Pan Africanism : France: History of Discrimination Against Arabs and Africans

Discussion in 'Black History - Culture - Panafricanism' started by Aqil, Nov 6, 2005.

  1. Aqil

    Aqil Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    The violent riots that have plagued France in recent days reflect the unjust discrimination in the French society, presented in the high unemployment rates and poverty among foreign immigrants, mostly Arabs and Africans in the majority Catholic country.

    Several analysts have explained that the current unrest in France is an expression of pent-up anger by African and Arab immigrants, at racism, police treatment, and unemployment. Torching cars, throwing rocks, and setting fire to buildings are recurring images in France, a country that’s usually referred to as an ideal of equality, while it hides its poorest in slums out of the sight of the elite French people, according to a Reuters editorial.

    France, the country that stands for freedom, equality and fraternity, has failed to protect the Arabs and provide them with jobs that helped integrate earlier immigrants. "This is the paradox of integration faced with the promises the republic failed to keep," said criminologist Alain Bauer. "I'm afraid the Arabs and Africans of France are being used as pawns in the political debate for the next election," social worker Aziz Sahiri said in a televised debate with Bauer.

    It seems that France’s integration model is not working - the country’s African and Arab communities suffer discrimination, poor schooling, unemployment and political disenfranchisement, according to Le Monde Diplomatic. The problem started three or four decades ago, when Arab and African immigrants began arriving from Africa and the Middle East. They settled on the outskirts of big cities, forming “ugly new towns” - but those bleak housing estates are now ethnic ghettos where most French rarely venture...and associate with drug rings and gang rapes.

    The French government did all it can to exclude those communities from the country’s political system. Controlled by the French white men, the more ambitious in the suburbs established self-help associations to find the authorities, criticizing them as “unacceptably ethnic” simply because they have "Muslim" in their names.

    Debates over the integration of the French society and the acceptance of immigrants and respecting their rights usually fail and end up with the government reaffirming a strictly French way of doing things, such as barring any religious symbols in state schools, the hijab and Muslim headscarfs included. "We've been talking about prevention for 30 years but it hasn't worked," Bauer complained. Politicians failed to address the problem the right way, and fallen back on an old litany: "It's not true, it's not serious and it's not my fault."

    Christophe Barbier, assistant editor of L'Express weekly, warned that even if the police managed to end the current riots they’ll be happen again as they reflect a turf war that could break out at the first provocation. About 68 people have been arrested since the riots broke out 10 days ago. Yesterday, hundreds of protestors took to the streets in Paris denouncing violence and appealing for calm. Among those who participated in Saturday peace march was Ahmed Brazini. "We're tired of everything that's been happening these days," he said. "The flames, the smoke, the burning tires, the stolen cars. "We're fed up with all of it, this must come to an end."

    http://www.aljazeera.com/me.asp?service_ID=10021
     
  2. Dual Karnayn

    Dual Karnayn Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    As a Black man and a Muslim, I find this entire situation quite disturbing for a number of reasons.

    First of all, I thought it was mostly Arab North Africans doing the looting and the burning.
    When one hears it in the American media, they say "Africans" rioting without making any distinction of race and region. But I understand that most of the trouble makers are North Africans.



    Now we all know France has did it's fair share of dirt to Black people and the French certainly aren't saints but there are a number of reasons why I condemn what's going on there.


    1.France is one of the few European countries that actually opposed the American invasion of Iraq while England, Spain, and Italy initially supported it.

    France and Germany have been the 2 countries that stood in the way of a totally reckless "war on terrorism".

    Now what are the French supposed to think about Muslims after this?

    All this robbing, raping, burning and sniping......they probably wouldn't care what happened to the Muslims of the world after this.


    2.France had a pretty good immigration policy that allowed millions of Africans into the country and gave them benefits and housing.
    But that probably will be changing soon because of the reckless actions of a few trouble-makers giving immigrants a bad name.

    Suppose I wanted to imgrate to France in the future to study or just live, will this ruin my chances?


    3. France is world renown for it's historically liberal and tolerant society...even back during the time of Josephine Bakker.
    Now look how it is repaid.

    I know it's the North African Arabs causing most of the problem, but unfortunately some are just gonna blame ALL people of color and Muslims for it.
     
  3. dustyelbow

    dustyelbow Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Adding some fuel to the fires in Paris and their decisions

    France was involved with UN Iraq's oil for food medicine program. With this in mind, France will not dump Muslims wholesale anytime soon, their transportation and energy sector depends on giving a haven for Middle East Muslims in Europe and to meet European Union directives. Many Iraqis have seeked political haven in France, not like the huge class of North Africans as economic refugees though but its not gonna be a complete crackdown on Muslims. It will be a continental crackdown on all Africans in most cases including North Africans. I think Oprah Winfrey was discriminated at a high class store in France due to the sales clerks saying they thought she was North African so this will be about Africans with element of religion involved.
     
