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France, A Case Study In Failed Colonialism

Updated on December 1, 2013

Racial Riots in France

The Empires of 19th century Europe could not have predicted the outcome of their failures centuries after they decided to colonize foreign lands and cultures. Besides the benefit of a never ending supply of cheap labor, mineral resources, and food to feed their citizens they now have to deal with their short sighted approach in indoctrinating the natives with Christian European values. Today there is a crisis within many European countries with the problem of managing racial tensions brought on by multiculturalism. For a good example, there is no other place so evident of this internal crisis than in France.

Over the past decade France has erupted in numerous racial riots involving Arab and African immigrants. The Africans have been protesting against racism and decriminalization, while since 911 the Arabs have been fighting the stigmatization of being labelled terrorists. Influential community leaders lay the blame squarely on a racist society that has marginalized the children and grandchildren of North African immigrants. They explain that there's a deep frustration of being seen as immigrants for young people who were born in France yet are still being seen as immigrants. They are often denied jobs, housing, and participating in society in any meaningful capacity.

The problems of the African immigrants have been dismissed by the establishment time and time again because they are not organized and lack political influence. When it comes to the Arabs however, that is a different case. Arabs have the power of Islam behind them which has enabled them to become a more cohesive force in combating the racial discrimination that has been slowly building against them since 911. Arabs started immigrating to France centuries ago shortly after the French started invading Arab lands to set up colonies. Many were brought in as laborers and servants.

Today, Arabs are involved in business and politics and have been practicing Islamic religion by building Mosques all across France. They have had very little opposition in practicing their cultures until recently when threats of national security started becoming an issue. All of a sudden French society feels threatened by Islamic women wearing Burka veils and by the prevalence of speakers on Mosque steeples which they use to broadcast a call to prayer.

As evidence of this weeks events where 7 people were murdered by a crazed Taliban sympathizer of Arab ethnicity, It was just a matter of time that the building frustrations that Arab immigrants in France have been experiencing came to a head. We might dismiss the gunman's actions as being due to foreign influences but he did blame French foreign policy as the reason for his actions.

Most white French people see the problem with immigrants in France as a burden on their society. Immigrants may contribute to the economic prominence and stability of the country but they are certainly not welcome to the privileges of statehood. It is evident that in France and other territories of former colonial power holders there is a certain mindset that persists. That mindset says, although we colonized you, then gave you freedom and accepted you into our motherland, you are certainly not welcome.

The Taking of Beirut by the Crusaders

That is because no matter how closely we have trained you to become like us you will never be equal to us. You may gain enormous wealth but you will never enjoy the privileges that your wealth entitles you to. You may gain the highest political office but you will never have sovereignty over us. You may rise to the highest post in our religious institutions but my seat next to my God is reserved, yours is not.

So where is the colonial failure you might ask? Well the failure of some colonizers in the past was not to ensure that the cultures and religious practices of those cultures were completely wiped out. A good example is the Native American colonization. Although many Native Americans are still alive today they are certainly no threat to the stability of the country. Their cultures were decimated and their children were indoctrinated with colonial culture in residential schools. They were put through a system designed to "tame the savage" in them. The African Americans who were brought in through slavery are also largely tamed by the same ideological and religious indoctrinations.

The failure to convert the Arabs was largely due to the failure of the Crusades. The Crusades were a series of religious expeditionary wars, primarily against Muslims and blessed by the Pope and the Catholic Church, with the stated goal of restoring Christian access to the holy places in and near Jerusalem. The main series of Crusades occurred between 1095 and 1291 and were comprised of military units of Roman Catholics from all over Western Europe. Their emblem was the cross as "crusade" is derived from the French term for taking up the cross. Many Crusaders were from France so you see how the current problems have come full circle.

French society today need to realize that the problem of multiculturalism is their own doing. You cant indoctrinate a foreigner with your culture while exploiting him and not expect that foreigner to come to you for help when he is hungry and needs to eat. As you shift your society more and more to the Right be careful because Right Wing extremism leads to Fascism and Hitler has shown the world what we can expect when we play the racial blame game.


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    • mintinfo profile image

      mintinfo 4 years ago

      Quebec Canada. The provincial government tables is new law banning all religious symbols from public and government institutions. This includes Christian crosses, Jewish Yamaka, and most importantly Muslim Burkas.

      I have heard many reasons why they are trying to do this including "trying to achieve a more secular society" but I know the real reason is a targeting of the Muslims. I call it the "Dragnet Syndrome". It is a process by which a law is instituted to target a specific group of people at the expense of some of the implementer's personal freedoms. In this case many of the supporters are willing to take the hit. Failed colonialism!