Philadelphia council approves ban of tear gas & rubber bullets as battered police struggle to quell ‘peaceful protests’

Amid unrest that has left dozens of officers wounded this week, Philadelphia police may lose much of their crowd-control weaponry, as the City Council voted to ban use of tear gas and rubber bullets against “peaceful protesters.”

The council reportedly voted 14-3 Thursday to prohibit use of the crowd-control tools during protests. The legislation will be enacted once it’s signed by Mayor Jim Kenney, who has tried to appease demonstrators this week by blaming the unrest on “systemic racism” and promising actions to “bring true equity to our city.”

Black Lives Matter demonstrations reignited in Philadelphia on Monday, after police fatally shot a knife-wielding black man named Walter Wallace Jr. The protests quickly turned violent and spun so out of control that at least 57 police were injured in the first two nights, including one who was run over by a large pickup.

Also on rt.com

Officers stand guard outside a police station during protests over the death of Walter Wallace Jr at the hands of law enforcement, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 28, 2020.
Philadelphia police discover van ‘loaded with EXPLOSIVES’ as sporadic looting continues for 3rd night despite curfew

Rioters also torched and vandalized at least 18 police and fire department vehicles and blew up dozens of ATM machines around the city. Police described Philadelphia’s Port Richmond shopping district as a “total loss” after more than 1,000 looters ransacked stores in the area.

Although the unrest was severe enough for Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf to activate the state’s National Guard troops and for Kenney to impose a 9pm curfew on Wednesday, city lawmakers saw fit to ban most of the non-lethal crowd-control tools used by police.

READ MORE: Russian film crew attacked in Philadelphia just ONE day after embassy warns about safety of journalists working in US

The decision came one day after Philadelphia Fraternal Order of Police President John McNesby called on city leaders to “support your officers, back your officers, and let’s get a handle on this thing.” He urged city officials to quickly release all available information about the Wallace shooting, which he believes is “cut and dry” in exonerating police. The 27-year-old Wallace was shot after he continued moving toward two backpedaling officers and refused their commands to drop his weapon.

Many observers on Twitter were astonished by the City Council vote to ban tear gas and other crowd-control weapons. “We are making it easier for rioters to riot. What the crap is going on?” podcast host Graham Allen tweeted, while Human Events editor Will Chamberlain noted that the definition of “peaceful protesters” has been stretched recently.

Also on rt.com

FILE PHOTOS.
Walmart removes guns & ammo from floor displays due to ‘isolated civil unrest’ after looting spree in Philadelphia

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!



Source: RT, Philadelphia council approves ban of tear gas & rubber bullets as battered police struggle to quell ‘peaceful protests’

Covid lockdown loophole? UK man creates company to list family as employees for Christmas ‘working lunch’

A British account manager says he’s beaten the country’s crackdown on private gatherings amid the Covid-19 crisis – and it only cost him £6 – creating a company and listing family as staff to game a loophole in the restrictions.

Fenn Settle, a 27-year-old from a suburb of Leeds, said he set up a new limited company, Fenn Settle Ltd., in order to evade the UK’s “rule of six,” which prohibits gatherings of groups larger than six people who live in different households.

Boasting about the feat in a Facebook post, Settle said he would “hire” friends and family for the new business venture, which he said cost only “6 quid” to establish. He will then host them for an “unpaid work event” at his home, a “registered premises,” on Christmas, he added.

Right, then, UK government, joke’s on you. I’m not allowed to have my family around for Christmas. I AM, however, allowed to have employees around… Checkmate.

https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=3436981476390224&set=a.246614668760270

Downing Street has acknowledged that the rules contain loopholes, with a spokesperson saying on Thursday that “There is a specific exemption which says that people from different households can gather in indoor settings that are open for work purposes,” but they stressed that the exemption was meant for freelancers and not intended for work meetings at private homes.

Settle told the Daily Mail that he got the idea after the death of his grandfather in April, noting he wasn’t able to see him for the last eight weeks of his life “because of Covid rules.”

