France’s Go Ahead and Go (If You’re Brave) Zones

I was working the Worst President Twitter account and I came across a tweet by National Review’s Charles C. W. Cooke, regarding an article he’s written about Paris. In the article he discusses, among other things, the now-infamous Fox News report about Paris’ no-go zones:

Outside the periphique, it’s dangerous, ugly, tense—often lawless. If you’re Jewish you’re in trouble. There’s little sense of “Frenchness.”

To which I responded, in Twitter form, that if it isn’t French; if Jews better watch out and it is rather lawless then that would fit the definition of a no-go zone, if you ask me. Cooke took exception to that, asserting vigorously that the concept of a no-go zone is untrue. I promised to read his National Review article. Proving definitively that National Review is not part of Obama’s America, I had to pay twenty five cents for the privilege of reading it – and it was well worth the two bits (actually, it is worth quite a bit more than that). If you’ve got a quarter and a little time to spare, I highly recommend it – and you can read it here.

Getting down to no-go brass tacks, the article includes this:

Approximately 80 percent of those who live in Aulnay’s cités are Muslim, I am told. “So,” I ask, “is this one of those sharia-bound no-go areas that we always hear about?”

To my surprise, the question provokes laughter. “That’s a myth,” my hosts exclaim. “It’s impossible.” There are certainly serious “tensions” between the police and the locals, one guide says. “Police won’t go and interfere with women illegally wearing niqabs because they don’t want to prompt retaliation. Definitely, there’s tolerance toward this stuff.” Recently, I learn, a veiled woman who was stopped by police refused to hand over her ID. Instead, she called for help. Quickly, the police in the area were surrounded, and, hoping to defuse the situation, the local commissioner let her go. Angry at the intrusion, a gang came back and burned a copy of the civil code.

This, it seems, is fairly typical. But sharia, as we understand it? “No.”

I have immense respect for Mr. Cooke and enjoy his writing on a regular basis – but, for crying out loud, the wearing of the niqab is required by Sharia law and forbidden by French law…and the French authorities allowed the lady in question to adhere to Sharia law.

I get the point that what is in the public mind when they think “no-go” is an exaggeration; the concept that there are places under French jurisdiction where the police and other authorities never go. If that is what is claimed as a myth, then I concede the point. The French police and military are fully capable of entering any place under French jurisdiction any time they wish and I’m sure that when something the authorities can’t ignore happens, they go in. But, as it actually made pretty clear in Cooke’s article, there is massive criminal activity going on in parts of Paris and the authorities aren’t doing much about it. Cooke’s story of pretty open drug dealing out in front of a Mosque means, to me, that the police know full well that if they try to interfere with this then Muslim radicals in the area will kick up a fuss and lots of elite voices in France will start making accusations of racism…and so they just don’t go. The area is, for practical purposes, a no-go zone for the French authorities. Not because they can’t go, but because they won’t go – and they won’t go because they believe the political costs of going outweigh the benefits of not going.

Don’t be too down on the French about this: there are no-go zones in the United States, as well. Why do you think in places like Chicago there are neighborhoods horrifically crime-ridden while the neighborhood just down the street is nearly crime-free? I can’t think of any other reason than that the police are protecting one area very well, but not too interested in what is going on in the other. Take a look at the crime stats for the Hyde Park and Washington Park areas of Chicago – Hyde Park ranks 44th of Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods in violent crime; Washington Park ranks 5th. They are right next to each other. Seriously – you can cross the street from Hyde Park to Washington Park. Criminals can’t cross the street? Of course they can – but for some reason they don’t. In fact, why don’t criminals routinely head to the richest areas of town to rob and burglarize? Its not like criminals don’t have cars – why beat someone for $50 when you can beat someone else ten miles away for $500? One area is protected, another area isn’t. One area is under the laws of the City of Chicago, one area not quite so much. As to why these two neighborhoods are different I’ll leave that to someone with the time for more in-depth research…but, to me, Washington Park is a no-go zone. I won’t go there. Certainly not after dark. So are those neighborhoods of Paris where Mr. Cooke recently toured. They aren’t entirely part of France – I can’t expect a friendly and polite French police officer to protect me in some areas. I can’t even be very certain that if I were killed in one of those areas that an in-depth investigation would be done…after all, it might lead to someone of a certain faith being the prime suspect and arresting him could cause a riot. Better just to send the American stiff back home and close the case as “unsolved”.

