Intifada Faransa : French Intifada


Intifada Faransa


The term “Intifada” is often associated with a series of Palestinian uprisings against Israel, marked by distinct phases of escalating violence. Interestingly, a similar pattern of violence seems to echo in France, albeit with a delay of about 5 to 10 years, and in a different sociopolitical context.

Phases of Intifada in Israel and Parallel Events in France

  1. 1989 Intifada: “The Stone Intifada” in Israel featured widespread throwing of stones and low-tech methods of killing soldiers and civilians. A comparable phase in France could be considered starting around 2005 with the suburban riots, characterized by civil unrest and public expressions of dissent, burning hundreds of cars.
  2. 2000 Intifada: “The Al-Aqsa Intifada” saw an escalation to bombings and armed attacks. In France, this corresponds roughly to the period post-2015, marked by a series of coordinated terrorist attacks, including the tragic November 2015 attacks in Paris.
  3. 2010 and onward: “Intifada of Knives” in Israel involved lone-wolf knife attacks and spontaneous acts of violence. France has witnessed a similar pattern beginning around 2015, continuing into recent years with sporadic knife attacks targeting public figures and civilians alike, including the tragic murders of Father Jacques Hamel on July 26, 2016, and Samuel Paty on October 16, 2020.

Recent Unrest at Sciences Po

In a more localized context, the insurrectional behavior can also be seen in educational institutions. For instance, Sciences Po Paris experienced significant turmoil due to pro-Palestinian activism. This resulted in the blockade of the Émile-Boutmy amphitheatre, with a Palestinian flag being hung, and students renaming the venue the “Gaza amphitheatre”. The protest escalated to the point where a Jewish student was barred from entering, amidst cries of discrimination. This incident drew sharp criticism from French President Emmanuel Macron and was met with a governmental response condemning the antisemitic undertones of the event.

Key Incidents in France

  • Father Jacques Hamel was tragically murdered in Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray, France, on July 26, 2016.
  • Samuel Paty, a French teacher, was tragically murdered in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, France, on October 16, 2020.
  • The Bataclan theatre in Paris was one of the sites targeted during the terrorist attacks on November 13, 2015.
  • The offices of Charlie Hebdo, a French satirical newspaper, were attacked on January 7, 2015.

15 years old Mathis stabbed to death by Afghan teenager, April 27, 2024.


This mirrored escalation and pattern suggest a form of “cultural intifada” taking root in France, reflecting deep societal divisions and the importation of foreign conflict dynamics into local French societal and political disputes. The delay in these patterns possibly indicates a lag in ideological and tactical adaptations across different contexts.

The term “Intifada Faransa” thus not only captures a direct comparison with the Palestinian violence but also reflects a broader metaphor for the rising tide of civil unrest and violence within France, influenced by global ideological currents and local tensions. This analysis not only helps in understanding the nature of such violence but also in anticipating potential future developments in urban and sociopolitical unrest.


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