Last March, when the French Muslim terrorist Mohamed Merah murdered a teacher and three children at a French Jewish school in Toulouse, a media firestorm resulted. Things have not gotten easier for French Jews since then. As the New York Times noted this week, French Jews say anti-Semitic threats have in fact escalated since March, Merah's act having stirred "empathy" and "emulation."
Indeed, the main thing that appears to have prevented further catastrophes is good police work. On Saturday French police raided the Strasbourg apartment of a 33-year-old French Muslim named Jeremy Sidney and ended up killing him in a shootout. Sidney's DNA had been found on a grenade that, in September, was thrown into a kosher supermarket in Sarcelles (near Paris), wounding a customer.
Sidney, it turns out, was born in Melun, France, got a two-year sentence for drug trafficking in 2008, and converted to Islam while in prison. And he was no isolated case. As part of the same far-reaching operation on Saturday, police arrested twelve other suspected Islamic terrorists in Paris, Tours, Strasbourg, and Cannes.