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The lesser evil

At a gathering in Paris, French intellectuals conclude that they must support the Algerian government's "armed solution." Michael Ignatieff considers what, if anything, Europe can do

Yasmina walks shyly on to the stage at the Mutualit? auditorium in Paris in her headscarf and traditional red robes. She is so tightly veiled that only her eyes-dark and timid-are visible. She is a shepherdess and she has been flown all the way to Paris to tell her story to the 1,000-strong crowd.

The meeting has been called by French intellectuals-Andr? Glucksman, Bernard-Henri L?vy-and political figures-Brice Lalonde, Robert Badinter and Jacques Lang. They want Europe to do something to stop the killing in Algeria. The speeches are eloquent: crimes against humanity are being committed on the borders of Europe;…

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