The death of the Islamic State leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was met this week with no outpouring of joy or even relief in France, even though this is the European country that suffered most from his depredations.
The reason is simple: the Islamic State’s crimes, and the fear they instilled in the national psyche, are so ingrained in France that the daily fabric of life has been inexorably altered.
As if proof were needed, within the last month, a former far-right candidate shot two Muslims who stopped him from burning down a mosque. A Muslim mother was reprimanded by an official for wearing a head scarf. And President Emmanuel Macron called for a “society of vigilance” after a Muslim employee at Police Headquarters in Paris killed four officers in a knife attack.
These recent symptoms of what some call an ongoing trauma for France demonstrate why Mr. al-Baghdadi’s death was ‘‘no more than a step,” as Mr. Macron put it Sunday in a muted reaction to the news.
— rickgladstone (@rickgladstone) October 31, 2019