and later [ inaudible], she is a Muslim commentator on discrimination who says French Muslims are treated unfairly

Speaker 3:

And that the French government, while dealing with terror also has to be more measured to Muslims who make up 9% of francis' population, both interviews, honestly, incredibly insightful to understand the different forces at work in France and the backstory behind the headlines. All right . And Judah Kelly runs the international intelligence cluster and she consults on security, efficient , uh , issues. And she joins me now from Paris high-end hi . I sort of make a practice of asking people during COVID 19, how they're doing. I mean, you were under locked down as we speak and we are about to go under, locked down in London yet again.

Speaker 1:

Yeah , I think it's more and more, I mean, we'll have more, more countries that are in our case. Well, let's say we have a double, a double kn ock d o wn o ne, which is a l i n k to a h e alth and th e other one to s ec urity because we, as we, you know, we, we went thr ough three attacks in one month, a ter r orist attac ks. So, uh, w hi l e with a bi g, uh, p ro t est, I mean, uh, c ri t icize him coming from the Musli m coun tries. So it's, uh, w e h ave, let's say three craziest 200 nowadays security has and d ipl o matic. So, uh, i t's , it's, let's say it's not a holiday.

Speaker 3:

And what is the, what is the mood there? Like, I mean, there's, there's, there has been more security deployed to the street and visible security. I understand around churches and , uh , historic sites and that kind of thing. The army actually, right.

Speaker 1:

It's part of a system which was already existing, which is called the VGP heart , which has been raised to the , the , uh , it was the highest lever that means having more security forces in the streets. And , uh, I mean , uh, well, it's not specific to this time it's to this barrier it's , uh , uh, any times there is , uh , any , um, at dark or a suspicion of attack, it's much more linked to, to show that. Uh, yeah. Yeah, sure. I mean, it's much more to, let's say there any waiting to do something or even to, we ensure the people that they are in , in the safe situation, because they can see , uh, uniforms and forces in the streets. So it's much more, I mean, for , uh, for that then to really prevent , uh , the rest of day ,

Speaker 3:

I heard a lot of the terror attack in France. So I've , I've been to Paris many times , uh , after the attacks on Charlie and the bot , the Klan theater attacks. Um, and they are some of the most , uh, bloody shocking , uh, terror attacks that I have covered. But I mean, but the Klan theater , uh, was a horrendous event and I , and , uh, I'm sure people can not forget there and plus all of the shootings and the cafes leading down the street towards about the clan . And I mean, at that time, you know, there were these tremendous marches in France and , uh, through Paris, you know, it was just, we, Charlotte , we are Charlie and people really came out despite the publication of these cartoons and supported Charlie Hebdo, is , is this different?

Speaker 1:

Well, you know , uh , first of all, what the meaning of being Charlie , I mean, everybody can understand it , uh, differently , uh, being Sharley could mean being for the , some kind of , uh , freedom of expression, but being Sharley , uh, could also mean that we like those scary catchers Orca cartoons , which is not the case of the whole people in France. So , um, so you can put your other understanding , uh, in that you can, you can be, you can be a challis who not being Charlie, but not against Charlie. He wants that being that we fought , we, not all people are, let's say agreeing with such a satirical cartoon , uh, but the, or agree for freedom of expression, you understand the, the , the, the, the smaller distinction between the two,

Speaker 3:

Right? But that distinction is lost on another culture. Um , because Muslim people who follow the Muslim faith believe that they are insulting the prophet Mohammed , uh, you know, one with a bomb in his turban, u h, another one with him crawling on the ground, th ey're a ssociating the prophet Mu hammad w ith attacks of terror and extremism. Um , a nd so to them, it it's insulting and it is not freedom of expression. And yet to the French public, you have this term, and maybe you can explain it to me a little bit, and it is less C T let's see, T which essentially means secular secularism.

Speaker 1:

Yes. Right. It's secure secular States yet secure is in fact that mean that well also, you see , um , it's very important to, to , uh, to use the proper word because it's not as well as Charlie is not understood in the same way the Lacy day or securities is , um, uh, according to who is using it or who is understanding it. It's not the same reality. You see, sorry.