“[That] got me thinking of [setting up the business]. People are dying on their own and yet you can see work colleagues,” he said. “I tried booking a dinner reservation for me and a couple of work colleagues. They said they weren’t able to sit us and I said ‘we’re in a work bubble’ and that was fine.”

Also on rt.com

FILE PHOTO: Police officers amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Britain. © REUTERS / Hannah McKay
UK regional police chief says cops will INTERVENE if family Christmas celebrations break Covid rules, angering Britons

Settle, however, acknowledged that his post was “a bit tongue in cheek,” and that he merely wanted to bring some cheer to an “otherwise very bleak situation.” He did file the new Ltd. with the UK’s official Companies House, but while the business is still listed as “active” on the register, its filing history shows that it applied to be dissolved and struck from the records on the same day it was established.

Though several European countries have revived nationwide lockdowns during what some health experts have called a “second wave” of the coronavirus pandemic, the UK has stuck to a three-tier system that assigns risk levels to particular areas and applies restrictions accordingly. To date, the country has tallied more than 965,000 infections and nearly 46,000 deaths, according to official data.

Environment Secretary George Eustice said on Wednesday that the government was aiming to balance containing the virus with allowing citizens to “live their lives as close to normal as possible,” particularly for Christmas, but some residents remain skeptical. Earlier this week, West Midlands Police Commissioner David Jamieson stoked fury after vowing to crack down on family gatherings on the holiday and enforce the country’s Covid restrictions to the hilt, drawing comparisons to fascist regimes and “Brownshirts” from enraged Britons.

Also on rt.com

FILE PHOTO.
‘Christmas in shifts’: German nursing care commissioner calls on people to take turns at celebrating

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!



Source: RT, Covid lockdown loophole? UK man creates company to list family as employees for Christmas ‘working lunch’

Americans divided: Democrats prefer FRANCE to US, while Republicans like Israel better than Mexico & Cuba

Americans of rival political stripes are so divergent on their views of the world that the country Democrats favor even more than the US itself, France, ranks lower than Poland in the eyes of Republicans.

A poll released this week by YouGov Ratings showed that 71 percent of Democrats have a positive view of France, compared to just 43 percent of Republicans. The two sides were similarly divided over Mexico, with 58 percent of Democrats and 29 percent of Republicans holding a positive view.

Also on rt.com

Luis Arce celebrates with supporters during a press conference following the general election victory of MAS (Movement Towards Socialism) on October 19, 2020 in La Paz, Bolivia
Caitlin Johnstone: America has no allies, only hostages

The only country on which the two sides had an even bigger gap in opinion is Israel, which is liked by 69 percent of Republicans but only 36 percent of Democrats. Opinions of Israel among Democrats have worsened so much – 60 percent viewed it as positive in a 2013 Gallup poll – that the Jewish state is now viewed less favorably than Cuba (at 39 percent) or Kenya (43 percent).

Newsweek opinion editor Josh Hammer pointed out left-wing distaste for Israel on Thursday, tweeting that the preference for communist Cuba shows that “this is not JFK’s Democratic Party.”

Responses on Twitter merely verified the shift, with one user saying, “Does Cuba deny a people the right to exercise their sovereignty, demolish their homes and confiscate their land?” 

“Democrats support people’s right to self-determination over a regime that continues to violently expand into territories that they do not have legal rights to,” said another.

Only 16 percent of Republicans regarded Cuba positively, while Poland (50 percent) was more popular than France.

Perhaps even more meaningful, though, was the divergence of views among Democrats and Republicans about their own nation. Just 68 percent of Democrats said they have a positive view of the US, while 95 percent of Republicans gave their own country a thumbs-up. 

Democrat respondents ranked France and Ireland – both at 71 percent – higher than the US. Republicans actually like Ireland a bit more, at 74 percent.

The one country both parties seem to be more or less in agreement about was Russia, with a 19 percent positive rating among Republicans and 16 percent among Democrats.