  4. Dual Karnayn

    Dual Karnayn Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Dusty

    And this is EXACTLY what I'm afraid of.

    The just has a riot over in England invovling Black people.

    Who benefits the most as Europe begins to lose it's tolerance and liberal social order?
    Certainly not us as Black people or Muslims.

    But we get the blame.

    Those Arab and Berber North Africans....most of whom are racist themselves...are making it hard on the rest of us by creating resentment and anger in the hearts of a typically more left leaning people.

    Why FRANCE of all places did this shiit have to jump off?
     
  5. Aqil

    Aqil Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    According to Wikipedia, Islam is the second-largest religion in France, with approximately 4 to 6 million people of Islamic faith - or with a Muslim cultural or ethnic background - of which an estimated 2 and 3 million people actively practice the religion. In 2000 the French Interior Ministry estimated the total number of Muslims at 4.1 million, and the number of French converts at about 40,000. Others claim there are between 5 and 6 million Muslims of French extraction. The CIA World Factbook 2005 estimates that the Muslim population makes up between 5% and 10% of France's total population of 63 million, which corresponds to 3 to 6 million Muslims.

    The study L'Islam en France et les reactions aux attentats du 11 septembre 2001, Résultats détaillés, of the Institut Français de l'Opinion Public, found that 36% of Muslims self-describe themselves as "observant believers"; 20% claim to regularly attend the masajid on Fridays; and 70% said they "observe Ramadan." This would amount to roughly 1.5 million French Muslims who are "observant believers"; another 1.5 million without religious belief who culturally identify with Islam enough to observe Ramadan; and 1 million of "Muslim extraction" with no strong religious or cultural ties to Islam.

    There have been Muslims in France since the colonization of Algeria in the 1830s. It is estimated there were tens of thousands as early as the 1920s. Muslim immigration - especially of men primarily from Algeria and other North African colonies - was very high following World War II, because the French workforce was inadequate for reconstruction efforts. The Muslim population is now estimated at 5-6 million (compared to a total French population of about 63 million people). This is only an estimate, since census of religious adherence is prohibited by French law. Most social scientists believe this number is too low, and speak of as many as 8 million Muslims in France (compared to 12 to 20 million in the European Union).

    The terms "Arab" and "Muslim" are often confused; in practice, Arabs can be Muslim, Christian, agnostic, etc.; while Muslims can be non-Arab (like Turks and Iranians). However, in the popular perception "Arab" and "Muslim" are often seen as synonymous. This perception is probably reinforced by the fact that Arab Muslim issues are much more visible and problematic, and because their voices are more polemic than Christian Arab voices. The number of French non-Arabs who have converted to Islam is unknown; some surveys suggest up to 30,000 conversions have occurred in the last few decades; some in the Muslim community claim a number ten times as high.

    To many French people the term "Muslim" is unprecise, as they sometimes use it to refer to an ancestry, and sometimes as a varying set of religious practices. However, if religious adherence and ethnic origin may be juxtaposed and even reinforced by each other, they are not synonymous. France does not legally recognize ethnic background, but in recent years the government has tried to organize a representation of the French Muslims. In 2002, Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy initiated the creation of Conseil National du Culte Musulmana (French Council of the Muslim Religion). This association - though it is informally recognized by the national government - is merely a private, nonprofit association with no special legal status. As of 2004, it is headed by the imam of the main Paris masjid, Sheik Dalil Abu Bakr.

    The first generation of Muslims, who are today retired from the workforce, was not seen as immigrants, neither by France and the employers, nor by Muslims themselves. Muslims kept strong ties with their mother countries, where their families often lived. Then, in 1974, the government favored regrouping families, and children and wives moved to France. Most Muslims asked for French nationality at this time.

    The situation was different with the second generation - the majority born in France - and as such French citizens. They do not intend to go to their country of origin, with which they have few bonds. They often feel like immigrants, even though they may have little knowledge of the country of their ancestors. The prominent French political scientist Olivier Roy indicates the fact that they are Muslims is only one element among others. Their identification with the area of origin is much stronger: they are first Algerians, Moroccans, Kabyles and Turks. In general, the weight of the identity of origin is stronger for the first generation, which is why religious buildings built by this generation are Turkish, Tunisian, Moroccan, etc.

    This is not so true especially with the second generation of Arab Muslims, who often do not even speak Arabic. They have many generational conflicts with newer Imams. Most immigrant Imams have a religious-based education, learned outside France. Their rejection of French secular enlightenment values are at odds with some of the modern French/Arab Muslim youth, but are very appealing to other French Arab/Muslim youth. A conflict seems to be growing between those advocating French imams to be trained in France, up to French academic standards - including fluency in French - and in accordance with French and EU legislation, and those insisting that imams should be trained in Muslim countries...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islam_in_France#Muslim_population_in_France
     
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