Observing the riots in the suburbs of Paris, an American is tempted to rejoice. Are not the French getting their just deserts for their arrogance, opposition and condescension toward the United States and for their observation that the predominantly poor victims of Hurricane Katrina revealed an ugly underside of America that they happily condemned?
Unfortunately, laughing at the French dilemma is a luxury we can only briefly afford, because what is happening in France among many of their Muslim immigrants is the immediate future for all of Europe and a probable future for the United States, if the West does not immediately and effectively confront this spreading threat.
France thought it could import millions of people who do not share its tolerant and laissez-faire philosophy and not pay a price. The Muslim population in France is now estimated at about 5 million (compared to a total French population of about 60 million).
This is only an estimate, because French law forbids census questions related to one's religion. It is believed that there could be as many as 8 million Muslims in France. This compares to estimates between 12 to 20 million in all of the European Union.
High fertility rates among France's Muslim population, coupled with low fertility rates among the native-born French (the government is offering cash incentives to middle-class French women to have more babies), and increasing Muslim immigration from North Africa, contribute to the undermining of French culture and social and political stability.
Anti-Semitism has been on the rise in France for years, as incidents ranging from graffiti to violence against Jews become almost daily occurrences.
France is experiencing what other Western nations are, or will soon, experience: millions of Muslim youth who identify with the larger and borderless "Muslim World" and less, or not at all, with their host countries. Mosques erected in these countries are growing as rapidly as Starbucks or McDonald's franchises.
The same is true in the United States. According to the Hartford Institute for Religion Research's recent Faith Communities Today study, the total number of mosques in the United States increased 42 percent between 1990 and 2000, second only to the growth of Christian "mega-churches." Many of these mosques are built with the help of Saudi Arabia, which adheres to the Wahhabi sect of Islam, the religion's most puritanical and violent wing. In some cases, the mosques are connected to schools that teach separation from American values and hatred of Jews and Christians.
France will be America's future if we don't stop denying that this invasion is deliberate and purposeful. If we don't end the proliferation of radical Muslims, it would not be out of the question to predict a terrorist plot to blow up American cities, if the U.S. government fails to bow to fanatical demands to abandon Israel. What would the government do if weapons of mass destruction were placed in our cities and it was announced that unless Washington met their demands, millions of Americans would be annihilated? Before you start accusing me of bigotry, on what basis - other than your wishful thinking and refusal to confront this threat - do you base your position?
This is not going to be pleasant for countries and cultures that have believed in the "melting pot," but radical surgery on a growing cancer is what is needed when early warning signs have been ignored. France must deport the most dangerous and violent radicals whose goal is to turn the country into an Islamic state dominated by Sharia law. The message should be: if you engage in or promote violence, you're gone from the country.
In the United States, a concerted effort is being made to convert more of us to Islam, especially in prisons. According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, in September 2003, about 5.5 percent of the federal inmate population (172,785 on Oct. 6, 2003) were some form of Muslim. Why shouldn't we fight back by reaching out to them with our religious and political doctrines? I know Muslims who have been converted and now live peaceful and productive lives among us. We shouldn't passively allow them to proceed with their conversion agenda with no response. Let's peacefully and lovingly share our far better religious and cultural message with them.
France has reached its limit. It must not allow more immigrants of the type who are rioting in the country and it must deport the troublemakers within its borders. There is no other way. Have the French learned their lesson? Will the United States learn from France?
Cal Thomas is a nationally syndicated columnist and a host on Fox News Channel. Readers may leave e-mail at www.calthomas.com. His column appears on Tuesday and Thursday.