Like this story? Share it with a friend!



Source: RT, Americans divided: Democrats prefer FRANCE to US, while Republicans like Israel better than Mexico & Cuba

Walmart removes guns & ammo from floor displays due to ‘isolated civil unrest’ after looting spree in Philadelphia

Walmart has temporarily pulled all guns and ammunition from displays in its stores, citing what it called “isolated civil unrest” in American cities amid a wave of protests that have frequently descended into riots and looting.

The US’ largest retailer announced the move on Thursday, noting that while firearms will “remain available for purchase by customers,” they will no longer be sold from the floor in the near term, declining to say for how long.

“We have seen some isolated civil unrest and as we have done on several occasions over the last few years, we have moved our firearms and ammunition off the sales floor as a precaution for the safety of our associates and customers,” a Walmart spokesman said in a statement to the media.

In a letter to store managers obtained by the Wall Street Journal, the company also referred to “unrest in isolated areas of the country,” explaining that staff should remove guns from displays “out of an abundance of caution.”

Also on rt.com

RT
Looters ransack stores in Philadelphia as protesters face off with riot cops over police shooting (VIDEOS)

The decision comes as a number of American cities are gripped by chaotic demonstrations against police brutality, which have erupted with increasing regularity since the death of George Floyd at the hands of officers in May. Unrest flared up again after Philadelphia police shot and killed 27-year-old Walter Wallace Jr. as he wielded a knife during a confrontation with officers on Monday. The incident, which was captured in a disturbing viral video, sparked several nights of chaos across Philadelphia, seeing protests give way to clashes with police, rioting and widespread looting, which targeted at least one Walmart location.

Since unrest kicked off in the city on Monday night, at least 11 people have been shot in the area around the Walmart store, though it is unclear whether the violence and looting were connected, or to what extent. However, footage has circulated on social media showing unfired bullets strewn across the supermarket’s floor, suggesting ammunition may have been plundered, while local media reported looters firing on each other in the Port Richmond neighborhood, where the Walmart is located.

The status of all 11 shooting victims remains unclear, but they reportedly included two teenagers – a 15-year-old girl and an 18-year-old man – as well as a 33-year-old male who succumbed to his injuries.

The retail giant made no mention of the looting of its store in Philadelphia, or the string of shootings in the area, in announcing its move to pull the guns and ammunition, which are sold at around half of its 4,700 locations in the US. Walmart similarly opted to remove firearms from some store displays over the summer during a series of protests over the Floyd killing, also describing that move as a precautionary measure due to looting and riots.

Also on rt.com

Officers stand guard outside a police station during protests over the death of Walter Wallace Jr at the hands of law enforcement, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 28, 2020.
Philadelphia police discover van ‘loaded with EXPLOSIVES’ as sporadic looting continues for 3rd night despite curfew

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!



Source: RT, Walmart removes guns & ammo from floor displays due to ‘isolated civil unrest’ after looting spree in Philadelphia

Nancy Pelosi confident Biden will be president ‘whatever the end count is’ on Election Day

Democrat Joe Biden will defeat US President Donald Trump and be inaugurated on Jan. 20, regardless of what the vote count on Election Day may show, US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi vowed to reporters on Capitol Hill.

“I feel very confident that Joe Biden will be elected president on Tuesday,” Pelosi (D-California) said through her mask at a press conference on Thursday afternoon. “Whatever the end count is on the election that occurs on Tuesday, he will be elected. On January 20 he will be inaugurated president of the United States.”

Pelosi made the comments in the context of preparing to govern with Democrat control of both Congress and the White House, saying, “we have to be ready for how we are going to go down a different path.”

Read more

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in the final 2016 presidential campaign debate at UNLV in Las Vegas. © Reuters / Mike Blake
Media aghast Trump won’t pledge to ‘accept’ 2020 election result…as Hillary yet to admit her 2016 loss was legit

Reporters joined her in treating the election result as fait accompli, asking not about her curious phrasing about the election, but instead how House Democrats intend to work through differences between moderate and far-left factions of the party.

