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December 9, 2016 3:08 am

France: A Civilization Threatened Again?

avatar by Judith Friedman Rosen

Basilica of St. Denis. Photo: Judith Rosen.

Basilica of St. Denis. Photo: Judith Rosen.

Standing on the quiet cliffs overlooking the beaches of Normandy, it is hard to believe that 72 years ago, young heroic Allied soldiers disembarked their Higgins boats to begin a bloody assault — eventually breaching the Nazis’ impregnable wall, and turning the tide of World War II in Western Europe.

Over the course of three months, during which they sustained more than 200,000 casualties, American, British, Canadian and Scottish troops — along with French and Polish units — fought their way through France’s formerly bucolic countryside. They eventually reached, and liberated, Paris.

Today, the entire province of Normandy, vital to the political and military life of Europe for hundreds of years, pays daily tribute to those who died pursuing liberty there. The towns of Bayeux and Rouen — with inspiring cathedrals, colorful, artful patisseries, charcuteries, specialty shops, chocolatiers and bonbonnieres, cafes and restaurants — are chock full of tourists paying homage to the glorious victory.

Yet a constant fear threatens this tourist mecca, and all of France: the French open-door policy to Muslim immigrants, who reject Western values and liberty. Some of these people have brought terror to France. Antisemitic and anti-Christian murders have plagued Rouen, Paris, Toulouse and beyond.

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Miles up the coast overlooking the Straits of Dover is Calais, where the Nazis mistakenly thought the Allies would attack. Prior to its recent evacuation, a huge number of Muslim immigrants were camped here, in what was called the “Jungle.”

After the “Jungle’s” demolition, the migrants returned to camp out on the streets of Paris.

Tents, blankets and sleeping bags of young, male migrants are spread along the thoroughfare leading to St. Denis. Some mornings, they are cleared away by police, only to return by nightfall. And still, more and more migrants edge their way into the Parisian landscape.

Michel Gurfinkiel, the French conservative journalist and public intellectual, noted that “there is a clash of culture and civilization” in the outer Paris boroughs. Some of these areas, he says, are “no go zones” — lost to the Republic. Unlike the Asian and Indian immigrants, he says, many of the Muslims are not willing to integrate into the society — and are trying to force their values such as Halal, the prohibition of pork and female modesty onto the French populace.

Danielle Guerrier of the Catholic Diocese tearfully lamented that the newcomers have chased the Christians out of her district, which houses the famous St. Denis Basilica Cathedral — home to  the necropolis of the kings of France. People, she says, are afraid to come to work in the district. She asks, “What is the future of France? What kind of major collision will occur when 30% of French Muslims want Sharia law and less than 25 % identify as French citizens?”

Although many politicians, bureaucrats and clergymen feel that they have a grip on the influx of Muslim immigrants into France, how will they prevent terrorism and preserve the freedoms that were won at Normandy 72 years ago?

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