How did the Paris massacre mastermind live in Brussels for four months? Who protected him?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by aaronvan, Mar 18, 2016.

  1. aaronvan Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #1
    Incredibly, they took him alive, another spineless jihadist more eager to save his own skin than go martyr with a suicide belt.


    More importantly, in what way did this turd live and move in Brussels for all this time? He certainly didn’t leave Europe or he would not have returned. So who protected him? Who gave him shelter? How hid him from the police? Who gave him succor? How many sympathizers and supporters does he have in Brussels, Belgium, and Europe? How large are the ISIS networks in Europe?


    The French are very accomplished interrogators, having had so much practice in Algeria. I’m sure they’ll get answers.
     
  2. LizKat macrumors 68040

    LizKat

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    #2
    "Having had practice in Algeria" is part of why the French have (and have had) problems in the banlieues outside Paris where many of their residents from North Africa reside. Not all the resentment there has been generated by ISIS, far from it. But ISIS is not too stupid to have overlooked recruiting options there. Did you read Andrew Hussey's The French Intifada? Some call it controversial and not least because it's by a Brit (albeit an academic long living in France) writing French history, but anyway it's about the fallout in France from actions taken during her colonial history in North Africa. I'm not at all implying that everything about the plight of former North Africans in France is the fault of the French government, nor does Hussey imply that either.

    On Belgium: There are some other threads here, in which I think you may have participated, that cited a few links suggesting Belgium was overdue for a wakeup call. One was from Politico, a piece titled Belgium is a failed state. The piece is long and interesting and makes clear there have been nests of lawlessness and radicalism especially in Molenbeek, that had been tolerated for too long. Not all connected to ISIS but certainly those would be known to some who are of ISIS, and who could have been willing to put this guy up for a night, give him food, whatever. Looks like not all of that went undetected in this case. So the wakeup call has worked, I guess. What a price Paris paid for it, though.
     
  3. vrDrew macrumors 65816

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    #3
    Salah Abdeslam, the man wanted in connection with Paris attacks was wounded in a gunfight with police before being captured. The police were not expecting to find him in the apartment they raided, so its unlikely that Abdeslam knew they were coming. I don't know that much about suicide belts, but I'm pretty sure you don't hang them in your closet next to your scarves and ties. And you have to be a very committed terrorist indeed to lay on the couch playing Xbox360 with a couple of kilograms of Semtex duct taped to your kidneys.

    How did he evade capture? Well, its important to understand he was born in Belgium, and he probably had all sorts of friends, relatives, and contacts. The Belgian police apparently had conducted a series of raids, and found Abdeslam's fingerprints at a couple of locations. The police also arrested a family believed to have sheltered him.

    One thing that might explain his ability to remain at large: Apparently there is a law in Belgium that the police cannot raid a private home after 9.00 pm. I suspect they will revisit that soon.
     
  4. juanm, Mar 18, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2016

    juanm macrumors 65816

    juanm

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    #4
    That's one of the many things people who use the "terrorists-among-refugees" argument fail to understand: there's absolutely no shortage of resentful young people in France, it wouldn't make sense to bring them from Syria raising flags in the process.

    Basically, all the large French cities have poor neighborhoods, where they stacked Algerian immigrants decades ago. Then, being French, they decided to go for the easy, lazy way, and gave them some money -through ill-designed programs that encouraged natality, thus snowballing the problem into what we are facing now: enormous unemployment and poor integration due to the cultural and religious differences.

    These guys, as a result, are born in a country where they feel hated, and will flock to whatever structure makes them feel included, be it gangs, or as of late, religious fascism.

    I can see both sides (I went to school in a not-so-good neighborhood in France) and these are my conclusions:
    -The Paris attacks won't be the last.
    -The French are still in denial regarding the causes, so their reaction will not de-escalate the problem, au contraire.
    -The only solution will be one that solves poverty, as a way to reduce the need for religion (so it'll be at least another 20 years or so)
     
  5. Mac2me macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    I read a news account that they also arrested 3? relatives of his. I suspect they were hiding him and assisting him? Been curious to find out if one of them was the brother Mohamed I think it was that stood on the balcony outside their home saying Salem must have been misguided, had second thoughts and the family was asking him to give himself up. That plea was all over the TV shortly after the Paris incident. The family recently was able to hold a funeral for the brother who blew himself up and I heard on TV the authorities were watching people who attended. Might have got lead from the service. He undoubtedly had contacts from his old neighborhood. Caught him holed up in abandoned apt 4 blocks from the City Town Hall.
     