“Our caucus has a beautiful array of thinking, of generational, gender, gender ID, ethnic background, geographic differences and the rest, but the one thing that unites us is our commitment to America’s working families,” Pelosi responded.

Speaking on MSNBC the evening before, Pelosi urged Trump to “stand up like a man and accept the results” of the election, which she presumed were a foregone conclusion.

“The states will count the votes that they have in a timely fashion,” Pelosi said, adding that Trump allegedly saying he would declare victory on election night “shows his lack of patriotism, his undermining of our elections while he allows foreign countries like his friend [Russian President Vladimir] Putin to undermine the integrity of our election, he himself is doing it as well.”

Fox News host Sean Hannity took notice of Pelosi’s curious phrasing, while his mostly Republican audience took Pelosi’s words as a threat. One commenter called Pelosi’s statement “a blatant admission that they will cheat by any means necessary.” Another tweeted, “Sounds like she is talking about open sedition,” while still another said, Civil War II is near.”

Failed 2016 Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton set off similar alarm bells in August, when she said Biden should not concede defeat “under any circumstances.” Ironically, it was Clinton who said repeatedly during the 2016 campaign that Trump was “threatening our democracy” by not promising in advance to accept the apparent results of voting on election night.

Another failed Democrat candidate, 2000 election loser Al Gore, muddied the waters further the day after Clinton’s statement aired, saying Trump would be forced from office by military and security forces if he refuses to leave on inauguration day.

Biden himself had said back in June that he was “absolutely convinced” the US military would “escort [Trump] from the White House with great dispatch” if the president loses the election but refuses to concede.

Also on rt.com

Joe Biden speaks in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Biden indulges fantasy of Trump refusing to leave office in November, says election-stealing is his ‘single greatest concern’

Pelosi has also refused to budge on her demands in talks about Covid-19 relief with the Trump administration, apparently as convinced that Trump needs it more than the Democrats as she is of Biden’s triumph next week. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, who has been negotiating with Pelosi, accused the speaker on Thursday of a “political stunt after she sent a letter to his office at midnight the day before, and released it to the press at the same time.

Like this story? Share it with a friend!



Source: RT, Nancy Pelosi confident Biden will be president ‘whatever the end count is’ on Election Day

‘Journalists desperate to not know’: Glenn Greenwald blasts media coverage of Hunter Biden scandal in piece The Intercept censored

US mainstream media deliberately ignoring the Hunter Biden story is a betrayal of the core principles of journalism, argues Glenn Greenwald in an article that the outlet he co-founded tried to censor, prompting his resignation.

Between the laptop, emails, documents and witness testimonies pertaining to the son of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his business dealings overseas that basically traded on the family name, there is more than enough reason to at least look into the story, Greenwald said in the article. 

Instead, Silicon Valley and the mainstream media openly sided with the Biden campaign, burying the story completely and censoring or punishing anyone who dared step out of line – Greenwald himself included. His story was posted on Thursday on Substack, after The Intercept, which he co-founded in 2014, refused to publish it. 

It wasn’t the Biden campaign, but the “nation’s media outlets and former CIA and other intelligence officials who took the lead in constructing reasons why the story should be dismissed, or at least treated with scorn,” Greenwald wrote. The prevailing view quickly became that it was “irresponsible and even unethical to mention these documents.”

These journalists are desperate not to know. 

Any media outlet that “renounces its core function – pursuing answers to relevant questions about powerful people” deserves to lose the public’s faith. Most US media have done exactly that with the Biden story, Greenwald argues, taking the lead “not in investigating these documents but in concocting excuses for why they should be ignored.”

The refusal of the press to even ask questions is a far bigger scandal than the potential misconduct of the Bidens, Greenwald argued.

