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Supineness or subtility?

Reader comment on item: [Nepal and France:] Two Opposite Responses to Terrorism

Submitted by Nico (United Kingdom), Sep 18, 2004 at 06:02

You conclude your article by implying that the French should have "hit back". At whom? And where? Should we have sacked mosques all throughout the country like the Nepalese did? Invaded Algeria again? Or give a hand to the Americans in Iraq?

With all respect, I think France has a longer experience of dealing with terrorists than the US. From the early XIXth century onwards we experienced monarchist, anarchist, communist, separatist and Islamist terrorism. These were dealt with using police action and intelligence, not by invading other countries or persecuting minorities (although some minorities have been persecuted in France, but for other reasons).

There was a wave of Islamist bombings in France in the mid 90s. Did we invade Algeria or Morocco? No, intelligence and police measures were taken, and since then there hasn't been a single bombing in France.
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