Start with this — Mireille Mathieu — and if, like me, you don’t speak French, perhaps the translation.

And then, of course, Casablanca.

It’s not the gruesome number of people who were killed — 129 and bound to rise.  (As one of the Democratic candidates noted during Saturday night’s debate after the topic shifted, “Since we last debated [less than a month ago] nearly 3,000 people have been killed by guns, 21 mass shootings . . . 200 children.”)  Rather, it’s the insanity of it, the intentionality, the inhumanity.

All condemned by Muslim leaders around the world.

In an official statement, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani called the attacks a “crime against humanity.”

Indonesian president Joko Widodo condemned the “violence that took place in Paris,” and called for more international cooperation to fight terrorism.

Leaders of Arab states called the attacks immoral and inhumane. Qatar’s foreign minister Khaled al-Attiyah denounced the “heinous attacks,” adding, “these acts, which target stability and security in France are against all human and moral values.” Kuwaiti Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Sabah called the attacks “criminal acts of terrorism which run counter to all teachings of holy faith and humanitarian values.” The Saudi foreign ministry called for global cooperation to “root out this dangerous and destructive plague.”

And it is Muslims, mainly, who are going to have to fix it.  Because if it is mainly we — and other primarily Judeo-Christian nations — who are bombing and occupying Muslim nations, toppling their regimes and humiliating them with our superior strength and technology, we may further lose their hearts and minds.  (Start with our removing the democratically elected leader of Iran in 1953 — read it on the CIA website — and go from there.)

It is horrible.  It is complicated.  And, taken literally, it may be hard to argue that Islam is a religion of peace.  (I was dismayed to read this interpretation of “…whoever kills a person, it is as if he had killed all mankind. And whoever saves one it is as if he had saved all mankind…”)  But taken literally, Jews would be stoning practically everybody to death.  (What?  You’ve never worked on a Saturday?)  And there’s always Queen Isabella’s wonderful quote: “I have caused great calamities.  I have depopulated provinces and kingdoms. But I did it fore the love of Christ and his Holy Mother.”

We will get through this.  The better if we act rationally and in cooperation with all those who oppose ISIS atrocities.

Vive la France.


[Seen on a friend’s T-shirt: “If your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.”]


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