Well said, Brendan.
"Among other things, he finds that the serious social friction doesn't start so much with the immigrants—who, he says, typically show up to work hard, save money, and try to send their children to college—but with their kids."

I guess the takeaway is forced sterilization for immigrants.
"there's no sense to be made" is as facile as "everything happens for a reason". it's what people say when they don't know what to say.

do children of immigrants elsewhere, say, in 'Merica, feel that "death is their only way home"? pretty sure they don't, even if assimilation is difficult/impossible.

rather than blame Euros for intolerance, i'm going to go ahead and point at decades of Saudi funding for Wahhabist Madrassas throughout Sunni Islam, done in exchange for maintenance of their doomed, corrupt monarchy. Islamist rebellion gives alienated Muslim youth focus, meaning, romance, and certainty. it will take decades to undo, and it can't be undone by the west.

well, maybe if we stop sucking the Saud's dicks, it will happen faster.
Hebdo's speech should be protected and criticized. My dislike of their speech should not make it illegal; however, the fact that it's legal, and even the fact that someone was killed over it, does not make it good speech worthy of repeating.
"Is there a difference between mocking Christianity and mocking Islam in a Christian-dominated continent with a xenophobic right wing that's on the rise?"

As it turns out one is a lot more likely to get you killed than the other. Oddly, you would expect the "xenophobic right wing" to be killing you if you made fun of them but that's not what happened here.

How about this, we wait week for the victims' bodies to cool off before we start making excuses for murders who were following the advice of their imaginary sky friends.
I can't help but feel that we are "blaming the victim" by trying to explain the violence as a response to Islamophobia.
@3 I came to the comments section to express pretty much what you've pointed out. The Saudi's have sowed their fundamentalist/medieval vision of Islam across the world using their oil wealth to fund those Madrassas.

Coming to the wrong conclusion is as dangerous and unproductive as coming to no conclusions about this.
@ 7. I want to be crystal clear that nobody deserves to be massacred. Writers and cartoonists should have extremely broad freedom to express great ideas, terrible ideas, sophomoric ideas, the whole spectrum of ideas without fear of something like this happening. It's hard for me to wrap my head around the sadness of this event.

I'm just disagreeing with the premise that this horrible event is—unlike, say, an earthquake or tsunami—beyond meaning or human context.
By nuking Saudi Arabia, we could free them.

Their glowing ghosts would welcome us as Liberators, under King Rmoney.
"the children of Algerian immigrants, orphans, holders of low-wage jobs like delivering pizzas, attracted to jihad after what sounds like a typically aimless lower-class youth...."

Yet if they were Russian Christian or Jewish Israeli "children" who committed this massacre against Muslims, Arabs or blacks this pity party would not be taking place. Spare me. This is predictable. So much sympathy for the perps because of their religion and race. Very little attention to the victims.
Excuse away Boko Haram in 3... 2... 1...…
The constant liberal apologia for Islam has become absolutely ridiculous. It's a like a woman trying to defend her abusive boyfriend. "Sure he throws acid in people's faces, hangs gay people from construction cranes and shoots people in cold blood for mocking his religion, BUT HE'S SO BEAUTIFUL ON THE INSIDE! He's just MISUNDERSTOOD!"

Give me a fucking break. How about you wait until the bodies of the victims are off the slab before you try and make this about white people.
You are right that there are reasons for the massacre at Charlie Hebdo, Brendan. But understanding those reasons does not mean that you then have to accede to them. Quite the contrary.

I think I understand the reasons very well, but am damned if I'll mute what I write about fanatics and fundamentalists (of any religious stripe) to pander to their feelings. Part of what makes The Stranger outstanding is that it has never done this. Now would be a terrible time to start.

Your argument -- responsibility, context, etc -- has been made many times before, and it segues easily into an argument for self-censorship. It's also the argument right-wing regimes make against freedom of the press, which is why a Saudi blogger today suffered the first 50 of a sentence of 1,000 lashes.

