Tuesday, November 27, 2007


There has been no shortage of warning signs. Robert Castel, writing in Le Nouvel Obs a month and a half ago, said that "threats of an explosion are accumulating." Less than a month ago, the Cour des Comptes issued a report denouncing, among other things, "the inconsistency of policy," "delays in payments to associations," "cumbersome mechanisms," and in general neglect of the suburbs by the state. So there is no reason for surprise that what appears to have been an unfortunate traffic accident has erupted into two nights of violence reminiscent of the riots of 2005. Sarkozy, still in China, is monitoring the situation closely and has announced a meeting with the parents of the two dead adolescents upon his return. But thus far he has shown no sign of considering a reversal of the policy he initiated, to end the police de proximité and rely on riot police to maintain order in the suburbs. Fadela Amara is on the scene, but we really have no idea whether her talents include the bureaucratic skills needed to overcome inertia and get the suburbs what they need. Michèle Alliot-Marie, who occupies the position that Sarkozy held during the 2005 riots, has not helped matters by blaming the violence on "organized gangs."

Videos here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the media is misinterpreting the scenario; it’s just the religion of peace preaching in their customary style.