Remember, these are the kind of guys who now fight for ISIL.
I very seldom address politics on IMDB, but this is the time for one because it is gets to the heart to the subject of this film.
Daesh, Islamic State, ISIS, or whatever you want to call it that organization, attracts sympathizers from the kind of people that you see in this film.
If these characters were alive and around today, they'd be little different than the people who support or sympathize with these suicide bombers and mass shooters. France couldn't ever assimilate these people and never effectively tried to, so they turn angry towards a society that they can't understand. They think that the country is a conspiracy against them when, really, they just don't fit because they have no education and a third world state of mind. The ideas and values they have learned from their parents are totally contradictory to the society in which they live, so naturally they see society as evil. Police harass them because, statistically speaking, they are the group of people most likely to commit gang related and property crimes because they have no recourse to any real employment. At least, they can't really advance in society. France has been noted to be different from Britain for instance, due to the fact that you often see minority business owners and executives the UK, but very seldom in France.
I never bought the part about Vincent Cassel's character being Jewish. Jewish people in France suffer a lot of anti-Semitic attacks from arabs and moslems living in the country. There has been something of a wave of emigration from France to Israel and elsewhere because of this. Jewish cemeteries are attacked and vandalized. The venue where The Eagles of Death Metal were playing in Paris (they were the band whose fans were massacred) was once owned by jews and hosted jewish functions before it was sold. It is speculated that the shooters didn't know this when they planned the attack. I think that the director of the film was jewish and so he wanted to show solidarity with the underprivileged or something. Either that, or he wanted to divert the viewers' eyes from the fact that these tenements are almost entirely populated by moslems. Moslems definitely make up the street gangs that infest the Parisian housing projects.
I've got no problem with not wanting to encourage racism, but please be realistic. A solitary jewish kid in these projects would get his butt kicked every day until he left. Maybe I'm wrong and there is one jewish person out there somewhere in one of these tenements, but it sure can't be very many. The antisemitic and antisocial currents are too strong in that subculture.
I stayed in Germany for a time some years ago, and I saw some of these same problems featured in La Haine with Turkish guest workers there. The Germans don't fully accept them, and the Turks don't want to assimilate. This has been going on for over thirty years now. In thirty plus years, negative attitudes have not changed but instead have become further entrenched.
Angela Merkel had rocks in her head when she publicly invited hundreds of thousands of people to trample across the nations of Europe and show up at the door. She stared these problems in the face for all of her political life and, like a sane person, she decided to throw gasoline on the fire. Those refugees should have been interviewed by German consular officers in their country of origin (or, at least, in the region) on a case by case basis before they were admitted. Then they could have been settled and provided for in an orderly manner. Now Europe has a humanitarian crisis on its hands. Merkel's public announcement was a totally irresponsible political move. She knew that there would be trouble on multiple levels before she made that announcement, and she chose to grandstand and encourage chaos.