I also admire Buruma's work, but immigration may not be the main issue here. The Parisian policeman killed when rushing to help was the son of Algerian immigrants. And the grieving partner of Charlie's editor is the daughter of Algerian immigrants.
@12, I wouldn't call it sympathy for the perps. This is about trying to find the underlying causes, to better fend off the "outbursts" whenever and however they occur.
The downside of this is the possibility of fueling other violent groups (the violent right wing groups have their own sense of alienation driving their behavior) to action against Muslims regardless of actual affiliation with radicals.
In every incident there are many back stories. Dismissing these stories as overly sympathetic is ignorant of patterns taking shape in the larger world.
One has to be clueless to claim that CH would "make fun of the little lady with bedsore on welfare" as if it were regular or even occasional. Charlie Hebdo often speaks in the voice of the classic nationalist xenophobic sexist wingnut ("a beauf"). Charlie Hebdo sends back to cynics and the chronically stupid the ugly image of themselves. It is impossible to say that CH never crossed some line (many people worked over many years at the paper) but the claims of mostly conservatives offended by silly nudity of whatever else are way overblown. You guys should be ashamed to give legs to conservative criticism of CH.
@14 nice hyperbole.
You know why some liberals apologize for Muslims? Because we don't want the bigots among us to start harassing them for simply being around. I don't want to live in a world where it is acceptable to round up an entire group of people.
I can't help but wonder to what degree the kids being torn between the old country and the new is responsible for this. Not so much that they don't belong to either, but that they feel pressure to conform to their old traditions by their parents but also feel pressure to assimilate into their new culture. In the U.S., immigrant parents lose control/influence over their kids very quickly. I'll be damned if I've met a second-generation American immigrant who wasn't already fully assimilated, often much to the parents' frustration.

I'd also like to point out that France and some other European countries have extremely strict laws against overt hate speech. The Front National asshole who compared a black politician to a monkey went to jail for it. Legally, maligned groups in France have much more protection from offensive speech than they would have in the United States. No Republican has gone to jail for their heelarious jokes about Obama being a money and watermelons being grown at the White House.
@16 The underlying causes? Funny when white Christians do this to Jews, Muslims, blacks or gays they are just shitty people. This is no "underlying causes" that absolve them of wrongdoing. There are no "underlying causes" which explains they are the victim who is acting out of oppression. I know what the underlying causes are according to this author: poverty, racism, classism, Islmaphobia, blah blah blah. I know this because to the left no Muslim or POC is just a crappy person. Only whites are crappy people. POC and Muslims who act like the KKK or Nazi's are just oppressed people who need to be coddled more. It's truly sick. So much sympathy for black and Muslim victims. Never any sympathy for those they victimize.

@9 Your problem is your trying to enforce the mores and good taste of the regressives offended by CH.
I've been wondering, what if we were speaking of two men who had pre-planned the shooting of the (late) Fred Phelps and his group of 10 individuals at a burial-- maybe the shooters were not even related to the deceased, but had just decided they'd had enough, and taken on the mission of killing the Phelps group, mowed them down as they stood across the street with their stupid signs--how would we all be speaking of the shooters, their motivations, free speech... Just a thought.
@7,9 - So sure, this was "a vicious attack on freedom of expression", and perhaps the perpetrators were disaffected 2nd Gen youth... but they were specifically recruited by a spider-web organization that used them like pawns to effect a strategy styled towards inciting the French right-wing to thoughtlessly attack Muslims (which comprise all of 8% of France's population) in order to push those Muslims into Al-Qaeda's arms, so they can continue to exact their revenge on the US (& Europe) for occupying "their" (Arab) lands for the last 20-30 years.
I suppose if Ann Coulter had been raped and murdered, The Stranger would be defending misogyny today.
@20 - When those in power, --your 'white Christians' who run the USA and therefore the US military who have been so kind to those in the lands the US occupies--, do shitty things... do we really need underlying causes? The causes are 'racism in service to the maintenance of power'. Isn't that enough? (Or obvious enough?)

BTW, very canny of you to subtly demonstrate the very issue you raise! ;>)
@12 - What's missing in your analysis is "who holds the power in the situation".
Check your assumptions and try again.
@20, acknowledging a cause does not give them absolution, as you are accusing me (& others who ponder the inner workings of humanity) of saying. These sorts of things keep happening throughout history. Yes there are variations, the similarities aren't always apparent on the surface, but they are essentially the same.
This is a human problem.
"Islamic terrorists trying to bait the French far right into bashing arabs" sounds like a good first stab at 'making sense of it'
@15, @20, et al: No one is suggesting anyone "accede" to the violence. We are entitled to be outraged and to punish the guilty. But that's not the point of this article or stream of thought.

The question is not how we deal with the fallout of this violence, the question is how the fuck do we figure out what we need to do to prevent it.