  6. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #6
    If we don't ruin it in the U.S., I think it's been proven that we can coexist with Muslims or better said they can coexist with a Western secular society, under a live and let live system. I don't claim to be an Islamist expert, but reports seem to be that Muslims in Europe either have a hard time assimilating (societies, their fault, or both?) or expect to keep their strict religious and cultural standards alive in their adopted country, and are isolated by their own means. If you look at the US North East, large cities had culturally divided ethnic areas, but in those cases mostly there was a common thread of Christianity while acknowledging the Jews have historically had a much harder time of it and still feel a unfair resistance to total acceptance (at least that is my impression). Fortunately they decided ( if anyone ever thought about it) that violence was not the answer. My question is that if you look at the Muslim populations in France and Belgium, how capable are these groups of moderation, or are they subject to gross prejudice, keeping them angery?
     
  7. aaronvan thread starter Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #7
    Chris Matthews on MSNBC reports that the neighborhood he hid in is an "ungoverned space," a sort of mini-Islamic theocracy, existing in the heart of Brussels.
     
  8. LizKat macrumors 68040

    LizKat

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    #8
    Any time a country ends up with a segregated -- even self-segregating-- minority that's low income, low opportunity, high population density, heavy on youngsters, there's going to be some kind of trouble. Either there's a local authority, maybe religious, trying to keep a lid on things --which can become part of the problem-- or there's a tendency for community activity to degrade from a state of some social order more towards lawless and predatory.

    You're not born a thief or a rogue but you have to survive, so as a kid you may choose a path that seems to offer comfort or at least strength in numbers and then it turns into a dead end after awhile. Maybe there's some social safety net, your mom got on the dole, you grow up with that in the background, you end up with kids yourself, you perpetuate the problems you were born into: gangs, material insecurity, dependency, fallback to petty crime and drug dealing, the same as we have in the USA.

    In France it's unclear how much race (or rather, ethnicity) figures into the economic and social equations. Which part of North Africa one is from appears to matter, because that differentiation is made amongst North Africans themselves and there’s also some jealousy over who gets treated better or worse. But, being Muslim is another factor.

    In France one is explicitly mandated to be "French first", meaning your allegiance must be to your French citizenship before your allegiance to a religion or ethnic heritage. This is difficult for conservative Muslims in any case because habits of clothing, prayer hours and social custom are so different in an otherwise largely secular France (except for adherents to orthodox Judaism). That's before those Muslims examine the value of being "French first" when they are jammed into the gritty suburbs around Paris and feel deprived of "French" economic options and social mobility.

    Andrew Hussey's book mentioned the danger ahead when a subset of the French population is waving banners saying "**** France" during riots. Those French Arab youth are French, born French, but many do not feel French and don't feel they have a stake in whatever means "France". Feeling stateless in your own "zone" of some piece of geography starts to sound a little bit like the forever-camps in the Palestinian territories. We all know how well that's gone for both Israelis and Palestinians for so long now.

    It takes innovative activism to break a society out of habitual segregation and discrimination, no matter if the pigeonholes are racial, ethnic, etc. Effecting change means spending money but it means deploying knowledgeable energy and dedication as well. We're short on the political will to mobilize enough of that in the USA, and who knows what France is trying to do about it. Now in the wake of terror hardly seems like a great time to try to sell the idea in, but it's actually a critical time to do more of it.
     
  9. Huntn macrumors G5

    Huntn

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    #9
    Thanks for the insight. My impression is that one of the keys to assimilation as a minority is putting a substantial part of their ethninticity away to fit in. The odds are the majority won't become like the minority and an unwillingness to assimilate means the minority will remain seperate. That's an observation. I don't know if this applies to Muslims in Europe, but my impression, which could be in error, is that the type of extreme Muslim religiosity and culture seems to factor in somehow. As you referenced anti-Muslim prejudice ( religion and cultural) could also be a substantial negative roadblock to assimilation.
     
  10. aaronvan thread starter Suspended

    aaronvan

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    #10
    Assimilation is the responsibility of the immigrants. Waves of Chinese, Irish, Jews, Italians, and Scandinavians immigrants came to America successfully assimilated in the face of religious and cultural discrimination. Arabs in Michigan are very successful. Furthermore, if colonialism was responsible for terrorism the West would be beset by Congolese, Indian, Namibian, Filipino, and Native American terrorists.
     

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