Also on rt.com

The Intercept co-founder Glenn Greenwald (June 25, 2019 file photo).
Glenn Greenwald, who helped publish Snowden revelations, RESIGNS from outlet he founded after editors censor his Biden reporting

Greenwald co-founded Intercept in 2014, and the outlet’s first mission was to share the materials obtained by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden showing the global extent of mass surveillance by the US and its partners. He went public on Thursday with his resignation letter, citing the censorship of the article as the final straw.

After the editors shot back that his resignation was a personal tantrum, Greenwald published the emails showing the back-and-forth over the article.

Though the lengthy article that was eventually published on Substack contains a comprehensive overview of the story involving the Bidens and their business dealings in China, Ukraine and elsewhere, its focus is on what Greenwald describes as the media’s dereliction of their primary duty.

Eager to avoid a repeat of 2016, when they were “attacked as Trump enablers in their overwhelmingly Democratic and liberal cultural circles,” journalists have “spent four years inventing standards for election-year reporting on hacked materials that never previously existed and that are utterly anathema to the core journalistic function,” he writes.

These days, political reports at major news outlets “make little secret of their eagerness to help Biden win.”

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!



Source: RT, ‘Journalists desperate to not know’: Glenn Greenwald blasts media coverage of Hunter Biden scandal in piece The Intercept censored

Chemical-carrying freight train derails in Texas causing pile-up & sparking evacuations (VIDEO)

A freight train came off the rails in southeast Texas, resulting in a breach of five tank cars carrying chemicals. The crash, which was caught in a spectacular video, prompted the evacuation of residents in the area.

Footage captured by a nearby motorist showed one of the train cars collapsing onto the road close to the tracks before its contents burst out in a massive fountain. Several other cars also swiftly derailed, creating a pile-up.

A local man, who worked near the site of the crash, told NBC that it “sounded like a tornado coming.”

A “petroleum product” that did not pose a risk to the population leaked from four of the overturned cars after the derailment, the Orange County Office of Emergency Management said. However, another car contained a “corrosive product,” which was being contained by emergency responders.

People within a mile of the derailment were asked to evacuate, including elementary and middle school students in the town of Mauriceville, near the Texas-Louisiana state line.

Also on rt.com

© Twitter / Fort Worth Fire Department
Fiery train derailment forces evacuations, hazmat response in Fort Worth (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

There were no reports of injuries as a result of the incident. The reasons for the derailment are being investigated.

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!



Source: RT, Chemical-carrying freight train derails in Texas causing pile-up & sparking evacuations (VIDEO)

Police chief dragged after declaring British ‘civic duty’ is snitching on neighbors who violate Covid-19 rules

A UK police constable has been deluged with mockery and Hitler memes after arguing it’s every resident’s duty to turn in neighbors and local businesses for breaking lockdown rules and complaining British culture reviles snitches.

UK residents who report their neighbors and local businesses to the police for violating the country’s increasingly stringent Covid-19 control measures are just doing their “civic duty” and should be praised, not ostracized, Merseyside chief constable Andy Cooke told the Daily Mail on Wednesday.

Also on rt.com

FILE PHOTO.
These new totalitarians now want to police what we say around the dinner table. This is Soviet-style denunciation, 2020-style

People are doing a civic duty in contacting us for the right reasons,” he stated, insisting “the vast majority of people across the country are really concerned about this” and “any information that you can give us in relation to breaches will save lives, and that’s why people are [reporting to the police].

Lamenting that the practice of turning one’s neighbor in to the authorities for minor infractions wasn’t more widely accepted among respectable Brits, Cooke blamed a “sneering culture” for placing rats at the bottom of the social hierarchy.

His remarks weren’t received well on social media, where users were quick to pull out the Nazi pics and Orwell quotes.

This is what Hitler and Stalin demanded of their people,” one user pointed out

Others suggested the cops focus on fighting real crime. Merseyside saw a 6.3 percent increase in violent crime over the past year, according to statistics released in July.