There are serious social problems that are brewing this nihilism and violence. No one is proposing we forgive those who perceive themselves as downtrodden for running amok and destroying lives. All we socially conscious folk are asking is, can these people be better integrated into society so that they're invested as equals, what would it take, can it be done in compliance with our democratic principles, and do we have the will and assets to do it?

The first question whenever anyone tries to solve a problem is, to figure out what the fuck is going on. Mr. Kiley's examination of the question is overdue.
@24, you raise a good question there. Lets just say that it's only concern about the bigger picture that would keep me from celebrating the execution of the WBC, or bank and insurance executives.
We all have a dark streak.
A lot of people here are leaping to defend Islam and Islamic culture -- culture, mind you, not only the religion -- and that Islam has nothing to do with terrorism, that western capitalist pigs deserve whatever they are getting since western capitalist pigs were/are so wicked etc etc.

So my question is "Why there are no Vietnamese terrorists? In France or the USA or anywhere?" (And lots of other groups, for that matter such as Mexicans etc etc who also get a lot of mis-treatment.)

If any group had a real gripe against the USA and France, it might be Vietnamese. But why no terrorism by that group/culture/heritage? Why aren't Vietnamese resentful and full of wrath?

I think that such question needs be answered before blaming the USA and France for their mis-deeds in the Middle East and thus excusing terrorism by people of Islamic heritage.

@31 nailed it!
15 & 20 failed it!
@23 I can't say that I have one. I do however have a Final Solution to the Hypocritical Liberal Cuckhold problem. It would involve strategically parachuting them into ISIS encampments so that they can experience that rich, vibrant culture firsthand. Because guns are scary and kill people, they would be armed only with Arcade Fire CDs and a selection of microbrews. That way, perhaps they can make the militants finally see the error of their ways and renounce their terrible, backwards religion.

Of course this is all still in the planning stages. I'm no Eichmann when it comes to the logistical stuff.
Tell me again how the hundreds of women and children slaughtered by BoKo Haram the other day was not an Islam thing?
Conflating race with religion is disingenuous. It is morally wrong to satirize race. It is not morally wrong to satirize religion. If you want to make the claim that the comics in question mock believers because they are Arabs or Turks, that's one thing. Substantiate that and you have an argument worth considering. But the comics I saw mocked religious beliefs and like any other philosophy, from objectivism to environmentalism, Islam is fair game for ridicule. Especially when it claims to be the One and Only Truth. Which it most certainly does.
You can't completely excuse the texts of Islam from this whole situation. But the conservatives harping on it take it too far. Yes, a vast majority of Muslims nonviolent blah blah blah. It's still a tool used to excuse violence and oppression of women unlike any other religion in the world, because of its texts. The Koran says so. Or can easily be twisted to say so, whatever you want.

Of course, you can't change the text of the Koran - Islam isn't going anywhere. So you have to look at fixing the situations that get people to want to make the worst of the Koran. Yes, Islam used to be associated with great scholarship and etc. Right now it's being used by the world's worst assholes.

It should remain okay to criticize a religion within reason. Islam is not the main cause but it is very disingenuous to pretend it is not a factor.

I should be able to say all of the above without being labeled an "Islamophobe." It is not the Islam of the majority of the world but they aren't making stuff up. This is how a small minority, but still hundreds of thousands to millions of people are raised to think. It is not the reason, but it is a major factor.
How about we offer potential Muslim oriented youth with a penchant toward extremism, a FREE two year college education with a guaranteed job as long as they stay away from jihadist websites forever?
It's amazing how any attempt at nuance gets shit on by conservatives who insist on WAR BETWEEN CULTURES...which is exactly what the terrorists want.

Is religion a factor in religiously motivated violence. Of course. Is Islam (in it's core texts) more violent than Christianity? Nope. Is there a complicated social/political history to why there is such a widespread, violent Islamist movement now? Yes. Is talking about that justifying terrorism? No, it's the route to an actual solution.
@33, guess you don't know that there is a large population of Vietnamese who are and have been Muslims for hundreds of years (look up Champa)? Islam is not the cause of terrorism. Alienated, disconnected, ANGRY people who believe they have been victimized are, and the number of them are rising as the rich get richer and more callous and contemptuous and the poor get poorer and more hopeless. Vietnamese people have never been hopeless, not under the Chinese, not under the French, not during the Vietnam War, and not now under Communism, because they don't think of themselves as powerless victims. Vietnam also has a very high literacy rate historically; schools (including colleges and universities) used to be free until very recently. It's harder to brainwash people who can ask "What's wrong with this picture?".
I did French studies in college and had the experience of living in France during the riots in the mid-'00s. Today, in a moment of total emotional ruggedness after hearing everyone miss the subtext of why this happens, I took to Facebox to vent:

