What France got right in the Toulouse attacks

March 26, 2012 13:01

Juppe’s presence at funerals in Jerusalem sent powerful message against anti-Semitic violence.

Peres and Juppe meet

Peres and Juppe meet. (photo credit: REUTERS/Darren Whiteside)

The French got many things wrong with regard to last week’s terror attacks in Toulouse, starting with grossly negligent monitoring of a known jihadi sympathizer who had been to Afghanistan and Pakistan and was supposed to be under surveillance. Nevertheless, they got one thing extraordinarily right: Foreign Minister Alain Juppe’s presence at the funerals in Jerusalem.

Normally, foreign ministers attend overseas funerals only for important political leaders. But Juppe flew to Jerusalem to pay his last respects to a rabbi and three Jewish children. It was undoubtedly cold comfort to the grieving families. Yet gestures matter, and this one sent a powerful message: Official France views an anti-Semitic attack on Jewish children as an attack on itself.


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