14 November 2015

Two Suggestions for Dealing with the Paris and Lebanon Attacks

Three teams of Islamic State attackers acting in unison carried out the terrorist assault in Paris on Friday night, officials said Saturday, including one assailant who may have traveled to Europe on a Syrian passport along with the flow of migrants.

“It is an act of war that was committed by a terrorist army, a jihadist army, Daesh, against France,” President François Hollande told the nation from the Élysée Palace, using an Arabic acronym for the Islamic State. “It is an act of war that was prepared, organized and planned from abroad, with complicity from the inside, which the investigation will help establish.”

As the death toll rose to 129 — with 352 others wounded, 99 of them critically — a basic timeline of the attacks came into view.

The Paris prosecutor, François Molins, said the attackers were all armed with assault rifles and suicide vests. Their assault began at 9:20 p.m. Friday, when one terrorist detonated a suicide bomb outside the gates of the soccer stadium on the northern outskirts of Paris. It ended at 12:20 a.m. Saturday when the authorities stormed a concert hall, the Bataclan. One attacker there was killed; two others detonated suicide vests. Inside the hall, 89 people, who had been listening to a rock band, had been shot to death.
Meanwhile, we see very little coverage of what happened the day before in Beriut:
A fiery double suicide bombing terrorized a mostly Shiite residential area of southern Beirut on Thursday, ripping through a busy shopping district at rush hour. The Lebanese Health Ministry said at least 43 people had been killed and more than 200 wounded in the worst attack to strike the city in years.

The Islamic State extremist group, which controls parts of neighboring Syria, claimed responsibility for the attack. The group portrayed its motives as baldly sectarian, saying it had targeted Shiite Muslims, whom it views as apostates. It mentioned almost as an afterthought that it had targeted Hezbollah, the Shiite militant organization that backs the Syrian government in the civil war raging next door.

Hezbollah maintains tight security control in the district that was hit, and the bombing seemed aimed at hurting the group by attacking civilians in an area where it has many supporters. But the stricken area also typifies working-class Beirut, where Palestinians, Christians and Syrian refugees (mostly Sunnis) live, work and shop.
First, I think that we need to understand that this is state sponsored terrorism:
It is long past time for the oligarchies of the Gulf states to stop paying protection to the men in the suicide belts. Their societies are stunted and parasitic. The main job of the elites there is to find enough foreign workers to ensla…er…indenture to do all the real work. The example of Qatar and the interesting business plan through which that country is building the facilities for the 2022 World Cup is instructive here. Roughly the same labor-management relationship exists for the people who clean the hotel rooms and who serve the drinks. In Qatar, for people who come from elsewhere to work, passports have been known to disappear into thin air. These are the societies that profit from terrible and tangled web of causation and violence that played out on the streets of Paris. These are the people who buy their safety with the blood of innocents far away.
It's been known for years that these regimes, in particularly the House of Saud, have been ATMs for the terror movement for decades.

To that particularly unsavory lot, we need to add our NATO ally Turkey, where the increasingly autocratic and delusional Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who had decided to throw in for Sunni fundamentalist hegemony for his neighbor to the south, which is also his goal for Turkey.

Quiet diplomacy is not working with these folks. They need to be named, shamed, and sanctioned.

Additionally, changing the goal in Syria, and actively supporting the Assad regime as the best of a bad lot, which has the advantage of being true, and also has the effect of thwarting the goals or Turkey and the potentates on the Persian Gulf, and letting them know that they have crossed a line.

The fact that the Assad regime is that best alternative for the Syrian people and the world is a very real indictment of Western foreign policy.


Stephen Montsaroff said...

"The fact that the Assad regime is that best alternative for the Syrian people and the world is a very real indictment of Western foreign policy. "

Not half so bad as an indictment of the Arab world.

Matthew Saroff said...

I would not limit that to the Arab world. Neither Turkey nor Iran are Arab states.

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