Local Time

Thursday, April 28, 2011

France discrimination favors Jews


The French public starts to feel betrayed by the government as its debate on laïcité turns out to be focused on Islam and that it is the Muslim community Paris cannot stand.


One of the 16 points in the proposed secularism package by the ruling Union for a Political Movement (UMP) is that no religious community has the right to request a privilege.

UMP Secretary General Jean-François Copé noted that asking for cancellation of exams by educational institutions on the occasion of certain religious holidays as a case in point.

However, it soon came into light that some engineering schools have been pressured by the Elysée to postpone exams coinciding with the Jewish holiday of Passover so that Jewish students could freely participate in the tests.

A senior official in the French Education Ministry leaked the news to a number of websites and the magazine Le Point commissioned its reporters to pursue the case.

The schools, however, declined to comment on the issue, but two school officials acknowledged that they have been under pressure to adjourn the exams but they did not give in to Elysée.

The French government soon denied the allegations but failed to forestall the reflections in the media.

Eventually, the Chief Jewish Chaplain for the French Army, Major General Rabbi Haim Corsia admitted to his efforts to use his position to serve religious purposes.

He said that he asked President Nicolas Sarkozy to order the delay of the Passover exams and that Sarkozy issued a decree in this regard.

The French Jewish Council later said the move was not in contradiction with the concept of laïcité.

But the usually Islamophobic secular sites, normally replete with materials against the faith of Islam and its spread across France, published articles criticizing Sarkozy's move as a threat to secularism in the country. But the articles were removed after a day.

The attempt also sparked an outrage among the country's Muslim population who condemned Sarkozy's hypocrisy.

Now it appears that the entire secularism debate in France, claimed to cover all religious groups, was merely aimed at covering the discriminatory approach adopted by Paris against Muslims in the country and a gateway from religious discrimination charges.

The recent revelations is widely viewed as a scandal that lays bare the French government's double standards in its dealing with religious issues as well as the influence of Jewish lobbies in the country. 

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