This article was first published a year ago on the 14th of November 2015. It was the author’s first article written in the evening of November 13th (ET) completed following president Hollande’s midnight speech.
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Terrorist attacks have been carried simultaneously in several locations in the Paris metropolitan area, according to early report.
According to reports (at the time of writing) 100 people were killed in the Bataclan Concert Hall, when terrorists opened fire with automatic weapons. Another 15 were killed at the Stadium of France outside Paris.
Official reports at the time of writing (21.oo ET) point to more than 140 deaths. Our thoughts are with the family members of the victims, who have lost their loved ones.
Within minutes following the attacks, which were launched simultaneously, and prior to the release of a preliminary report by the police, France’s media went into overdrive. News commentators and intelligence analysts on France’s network TV stated with authority that the attacks emanated from Syria and Iraq.
The media coverage of these tragic events was casually linked up with the war in the Middle East, highlighting France’s commitment –alongside its allies– in waging a “humanitarian war” against the terrorists.
The Islamic State was identified as the architect of the attacks.
The attacks were described without evidence as an act of revenge and retribution against France for having bombed ISIS strongholds in Syria and Iraq as part of Obama’s counter-terrorism air campaign.
Paris Match on October 2nd predicted a French Style 9/11, “un 11 septembre à la française”.
The threat is real, according to Judge Trévédic in an interview with Paris Match. “The attacks in France will be on a scale comparable to 9/11” (see below)
None of the early news reports on November 13th, mentioned the fact that a large scale and well organized terrorist attack had been predicted. The title of the media report below is:
“Intelligence services fear a 9/11 French Style”
Yet in a bitter irony the October report stated that these forthcoming attacks were difficult to avoid: “impossible a dejouer”, suggesting that French intelligence is inept and unable to prevent a forthcoming catastrophe.
What was the role of this media hype by Paris Match?
Media disinformation? Create an atmosphere of fear and intimidation?
France’s president Francois Hollande no doubt was aware of the October warnings. He had been briefed by his intelligence advisers.
Shortly before midnight local time on November 13, president François Hollande announced drastic police state measures against an alleged terrorist network operating nationwide.
It is highly unlikely, however, that Hollande took this decision spontaneously in the evening of November 13, on the spur of the moment in response to the attacks and prior to the holding of a cabinet meeting. The decision to enact a State of Emergency had no doubt been envisaged in advance of the attack in relation to a potential terrorist attack scenario.
As we recall, the last time a State of Emergency was enacted was in May 1961 in response to the Algiers putsch (Putsch d’Alger), a failed coup d’état to overthrow President Charles de Gaulle’s government.
Hollande’s midnight speech had the appearances of having been scripted –i.e with regard to the adoption of a State of Emergency, a far-reaching political decision:
My dear compatriots
As I speak, terrorist attacks of unprecedented proportions are underway in the Paris area. There are dozens killed, there are many injured. It is a horror.
We have, on my decision, mobilised all forces possible to neutralise the terrorists and make all concerned areas safe. I have also asked for military reinforcements. They are currently in the Paris area, to ensure that no new attack can take place.
I have also called a cabinet meeting that will be held in a few minutes. [the measures are announced before consultation with the Cabinet]
Two decisions will be taken: a state of emergency will be declared, which means that some places will be closed, traffic may be banned , and there will also be searches which may be decided throughout Ile de France (greater Paris). The state of emergency will be proclaimed throughout the territory (of France).
The second decision I have made is to close the borders. We must ensure that no one enters to commit any crimes and that those who have committed the crimes that we have unfortunately seen can also be arrested if they should leave the territory.
This is a terrible ordeal which once again assails us. We know where it comes from, who these criminals are, who these terrorists are.
In these difficult moments, we must – and I’m thinking of the many victims, their families and the injured – show compassion and solidarity. But we must also show unity and calm.
Faced with terror, France must be strong, it must be great and the state authorities must be firm. We will be.
We must also call on everyone to be responsible.
What the terrorists want is to scare us and fill us with dread. There is indeed reason to be afraid. There is dread, but in the face of this dread, there is a nation that knows how to defend itself, that knows how to mobilise its forces and, once again, will defeat the terrorists.
French citizens, we have not completed the operations. There are still some that are extremely difficult. It’s at this moment that the security forces are staging an assault, especially in a place in Paris.
I ask you to keep all your trust in what we can do with the security forces to protect our nation from terrorist acts.
Long live the Republic and long live France.” (emphasis added)
France is under attack. we must defend ourselves.
