Strasbourg: Capital of the EU & “The Future of Europe”

“Strasbourg is one of those leading cities of what could be called ‘jihadogenic urban areas'”


“New York, Geneva and Strasbourg are the only cities in the world which are home to international institutions without being national capitals”, an official page of the French city proudly proclaims. “The choice of Strasbourg as the European capital following the Second World War is no accident. The city stands as a shining symbol of reconciliation between peoples and of the future of Europe”.

Last December, however, Strasbourg was shocked by a new terrorist attack. Cherif Chekatt, shouting “Allahu Akbar”, murdered five people, before being neutralized in a two-day manhunt. Among Chekatt’s victims were Italian, Polish and French citizens. Unfortunately, Strasbourg has become one of Europe’s hotbeds of jihadism, an ideology seemingly aimed at destroying Europe’s people, not conciliating with them.

The weekly Valeurs Actuelles called Strasbourg a “French bastion of jihadism“. Seven men from Strasbourg, who went to Syria between December 2013 and April 2014, have already been sentenced to prison terms ranging from six to nine years. The heaviest sentence was handed to Karim Mohamed-Aggad, the brother of the Bataclan Theater suicide bomber Foued Mohamed-Aggad. The weekly L’Obs called Strasbourg “land of jihad“.

“It’s true that we have statistically more ‘S-Files’ [individuals labeled by authorities as a threat to national security] here in Strasbourg and in the Bas-Rhin department than the national average”, the mayor of Strasbourg, Roland Ries, said. Farhad Khosrokhavar, a sociologist and director of studies at the School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences in Paris, explained:

“Strasbourg is one of those leading cities of what could be called ‘jihadogenic urban areas’, such as the suburbs of Paris, Toulouse, Nice or Lyon in the past… Strasbourg is at the crossroads of Europe, all you have to do is cross the Rhine to be in Germany and you are not very far from Switzerland.”

There is not only violent terrorism. Pope Francis, in a 2014 address to the European Parliament in Strasbourg, said:

“In many quarters we encounter a general impression of weariness and aging, of a Europe which is now a ‘grandmother’, no longer fertile and vibrant. As a result, the great ideas which once inspired Europe seem to have lost their attraction, only to be replaced by the bureaucratic technicalities of its institutions.”

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