I know a few French people, some of whom are amongst the elite of France.
It appears there is some genuine fear in France about two things, the fall of Catholicism and the rise if Islam. Apparently 2,000 mosques have been approved for construction in France by the French government.
I heard say that some French believe that Islam is not being portrayed truthfully in France so as to discourage fear of jihad and sharia. Neither of which would be tolerated by the French.
French religious fleeing the jihad from Muslims wanting to impose Sharia in Iraq when asked if they were afraid said no, that they were more afraid for unsuspecting French who they fear are the next victims of the Jihadists. They also said that Islam in France was purposefully not portrayed as it truly is practiced in the Middle East. For example differences in Korans from France and the Middle East was mentioned. I do not know if this is true but the point that Islam in France was sugar coated was also mentioned.
The interesting thing about French elites is that they are united by friendship, a true sense of patriotism that supersedes other affections, a peculiar interest in the protection of France, and they are active and energetic. They also do not suffer from the peculiar scourge of political correctness that strangles free debate in the United States.
As for the French common people, they are very loving and compassionate people for the most part. At least the country folks. But they too are quick to unite and have no fear of their government. They are also not lazy in letting their discontent known. French families and friends are known to debate two things for hours; politics and food. I often wish Americans would do the same instead of talking about sports teams.
I have always wondered why there have been an unusual number of saints and apparitions from France. I suspect that in Europe, one of the first clashes between Islam and Christianity will be in the country formerly known as the daughter of the church.
Could get interesting.