© 2024 WGLT
A public service of Illinois State University
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

'People Are Very Shaken': Fear, Anger In France After Paris Killings


And Parisians awoke to a somber city rocked by terror for the second time this year. Terrorist attacks at the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and later at a Jewish grocery began the year, making for an awful kind of symmetry. Now turn to political scientist Nicole Bacharan in Paris. Thanks very much for being with us.


SIMON: What's the mood among people you know in Paris right now?

BACHARAN: Well, people are very shaken, very shaken, very busy, you know, contacting everybody, checking on the social networks, calling, making sure everybody's, you know, answering and trying to find the people who haven't been answering. That's one thing - people are showing a lot of solidarity. You know, lots of people put out messages during the night to save I live in the neighborhood, my apartment is open, there is tea, it's warm, come in as many as you are. People are very shaken and I think slowly people are getting very angry - very angry.

SIMON: Angry at who? At what? Explain that for us please.

BACHARAN: Angry at the so-called Islamic State. I know that in the coming days there will be discussion about what are we doing in Syria, should we be doing what we're doing? Should we enter inside war or not? And, you know, if there is any kind of strategy and you've been discussing this earlier within ISIS, it's certainly to scare and to divide, to have, you know, some current of people saying, well, maybe we should not get involved at all. But I think that's going to be marginal. You know, people aren't that weak and when they're attacked they get angry. And I very much think that the general mood would be towards strengthening the action and strengthening the alliance of, you know, all the countries who are involved in fighting ISIS.

SIMON: Any concern, Ms. Bacharan, that some of that anger might be focused on immigrant communities, particularly Muslim immigrant communities in Paris and the rest of France.

BACHARAN: You know, I was discussing that with friends today. I mean, everybody is calling everybody obviously. And we were all coming to the conclusion that Paris is such a (unintelligible) place. People are all colors, and shade, and ethnicities and religions but we don't expect that in Paris. I mean, we're all targets, whatever our, you know, shade and complexion could be, so I really hope not. I don't see it happening. Of course, you know, we have a way of the extreme right and there is always a danger, but when you're in a city like Paris, it's a really a very, very cosmopolitan city. A friend of mine was telling me he was in the market, you know, on the street market this morning - I mean, all the - all the shopkeepers are from various Arab countries and they were all sharing the same anger and the same feeling of being targets. So I hope not.

SIMON: Well, Paris is their home, isn't it?

BACHARAN: Absolutely. I mean, absolutely and they're welcome here and they are as French as we are.

SIMON: Political scientist Nicole Bacharan speaking with us from Paris. Thanks so much for joining us.

BACHARAN: Thanks to you. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.