A few played along, tweeting that they could “hear voices of people having fun and not living in fear” and “even saw two people hugging, no face masks they were even smiling.”

Several suggested the strategy of enlisting civilians to police their neighbors would backfire, both by destroying trust in the police and by creating suspicion in communities.

Cooke’s paean to the common snitch came on the heels of similar comments by West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson, who said in a Tuesday interview that police would not hesitate to break up Christmas and other holiday celebrations if they “flagrantly” violated the government’s rules on gatherings.

National Police Chiefs Council chair Martin Hewitt also promised “quicker enforcement” of “blatant” rule violations earlier this week, urging members of the public to report “egregious breaches” – like pubs being open past the 10pm cutoff – that “put everybody at risk.” As of Wednesday, the NPCC had issued 20,223 fines for violations of the Covid-19 restrictions, including 980 spot tickets for breaking lockdown.

Also on rt.com

FILE PHOTO: Police officers amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Britain. © REUTERS / Hannah McKay
UK regional police chief says cops will INTERVENE if family Christmas celebrations break Covid rules, angering Britons

Unlike Jamieson, however, Hewitt declined to speculate on whether his officers would be breaking up Christmas parties, instead merely urging the public to take heed of the rules in whatever part of the country they opted to spend the holiday. 

Despite a steep fall in the number of deaths with Covid-19 from the pandemic’s peak earlier this year, the UK has introduced a strict three-tier lockdown nationwide, barring people from congregating in groups larger than six and prohibiting home visits.

Like this story? Share it with a friend!



Source: RT, Police chief dragged after declaring British ‘civic duty’ is snitching on neighbors who violate Covid-19 rules

UPS finds Tucker Carlson's trove of missing Biden documents after critics mocked 'conspiracy theory' that they vanished in transit

UPS has found documents that went missing in transit to Tucker Carlson, putting to rest questions about the whereabouts of a trove that the Fox News host had called “damning” of presidential candidate Joe Biden’s family.

“After an extensive search, we have found the contents of the package and are arranging for its return,” a UPS spokesman told the Daily Beast on Thursday. “UPS will always focus first on our customers and will never stop working to solve issues and make things right.”

Also on rt.com

US Vice President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping on September 25, 2015
Hunter’s ex-business partner says Joe Biden is ‘COMPROMISED’ by China, while detailing family deals in explosive interview

While the successful search resolved the issue of the documents’ whereabouts, questions remain about how they disappeared from a package sent to Carlson in California from a producer in New York — and who, if anyone, was behind it. Without naming the company involved or specifically saying the papers were purposely targeted and stolen, Carlson suggested on his show on Wednesday night that the disappearance wasn’t coincidental.

“As of tonight, the [shipping] company has no idea and no working theory even about what happened to this trove of material – documents that are directly relevant to the presidential campaign just six days from now,” Carlson said. The company’s executives “seemed baffled and deeply bothered by this, and so are we.”

Carlson described the package as containing confidential documents about the Biden family and said they were “authentic, real and damning.” He said he asked a Fox producer in New York to send the documents to him in Los Angeles, where he had traveled to interview former Biden business associated Tony Bobulinski on Tuesday. The package didn’t show up on Tuesday morning, prompting UPS to begin an exhaustive search.

Mainstream media critics mocked Carlson for saying the documents had disappeared, including some who suggested that they never existed. HuffPost said Carlson “concocted yet another conspiracy theory to explain the disappearance of documents related to what they called his “conspiracy theory” about Biden’s son, Hunter.

Also on rt.com

© Fox News
Critics call for ‘murder apologist’ Tucker Carlson to be fired after he says govt failure to tame violence caused Kenosha shooting

Other Biden supporters were even more pointed in their mockery. “Documents Tucker Carlson never actually had that would allegedly blow up the election were so important that they were sent via DHL (sic) and now can’t be found despite copiers, iPhone cameras and security cameras,” gun control activist Shannon Watts tweeted.