As a citizen of the United States, there should be no part of the United States where it is unsafe for me to travel – any time, day or night. And if I got myself a visa to visit France, I should be able to wander aimlessly about France with never a worry for my safety. That is what government’s which are doing their job ensure. Indeed, it is the prime reason to have a government. Most of the rest of what government does is dross. But, that is not the case. Of course, it has always been like that: there have always been bad neighborhoods that are best to stay out of. But the difference we have today with the past is that a bad neighborhood in the past might have been that way for a multitude of reasons, but some of the bad neighborhoods in Paris (and elsewhere in the Western world) are to be stayed out of simply because of the faith of a majority of the people living there. Safely defended by a craven fear among our elite leadership, areas of the West are being sutured off from our laws and customs. To be sure, a great deal of run-of-the-mill criminal activity is going on in these areas, but the defense of the run-of-the-mill criminals is the fact that they operate out of primarily Muslim areas.

There are various kinds of injustice in the world but one of the worst is when average folks are not afforded protection. In our elite’s desire to not deal with real problems, they have essentially thrown a large number of people to the wolves. In the Muslim neighborhoods of Paris – as Cooke points out – you don’t see a lot of women on the streets and those you do would fit nicely into Mecca. But is that what they really want? Do all Muslim women in those Paris neighborhoods want to wear the niqab? I doubt it. Human nature being what it is, there are certainly some who would prefer to dress like French women – but they dare not, because French law and customs don’t matter and while in theory a Muslim French woman in those areas could appeal to the police for protection, the reality is that she’s at the mercy of those who actually rule the neighborhood. We do it, too, you know? Just for one example we throw people to the criminal wolves on our border because we refuse to enforce our laws – and if we won’t enforce our laws, then someone will enforce their laws. In the case of our border the laws are those of various criminal gangs. If what it would take to ensure the enforcement of French law is an armed French policeman on every corner in the Muslim neighborhoods, then that is what France’s government is morally bound to provide. But, they don’t. Too difficult. Might get called a racist.

It is a paradox of the modern West that as our governments have asserted increasing power over our lives, they have less able to actually protect our lives. This is a sign of civilizational collapse. I’m not at all certain how this is all going to come out in the long run, other than a solid assurance that it can’t go on too much longer, and when the final smash comes, it will be quite astonishing. Whether the remains of western civilization will emerge to rebuild – or be buried forever – remains to be seen. But if we do want our western civilization to survive, then it is a requirement that we look at the facts with a clear eye. Needlessly causing offense is wrong – that is why I asserted a few days ago that the Charlie Hebdo cartoons were wrong – but if telling the truth is offensive, then offend away.

Muslims living in the West have an absolute right to the same freedoms that the rest of us enjoy and if we don’t guarantee them their rights, then we have failed in our duties. Among these rights are, of course, the right to be as devoutly Muslim as they wish to be – but they also have a right to be as slipshod and/or heretical as they wish to be, just as the rest of us have the right to be devout about our beliefs, or ignore them nine days out of ten. Just as, say, a Jew must be in no danger if he doesn’t adhere to Judaism, so much a Muslim be in no danger – no matter where the Muslim lives in the West – for not adhering to Islam. And whatever amount of law enforcement activity is necessary – guided, of course, by a strong sense of justice tempered by mercy – to ensure this state of affairs, that is what must be done. Say, if you wish, that there aren’t any no-go zones in Paris or other Western cities. Fine. Granted. But what are we going to do about those non-no-go zones where a person steps away from the ruling orthodoxy at the peril of their life?