Speaker 3:

In what way is it different depending on it,

Speaker 1:

Some of you have a Tran here , um, that I call the laces . Like we said , the Islamists, if you take the word light light , which is a four Lacy tape , uh, let's say secure very stuff , if you want that, that means that they are activists in , um, in the, in promoting Lacy against religions , which is not at all the , the real meaning of , uh , lady CT or secretaries security.

Speaker 3:

I mean, historically in the, in the French state and the Republic was the separation between church and state, wasn't an in to push the Catholic church.

Speaker 1:

But that was, first of all, in the history, you have an agreement with the catalysis then with the GDSs , I mean the Jewish community. Now it seems that it could be the turn of the Mexican community. So , uh, but the , the real meaning of [inaudible] is , um, to , um, that everybody can have his own face and leave his , or his own face, but in the public , uh , space , uh, you are only one community t hat's m ean that you can, you don't have to show your difference, which is completely the o ther system that the one in , in the United States or in the UK, or it's, u h , i t's not a l o t o f t he same approach. Uh i t 's o nce one community is the nation nation is full of the same citizen. And if they have some differences, like a r e ligion, so they have to lea ve th at in the ir, u h , pr ivates SoC o, n ot to, to show up with that. That's a bit complicated even to understand for the French people in the meeting that , uh , some, sometime some, let's say in some territories, just to, to, let's say to please some , uh, some , uh , association you will allow them to , uh, to have specific hours for swimming pool , uh, for , for girls in the swimming pool , because they , and they will get some votes, of course , uh, I think the majors, for instance, but , uh, that, that, what I want to say is that , um, now , uh, the Lacy's , uh , trans eh , or wink is, is trying to , to use , uh, the Lacy as, as an , an arm, a weapon against Islam. That's now a things how they are moving. And , um , it is perceived now abroad specifically in the Michigan countries , uh, like that. Uh, so, so , uh, we are now in that debate and they , um, uh, me and my side that I really tried to , um, work , um, to , to one the authorities and t he, the opinion that the r epublishing of the cartoon o f t hose p rophet Hammad cartoons, u h, wasn't very, very threatening. U m, u h, m s. [ inaudible],

Speaker 3:

I want to just clarify, I want to be clear because you make a distinction between the original publication and the republication in you believe that the republication , uh, was a provocation.

Speaker 1:

Yes. Uh , I mean, not a provocation, but is doesn't mean freedom of expression in that case. Uh, I mean, because you know, a very small who , I mean, surely those cartoon has becomes like the, the, you know, the , the flag , uh, of the freedom of expression, which is not how , uh, it's not so shared within the French , uh, opinion, but as they are being victim of a terrorist attack, the let's say being a victim doesn't allow , uh, uh, to , uh, lose , um, the understanding of the world in ways in which we are,

Speaker 3:

Why doesn't , uh , president Macron just condemn the republishing of the cartoon. Why doesn't he say, look, we understand that the sensitivities of the Muslim population , um, w we support the original publication, but republication obviously is causing bloodshed and division within society just don't, you know, I, I'm not going to ban you from public publishing them, but it was wrong to publish them. Why won't he take that step? Or do you believe that that's something he shouldn't do that he should stand up and by supporting free speech, he should support those cartoons.

Speaker 1:

Yeah , it's exactly what a former , uh, president Chirac has done , uh, more than , uh , uh, let's say, 14 years ago. Uh , when it , when he just said that it was very angry with the publishing at the time, because that will make the water Muslim world very angry, and they will not understand that you , I mean that in explanation. So , uh, what I mean , um , what happened, what is happening nowadays was very predictable. And , uh, but the fact, as I said previously, as Charlie Hebdo has been attacked, they are like some sexual lions are like, Holy , uh, people, you know, that's mean that you cannot tell them, or is not good for you , what you're doing, because we understand you have been victim. So that has impacted , uh, the debates and that's , uh , really , uh, puts , um , macro , uh , a very complicated solution as , um, is there is, I mean, the opposition

Speaker 3:

You're right. Okay. I want to ask you, because the opposition, like Marilla Penn , who was far right. And as it is by a lot of estimates, Islamophobic , um, that , because he has elections coming up Macron, he has to play to the far right. To some degree. I mean, is that, is that unfair, or do you think that that's, what's taking place?

