Sometimes humor can teach us an important lesson. For example, this joke:
"Q: Why are there large trees along the Champs Elysee? A: So the Nazis could march in the shade!"
Today, in the very same location on that wide avenue, we find anti-Israeli and anti-American demonstrations. Once again, France is giving the world trouble. It seems to always begin with small, innocuous, anti-Semitic incidents throughout a country. In this case, a synagogue is torched because of "The Occupation." Jews with skullcaps are harassed in the streets because of West Bank "settlements." A Jewish soccer team is attacked by a gang of hooded youths because of "The IDF." Jewish day schools are firebombed because Israel responds to terrorism.
If the French are truly protesting Israel's actions, important questions must be asked. Why are innocent French Jewish citizens being targeted? And, if the world's troubles are indeed the fault of the Jews, why has America become another focus of French criticism?
Unfortunately, France has learned virtually nothing from WWII. That famous French arrogance, usually experienced in fine French restaurants, has prevented this ungrateful nation from showing their appreciation for U.S. soldiers dying to rescue them from the Third Reich. Ever since Napoleon, France has thought of itself as an important world player, when in truth, they have become irrelevant.
Opposing Israel and now the United States, merely gives the French a feeling of newfound importance and power. The world should learn from its ugly past. The important lesson of what Hitler attempted, and continued with Nasser, Saddam, Khaddafi and much of the Arab/Muslim world today, is that those who begin with attacking Jews and Israel, will eventually move on to more significant targets, namely decent democracies. That is why America is now the victim of French demonstrations and government antagonism regarding Iraq. Seeing a newly formed Franco-German partnership challenging a US-British decision to fight an evil danger, is a "deja vu" of history.
France's policy regarding the Israeli-Palestinian issue is evidence of a lack of moral clarity. The fact that French churches are empty while their sex clubs are filled to capacity, is further proof of a moral decline. However, a string of related events should make the West, particularly America, maintain a safe distance from the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre.
The French Intifada against the Jews and Israel includes: A gunman firing on a kosher butcher shop in southern France; the University of Paris stopping collaboration with Israeli universities and academics, while suggesting that the EU do the same; Rabbi Gabriel Farhi stabbed in Paris preparing for the Sabbath and his automobile set on fire; the major French encyclopedia questioning the large number of Jews murdered during the Holocaust; eight people in France arrested for their participation in bombing the Tunisian synagogue; a bomb diffused at the entrance of a Jewish cemetery in Strasbourg; "Dreaming of Palestine," a book by a teenager glorifying suicide bombings in Israel, becomes a French bestseller; French lawyer, Gisele Halimi defending Marwan Barghouti, the man personally responsible for most recent suicide bombings in Israel. And the list goes on.
The French Intifada against America has only just begun: France was the greatest obstacle during the Security Council resolution to disarm Iraq; Richard Reid, the "shoe bomber," was allowed through French airport security, despite missing pages from his passport due to trips to Afghanistan; information about Zacharrias Moussai, a French citizen and so-called "20th hijacker," is not being released to authorities because American law includes the possibility for capital punishment; France was the most outspoken country against George W. Bush's decision to boycott Arafat as the Palestinian leader; French farmer Jose Bove destroyed a McDonald's to protest American policy; Kamel Daoudi, an al-Qaeda leader, caught in Paris with plans to blow up American embassies worldwide; Jean-Marie LePen, a man who makes David Duke look like a Boy Scout, receives one in five French votes; a book claiming that Osama bin Laden attacked the World Trade Center as part of a U.S. Government conspiracy is taken seriously and becomes a French bestseller. And the list goes on.
President Jaques Chirac has criticized "(America's) attempt to legitimize the use of unilateral and pre-emptive force," as if morality is accomplished through a majority worldwide vote. There was no UN vote for American entry into WWII, saving France and the world. Yet, Chirac continues his diatribes with the idea that "weapons inspectors need more time." Using that same logic, perhaps America should have given Hitler more time.
The evidence is overwhelming. It is more than merely a "smoking gun" There are photos and videotapes of French misbehavior every day, and it is rather disquieting. When a nation shows mercy towards a Vichy official such as Maurice Papon, who sent thousands of Jews to death camps, their values certainly come into question. The excuse that he is "being released from prison because he is just a sick old man" shows a totally misguided compassion.
When French demonstrators, wearing Che Guevera and Stalin T-shirts march with Palestinian flags in goose-step, the world should begin to worry. There may be trouble brewing, and it all begins with "Bon jour!"