MSNBC analyst Michael Steele, former chairman of the Republican National Committee who has since endorsed Biden, was among those who suggested Carlson was lying about the existence of the documents.

“Oh for f*** sake, seriously?” Steele asked. “Would have been a better story if your dog ate the damn papers.”

Carlson devoted his entire show on Tuesday night to the Bobulinski interview, which provided more specific allegations about the Biden family’s business dealings in China following an Oct. 14 New York Post report on the ventures. Although Bobulinski provided legal documents, text messages and recordings to back up his claims, the interview was largely ignored by other mainstream media outlets.

Like this story? Share it with a friend!



Source: RT, UPS finds Tucker Carlson’s trove of missing Biden documents after critics mocked ‘conspiracy theory’ that they vanished in transit

Macron's clampdown on radical Islam is backed by most French, but should've been done in more conciliatory way – Austria's ex-FM

France is in dire need of reconciliation, but President Emmanuel Macron’s clampdown on Islamic extremism is only polarizing society, Karin Kneissl, ex-Austrian foreign minister told RT, commenting on the stabbing attack in Nice.

Following the beheading of schoolteacher, Samuel Paty, by a radicalized Chechen refugee earlier this month, Macron vowed to defended French values and take a firm stand against Islamist extremism, announcing the closure of several mosques on accusations of promoting fringe ideology.

“The president had many, many people behind him when he was very harsh on the execution of the teacher,” Kneissl, who was Austria’s foreign minister between 2017 and 2109, pointed out. “This topic dominated everything” and even removed the looming Covid-19 lockdown in France from the headlines.

However, it could have been done in a little more conciliatory way because there are six million Muslims living in France.

“You have a certain percentage, who are radical,” but the majority of Muslims just want to be French citizens and live their lives, she said.

“What France needs right now is much more a social cohesion, a sort of reconciliation… but here I observe that things have been going in a more polarizing way,” Kneissl said of Macron’s steps to counter extremism.

Paty’s gruesome murder was allegedly provoked by the teacher showing caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed to his students during a lesson on freedom of speech. The cartoons, which are blasphemous to Muslims, were back in the spotlight recently after they were republished by French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. The controversial act was dedicated to the beginning of the trial on the accomplices of Islamist gunmen, who attacked the magazine’s office in 2015 over the same caricatures, killing 12 people.

Also on rt.com

French President Emmanuel Macron and Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi visit the scene of a knife attack at Notre Dame church in Nice, France on October 29, 2020. © REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/Pool
Attack in Nice carried out by ‘Islamist terrorist’, Macron says, ordering troops to patrol churches & schools in France (VIDEO)

When asked if it was better for Charlie Hebdo to tone it down and refrain from provocations in this tense moment, the former FM responded that this advice could be “right in such a situation.” She said she admired the French Republican values and their dedication to freedom of speech, but it was more important “to bridge the rifts in this fragmented society” at the moment.

The Prophet Mohammed cartoons first appeared in a Danish magazine in 2006 and faced a strong backlash in the Muslim world. However, Denmark never saw such an outbreak of violence that’s now being experienced by France.

Kneissl believes that the reason for this is that “France is a much more interesting target than Denmark was 15 years ago. France is still an old European power that is present militarily in a number of Muslim and Arab countries.”

Also on rt.com

Security forces guard the area after a knife attack at Notre Dame church in Nice. © Reuters / Eric Gaillard
Knifeman beheaded TWO victims in church terrorist attack, Nice first deputy mayor tells RT (VIDEO)

On Thursday, a knife-wielding man attacked a church in the French resort city of Nice, beheading two people and fatally wounding another. Several hours later another assailant tried stabbing police officers in the city of Avignon, but was gunned down.

Earlier this week, the French interior minister warned that the terrorist threat in the country was “very high” due to rising tensions caused by the killing of Paty.

Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!



Source: RT, Macron’s clampdown on radical Islam is backed by most French, but should’ve been done in more conciliatory way – Austria’s ex-FM