9 thoughts on “France’s Go Ahead and Go (If You’re Brave) Zones

  1. Retired Spook January 23, 2015 / 10:52 am

    Not necessarily related to the Muslim problem in Europe, but certainly contributing to the instability that radical Muslims will take advantage of, is the emerging banking and currency crisis.

    The euro was falling on Friday, tumbling to levels not seen in 11 years as reaction to a massive asset-purchasing program from the European Central Bank continued to take a toll on the single currency.

    • M. Noonan January 23, 2015 / 11:50 am

      Increased poverty certainly won’t be a recipe for social peace – and I do wonder about the suddenly rising claims for unemployment. $2 a gallon gas is good…but it is killing our oil industry, which has been the driver of such growth as we’ve had since 2009.

      • Amazona January 24, 2015 / 10:59 am

        The growth driven by the oil boom has been in the sectors affected by the income and needs of those actually working in the oil industry—that is, restaurants and car dealerships and furniture stores and housing construction, etc. Restaurants sell food, which is brought in by truck, and employ service personnel, so restaurants cutting back or going out of business mean less business for trucking/food suppliers and more people out of work. Car dealerships sell cars (or, more likely in the oil patch, pickups) and a slowdown in these sales trickles down to all those suppliers to the automotive industry that the Loony Libs were hysterical about during the WE MUST SAVE GM hysteria a few years back. When people are not building houses, this impacts everything from the timber industry to the guys who make door locks and toilet bowl valves. And so on.

        Gas was too high, but getting gas prices lower by gutting the petroleum industry is short-sighted and fraught with Unintended Consequences How about building some refineries? Why ship crude oil from Canada all the way to the Gulf states where there are still some refineries, instead of building a couple of big refineries nearer the northern border, closer to crude oil supplies, and closer to major urban areas from Seattle to New England? Building refineries would put people to work building them, keep people at work running them, and cut transportation costs of refined petro fuels. The only down sides I see are the need for constant underwear changes by the enviro-nazis and some exploding heads at the EPA.

      • M. Noonan January 24, 2015 / 1:47 pm


        I think you’re right about that – as we have the oil and gas, we should ensure that all means of turning it into end-products should be within the United States…so that no matter what the actual price of oil, we’re still the place to go for oil products.

        But the ECB’s move to print up another bucket of money to sustain insolvent banks shows that the global economy is not in good shape…and if (when) we do hit the crisis wall again and poverty spreads, I do wonder what will happen in the already impoverished areas…especially those with a selection of head-choppy residents…

  2. Amazona January 24, 2015 / 3:07 pm

    Meanwhile, while France is denying that Muslims have established Muslim law in France, we are seeing intercontinental-sized missiles and launching sites in Iran, we are refusing to maintain much less tighten economic sanctions on Iran while at the same time releasing more than a billion dollars in frozen Iranian assets to Iran, and admitting that we are not interested in halting its nuclear development, only trying to keep it from “breaking out” (whatever that is supposed to mean). We stood back and let radical Islam overtake Syria, murdering hundreds of thousands and establishing research and development of weaponry and missiles in Syria, while giddy dolts like casper titter about the allegation that Barry “….was able to get Syria to dismantle its chemical weapons without military firing a single shot or dropping a single bomb…”

    • M. Noonan January 24, 2015 / 6:44 pm

      It is astounding how blind people can be – and even if we want to credit Obama on the chemical weapons deal, there are plenty of rumors that Syria retains chemical weapons…and now we’re dropping bombs all over the place over there. Of course, people like Cappy don’t realize it, because it’s not in the news and Obama doesn’t talk about it.

      • Retired Spook January 24, 2015 / 8:59 pm

        Have you ever wondered how many Lefties actually believe the crap they espouse, and how many are just so mentally invested in progressive ideology that they’ve gotten completely disconnected from reality?

      • Amazona January 24, 2015 / 9:20 pm

        So much of their response is just an automatic knee jerk spasm of blind oppositional reaction to anything—ANYTHING—said or done by the invented Other (“conservatives” or, even worse, “RePUBlicans spit hack”) that it is impossible to believe that what they say represents anything like a thoughtful belief.