The political discourse is in some regards reminiscent of the 9/11 attacks and the statements of George W. Bush et al.
The media immediately started comparing the November 13 attacks in Paris to 9/11, intimating that France was at war and that the alleged Islamic State attack was from abroad, i.e. the Middle East.
Police State Measures
President Hollande had ordered by decree without debate or consultation with France’s National Assembly the enactment of a State of Emergency throughout France, coupled with the closing of France’s borders allegedly to prevent terrorists from coming in, and from terror suspects from leaving the country.
The measures also included procedures which enable the police to conduct arbitrary arrests and house searches without a warrant within the Paris metropolitan area opening up the development of a potential hate campaign directed against France’s Muslim population.
These drastic police state measures (including the repeal of habeas corpus) ordered by president Hollande were decided upon prior and in the absence of a police report. Initial reports confirmed the involvement of half a dozen terrorists. There was no evidence of a nationwide terror network.
But as we mentioned above, Hollande had no doubt been briefed by French intelligence which had, according to reports, “predicted” the possibility of a 9/11 style attack. (October 2 media reports).
France had been heralded in Paris Match, October 2, 2015 as the Number One Target of the Islamic State, “a terrorist army with unlimited potential…” The threat and diverse forms it can take suggest that our counter-terrorist abilities are no longer effective as they used to be”
President Hollande assumed that jihadists were behind the attacks, but when he made his speech, there was no evidence from police sources to support his statements.
Moreover, with regard to the Bataclan Concert Hall where there were more than one thousand people at a Rock concert, the reports confirmed that there were four kamikaze terrorists, all of them were killed. As in the case of Charlie Hebdo and the Kosher Grocery Store terrorist attacks in January 2015, the terrorists were killed rather than arrested and indicted.
Was there an attempt on the part of the police to capture them alive?
Moreover, the media was held at bay, they were not allowed to report what was happening within the Concert Hall, they were prevented from talking to the witnesses underlying this tragic event.
Meanwhile a curfew was imposed.
President Obama made a declaration early in the evening (ET) largely sustaining the “war on terrorism” narrative:
THE PRESIDENT: Good evening, everybody. I just want to make a few brief comments about the attacks across Paris tonight. Once again, we’ve seen an outrageous attempt to terrorize innocent civilians. This is an attack not just on Paris, it’s an attack not just on the people of France, but this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.
We stand prepared and ready to provide whatever assistance that the government and the people of France need to respond. France is our oldest ally. The French people have stood shoulder to shoulder with the United States time and again. And we want to be very clear that we stand together with them in the fight against terrorism and extremism.
We’re going to do whatever it takes to work with the French people and with nations around the world to bring these terrorists to justice, and to go after any terrorist networks that go after our people.
We don’t yet know all the details of what has happened. We have been in contact with French officials to communicate our deepest condolences to the families of those who have been killed, to offer our prayers and thoughts to those who have been wounded. We have offered our full support to them. The situation is still unfolding.
This is a heartbreaking situation. And obviously those of us here in the United States know what it’s like. We’ve gone through these kinds of episodes ourselves. And whenever these kinds of attacks happened, we’ve always been able to count on the French people to stand with us. They have been an extraordinary counterterrorism partner, and we intend to be there with them in that same fashion.
… (emphasis added)
Obama is committed to helping the French people, in going after the terrorists. France is a partner of Obama’s bombing campaign initiated in August-September 2014 which theoretically is directed against the ISIS.
Hollande is described by Obama as an “extraordinary counterterrorism partner”. In turn, Hollande referring to the Islamic State says “We know where [Syria, Iraq] it comes from, who these criminals are, who these terrorists are”.
The clash of civilizations is implicit in Obama’s statement: “this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.”
Who is Behind the Terrorists?
What the French media in its coverage of these tragic events fails to mention is that both the US and France, not to mention Britain, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Israel are covertly supporting various Al Qaeda affiliated terrorist formations in Syria and Iraq including al Nusrah and the Islamic State.
France is the victim of the Islamic State, but at the same time the US and its allies including France are “State sponsors” of the Islamic state which is an Al Qaeda affiliated entity.
Lest we forget, the US has supported Al Qaeda and its affiliated organizations for almost half a century since the heyday of the Soviet Afghan war. CIA training camps were set up in Pakistan. In the ten year period from 1982 to 1992, some 35,000 jihadists from 43 Islamic countries were recruited by the CIA to fight in the Afghan jihad. Since the Reagan Administration, Washington has supported the Islamic terror network.
