Obama State Dept coaching future politicians in Muslim enclaves of Paris
Posted on September 23, 2010 by creeping
More Muslim outreach at taxpayer expense. Worse – the Obama administration is developing French Muslim politicians in the riotous, anti-Western, anti-assimilation suburbs of Paris where Muslim youth burn thousands of cars each year and attack first responders.
Future politicians trained with U.S. tax dollars?
via U.S. embassy outreach gets respect from Paris immigrants who feel ignored by France | cleveland.com.
BONDY, France — The residents of this poor, multiracial Paris suburb say they have been abandoned. For 30 years, they say, the French authorities have written off Bondy and neighborhoods like it, treating their inhabitants as terminal delinquents and ignoring their potential.
This, residents note, is not the approach taken by the U.S. Department of State.
The U.S. Embassy in Paris has formed a network of partnerships with local governments, advocacy groups, entrepreneurs, students and cultural leaders in the troubled immigrant enclaves outside France’s major cities.
Begun in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks as part of an effort to bolster the image of the United States within Muslim communities across the globe, American outreach in these hard neighborhoods — often referred to collectively as the “banlieues,” or suburbs — has grown in scale and visibility since the election of Barack Obama.
France is home to between 5 million and 6 million Muslims, Europe’s largest Muslim population, and the banlieues have long been considered potential incubators for religious extremism. But anti-American sentiment, once pervasive in these neighborhoods, seems to have been all but erased since the election of Obama, who has proved a powerful symbol of hope here and a powerful diplomatic tool.
Many suggest the Americans’ warm reception is a measure of these communities’ sense of abandonment. Others say it is the presence of Obama in the White House. Whatever the case, the United States is now more popular in the banlieues than at any time in recent memory, say French and American officials.
With an annual public affairs budget of about $3 million, the Paris embassy has sponsored a variety of urban renewal projects, music festivals and conferences. Since Obama’s election, the Americans have helped organize seminars for minority politicians, coaching them in electoral strategy, fund-raising and communications.
The International Visitor Leadership Program, which sends 20 to 30 promising French entrepreneurs and politicians to America for several weeks each year, now includes more minority participants, and Muslims in particular. The embassy began a similar program for French teenagers.
Officials insist the outreach is not meant solely to curry favor for the United States; the Americans also see an emerging group of political and business elites in these neighborhoods. The embassy is “trying to connect with the next generation of leaders in France,” Rivkin said. “That includes the banlieues.”
Residents “have the sense that the United States looks upon our areas with much more deference and respect,” said Roger, the Bondy mayor. For electoral reasons, he said, French politicians exaggerate the violence and criminality here.
The no-go zones were described several years ago in, The 751 No-Go Zones of France. The French government website is no longer available but the listing is archived here:
They go by the euphemistic term Zones Urbaines Sensibles, or Sensitive Urban Zones, with the even more antiseptic acronym ZUS, and there are 751 of them as of last count. They are convienently listed on one long webpage, complete with street demarcations and map delineations.
What are they? Those places in France that the French state does not control. They range from two zones in the medieval town of Carcassone to twelve in the heavily Muslim town of Marseilles, with hardly a town in France lacking in its ZUS. The ZUS came into existence in late 1996 and according to a 2004 estimate, nearly 5 million people live in them.
Comment: A more precise name for these zones would be Dar al-Islam, the place where Muslims rule.