Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Rioting continued in France for the third consecutive night after Sarkozy's victory; 840 people have been arrested so far, and about 1200 cars torched. Things do seem to be calming down a little, and there was only serious rioting last night in Paris and its suburbs, Toulouse, and Lyon.

Seems to me this is a mixture of race rioting and street guerrilla anarchism--what they call kale borroka in the Basque Country. These racaille better have their fun now, because Sarkozy is going to crack down on this crap after he takes over, which is within about two weeks. You can't run a country with punks taking over the streets as they have been doing in France--or as the gangs do in some underclass areas in the States.

One real silly response I've heard going around the Guardian's comments section is that this rioting in France is bad, but American race rioting is worse. This is a rather off-the-wall comparison, since I have no idea why they're bringing in America. Also, have we had any real race rioting since the early '90s? I remember a couple of people got killed in Brooklyn, and there were the 1992 "Rodney King" riots, in which about fifty people died. I checked Wikipedia, though, and couldn't find any serious rioting in the US since then. This looks like the best we can do.

Another very silly response that TV3 is making a big deal out of is to attack Sarkozy for going off for a quick luxury vacation in Malta. Hell, I'd say he deserves a nice rest. And, no, I don't believe the story that renting a yacht costs €110,000 for three days. I might believe it if you told me that it cost €110,000 for the French secret service to protect him down there, but they have to protect him wherever he goes, of course. This is a complete non-issue.

I'm starting to think José Montilla is a pretty reasonable guy for a Socialist. He hasn't done anything stupid yet, and he shit-canned the regional representative in Madrid for saying that Montilla's predecessor and still party president Maragall was sick in the head. This guy, Martínez Fraile, is a buddy of Montilla's. La Vangua's take is that Montilla is warning his coalition partner, notoriously unreliable Esquerra Republicana, that he's not going to take any crap off them, either.

Interesting World War II stuff that might be true: A Dutch TV documentary says that KLM, with the help of Prince Bernhard, who was a director of the state-owned airline and pro-Nazi, helped Nazi war criminals escape to South America in the late 1940s. Specific accusation: Two of them were Eichmann and Mengele.

Interesting last line of La Vangua's article. "Holland is still debating the collaboration of its authorities with the Nazi regime, and the deportation of a large part of its Jewish and homosexual population to concentration camps."

Now, we know that some 110,000 Dutch Jews died in the Holocaust, but I had never heard that Dutch homosexuals were deported en masse to concentration camps, or that anywhere near 110,000 of them died. Wikipedia cites estimates of between 5,000 and 15,000 gays (from all nations) killed by the Nazis--a tragedy, to be sure, but not precisely the reason the Nazis set up the death camps. My question is why La Vangua's reporter brought in homosexuals, when the debate is quite obviously about Dutch society's treatment of Jews.

La Vanguardia's banner headline today, though, is: "Catalonia largest jihadist center / 30% of imprisoned Islamic terrorists lived in Catalonia / High tension in Salt / Studies of threat of attack on Barcelona." Their sources are a think-tank study and a police officers' organization.

Big news: Every month approximately five Islamist terrorists leave Catalonia for training in Iraq, Chechenia, or Afghanistan.

Their story says, straight out, that extremist Islamist cells in Catalonia are recruiting suicide bombers for Iraq and Afghanistan, that the cops are getting cooperation from the "Muslim communities established in Spain," and that fundamentalist radicals camouflage themselves in areas with a large Islamic population, and then proselytize. Investigators are focusing on the 36% Muslim town of Salt, Girona's ugly twin sister, "the Islamic capital of Catalonia." Supposedly Salt's Muslims have been infiltrated by radicals, and there's an ideological battle going on right now between moderates and jihadists. The cops aren't ruling out an attack in Barcelona, but they haven't found much evidence that one is being planned.

Interesting bit: White flight doesn't only happen in racist America. 1500 Spanish citizens have moved out of Salt since 2004.

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