Speaker 1:

Well, he's between two, u h, let's say, u h, track, u h, u m, and also t rap, we can say as well, you have the trap of the, the right extreme right-wing of course, that, u h, is in position now to use what is going on against t he, the platforms per se, and, u h, as well, you have the, let's say the, the l aziest people. I mean, those people who are like, u h, you know, a majority in the media or in the, let's say c ertain intellectual c ircle that say, we cannot touch our freedom of expression. If you touch to the cartoon, you will touch the h orror, our more, u h, value, u h, u h, for f ear of expression. And you have a certain voice that I , I, I do r epresents, u h, which is, u h, I mean, u h, freedom of expression doesn't mean that you have to, u m, u h, let's say humiliate people. And, u h, and, u h, I remember the Obama speech in 2009, u h, when he addressed the M uslim w orld in Cairo and telling that when y ou, you attack one, when believing, when be lief, you just, u h , a ttack the whole wh ole o f them. So it r eally ad dress a v ery, very good speech. And I, u h , t r ied t o, to not to put it as a mother, that's what we could do, what the president could do now, u h , i nstead of having, let's say a k ind of a v ery, a m ilitary speech, you know, very, u h , s trong and, Um, Obama at the time was using a very positive speech. And , uh, let's say towards the Michelin people , uh, not the missing States. So he contributed to , uh, give some humanity and the D politicized , or if we can say that , um, the, the debates and , uh , is the Islam compatible , uh, with the Republic or the democracy.

Speaker 3:

But do you think of Macron had been more conciliatory and found more middle ground rather than making this tough on terrorist speech come out and said, look, we condemn terror. We condemn what happened in nice . We condemn violence at any stage, but we also ask for sensitivity to religious symbols that may anger the Muslim population , uh, not as a sign of surrender, but as a sign of inclusion, do you think that would have taken the temperature down a little bit and why couldn't he do that? I mean, he must have known what he was doing.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, sure. You know , uh , differently Chirac , uh , he doesn't know very well he's part of the world, but if you notice at the beginning, he, he said something during the, his campaign , uh, telling that the , the , the war in geria , uh, was, you know, a mistake and colonization was a , uh , crime of humanity. It was , uh , something that very far from his position nowadays. So we can understand that. I mean, I'm , I'm sure that he really , uh, he doesn't like the cartoons, those cartoons, but , uh, he it's too late anywhere nowadays, because the, all the , I mean, the, the consequences, the impact of not only the republication of challis and those cartoons , but also what he said about these radical Islam and the , what he called the [inaudible] , which is , uh , fighting against the community who are living communities, which are living in France, but not, not in compliance with the French system , uh , recovery . So , uh , that has not been well understood and also very well as to metabolized by of course , uh , missing brother , uh , brotherhood , uh , and the other country like Turkey who jumps on the occasion.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. President Eric , the one certainly called him crazy to some degree. And you have, u h, y ou k now, leaders around the world and demonstrations around the world against France now, and M acron really making it out to be t he, that France is against, u h, t he, against t he Muslims, even though France has taken in so many Muslims.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. I mean , uh , I think that's , we are now, I mean, me, I'm really promoting, I advocate the fact that we have to dialogue, dialogue, explain, explain what is our STEM put more value of? I mean, what , what the Muslim, the French ms . Freeman had , uh , brought to our , uh , success or our country, you know, all positive things that that could be cool . And , uh , we re recreate some , uh, some , uh, dialogue and , uh, uh, respects. And , uh,

Speaker 3:

Right now the divide is, is growing. And th th just , it's just the promise of more, more bloodshed and more conflict. Do you think

Speaker 1:

