"France has a problem with Islam"
§ "I am not an Islamophobe. Women have the right to wear headscarves, but I do not understand why we are embracing this religion [Islam] and those manners that are incompatible with the freedoms that are ours in the West." — Pierre Bergé, French fashion mogul.
§ French security officials rejected an Israeli company's offer of terrorist-tracking software that could have helped them identify the jihadist cell that carried out the attacks. "French authorities liked it, but the official came back and said there was a higher-level instruction not to buy Israeli technology," a well-placed Israeli counter-terrorism analyst revealed.
§ Jacques Hamel, the priest who had his throat slit by two Muslims in Normandy, had donated land adjacent to his church to local Muslims to build a mosque, and they had been given use of the parish hall and other facilities during Ramadan.
§ At least five of the jihadists who carried out the attacks in Paris and Brussels financed themselves with social welfare payments: they received more than €50,000 ($53,000).
§ Muslim employees at Air France have repeatedly attempted to sabotage aircraft, according to Le Canard Enchaîné. "Concerning Air France, we have seen several anomalies before the departure of commercial flights," an intelligence official said.
§ "There will be no integration until we get rid of this atavistic anti-Semitism that is kept secret. It so happens that an Algerian sociologist, Smain Laacher, with great courage said that 'it is a disgrace to maintain this taboo, namely that in Arab families in France and elsewhere everyone knows that anti-Semitism is spread with the mother's milk.'" — Georges Bensoussan, sued for alleged hate speech against Muslims for having made that statement.
§ The Mayor of Beziers, Robert Menard, was charged with incitement to hatred for tweeting his regret at witnessing "the great replacement" to describe France's white, Christian population being overtaken by foreign-born Muslims. "I just described the situation in my town," he said. "It is not a value judgement, it is a fact. It is what I can see."
The Muslim population of France was approximately 6.5 million in 2016, or around 10% of the overall population of 66 million. In real terms, France has the largest Muslim population in the European Union, just above Germany.
Although French law prohibits the collection of official statistics about the race or religion of its citizens, Gatestone Institute's estimate of France's Muslim population is based on several studies that attempted to calculate the number of people in France whose origins are from Muslim-majority countries.
What follows is a chronological review of some of the main stories about the rise of Islam in France during 2016:
January 1. The Interior Ministry announced the most anticipated statistic of the year: a total of 804 cars and trucks were torched across France on New Year's Eve, a 14.5% decrease from the 940 vehicles burned during the annual ritual on the same holiday in 2015. Car burnings, commonplace in France, are often attributed to rival Muslim gangs that compete with each other for the media spotlight over which can cause the most destruction. An estimated 40,000 cars are burned in France every year.
January 3. Raouf El Ayeb, a 31-year-old French citizen of Tunisian origin, was charged with attempted homicide after he tried to run down four troops who were guarding a mosque in Valence. Although police found "jihadist propaganda images" on Ayeb's computer, they attributed the attack to "depressive syndrome" rather than terrorism because he was not heard shouting "Allahu Akbar" (Allah is the greatest) during the attack.
January 7. Sallah Ali, a Moroccan born French citizen, stormed a police station in the 18th district of Paris while shouting "Allahu Akbar." He was carrying a butcher knife, and Islamic State flag and was wearing what appeared to be an explosive belt. Police opened fire and shot him dead. The belt was found to contain fake explosives. Investigators were unsure whether the attack was an act of terrorism or the work of a man who was "unbalanced."
January 11. A 16-year-old Turkish Kurd brandishing a machete attacked a Jewish teacher outside a school in Marseille. The perpetrator said he had acted "in the name of Allah and the Islamic State."
January 12. Some 80,000 people applied for asylum in France in 2015, but only one-third of the applications were approved, according to the French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless people (Ofpra).
January 13. Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve banned three Islamic cultural organizations that ran the Lagny-sur-Marne mosque, which was closed down as part of a security crackdown. He accused the leaders of the groups of inciting hatred and calling for jihad over a period of several years.
January 15. An Ifop poll for Le Monde found that half (51%) of French Jews feel they are under threat because they are Jewish; 63% said they have been insulted; and 43% said they have been attacked. Some 70% of those who said they want to leave France said they been exposed to anti-Semitic acts.
January 27. The Ministry of Culture assigned an "18 and over" rating to "Salafistes," a documentary which features interviews with North African jihadists. The filmmakers said the government wanted to "kill the film" by banning it from being aired on public TV, and making cinemas reluctant to show it. Filmmakers François Margolin and Lemime Ould Salem insisted that the film should be given as wide an audience as possible. "What has upset the French authorities is not the violence, but the subject itself," Margolin said. "They want to prevent French citizens from knowing the truth."
January 28. The Council of State (Conseil d'État), France's highest administrative court, rejected a request by the country's Human Rights League (Ligue des droits de l'Homme, LDH) to lift the state of emergency imposed after the November 2015 terror attacks. "The imminent danger justifying the state of emergency has not disappeared, given the ongoing terrorist threat and the risk of attacks," according to a statement issued by the court. LDH had argued that the extraordinary powers given to security services posed a threat to democracy.
February 2. Six converts to Islam were arrested in Lyon on suspicion of seeking to purchase weapons in order to attack swinger clubs in France. They were allegedly planning to travel to Syria after the attacks, and had already purchased bus tickets to Turkey.
February 7. An increased police presence in northern port of Calais spread France's migrant crisis to other parts of the country. Migrant camps sprouted up in the nearby ports of Dunkirk, Le Havre, Dieppe and Belgium's Zeebrugge, as migrants sought new ways to cross the English Channel to Britain……………………..
Read the full text at: The Islamization of France in 2016