| 6°C Dublin

Ian O'Doherty: Five years after #JeSuisCharlie, we have #JeSuisMila - nothing has changed

Close

‘Charlie Hebdo’ supporters. Photo: AFP

‘Charlie Hebdo’ supporters. Photo: AFP

‘Charlie Hebdo’ supporters. Photo: AFP

We recently passed the fifth anniversary of the Charlie Hebdo massacre -- not that it seemed to be mentioned in the media.

But if you cast your mind back to that awful period, when it looked like France, and by extension the West, was tearing itself apart, you may remember the uproar. You may remember all the politicians from across Europe turning up for the commemoration service and saying "never again".

You will most assuredly remember the hashtag #JeSuisCharlie, which seemed ubiquitous until it suddenly vanished.

Well, France is going through something similar right now and there has been precious little mention of this, either.

The hashtag #JeSuisMila started this week in support of a teenager, Mila Orriols, who offended French Muslims.

Sixteen years old, gay and atheist, she was sick of being bombarded with lewd messages from men, and in the course of her Instagram rant, she said she "hated religion, there is nothing but violence in the Koran and Islam is shit".

Depending on your point of view, they were the angry words of a teenage attention-seeker or an attack on religion.

French politicians took the latter point of view, and the much lauded left-wing French intelligentsia have, so far, been happy to let her hang.

She has been forced into hiding, police won't allow her to go to school and she has been inundated with rape and death threats.

The French Muslim Council even said she deserved all the abuse she had received, before backtracking.

But the silence from so-called liberals has been striking and there is a lesson here - five years after Charlie Hebdo, they haven't learned a thing.

Indo Review