There's many consequences? First of all, of course, security, a consequence under , in the T under the territory, but also abroad because , um , the , the risk is to have similar to news attacks in France and in another country against French targets, interest or individuals. And , uh , the second one is, u h, u h, diplomatic. That m eans that, u h, u h, F rance will not, would not be able to make his voice, i ts voice h urts anymore. And, u h, s omebody of economical c onsequence i s because, u h, some country could choose to buy some, u h, u h, to sign big deals, you know, with, u h, t he, the French, u h, big companies, because they are F rench. So, u h, eh, we cannot trust a ny m ore French people and we don't want to have them on the ground a nd things like that. So the only t hings to do is to, u h, at least to, to, to, to, to hold t he narrative about domestic things in France and t he, t he, how we consider the Muslim civilization. And it was a ll seen as, you know, the counter influence. T he, even some s ay, may not know to, u h, t o come to the p rovider t hat, t hat i n some country, u h, by, u h, [ inaudible] and all the radical t rends that, that f riendship is fighting

Speaker 3:

And to Chile from the international intelligence cluster. And great to talk to you, thank you for being generous with your time.

Speaker 1:

Thank you.

Speaker 3:

Rokia Diallo is a writer and documentary maker in Paris. Uh , she does a lot of writing for many different sources, including the Washington post, and she is a prominent anti-racist campaigner and very prominent in France. Thank you very much for joining us.

Speaker 4:

Thank you. Thank you for inviting me.

Speaker 3:

You're a black feminist daughter of Muslim , uh Singhalese and Gambian immigrants. And you grew up in Paris , uh, in a suburb there, and you earn your living sort of writing about race and France. And I only, I only say this and draw the attention to the fact that you have a Muslim background, because it's important understanding how Muslims feel right now in France. Can you tell me , um, you know, you're in touch with the community? What are people saying?

Speaker 4:

Yes. Um, it's a very difficult time because , um, they have been from the politicians , uh, constant , uh, demands , uh, to the Muslim community to say openly that they didn't stand with the terrorists. And the thing is that it's very offensive to say that because most of the , uh , official organism Muslim organizations have ascended deepest condolences , um, after the attacks and have said how they were , um, standing with the rest of the, of the nation against terrorism and the idea that Muslims should stand , um , higher than the rest of the population , um, draw a line between us and them who are supposedly close to extremism. And who's , if they don't say anything, we'll be, you know, people could be suspicious against them. So it's, it's kind of difficult. Even myself as a Muslim domain is , have faced, faced some, some nasty moments,

Speaker 3:

Nasty moments in terms of people lashing out at you in the community.

Speaker 4:

Uh, no. Um, for example, I have been very , uh, I have been one of the people who were very c ritique against Shania D OE before the attacks. I signed an o p e d in 2011. So it was, u m, four years before the deadly attacks to say that to me, u h, the w ay they were using, u m, their, u h, their cartoons was w hat's kind of nurturing, feeding and I slamophobic context. So, u h, that, that, u h, op ed was signed in a context where, u h, S haria do was already did, did already face an attack that was not deadly. It was in the night, it w as a fire. So I signed that o p-ed,

Speaker 3:

This is before the actual shootings took place in 2015 in their office .

Speaker 4:

It was four years , four years before. And, and we still don't know who said the local on fire. And the thing is that we were 22 sign the op ed , and that I am the only one to be c onsented with, q uestioned about me, about my signature. And two weeks ago, I was in a debate about gender, about feminism, and a v ery prominent philosopher told me that I was, u m , I was responsible for the shooting. And before saying that, he s aid, you are a Muslim black wo man, and you aren't the arms of the terrorists. Yo u s ay that on th e T V channel in front of 1 million people, I was in sh ock b ecause, you know, I didn't understood th e, th e, the reason for reminding that I was Muslim. And to say that the text that I signed years before the shooting was made me having any relationship with th e t e rrorist. So it was, it really was major contributors here in France, but it reminded me that be sides b eing a journalist to some people, I was se eing a Muslim woman,

Speaker 3:

Where is the truth between the two, this great division within France, because t he, the original publication of the cartoons, which resulted in those shootings, u m, you know, obviously all of us stood with France at the time I was a reporter. I came to Paris and I covered that. U m, and we felt that, you know, obviously t here was extreme violence going after cartoonists in an office and shooting them. And, u m, and then there was also another attack on, u h, on a g rocer Jewish grocery store. U m, and, a nd people felt terrible and they felt real solidarity with France. And yet there is many people that are uncomfortable with the publishing of these cartoons because they do offend. So, so where do you either have to be on Macron side or on the Muslim population side? Or do you think most people in France fits somewhere in the middle?

