The peasants revolt, send them to bed

“The last time the French asked for more proof, it came marching into Paris under a German flag.”
—David Letterman

To that end, apparently French President Jacque Chirac was correct in his previous assessments of Iraq, Saddam Hussein and terrorism. To-wit, that the world is not a safer place with Saddam Hussein removed from power—in particular that part of it occupied by the French.

For the uninitiated, “civil unrest"—known in the politically incorrect and otherwise real world as “riots"—broke out nearly two weeks ago after two mental giants of North African and apparently Muslim origin managed to barbecue themselves in a power substation’s transformer while avoiding police in the Paris suburb of Clichy-sous-Bois.

This gave way to nightly riots across France between ethnic-Muslim youths and the local constabularies in some 300 cities. As of this writing, 10 police officers have been shot, one person killed, thousands of vehicles (3,000 in two nights alone) have been torched, and municipal buildings, schools, synagogues and churches have been firebombed. Apparently, outrage over the incident gave folks the moral authority to hurt people and trash other people’s stuff—or something to that effect.

France’s Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy quite correctly and accurately used the word “scum” to describe the rioters. Predictably, he was “sautéed” by the politically correct equivalent of Democrats in France who apparently consider it gauche to denounce dangerous, anti-social behavior for fear that someone’s feelings may be hurt.

On Nov. 5, even the New York Times reported that “a majority of the youths committing the acts are Muslim, and of African or North African origin.” In an unsurprising show of solidarity, the newspaper then made a little quantum leap in logic, explaining that “the mayhem has yet to take on any ideological or religious overtones.” As overwhelming evidence of this, they noted that “second-generation Portuguese immigrants” and “some children of native French” had been involved in the violence.

Then a scant five days later, Chirac, either taking a cue from the Times or channeling American Democrats and Hurricane Katrina, morphed the riots into a debate on poverty at a Paris news conference. He pledged to address the “root causes” of the violence which were occurring in largely working class, Muslim communities.

Does everyone have that? The violence is happening in Muslim communities by Muslim youths, according to the American media, but the “root causes” have nothing to do with “religious or ideological overtones.” Yeah, that makes perfect sense. Or perhaps it doesn’t.

Even more unsurprising, however, is that when Katrina came calling in New Orleans, Bush bashers the world over lambasted the president for not responding three weeks before it hit. But the French president got a free pass for taking a two-week nap while Muslim thugs trashed his country. (And you wonder why conservatives don’t give a rip what the rest of the planet—especially the French—think about us?)

Yet when the man finally decides to get tough on rioters by claiming his priority was to end the two weeks of violence, I thought he’d “get tough.” Either that or unconditionally surrender.

Turns out I was closer than I thought. What Chirac really meant was the reinstatement of a 1955 law allowing local mayors to impose curfews.

Seriously. Curfews.

So, apparently the deluded French government thinks people who torch cars and buildings and shoot at police are going to be intimidated by curfews.

Is it any wonder why the French are so apathetic to the war on terror when the first rule of warfare is “Anyone can beat the French"?