A Man of Mercy and Love
"His refusal was categorical [in refusing a position as a military officer in Algerian military service, unwilling to order men to kill other men]."
"He chose to serve God so that he can cultivate love and sharing and tolerance among people of all faiths and denominations, believers and non-believers, throughout his life."
"[Her brother's message would be] Let us learn to live together. Let us be the workers and artisans of peace, each one in his own way."
Roselyne, sister of beheaded Father Jacques Hamel, funeral oration, Rouen Cathedral, Normandy
The world is aghast that an octogenarian beloved in his parish, in an episode of sacrilegious contempt
by two young Muslim men -- Abdel Malik Petitjean and Adel Kermiche who had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State jihadists -- was forced by them to kneel in the very place where moments before he was celebrating the Eucharist over morning mass, to make of him a sacrifice to Islamism, beheading him before his Church altar. Of course, this was in Normandy, France.
If memory serves, and it does, a similar and even bloodier event took place in Jerusalem a year ago, when two Palestinians with meat cleavers and and a gun killed five praying synagogue congregants, and grievously wounded eight other worshippers. Hamas declared victory over the 'crimes' committed by Israel on this occasion when the bloody slaughter gave down-payment satisfaction to their aspirations to destroy all of Israel and its Jews at some unspecified time in the future.
|Ultra-orthodox Jews watch emergency personnel clean up and secure the area of the attack. Photograph: JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images|
It isn't likely that in France, officials flew an Israeli flag and lit up buildings to reflect the Star of David colours, in solidarity with Jews and Israel, as Israel did to express its profound sorrow when France was attacked in Nice shocking the world with the extent of Islamist depravity in dedication to death and martyrdom. France now knows, as Israel has known for its entire existence, that it will live and its citizens will somehow manage to live, with the everpresent threat of terrorism.
Declaring that France is at war with terrorism, one of the steps taken to suppress the growing incidence of radicalization was to announce the intention to close twenty mosques. Presumably these places of worship have been identified as breeding places to seduce 'vulnerable' young Muslims to radical Islam in France. On the other hand, another initiative against terror was counter-announced; the intention to provide funding for a new foundation to support Islamic places of worship.
Replacing the shuttered Kingdom of Saudi Arabia-funded and -tutored mosques with those of infinitely less socially, politically and religiously combustible heritage. Of course there is always the breeding grounds that prisons represent with their over-abundant representation of young Muslims incarcerated for various crimes against society. When and as they are released from prison among them will be additional ticking time-bombs.
And then there are the banlieus to be considered, those Muslim ghettoes of squalid darkness and sequestered brooding resentment; areas where Muslims only dare to go for fear of consequences should any not of the Muslim faith enter. Where those French Muslims returning from jihadist training abroad can meld into the general populace without fear their presence will be revealed to authorities.
Those who are known to authorities will have the presence noted, but the overworked and under-trained investigators will simply jot down their notes and leave the matter there. Only to discover at a later time that some among them have made good their pledge to Islamic State, to the horror and detriment of French Intelligence.
Something will have to be done about those banlieus and the social brooding that keeps their inhabitants in a state of suspended animation, as it were. It is where police themselves will not willingly go knowing full well how they are regarded as oppressive symbols of official French failure to impress upon the larger Muslim population that if they are loyal to France, their reward will be opportunity and integration.