"In response to all these well-intentioned albeit knee-jerk reactions in solidarity with those who were "murdered for free expression," the responses have been incredibly reductionist and simplistic. Not once have I seen or read a think-piece vivisecting modern, post-industrial France's byzantine relationship with its own past; one of over-reaching colonialism and horrific attempts at maintaining empire. I would go as far as to say, and forgive me for making this stretch, that France's relationship with its imperial past is as complex as our own country's relationship with race (slavery and immigration.) The two nations share a willed inability to reconcile with state trauma and a theme that is constantly whispered at an unbearable volume - IDENTITY; identity in language, in character, culture, pastime, policy, and economy. In our continued efforts to assert national identity, those who are the most afflicted in our society are those we deem unfit to include to enjoy it: people of color, religious minorities, foreign nationals or immigrants, or people with varying degrees of gender expression and sexual proclivities. Now, given that these communities suffer the brunt of an society unequal under advanced capital and the withering away of the public, is it really just to exercise your right to free expression toward the abasement of those to whom your identity is not extended? Practicing said right only to fulfill your a need to criticize marginalized persons is nothing short of wasting it. Go ahead and spew your free expression on the disempowered, but many people are seeking various means to speak truth to power, which is, correct if I'm wrong, what free speech is all about. That said, please stop referring to this as an attack on expression and speech. Please stop talking about violence in religion. This is only about identity and power."
Nice reference Brendan. I really liked that movie "The Hate" albeit almost 20 years ago in its short theater run. Being shot in stylish b&w is my strongest memory. Fashion usually trumps substance in movies anyway.
Guess you don't know that Muslims are very small group in Vietnam, less than 0.1% so not sure of your point.
@44, are you being deliberately dense?

You asked, "Why there are no Vietnamese terrorists? In France or the USA or anywhere?" @41 answered "Vietnamese people have never been hopeless." That's the point. Read the whole comment next time.
rollin' coal, trollin' souls, because freedom's lost without righteous droll.
Anyone read about Boko Haram's latest hijinks?
I cannot understand why the knee knee-jerk commenters reluctant to acknowledge that Islam, as religion or culture or something, are at the root of the violence. The perpetrators themselves claim that it is all about Islam. Why should you doubt their own words?

Is it because of some sense of guilt If so go to a psychiatrist or priest and leave your own personal angst out of the civic discourse.
@ 48, you're not capable of responding to answers directed at your queries, so maybe that's the same defect responsible for the inability you express here.
Islam, as religion or culture or something, is relevant to violence wrought by people who are speaking in the name of Islam. For X to pull a gun while shouting 'Ali Akbar' and then have Y claim that Islam is not relevant is laughable.

The French are right to try to mimize religious symbols from public life.
@31 True, Mr. Kiley isn't asking us to accede to violence, but rather than propose any solution or even a general approach to fixing the problem, he asks for sympathy for these disaffected murderers. Respectfully, f**k that. My parents grew up Jewish in the '30s. Like most people then, my family and their people were dirt poor and desparate. We were openly refused education, jobs, housing, and many more such things. The public schools--as a policy--publicly shamed us for our accents, our dress, and our imagined sloth and filth. Dirtbags like Father Coughlin filled the radio with rants about us. Army leaders taught at West Point that we were subhuman subversives. Shiploads of our relatives seeking escape from genocide were turned away at our ports because we weren't considered desirable, and because national heroes like Lindbergh and Ford thought this country should ally with the killers. Editorials in popular newspapers supported that view. Do today's Muslims in Europe deal with anything nearly that bad? I think not. Yet Jews (even the many quite violent Jewish gangsters of the time), didn't blow up newspaper offices or attack radio hosts. These people are murdering because they're murderous, not because they're somewhat mistreated. They have bought into a subculture of hate that encourages murder. Sympathizing with their poor oppressed psyches wastes our energy, diverts our focus, and insults the law abiding. Let's discuss instead how to root out that subculture of hatred. To start with, let's seriously ask whether Wahabbi mudaras with close ties to hate groups and terrorist networks are merely teaching religion, or recruiting for murder. The First Amendment (or the French equivalent) is not a suicide pact.

