French President Emanuel Macron slammed the U.S. mainstream media in an interview with The New York Times for “legitimizing” violence, saying that it was a sign that the nation’s “founding principles have been lost.”
Macron’s interview comes after France was rocked multiple times last month with Islamic terrorist attacks that started with a teacher who was beheaded for showing cartoons mocking the Prophet Mohammed.
“When France was attacked five years ago, every nation in the world supported us,” Macron said, referring to the November 2015 Islamic terrorist attacks that resulted in the deaths of well over 100 people in Paris. “So when I see, in that context, several newspapers which I believe are from countries that share our values — journalists who write in a country that is the heir to the Enlightenment and the French Revolution — when I see them legitimizing this violence, and saying that the heart of the problem is that France is racist and Islamophobic, then I say the founding principles have been lost.”
The New York Times interview noted that 250 people have been murdered in terrorist attacks in France since 2015 — the most of any Western nation.
After the recent beheading of the teacher, “Macron responded with a crackdown on Muslims accused of extremism, carrying out dozens of raids and vowing to shut down aid groups,” The report said. “He also made a vocal recommitment to secularism. Muslim leaders around the world criticized Mr. Macron’s and his aides’ aggressive response, which they said focused on peaceful Muslim groups. The president of Turkey called for boycotts of French products, as varied as cheese and cosmetics. The next month saw a new wave of attacks, including three murders in a Nice church and an explosion at a French ceremony in Saudi Arabia.”
Macron, to the surprise of some, has pushed back on the far-left this year, including his rejection of their attempts to tear down statues and rewrite history.
“We will be inflexible when it comes to tackling racism, anti-Semitism and discrimination, and new strong decisions will be made to reinforce the egality of chances,” Macron said. “But this noble fight is perverted when it turns into communitarianism, into a false rewriting of history.”
“This is unacceptable when it is picked up by separatists. I tell you very clearly tonight my dear fellow citizens, the Republic will not erase any trace or name from its history,” Macron continued. “It will not forget any of its deeds or take down any statue. What we need to do is to look all together with lucidity on all of our history and all our memory. Our relation to Africa in particular so we can build a present and a possible future from one to the other side of Mediterranean.”