Speaker 4:

I think that many people are in the middle. Like you, you have people who understand that we have the right to publish any cartoon. And I understand that, I understand that it's the freedom of speech and you have the right to criticize any religion. The thing is that, why are you doing that? Like, I understand the idea that , um, [inaudible] is a , is a , is , um, humoristic newspaper. And th they have a way to use satire to tack people and to make them make fun of them. But to me, it's my personal conception. When you are power as a , as a newspaper, the is to make fun of those who are in position of power. So constantly , uh , targeting Muslims is there , right? But I'm not sure , uh , about the reason because Muslims, people, Muslim people are already at the bottom of the society that they belong to the poorest fringes of the French society. They face constant discrimination, a constant offensive language in the media. So I think on the top, the top of that , um, those , um, how can I say that offensive cartoons? I don't know how it can help us getting any better.

Speaker 3:

Good. Tell me, why do you think that president Macron didn't deliver? I mean, he's an intelligent person. Why did he not deliver a more measured statement after the beheading of the school teacher obviously was an emotional moment for him and for the, for France , that violence, again, a terrible act of violence against the teacher teacher, who, who through educating people about free speech, showed some cartoons and there was a debate whether he should have or not. But do you think that Macron could have been a little more measured and a little more sensitive to the Muslim population? Why was he not? And did he, did he do that intentionally, do you think because of the political field in France and elections are, are in front of them?

Speaker 4:

I think that my coins in a very, very tricky position, because those cartoons as the cost, the customer lives, and it was a major trauma in France, the killing in China do . And then in the, in the, in the [inaudible] , the Jewish supermarket was , uh , a major tumor because it was so horrendous. And so I think that from that time, the cartoons have been the symbol of freedom of speech. And people would say that it is our identity, and we need to stand in the defense. And I think that Muslims don't process it that way. No, like that there are most of the Muslim , I'm not comfortable with the cartoons, but they're , you know , they're okay. They're like, okay, it's okay. We won't say anything because it's the freedom of speech, but I , they're not, they're not comfortable with that. And there is a small portion of postpone portion of people who , um, are violent, but it's , it's, it's like just a , no, some , some, some persons. And the thing is that I think that my home cannot really , uh, uh, have a more balanced , uh, this course without it can't because it would anger the majority of , uh , French people. Because I think that most of them think that it is the symbol of our identity of free , free speech. We don't, I don't think, I don't think it's like, I don't think that our free speech or free speech only stands in those cartoons, but it has become a kind of symbol of what we stand for. And the fact that so many countries , um , out of friends don't understand what we are doing, really feed the idea that we are a very particular identity and way of defending freedom of speech. So we need to stand and to defend of French particularism . And it's a trap because my comb , it cannot say that it's offensive. And at the same time, it cannot say that we need to give up because it would send a message that, Oh, we have lost , uh, to , uh , terrorism and violence.

Speaker 3:

I'm Canadian. I talking to you from London, but I'm Canadian. My prime minister Trudeau came out and he said, he said in, in, in solidarity with friends and in condemning violence, he also said in a press conference , um , freedom of expression does not come without limits. We owe it to ourselves to act with respect for others and seek not to arbitrarily or unnecessarily injure those with whom we're sharing a society that's measured.

Speaker 4:

Yes, that's measured. And I definitely understand what he says. And the thing is that in France, in France , many people commented what he said as Oh , as him being a coward. You see? So they don't understand that he's trying to bring , um , a whole society together and to make sure that the freedom of some wouldn't be an offense to the others. It's , um, it's not seen like that. And , um, and, and to me, there is this, we , we , we don't in France. We don't really understand what it is to be a minority. And the fact that you cannot just say I'm free to say anything. And that freedom would be offensive to a group that is already , um, already on the side , on the side, on the side of the society. So I feel like , um, we coming from a very different culture in which , um, the culture of the majority , uh , is not seen as dominant, but it's seen as being the norm.