Je suis Charlie.
@50 So, for the sake of argument, let's say that there's an essential problem with all of Islam itself. Now what?

You want to ban a religion? Round up everyone who's Muslim and do what with them? The Nazis tried their "final solution" 75 years ago. We, I hope, are not Nazis.

Which brings us back to the question: trying to find some way(s) to overcome whatever-the-fuck-pressures are generating violent jihadists from within our own societies. That's what this article is about.

Because, after you're done assigning blame for this stream of violence, you still haven't proposed any program to ameliorate it.
Was she wearing a skirt?

Clearly Christianity is the root of parents killing their children. There are numerous child murders in The Bible and Andrea Yates and several other child murderers have said they did it because their religion told them to.
Who said anything about "blame"?
This s analysis and the answer is that there's a connection.
Maybe the answer is that Moslems have to figure it out.
The Germans have -- Germany of 1940 and 2015 are totally different cultures.
I have no idea what makes sense and what shoud be done.
But denying that Islam is involved is infantile.
@52 No, it's not all Islam. As I said, it's a subculture within Islam. But that doesn't resolve the problem. Saying, however correctly, #notallmen, doesn't change the fact that we've got a cultural problem of men feeling they can exploit and abuse women. Saying #notallmuslims doesn't solve the problem that far too many Moslems, both individuals and states, feel it's good to punish people for blasphemy. Because so many feel that way, the "pressures generating violent jihadists from our own societies," come much more from that strain of Islam than from the inevitable imperfection of mainstream European society. We'll need to find legal tools to attack the toxic ideologies and instigators, even though clothed in religion, rather than wring our hands about the failings of the West.

Thank you.
@42 The facts are that CH talked truth to power every week for many decades (it looks as if you have NO idea who you are talking about) and that bashing religious dogma and fanatics isn't at all the same as bashing the disenfranchised (which CH didn't do despite your repeated claims to the opposite), and that none of the above is inconsistent with fighting for the inclusion of the disenfranchised as CH did. Yes, we do have an identity and not being afraid of obscurantists when we tell them they won't impose their regressives ways on our turf is part of that identity.
@40 Is Islam more violent than Christianity?

Are you both deaf and blind?
@60- I've read The Bible and the Koran and can tell you that they both feature sociopath Gods and numerous justifications for murder. Islam is no more violent than Christianity, and anyone with an education can tell you that. (As long as it isn't some bullshit Bible college education.) Any big religion has a foundational texts that can justify anything. It's how they get big.

Now do you mean is there currently a widespread terrorist ideology among more Muslims than Christians? Because that isn't the same thing. (This is the nuance I mentioned, it requires some thought and some accuracy of language.) This is a product of the last five decades or so, it didn't exist before. It's a reaction to modern social, political and economic forces. If the USA and Britain hadn't backed the house of Saud it might not exist at all.
@57 and others who seem to believe that CH is racist:…
Yeah. The problem here is the automatic assumption by people like Kiley and Sacco that Charlie Hebdo was racist in the first place. Most of the people doing this don't spend any time in France and don't know shit about the magazine or the culture there.

Well. I do.

This assumption or racism is based on ignorance and out of context cover art and NOT on any underlying malignant philosophy or message by CH. It is SATIRE. And you morons don't attempt to understand the context of what you see.

If you stop this navel gazing internet telephone tag where one or two people see a cover and make assumptions and then just shit themselves in self righteousness and actually research the paper an entirely different story emerges.

First. The fact is Hebdo is mostly staffed by far left writers and cartoonists many of which belong to anti-racist organizations. FI: The Boko Haram cover was combining two separate issues current in France and making fun of the anti-welfare positions of the French politicians.

CH spent more of it's time provoking the right wing and the catholic church than it ever did Islam.

Second of all the style - the big nose thing is a FRENCH caricature. Look at the ALL the art over the years. All the art has big distorted features and noses.

Remember when Colbert was accuses of being a racist by that idiot woman? She fundamentally didn't not understand the nature of his satire. She was as off base in her accusations as Kiley and Sacco are.

And clearly most people accusing CH of racism don't understand FRENCH satire or the aims of the paper at all.

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