Drudge says today that the rioting in France seems to be losing strength. That's good. But the French are delusional if they think this will be the end of it.
The reason is this:
The average number of children per woman in the European Union is 1.5, according to EU statistics, but in some countries, including heavily Roman Catholic Italy and Spain, the average is 1.3.This has been going on for a long time. The Europeans lost their faith, became a contraceptive culture rather than a life-giving one, let the birth rate fall below the replacement level, and thus opened up a huge cultural and demographic vacuum which was quickly filled with Muslim immigrants.
This sets up an opportunity for an enormous cultural clash.
(The quote above was actually taken from this article about an Italian mother of 11 children who was just beatified by the Pope this week.)
Mark Steyn (via Instapundit) has some remarks worth noting:
For half a decade, French Arabs have been carrying on a low-level intifada against synagogues, kosher butchers, Jewish schools, etc. The concern of the political class has been to prevent the spread of these attacks to targets of more, ah, general interest. They seem to have lost that battle. Unlike America's Europhiles, France's Arab street correctly identified Chirac's opposition to the Iraq war for what it was: a sign of weakness.And:
French cynics like the prime minister, Dominique de Villepin, have spent the last two years scoffing at the Bush Doctrine: Why, everyone knows Islam and democracy are incompatible. If so, that's less a problem for Iraq or Afghanistan than for France and Belgium.