Nadine Morano, member of the UMP, confuses Islamic State with the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine

Nadine Morano is opposed to France’s recognition of the Palestinian state, as proposed by socialist deputies in the National Assembly. On November 28 she

French politician Nadine Morano confuses Islamic Jihad and Islamic State.
French politician Nadine Morano confuses Islamic Jihad and Islamic State.

expressed her sentiments about the proposal. She said, “who decapitates westerners? Those that are members of the Islamic jihad, Hamas’s partners. It’s the Jews that are beheading people today? It’s the Jews that decapitated Hervé Gourdel?” Her statement clearly confuses the Islamic State and the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine (JIP).

The Islamic State wants to establish a caliphate in its occupied territory. The JIP aims to eradicate Israel in order to establish a Palestinian state on the Israel’s current territory. Those who decapitated Hervé Gourdel “were members of the Islamic State.” Its members regularly threaten Western countries that are aiding Iraq’s government in overthrowing the Islamic State. ISIL has executed five hostages in the last three months. Gourdel was killed in September in Algeria by the group Djound Al-Khalifa (Soldiers of the Caliphate,) a group affiliated with ISIL.

Nadine Morano “hurt” by image of a veiled woman at the beach

The former minister of the UMP Nadine Morano has created controversy after posting a picture of a veiled Muslim woman at the beach on her Facebook page. Morano wrote, “There is nothing that threatens public order because the woman’s face was visible in accordance with the law, but it’s an attack on our culture that hurts.” Next to the photograph of the veiled woman, seen from behind, Morano showed the headline of the Figaro Magazine featuring a picture of Brigitte Bardot in a bikini.

Addressing the picture of Bardot, Morano writes: “This image of a Frenchwoman who is proud of her freedom as a woman struck me as a contrast to that of the veiled woman…When choosing to come to France, a state of rights, secular, one must respect our culture and women’s freedom.”

Her comments prompted a statement from the National Observatory Against Islamophobia, which called the post “stigmatizing.” “Is the act of wearing a veil on the beach not respecting the laws of the Republic?” asked Abdallah Zekri, the association’s president. Zekri contended that only the full veil is banned in France.

“It’s always the same one who stands out in the UMP…It would be better for her to deal with what’s happening in her party rather than to stigmatize women who wear the veil,” he added. Zekri is a former UMP member who left the party “after having felt the frequency of hate speech and racism rise.”

Jihadists, Hamas, the veil: does France have more tension with radical Islam than its neighbors?

August 22, 2014

A comparative survey between England, Germany and France has created controversy due to its results concerning France. When asked about their opinions about Islamists in the Islamic State of Iraq, those who were polled in France expressed a 15% positive opinion, compared with 7% in Britain and 2% in Germany.  Although the religion of those surveyed is not indicated, the survey’s results gave rise to questions surrounding integration, especially in France. It is important to note that the study’s sponsor is Rossiya Segodnya, a Russian press agency. While the Russian media is not particularly interested in the problems of integration in France, question remains about the agency’s motives for conducting the survey. Atlantico conducted an interview with historian Guylain Chevalier and professor Moustafa Traoré.

When asked if England’s method of integration, often lauded as a model for Europe due to its multiculturalist approach, is a success, he answered: “Let us remember that during the terrorist attacks in London, everyone across the Channel was shocked that the terrorists did not come from abroad but were ‘well integrated.’” He stressed that after the attacks, David Cameron saw the English model as a failure. He continued, “The phenomenon of jihadism that is developing in European countries is evidence of an evolution of a part of the Islamic community towards a radical Islam that responds to the goal of Islamic domination based on the model of the Islamic State of Iraq.” In the case of the Islamic State, every person who does not convert to Islam risks death.

Chevalier continued, “One can image what espousing this vision, for certain Muslims tempted by the renewed figure of the ‘warrior for Islam,’ could have as a projected consequence in Western countries in a closed community where things can go adrift.” For this reason, he concluded, “One cannot ask questions in such a context about the efficacy of our models of integration for combating a risk of radicalization in the long term, as it is fed by armed conflicts where Islam is increasingly involved.”

The Atlantico then spoke with Moustafa Traoré, and asked: “From the point of view of integration, the unemployment rate for Muslims, or of mixed marriages, how is France worse than other countries in terms of integration? In contrast, how is it better?” Traoré said that the best way to evaluate an integration system is to speak with those who are primarily concerned. For example, “One cannot evaluate the integration of women in the workplace without making reference to the feelings of the latter.” He stressed the importance of using proper terms when discussing integration, “France, is before anything, an assimilationist country that has the tendency to ask the newly arrived to get rid of their values, their culturally ethnic particularities, so that they can adopt those of France and of the Republic.” He continued, “To speak in France about the process of integration where there does not exist one is an intellectual fault that often reflects dishonesty, or an underlying racism.”

Chevalier points to the failures of England’s multiculturalism as, “A model that is specifically the opposite of France’s, a society that is the quintessential mix of primarily considering individuals as equals before seeing them as part of cultures or religions.” He adds that France has the highest rate of mixed marriages, 27%, of anywhere in Europe. However, he concedes that “It is becoming increasingly difficult to integrate populations that are coming from elsewhere, into an economy of chronic unemployment, where cultural tensions can also be exacerbated by the economic tension.”