Speaker 3:

I mean, obviously they have some history there with the Roman Catholic church and, and S and Francis secular ism and separation of church and state. But they, they apparently haven't explained this very well to people like president Erdogan of Turkey who sees this as, you know, what is Macron's problem with Islam and nor have they seem to explain it to their own people, people who have immigrated to France and live there and are French citizens .

Speaker 4:

I think that people understand because you don't have protests in France, again , against the cartoons. You don't have protests from French Muslims. Most of the organizations and the religious leaders, they come to , to try to bring peace to the public experience. Actually, I think that the French Muslims are much more moderate than Muslims from the other countries, but still they are facing demands to say louder and louder that they are not terrorists, that there are , uh, they are okay with the caricatures, which is, you know, you can just , uh, don't care. You can just not care about the characters, but I think that there is a difference between what was the situation of France in the early 20th century with the church that was dominant. And we get to racism being the religion of the majority. And now there is no , uh , Islam is not in the same position. It's not threatening the power of the state and Muslim people are less than 10% of the population. And among them , uh, there are the poorest , um , fringes of , uh, the French nation. So it's not the same. There is no threat of Islam , uh , you know , getting over , uh , the French state . So it's very different.

Speaker 3:

Two, two quick questions, president ai r t o o ne. Do you think that that was helpful? What he said, do yo u think that he, he thought he' s st anding up for Muslims, or do you think that he was igniting the situation further in Fr ance?

Speaker 4:

You know , um, uh, I think is, is, is just , um, using that what's going on to , to make domestic politics because , you know, we haven't heard him being that loud against China and the way they are treating wiggles. So like, I understand that there is an issue in France, but if you cannot be a president dealing so well with China and not saying anything about the way Muslims are tortured there, and then , uh , say that France is your , uh , top problem. So I think that ,

Speaker 3:

And obviously they have a little bit of history Macron in there , the one over Greece a nd the Mediterranean and other differences

Speaker 4:

And the integration . So I think in just , it's just taking advantage of the rage rage against Muslims, community, Muslim communities,

Speaker 3:

Where does this go from here to , to wrap this up, do you think, and what do , what do you worry about? Is it going to become more radicalized? And is there going to be more violence? Um, or how , how does , where does it go from here? It doesn't seem, we've seen this attack in Vienna now. Um, and obviously there's the danger that , um, there, isn't more understanding in the Muslim community in France, that there is less , uh, and they feel more discriminated against. Um, and that acts like what has taken place with the school teacher become even more possible tragically

Speaker 4:

It's, it's , um, it's very concerning actually, because I can feel that with the pandemic, with the lockdown, there is much tension in the French society, as well as many, many, many other societies. And the fact that the government is focusing so much on trying to shut down and Muslim organizations , uh , so quickly , um , make , um, Muslim people think that there are criminalized for just being openly Muslim and trying to stand for their rights. So on one side, it goes, u h, you know, to, to, to feel, t o f uel the idea that, u m, that, u h, you know, you are not accepted as a Muslim in the French nation. And t hen on the other side, there is, u m, t hese like, u h, civilization, civilization, war rhetoric that makes French, u h, you know, that makes, u h, the country having the idea that we are s tanding alone against another civilization, civilization, which is not true. It's much more complex than that.

Speaker 3:

Well, and as we speak, you know, even here in the United Kingdom, now they've increased the security alert to the top level, and they're worried about attacks here. So it is spreading beyond francis' borders, but Rokia Diablo really pleasure to talk to you. Thanks for being so generous with your time. And it was great to have your thoughts.

Speaker 4:

Thank you. It was a pleasure. Thank you for inviting me, Mexico Q4

Speaker 2:

In that hour , backstory on France and free speech and the crackdown on radical Muslims who have used terror in an attempt to silence what they view as offensive cartoon . Much of this took place when America was consumed with its election and the cliff edge dramatic vote count. I mean, we can't blame Americans if they tuned out of international news and missed a lot. And I was watching a lot of it too, but usually us news networks don't cover the world the way they should. That's why we bring you backstory with Dana Lewis. Please share this podcast subscribe, and you're welcome to sponsor this podcast. Get in touch, stay healthy, and I'll talk to you again soon.

Anne Guidicelli
Rokhaya Diallo