The attacks in france show that its colonial past endures _ natalie nougayrède _ opinion _ the guardian

Some point to the French republic’s specific brand of secularism – its model of laïcité (the prohibition of religious influence on anything that relates to the republic) inherited from the 1905 law separating church and state – which is often caricatured and misunderstood. Free trade definition Others point to France’s recent military interventionism in the Muslim world, from west Africa to Iraq. Designated trade definition Yet more highlight the discrimination its Muslim minorities suffer.


Trade definition in economics None of this can be ignored.

But an essential backdrop to many of the reactions to recent terror is France’s history, which ties its domestic politics to the turmoil of the Arab world like those of no other European state. Economic definition of trade France and Germany have the largest Muslim populations in Europe. Commodity trade finance definition Unlike Germany, whose Muslims are mostly of Turkish origin, France’s minority is overwhelmingly Arab because of the country’s colonial past. Trade organization definition (In the UK, for reasons also linked to empire, Muslims are generally of Asian background.)

Chaos and violence in the Middle East resonate in France as nowhere else in Europe. Foreign trade multiplier definition This is rarely mentioned by French politicians and officials, who tend to point to the fact that jihadi terrorism targets all western societies. Trade compliance wiki But France’s specific complexities are hard to overlook. Carry trade definition Talk of a country “at war”, in the aftermath of terrorist attacks whose perpetrators and accomplices have in most cases been French Muslims, stirs the ghosts of the Algerian war of 1954-1962.

In France, the colonial past is not dead, and it’s not even the past. Definition of trade marketing Marine Le Pen’s Front National is often described as a neo-fascist party, but unlike other far-right movements in Europe, its origins aren’t found in the ideologies of Mussolini and Hitler but in France’s colonial history.

The historian Benjamin Stora has described this backdrop as a “transfer of memory”: memories of the colonial era across the Mediterranean are transferred to contemporary France. To trade definition Millions of people in France still live with conflicting views on Algeria: the families of the one million French conscripts who served in the war; those of the approximately one million colonial pied noirs (Christian and Jewish people) who fled Algeria after its independence in 1962; those of hundreds of thousands of harkis, Muslim Algerians who worked alongside the French colonists and later also fled to France.

And then, of course, there are the children of migrants from North Africa, many of whom feel disenfranchised. Auxiliaries to trade definition Gilles Kepel, a prominent French academic, has written about how some of these youths, consciously or unconsciously, are “refighting” the battles their parents or grandparents papered over when they settled in France.

Facebook Twitter Pinterest ‘Memories of the colonial era across the Mediterranean are transferred to contemporary France,’ French armed forces suppress an uprising in colonial-era Algeria. Trade cost analysis definition Photograph: Loomis Dean/Time & Life Pictures/Getty Image

Look no further than France’s current state of emergency to see how the Algerian war is ever present. Definition free trade The French 1958 constitution and its high concentration of executive power was born from that conflict. Definition of home trade Words such as “assimilation” and “integration”, much used to this day when immigration is discussed, hark back to this era. Trade report definition France has a hard time thinking of Islam in terms other than assimilation or ghettoisation, and that has to do with the way it treated its Algerian territory from 1848 to 1962. Definition of trade winds This predated laïcité.

It seems the attack in Nice has opened a Pandora’s box of painful memories and prejudice. Trade area analysis definition Unlike the 2015 attacks in Paris, this onslaught occurred in a region characterised by a strong presence of “repatriated” families from colonial Algeria and their children and grandchildren. Definition of barriers to trade The south-east of France has been a hotbed of the Front National’s political rise.

This is the context in which some families of the Muslim victims of the Bastille Day attack (an estimated third of those killed) have reportedly been insulted in the streets of Nice, in some cases just after they had visited the morgue.

The parallel with France’s Algerian past is the perception that this is now a war with no frontline, in which danger can emerge at any time, anywhere, and in which Arabs living among the supposedly “real” French form a distinct, homogeneous, threatening entity.

The Front National may, under Marine Le Pen, have neutralised its antisemitism (breaking away, for electoral purposes, from the leftovers of the Vichy era of Nazi occupation); but it very much continues to pander to the colonial notion that “true” French identity is threatened by Muslim culture. Trade standards definition The roots of its narrative, in a nutshell, are: good Muslims are those who stay subdued and dominated, as in the heyday of France’s colonial possessions.

Nostalgia for French colonial might is still powerful, if unspoken. Fair trade definition and principles Yet as Stora and others have analysed, knowledge of that era remains patchy, among both France’s Muslims and its non-Muslims. Definition on trade The National Museum of the History of Immigration was inaugurated only in 2014.

In a recent parliamentary debate on the state of emergency, one of France’s younger politicians, Bruno Le Maire, made an extraordinary statement that reveals much about where the country is heading. Global trade definition Le Maire is running in the rightwing primaries for the presidential election and he comes from the Gaullist side of the political spectrum – not the Front National (which hates De Gaulle because he negotiated Algeria’s independence).

According to Le Maire, the enemy that must be “fought with utmost strength within France” is “political Islam”. American foreign trade definitions He didn’t say “jihadi fundamentalism”. By trade definition He defined political Islam as “Islam that criticises our culture” and “wants to make women invisible”. Definition of trade in This is what French colonists thought about Muslims in general.

France’s republican model is not responsible for the terrorism it endures. Foreign trade zone definition But it is a European country that, unlike others struck by terrorism, still has to come to terms with its colonial past if it wants to build an inclusive, promising future for all its citizens.

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