Vive la France d’immigrés

Long live France of immigrants! The World Cup 2006 of Germany is gracefully over. The champion is Italy, though France was the best team of the tournament, more precisely, France of immigrants. The World Cup has deployed a great national joy and echoes an anti-racist atmosphere in France.  Even regardless of which country wins the World Cup, there will be other victors, namely French multi ethnic people who seem to be coming out as political winners.

During the final match, all streets and squares of entire France have been swarming with hordes of multi ethnic people living in France. In cosmopolitanParis millions of people from all colours and origins poured out onto the streets chanting, cheering and setting “allez les Bleus!” .

Even after the undeserved defeat against Italy, the crowd enthusiastic celebrated all the night on Champs-Élysées. The cheers, the cries, the honking of horns, the waving of French flags, the car flags all prove the country's biggest public fest. The tri-colour of French flag has now become an entire symbol, it symbolises “non au racisme”, no to racism.

The title of vice- World champion belongs also to the French coach “le sélectionneur national”, team selector, Raymond Domenech who selected the national team based on their performance on the field. He disregarded the skin colour and origin of players despite all critics from conservative milieus.

Such a proud victory is of course a political defeat for all the extreme Rights in Europe.  From the National Front, in France, to the German neo-Nazi of NPD party or Ahmadinejad’s friends, they all started a dirty campaign for an all-white national team. Their followers in stadium even were mocking the origins of non-white players.

The victory is also a thorn in the eyes of Islamists who try to isolate Muslim population from the rest of their French compatriots. The ethnic combination of the French team is a political defeat for the international political Islam.

Opposite  to the  intolerance, violence and misogyny of a little number of Islamists, most French citizen with Muslim roots are as attached to the liberties, secularism and the values of the republic as their other white compatriots.

In 1936, the Nazi organised their pompous Olympic Games, in deed, to prove the theory of super-Aryans. But a shock for Hitler, when a US black athlete, Jesse Owens, spoiled his theory by winning four gold medals. This time, the IRI’s presence, which still denies Nazi Holocaust, spoiled the games.

Despite planned idea to symbolically rebury the rotted body of fascism, the German government and FIFA, by not banning the IRI, have ignored that the nature of religious fascism of the IRI. On the banal pretext that sport is separate from politics, they did not listen to the voice of all freedom-loving Iranian people that today are as opposed to the IRI as Germans were to the Nazi.

In this Hitler stadium of Berlin, which has been symbolically rebuilt, all teams must initially stand behind a banner that says “Say No to Racism”. History pursues us. So this is not only one black athlete who won, but a French team with a majority of black players, the immigrants’ sons of a European country in Hitler's stadium. This would be a symbolic spit on the Swastika that one day was the holy cross of this stadium. Furthermore, it is a slap in the face of all fanatics, more deservedly the gender apartheid of the IRI that bans female fans in any sport stadium.

A little group aside, German people, like most civilised people, are not nationalist or racist. The attitude of racism is not always due to people’s consciousness. It can be directly or indirectly imposed. For example, a year ago when a German football team was playing in Tehran, the players were greeted with a Hitler salute. It was not a conscious act of racism, but a welcome to their “Aryan” friends. For the German players, it was a racist insult.

In some cultures, the terms like racism, nationalism, misogyny or any form of fanatical attitude are not correctly defined. But in democratic cultures, there is a broad definition for each of them. “Français comme les autre”, French are equal to the others, is a reconciliatory slogan in France. It is, at least, true in football. French football resources are visibly on display in all ghettos and suburbs of the French immigrants and non-white population.

French immigrants are mostly Muslims among those of Maghreb origin (Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco).  Among them, those under 25 years old appear to be the real source of French football. In their “quartiers difficiles”, difficult areas, football is their practiced religion.

As a poor student who livened for many years in these areas, I know that many of them profess no religion. They are not more observant than their fellow citizens, but they take more of their religious values into account as a mechanism of self-defence against any form of discrimination. Islam does not push the majority of them away from French secular values. Islam is as a identity component (particularly in the youngest protesters of French immigrants in difficult areas). Apart from some veiled and bearded Islamists, French immigrants with Islamic roots are not practically Muslims: they  do not pray, they do not wear “foulard islamique”, Islamic scarf, they  go to mixed schools, accept mixed marriage and practice sport in mixed sex stadiums. This integrated generation of French immigrant is a generation of Zidane.

Sport and particularly football is for French immigrants an important means of integration. If not, the risk exists that an organised political Islam makes them withdraw from all values of secularism, what paves the way for the conservative   government in France to reject them.

Following the news, many thousands of “illegal” immigrants with their school children are now facing expulsion from France. I hope that the victory of France “d’immigrés” can nationwide reinforce the ongoing campaigns against this inhuman deportation. 

A part from IRI’s participation, the World Cup politically achieved a good end.  World Cup 2010 will be held in South Africa, a country freed from a totalitarian and racist regime, what augurs well for a welcome of an Iranian national team freed from the totalitarian IRI.


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