        Remember all the years I challenged trolls to please just explain a political philosophy, so we could establish a baseline for discourse? In more than a decade, only one ever did, and that was self-avowed Marxist James. What we got was sneering at me for asking, and personal attacks on me because I actually think a coherent political philosophy is essential for political discourse. The very concept of a political philosophy—-that is, a defensible commitment to a form of government—-is not only alien to them, it is completely irrelevant.

        Just look at casper’s ridiculous laundry list of alleged Obama triumphs. Even a cursory glance at his earlier promises would have nudged a thoughtful person into eliminating them from the list, as they were never kept (and usually never even attempted). How can a person with a brain brag about a five-year-old promise to dramatically increase renewable energy within three years, when it is so obvious that it never happened? How can a person with a brain be proud of a promise that proved to be empty rhetoric without a hint of success or even seriousness?

        The answer lies in the qualifier: WITH A BRAIN. The list was assembled by someone as lacking as casper, which is a pretty distressing thought in and of itself, proof as it is that there are at least two as blissfully stupid and passionate about earning their knee pads. Sadly, though, there are many many more.

        We have seen hundreds of thousands of people proud of their determined refusal to examine facts, proud of their rejection of reality, quite happy to illustrate their abject ignorance of the most basic concepts of the judicial system, unfazed by the proven fact that Michael Brown was a vicious bully who had already been accused of murder and recorded savagely beating a frail old (black) man and stomping him while he was down, continuing to flaunt their total lack of even a scintilla of intelligence as they strut around with their hands in the air and mouth meaningless platitudes. To this day people deemed (by some) to be qualified to opine on TV shows are still spouting nonsense about the death of this predatory thug. I think that anyone who knew Brown, and/or saw the videos of him savaging two men who were much smaller and weaker than he has to know, somewhere in the depths of his or her consciousness, that he was not an innocent gunned down because of his color—but THE TRUTH IS IRRELEVANT.

        All that matters is a story, no matter how transparently false or ridiculous, that advances an agenda or supports a bias.

      • M. Noonan January 25, 2015 / 7:18 pm

        David Burge – who Tweets at @iowahawkblog (and well worth a daily visit for some good humor…though he some times strays into NSFW language) – had a tweet right after the Charlie Hebdo attack where he wrote words to the effect:

        The March against extremist Islam
        The March against extremism
        The March against Islamophobia
        The changing narrative…

        That is pretty much it – the Narrative is all that matters and we’ve already seen the Narrative become “Charlie Hebdo was an act of extremism”, rather than what is truly was: a Muslim attack upon people who offended at least some Muslims. I saw on Twitter the other day a link to an article claiming that there has been a massive increase in anti-Muslim actions in France since the attack…I tweeted back, “were any of them gunmen killing people?”. Still haven’t got a response…don’t expect one. By June, any reports about Charlie Hebdo will likely be about how Muslims are enduring unjust discrimination…

        The left cannot allow itself to think about things – in fact, any time you stray into leftist views, you have to shut down thought. There’s this lady I’m Facebook friends with – very nice, very intelligent, well-educated; she claims the conservative label, but she’s really more Libertarian than conservative but here’s where her problem comes in: she wants pro-life people to sit down and shut up. Figures it hurts GOP chances – and she’s likely right about that in her experience as she’s a Chicagoan transplanted to New York City. Now, it is true that a person can think of a rational argument in favor of legalized abortion, though no one really has. But in spite of as much as she does share a lot of Conservative/Libertarian views, she’s clearly not going to take a stab at making the rational argument…she just wants it to go away, not wanting to understand that (a) if she wants to win she needs to kowtow a bit to pro-Life people and (b) that if a government won’t protect some lives, it will accrue to itself the power to decide who lives and dies (we’re already seeing advanced “thinkers” on the left advocating for legal killing of children until they are at least a few years old…and as far as granny goes, once that hip replacement has to come out of ObamaCare funds, she’s finished). The lady doesn’t want to think about it – and so holds to a liberal view of the matter. It goes like that all up and down the line.

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