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French interior minister: “We are at war with an enemy trying to pit Muslims against non-Muslims”

This idea is very common in the West. American politicians have articulated it. The reasoning goes like this: jihadis recruit by pointing to Western counter-terror initiatives (such as France’s now-discarded burkini ban, which was meant to strike against allegiance to jihadist and Islamic supremacist groups that flaunt Islamic dress in the West, and proposals such as Trump’s now much-nuanced temporary moratorium on Muslim immigration) and telling Muslims that they will never be welcome in the West. So in the face of jihad attacks in the West, authorities must redouble their efforts to bring Muslims to the West and accommodate them. By showing Muslims and non-Muslims living together in harmony and peace, this will stymie jihadist recruitment in the West and around the world.

This argument rests upon the assumption that jihadis recruit based on grievances against the West, and that if those grievances were redressed, there would be peace. That ignores the jihad imperative embedded within the Qur’an and Sunnah: Muslims are exhorted to wage war against and subjugate unbelievers, with no exception made for unbelievers who are kind, accommodating, and welcoming toward Muslims.

In reality, the dynamic works in almost exactly the opposite way: after every jihad attack, jihad groups see Western governments becoming more welcoming and accommodating toward Muslims, and resisting all attempts to make even a symbolic stand (like the burkini ban) against jihad activity. This enables them to embed more jihadis among “refugees” to the West, and to plot more freely in Muslim areas without fear of surveillance that has been deemed “Islamophobic.” Thus Cazeneuve’s determination to resist “an enemy trying to pit Muslims against non-Muslims” only has the effect of making French citizens more vulnerable to jihad attacks.


“French minister: ‘We are at war with an enemy trying to pit Muslims against non-Muslims,’”Associated Press, August 30, 2016:

France’s Interior Minister is mounting a bid to unite Muslims and non-Muslims in France as tensions rise following the ‘Burkini ban’

France’s interior minister has said the country is at war with an enemy trying to pit Muslims against non-Muslims.

Bernard Cazeneuve called for urgent action to create a strong bond between the nation and citizens of the Islamic faith in response.

He also said it was crucial to tailor the religion to the values of secular France, “a pillar of the republic.”

Cazeneuve spoke after a day-long conference with Muslim leaders, professionals and lawmakers to try to kick start a project aiming to bind Muslims to the nation, a task given new urgency after deep divisions surfaced over burkini bans in 30 French beach towns and after extremist attacks that also stigmatised Muslims.

A high court struck down the burkini bans on Friday, but the debate had already seeped into France’s political sphere revealing tensions between the secular establishment and sectors of France’s estimated five million Muslims, the largest Muslim population in Western Europe.

Cazeneuve, speaking to reporters, said a “strong and calm” relationship with Muslims is “urgent and particularly necessary.”

“France is at war with terrorists, at war with an enemy trying to divide it and pit the French against each other, fracture the nation’s body, sap the republic,” he said.

“We must not fall into this


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