Middle East Resources

Islamic Reactions to President Macron’s Speech

An Analysis: 9 October 2020

Bassam Michael Madany

On Friday, the 2nd of October 2020, “French President Emmanuel Macron Friday called Islam ‘a religion that is in crisis all over the world,’ in a speech addressing what he calls ‘separatism in France’s Islamic community.’
“In remarks delivered in the western Paris suburb of Les Mureaux, Macron said Islam is a religion in deep crisis worldwide, even in countries where it is the majority religion, because of “tensions between fundamentalism and political projects … that lead to very strong radicalization.” The French president said the government will offer legislation in December to “reinforce secularism and consolidate republican principles.


Reactions to President Macron’s speech came quickly from Islamic sources. President Erdogan of Turkey responded by warning Macron, “not to mess” with Turkey. He dismissed such remarks and accused Macron of ‘lacking historical knowledge’. Mr Macron, you’re going to have more problems with me, Erdoğan threatened.” I was surprised that some moderate Arabic-language websites took Macron’s words as an unwarranted critique of Islam.

Over the years, several Arab intellectuals levelled a similar analysis of Islam, and warned about the attitude of Islamic communities in Europe, that have opted to remain separate from the welcoming countries, such as France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Scandinavia.

In April 2020, I read an article by the Algerian intellectual Hamid Zanaz, warning Western leaders about the dangers arising from the growing numbers of Muslims in Europe who remain unassimilated and hostile to the host countries. It was published on a widely read online Arabic journal, Al-Awan. He titled it: “How the West Is Digging its Own Grave?” Zanaz contends that Europe had for too long, allowed many of its Muslim residents to disseminate an Islamic supremacist ideology. This, he believes, would lead to the eventual downfall of European civilization.

“A pioneer Islamist ideologue said the following about the West’s inability to face the challenge of Islam: ‘While we are able to fight democracy from within; democracy, on the other hand, cannot fight Islam, or at least, it cannot openly admit that.’ These words point to the most difficult problem facing Western democracies. Europe finds itself in an unprecedented dilemma as it confronts the Islamists’ destructive activities within its borders.

“Islamists receive all kinds of advantages available to them in Europe. They travel on European passports, receive free social services, benefit from the democratic and human rights traditions; only to work for the destruction of these blessings of modernity. How long should the Muslim communities in the West be allowed to provide a Trojan horse for these extremists to pursue their attacks on freedom and democracy?

“Is France, and with it, the entire West, on its way to Islamization? Or is this fear simply an indication of Islamophobia spreading throughout Europe and America, due to what the activities of the Islamists pretend? Is there any hope that descendants of Arab and Muslim immigrants would eventually integrate within Western secular and democratic societies? Or, are they going to demand recognition for their specific culture, by requiring the promulgation of laws based on the Islamic Sharia? Are they going to be satisfied with the freedom of worship that secular European laws grant them; or would they demand more special privileges?

“In other words, what should be the response of modern European societies to Muslim immigrants who are facing tremendous pressures from Islamist groups that seek to isolate them culturally, thus preventing them from integrating and acting as free and independent individuals?

“Second generation Muslims thus became the main agents in the project for the Islamization of Europe. Their financial support comes from both oil-producing countries, like Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States, as well as from fund-raising campaigns at European mosques. Are the descendants of this ‘Islamic Civilization’ about to become the West’s major problem during the 21st century, as many intellectuals are predicting? Is Sharia going to rule Europe as many Muslims dream? Finally, what will be the Europeans’ response to this Islamic invasion?”

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Related articles on this topic are available on my website, Middle East Resources



Today I noticed on Al-Awan, an article by Hamid Zanaz dated 14 March 2020:              IN EUROPE, THE MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD SPREADS THEIR POISON VIA THEIR SCHOOLS. Clicking on the underlined Arabic name provides the text of his article.

في أوروبا ينشر الإخوان سمومهم عن طريق مدارسهمحميد زناز