Copycat, Copycat, Where Have You Been?


France was quiet last night. Only one school was torched and the number of “car-becues” was down to 400. Two more nights and we will be back at the normal pre-riot level of 100 car fires per night. Ah, didn’t Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy say earlier that “20 to 40 cars torched each night” was the normal rate?

Yes, he did, but the official figures are generally understood to be underreported. As this discussion (in French) between firemen shows, when one car is set alight but two cars next to it are destroyed in the same fire, the statistics count it as only one case of car torching, not three. And when a car is set alight, but is not damaged beyond repair, it is not included in the statistics either. Hence doubling or tripling the official figure is not considered to be unrealistic. Some people even put the number at 50,000 “car-becues” per year. This is almost 140 in a “normal” night.

In Brussels, ten cars and one truck were set ablaze last night. The authorities do not want to publicise this too much because they fear copycat acts. This is also the reason why the French television network France 3 has decided no longer to disclose the numbers involved in vehicle burning.

It says a lot about the degeneration of a society when the authorities do not dare to talk about acts of vandalism and violence for fear that groups of people, instead of being appalled, will start copying the same type of lawless behaviour. Apart from the mentally instable, such as pyromaniacs, everyone is responsible for his own behaviour. People will only copy something if that is what they want to do.

Apparently France (and Belgium) have many people living within their borders who would rather change the creed of the republic “Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité” to another one: “Brûlé, Fumé, Explosé” (Burned, Fumed, Exploded).

Earlier this week Daniel Pipes wrote:

Indigenous Muslims of northwestern Europe have in the past year deployed three distinct forms of jihad: the crude variety deployed in Britain, killing random passengers moving around London; the targeted variety in the Netherlands, where individual political and cultural leaders are singled out, threatened, and in some cases attacked; and now the more diffuse violence in France, less specifically murderous but also politically less dismissible.

Though Pipes thinks that the “Dutch and French strategies will probably recur” because “the British variant is clearly counterproductive” for the jihadists, one can only hope that the copycat has not been to London. I do not think, however, that it is possible to detect regional varieties of jihadism which can be labelled British, Dutch or French. The Muslim radicals will continue to use the three strategies and they will not make regional distinctions. Random, crude bombing (the so-called British variety) cannot be excluded in Amsterdam, Paris or Washington; targeted killing (the Dutch variety) cannot be excluded in London or Paris or Washington; diffuse violence (the French variety) cannot be excluded in Amsterdam or in London, but it can in Washington. This is the only form of jihad warfare that will only be experienced by those who have foolishly opened their borders to invite the enemy in.

40 acts or 100+ vehicles per night in a 'normal' night?

That's still way too many acts of violence for a society to tolerate and long stand. The 'current' rioting and the large numbers of violent acts of rebellion are horrifying. Where will we end?

Diffuse violence in Washington

You are right it will not happen, but we need to clarify why. Is it because the US government has a better policy dealing with that kind of situation or is it simply because the numbers aren't there? I think the latter. After all, it only takes one suicide jihadist for British or Dutch style terror, but it takes tens of thousands of affected Muslem youths to get a campaign of sustained diffuse violence of the ground. Such large Muslem(!) getthos simply do not exist in the US.

You state : Europe was foolish to let them in. But is seems unclear the US has had a better Muslem immigration policy. Its only saving grace is geography. Were Mexico a Muslem country, it is not unthinkable that the US would be in exactly the same position as Europe is now. We need not go back a lot of years for an example of very large scale, partly racially motivated, rioting in Los Angelos by a group that has historically been present in the US for a much longer time than Muslems in Europe. Nor do we need to go back much in NY history to see a city with police no-go areas left to the rule of brutal criminals.

This is getting off topic, maybe I should make a real post about it somewhere. But I've long believed that underpriviliged getthos here (in Brussels, Paris, Rotterdam, etc...) would intensify. That they would shut themselves of from the outside world and likewise normal society would shut itself of from these areas. That that process was irreversable and riots like this would have been a price we payed albeit grudgingly but society would realize that there is no alternative and no salvaging those areas either.

From seeing what happened in for example NY, but also in Rotterdam, widely believed to be one of the first (if not the first) city on continental Europe where natives will be a minority I no longer think that way. Some measures simply work. For example a zero-tolerance policy for even petty crimes (like just dumping trash on the streets) combined with heavy investment to upgrade infrastructure (on all fronts : police presence, roadworks, education, public transport and housing) really works. "Leefbaar Nederland" is 'the risee' (sorry no translation, means as much as the laughingstock) of the Netherlands but "Leefbaar Rotterdam" has convinced and cooperated with traditional parties to adopt policy with measurable results. Central station is safe again, the Keileweg (drugrelated prostition zone) is closed, Spangen is no longer the hell-hole it used to be, etc...

French media admits burying riot story

As Little Green Footballs pointed out, The Guardian just put out an interesting article about how the French media intentionally buried the riot story. At first this was said to be a strategy for diffusing the riots: if we ignore it, it will go away. But now it is being admitted that the real intent was to prevent giving political ammunition to the "right wing"; i.e., people who want to control immigration in France.

The Guardian story was up five minutes ago, but now it's down for some reason. However, I have re-posted most of it on our blog, Plus Ultra. Here's the link:

I would find it unbelievable if I hadn't seen the American media do the same thing so many times, portraying obvious domestic Islamic terrorist attacks as run-of-the-mill, non-terrorism motivated crimes, under-reporting them, and refusing to mention the fact that the perpetrator is a Muslim.

A brief list off the top of my head:

The Oklahmoa University football stadium bombing

The East Cost sniper shootings

The El Al airline shooting at LAX airport

The guy who spread feces onto deli food in New York

The doctor in Texas (I think) who gave fake, contaminated vaccinations to hundreds of people

There are many more. Do European countries have a similar list of covered-up domestic terrorist attacks?


I beg to differ with my fellow reader.

An 8 month sentence for arson is not severe enough. There are crimes - murder, rape, etc - that are grave enough that most people do not indulge in them. There are others - vandalism, arson, etc - that are not as severely punished and so the taboo against indulging in them is less strong.

But for the owner of a car that has just been torched, or the owner of a factory burned to the ground, these acts are as brutal as murder. It has deprived them of their property and, in cases, their very livelyhood.

Furthermore I've always believed that crime, more often that not, grows in stages. Your hooligan of today is your arsonist with victims of tomorrow and your killer of the day after. Take that hooligan who torched a car, sentence him to a year in jail and force repayment of the car and I think he'll think about it twice before burning another car.

Yep you sure have a point

Yep you sure have a point there. But you know, they're simply copying eachother. Sheeps. It's not really an individual thing. Therefore I doubt that they're really bad persons. I just don't think it's fair to only put a few people behind bars.