Tuesday, January 17, 2006


These people are sick:

FAR-right groups in France are distributing ham sandwiches and pork soup to homeless people in an attempt to discriminate against Muslims and Jews, forbidden to eat pork products.

Food hand-outs, which have already taken place in Paris, Nice and Nantes, and in Brussels and Charleroi in Belgium, have now spread to the eastern French city of Strasboug.

At the weekend, Strasbourg's prefect banned the extreme right association Solidarite Alsacienne from distributing its soupe au cochon (pig soup) to poor and homeless people in the city centre.

On Saturday, police intervened to close the soup kitchen after Solidarite Alsacienne defied the ban and began distributing food in one of Strasbourg's main squares....

The president of Solidarite Alsacienne is married to a former MP for Jean-Marie Le Pen's National Front Party; the group

is close to Le Bloc Identitaire, an extreme-right umbrella group led by Fabrice Robert, a former leader of Unite Radicale, a neo-Nazi cell which broke up in 2002 after one its members attempted to assassinate the president, Jacques Chirac.

It's not exactly the same, but when I read about this practice of, in effect, waving food in front of hungry people that they can't eat, I'm reminded of the way Alabama prison guards reportedly taunt prisoners they've tied to hitching posts in the hot sun:

The plaintiff in this case, Larry Hope, charged that he had been handcuffed to a hitching post twice, one time for seven hours, during which he was shirtless "while the sun burned his skin... At one point, a guard taunted Hope about his thirst. According to Hope's affidavit: '[The guard] first gave water to some dogs, then brought the water cooler closer to me, removed its lid, and kicked the cooler over, spilling the water onto the ground.'"

That practice was defended as not cruel and unusual by William Pryor, then Alabama's attorney general and now a federal judge. Do I even need to tell you that the French food distribution is being defended by American right-wingers?

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