In recent developments in the Middle East, the terrorists are recruited and trained by the Western military alliance. NATO and the Turkish High Command have been responsible for the recruitment of ISIS and Al Nusrah mercenaries from the outset of the Syrian insurgency in March 2011. According to Israeli intelligence sources, this initiative consisted in:
“a campaign to enlist thousands of Muslim volunteers in Middle East countries and the Muslim world to fight alongside the Syrian rebels. The Turkish army would house these volunteers, train them and secure their passage into Syria. (DEBKAfile, NATO to give rebels anti-tank weapons, August 14, 2011.)
There are Western Special Forces and Western intelligence operatives within the ranks of the ISIS. British Special Forces, and MI6 have been involved in training jihadist rebels in Syria.
The Islamic State (ISIS), the alleged architect of the Paris attacks, was originally an Al Qaeda affiliated entity created by US intelligence with the support of Britain’s MI6, Israel’s Mossad, Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Saudi Arabia’s General Intelligence Presidency (GIP), Ri’āsat Al-Istikhbārāt Al-’Āmah ( رئاسة الاستخبارات العامة).
The ISIS brigades were involved in the US-NATO supported insurgency in Syria directed against the government of Bashar al Assad. Since August-September 2014, they are the object of Osama’s fake counter-terrorism campaign. The evidence, however, amply confirms that ISIS is protected by the Western military alliance.
With regard to France, a Washington Post 2011 report entitled “France sent arms to Libyan rebels,” confirms the role of the French government in support of the Al Qaeda affiliated Libya Islamic fighting Group (LIFG).
French officials announced Wednesday that they had armed rebels in Libya, marking the first time a NATO country has said it was providing direct military aid to opponents [LIFG]…
According to Tony Cartalucci (Global Research: January 8, 2015)
While Hollande’s predecessor, former French President Nicolas Sarkozy would be the one to set foot in decimated Libya in the wake of NATO’s intervention there – which included in addition to French arms sent to terrorists, French planes providing these terrorists air cover as they carried out atrocities and genocide – Hollande would continue policies enacted under Sarkozy, both in Libya, and currently in Syria.
In early 2013, France joined its coalition partners in sending weapons to jihadist rebels in Syria including the Al Qaeda affiliated Al Nusra Front which France’s Le Monde identified as “moderate”:
The UK Foreign secretary William Hague, and his French counterpart Lauren Fabius, are leading an isolated charge within the EU to lift a supposed arms embargo to self-described ‘rebels’, hitherto destroying Syria for over two years. Several underlying factors need to be addressed before these diplomatic (some would say military) manoeuvres are put into context.
Firstly, the most obvious issue with allowing the UK and France to freely arm ‘rebels’ of their choosing inside Syria is that this policy is against all international law, and will, as proven already to be the case, continue to vastly exacerbate the growing death toll and displacement in Syria. As the head of arms control at Oxfam noted: “Transferring more weapons to Syria can only exacerbate a hellish scenario for civilians. If the UK and France are to live up to their own commitments – including those set out in the new arms trade treaty – they simply must not send weapons to Syria.”
In recent developments, the ISIS and Al Nusrah have joined hands. (Philip Greaves, Under the Disguise of The “Battle against Terrorism”: The U.S., Britain and France Support “Al Qaeda in Syria”, Global Research, May 28, 2013
The evidence amply confirms that while Russia is targeting ISIS strongholds in Syria, the Western military alliance is supporting the Islamic State terrorists.
The notion that the Paris attacks was an act of retribution and revenge directed against France is questionable and contradictory inasmuch as the evidence confirms that France has been channeling weapons to jihadist rebels in Syria including Al Nusrah and ISIS.
On November 13, France was the victim of a carefully organized terrorist attack in different locations in the Paris metropolitan area, resulting in more than 140 deaths. The Islamic State was identified as the architect of this criminal undertaking.
What is intimated in the media reports of these tragic events is that the jihadists are attacking France.
But at same time, the countries which claim to be the victims of terrorism including France are involved through their intelligence services in supporting terrorist organizations in the Middle East. It’s called America’s “Global War on Terrorism”.
This contradiction has to be meaningfully addressed at the political level. The Global War on Terrorism is a lie which provides legitimacy to police state measures.
The state of emergency gives the police a green light to arrest on mere suspicion throughout France.
A telephone hotline is opened. Citizens are invited to call and report anything which they consider suspicious.
Civil rights have been suspended.
Arbitrary arrests are occurring in Paris without warrant.
The attacks could potentially contribute to a new wave of Islamophobia.