A little over a week after the outbreak of the riots, Alain de Benoist draws up their genealogy. French specificity, anteriority of mass immigration, culture of denial, occultation of ethnic realities, individualism… everything contributed, more than elsewhere, to setting fire. This interview first appeared in Italy in “Il Giornale”.
Alain de Benoist
July 7, 2023
IL GIORNALE: The demonstrations these days bear witness to the failure of multiculturalism. How did we get here ?
ALAIN DE BENOIST. They manifest of course a failure of multiculturalism, but to stop there would be simplistic. The violent urban riots we are witnessing at the moment also testify to a country divided and fragmented, not because of immigrants, but because of a dominant ideology which has substituted, in the general population, the law of profit for moral rules. . In a society dominated by market values, which structurally create the conditions for fragmentation and social unbundling, it is not surprising that no one cares about the common good.
In these riots, the left mainly saw a social revolt (against discrimination, exclusion, unemployment, etc.), while the right spoke of an ethnic revolt heralding a civil war. There is some truth in both interpretations, but they are both short-sighted. For forty years, tens of billions of euros have been invested in “urban policy” and the rehabilitation of “difficult neighborhoods” without any results. On the other hand, an urban guerrilla is not a civil war. In a civil war, two armed fractions of the population clash, the police and the army being equally divided, which is not the case here.
Generally speaking, it is strictly political interpretations that prove incapable of taking the full measure of the problem. The current urban riots have no political character. The rioters have no claims to make. They only want to destroy and plunder. When representatives of the left or the extreme left go to the estates to make it known that they “understand the anger” of the rioters, they are expelled or spit in their faces!
IL GIORNALE: To what extent does the crisis of French and European identity influence the demonstrations?
ALAIN DE BENOIST: The French population today has lost all feeling of belonging to a community. The rioters have one – or believe they have one. The crisis of French identity has ancient roots. It is the result of the influence of an ideology that is both individualist and universalist, which believes that men are “everywhere the same”, and that ethnocultural factors are not important. No society can solve its problems by the mere addition of the legal contract and the mercantile exchange.
IL GIORNALE: Is the French state challenged because many immigrants do not recognize the authority of French institutions?