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Events in France underline just how long and painful Europe’s quest for a working multiethnic model of society is going to be. After the successful resolution of the French veil argument last year followed by the July bombs in London—the latter seen as, in part, a product of Britain’s over-relaxed approach to integration—the republican model appeared to be in the ascendancy. Now, no doubt, the debate will swing back in favour of laissez-faire multiculturalism (with Blunkettesque bells and whistles attached).

The truth, of course, is that no country has the answer. In any case, each country’s approach must fit its…

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