Responding to the issue created by Nadine Morano, whose negative comments about a veiled Muslim woman at the beach have sparked controversy, Chevrier states, “It’s certain that her reaction reflects a fear that is growing today,” but notes, “In a number of Muslim countries, women have a minority status that is not completely discriminatory, and which is not without influence on the way a number of Muslims in France practice their faith.” He adds, “The countries of origin of those who decide to wear the veil did not operate on the separation of religion and politics like we do…To follow before anything the values of religious codes, seen as superior to common law, is a form of confinement that breaks with the idea of the common good and of the public interest and favors social and political divisions that could lead to radicalism.”

Traoré said that while he does not have the same point of view as Chevrier, he recognizes that “The reaction of Nadine Morano is understandable, when France has chosen assimilation instead of integration. This supposes that there exists a cultural model of established and rigid values to which the newly arrived must submit to, all the while leaving behind what makes up their ethnic and cultural differences.”

When asked about the tensions that erupted in Stockholm in 2013 and if there is another country that is similar to France in terms of its integration policies, Chevrier stated, “Our model of integration…is without a doubt the best safeguard for our peaceful coexistence in terms of social diversity, no matter what differences may exist.” He concluded, “The Republican model is a wonderful tool for integration…Confronting the danger of radicalism and its current temptations, the feeling of belonging to a national community, to a larger being that puts the public interest ahead of idiosyncrasies, is what’s at stake for peaceful coexistence and more so, a determining element for social peace.”

France wants to apply possible burqa ban for tourists

France’s government announced it would apply a proposed ban on face-covering Islamic veils to visiting tourists as well as residents, even as skepticism mounted over the legality of the plan.

Junior family minister Nadine Morano said visitors would have to “respect the law” and uncover their faces, prompting critics to speculate whether Saudi luxury shoppers would be forced to unveil themselves on the glitzy Champs-Elysees. “When you arrive in a country you have to respect the laws of that country,” Ms. Morano said on France Info radio. “If I go to certain countries I’m also forced to respect the law.”

French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Wednesday backed a strict public ban of the veil, commonly referred to in France as the burqa, eschewing more moderate proposals that focused on limits in state institutions such as schools and town halls. The draft bill will be presented to the cabinet next month.

If the European Court or domestic courts strike it down, Mr. Sarkozy would suffer his second constitutional defeat in the space of a few months — late last year; his plan for a carbon tax was rejected because its many loopholes violated the principle of equality.

French Minister of the family suggests possible ban on fully-veiled new immigrants

The French government is planning to require new immigrants to sign a contract recognizing that the face-veil is banned in France. “Equality between men and women is a fundamental principle of French society,” Families Minister Nadine Morano told French Radio, reported Agence France-Presse (AFP). “The same applies to the full veil.”

At present, newcomers are stipulated to sign the contract stating that polygamy and forced marriages are not allowed in France.”I also want to add that female genital mutilation is strictly prohibited,” said Morano.

MRAP files complaint against Morano for comments about French Muslim youth

The Movement Against Racism and for Friendship Between Peoples (Mrap or Mouvement contre le racisme et pour l’amitié entre les peuples) has launched a complaint of racism against French Secretary of State for the Family, Nadine Morano, for comments she made about Muslim youth.

During a debate on national identity on 14 December 2009 at Charmes (Vosges), Morano called for young French Muslims to love France, to find work, to not speak verlan (slang) and not wear their baseball caps backwards.

More and more young Muslims call for an end on the debate on French national identity

The debate on national identity in France became more focused on young French Muslims following the comments of Nadine Morano at Charmes. The president of the CFCM (the French Council of the Muslim Faith), Mohamed Moussaoui, critiqued the stereotypical image promoted by Morano.

A spokesperson for the Union of French Jewish Students called the debate on national identity a “theatre for the expression of prejudicial racism”. Leftist parties in France have also pointed to how “dangerous” the debate is for cohesive national identity.

Along these lines, Dominique de Villepin called for the end of the “terrible” debate which should have never begun. The former prime minister stated, “In a period of crisis, we have more important matters to attend to than creating further division.”

Nadine Morano, Secretary of State for Family and Solidarity, asks French Muslims to no longer speak “Verlan”

In the context of the debate on French national identity in Charmes (Vosges), Nadine Morano, French secretary of State in charge of the family and of solidarity, declared to young French Muslims that they no longer use “verlan” slang when they speak.

Verlan is a popular suburban phenomenon of speaking, changing the order of words (i.e. bizarre becomes “zarbi”). Morano called for young Muslims to love their country, to find work, to no longer speak using verlan, to no longer wear their caps backwards.

Benoit Hamon of the Socialist Party responded with concern for Morano’s caricaturized portrayal of young people which looks very little like most young French Muslims today. The organization SOS Racisme echoed Hamon’s position.

According to a poll held by Nouvel Observateur, 40 percent of French people see the debate on National Identity by Nicolas Sarkozy to the necessary. 42 percent of respondents noted the negative ramifications of the debate.