Monday, October 23, 2006

Violence is out of control in Iraq


Only, unfortunately, this picture is of French Muslim youth rioting in France.

Police there are calling this an infitada:

One small police union claims officers are facing a "permanent intifada." Police injuries have risen in the year since the wave of violence.

National police reported 2,458 cases of violence against officers in the first six months of the year, on pace to top the 4,246 cases recorded for all of 2005 and the 3,842 in 2004. Firefighters and rescue workers have also been targeted - and some now receive police escorts in such areas.

On Sunday, a band of about 30 youths, some wearing masks, forced passengers out of a bus in a southern Paris suburb in broad daylight Sunday, set it on fire, then stoned firefighters who came to the rescue....
More broadly, worsening violence in France testifies to Europe's growing struggle to integrate its ethnic minorities. Some mainstream European politicians - adopting positions previously confined largely to far-right fringes - are suggesting that the minorities themselves are not doing enough to adapt to European mores.

[]
Ethnic integration and violence against police are both becoming issues in the campaign for the French presidency. Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, the leading contender on the right, said this month that those who do not love France do not have to stay, echoing a longtime slogan of the extreme-right National Front: "France, love it or leave it."

Michel Thooris, head of the small Action Police union, claims that the new violence is taking on an Islamic fundamentalist tinge.

"Many youths, many arsonists, many vandals behind the violence do it to cries of 'Allah Akbar' (God is Great) when our police cars are stoned," he said in an interview. []

Sadio Sylla, an unemployed mother of three, watched the Oct. 13 ambush of the police patrol in Epinay-sur-Seine from her second-floor window. She, other witnesses and police union officials said up to 50 masked youths surged out from behind trees.

One of the three officers needed 30 stitches to his face after being struck by a rock.

The attack was one of at least four gang beatings of police in Parisian suburbs since Sept. 19. Early Friday, a dozen hooded people hurled stones, iron bars and bottles filled with gasoline at two police vehicles in Aulnay-sous-Bois, a flashpoint of last year's riots, said Guillaume Godet, a city hall spokesman. One officer required three stitches to his head.

[]


Police unions suspect that the recent attacks may be an attempt to spark new riots.

"We are getting the impression these youths want a 'remake' of what happened last year," said Fred Lagache, national secretary of the Alliance police union. "The youths are trying to cause a police error to justify chaos."



It must be a great year for Renault sales.

No comments: