Principia Discordia

Principia Discordia => Aneristic Illusions => Topic started by: Cain on November 14, 2015, 04:38:03 pm

Title: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 14, 2015, 04:38:03 pm
For those who want to talk about it.

I've mostly confined my points on it to Facebook, but I'll put this here, for people who want to know my take:

Quote
With the caveat that I literally got up half an hour ago and so have not seen any coverage since 7am, UK time...

ISIS is also my chief suspect. The methodology could go either way, Al-Qaeda or ISIS, with Beslan, Mumbai etc. The gratuitous nature of the violence also suggests ISIS over AQ, the latter being slightly more stringent with targeting (see Charlie Hebdo, frequent AQ complaints about civilian Muslims being collateral damage etc).

According to some reports, just before I went to bed, one of the gunmen shouted "this is the fault of Hollande, he does not have to intervene in Syria" before he killed himself. I suggested, back in 2014, that if overt intervention in Syria looked to be on the cards, the strategic calculus would change for ISIS, that while they would encourage and agitate for attacks in the west, they would prefer to focus on their more immediate enemies except in the case of potential attack. In the long term, I think ISIS would always be looking at attacking the west, it has to wrest the crown from Zawahiri somehow, and beyond that, their overall ideology paints the west as enemies of Islam.

Another thing not to discount is their awareness of the refugee crisis in Europe, and how an attack could complicate the political response there or even work to inflame tensions. ISIS are remarkably media savvy, and I'd be very surprised if they weren't aware of how such an attack would, almost inevitably, be followed by calls to refuse refugees, crack down on Musims generally. That then plays directly into their propaganda. It also sends a message to the refugees - no matter how far you run, we can reach you.

Quote
Another thing, that was mentioned in the Vice article but that I neglected to mention above. ISIS has been put under quite a bit of military pressure lately. I suspect it's more of a short-term issue than the death knell of the group, given their ability to bounce back.

That said, a large attack like this...well, it's advertising. Get more men and women joining the jihad. Convince the potential donors in the Gulf states that ISIS is leading the Islamic revolution, and so deserves their donations. An influx of recruits and money could be just what they need to turn things around in those areas where they've been taking a beating recently.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: LMNO on November 14, 2015, 09:50:27 pm
So, I've found myself unusually affected by these attacks, in a way I haven't felt before. 

And then it occured to me that it was basically because it happened in a Western country that I could be familiar with.  These things happen daily in countries I only see on CNN (even if it's in a kind, Anthony Bordain style), and many times it's my own country doing it.

So yay for me, recognizing my bias.  And boo for me, because of my bias.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 14, 2015, 10:20:48 pm
I saw a post on Facebook which kinda dealt with this:

Quote
Those girls in Nigeria. That little Syrian boy on the beach in Turkey. How far back you wanna go here? Myanmar is like a fucking murder theme park and has been on and off for decades. Guatemala? El Salvador? Sudan? Mali? Those students in Mexico? Hell, everybody who gets in the way of a cartel in Mexico? Been a while since the Eastern Europeans had a good old fashioned genocide, they're due any minute now.

And each and every time, people say "Oh, you care about this one but not about that one." They try to shame people for heartbreak because their hearts aren't broken often enough and by every single horror humans perpetrate on one another.

But here's the truth: humans are really good at doing unspeakable things to each other. We do it a lot. And we tend to do it in places where we can get away with it, and frankly, that's a lot of the world. I love Kenya, but why do you think those fuckers chose a university there instead of going on a rampage through Tufts or Oxford? Because they could. Because they knew nobody was really going to stop them. The cops in Kenya are fucking useless. The military is fucking useless. Kony is still alive because the Ugandans have neither the money nor the skill nor, frankly, the political will to hunt him down and take his skull as a trophy. Horrific shit, Eli Roth-level shit, happens in sub-Saharan Africa every single day.

And the reasons for that are incredibly complicated, and they're not the fault of some kindhearted person sitting in their breakfast nook weeping at the pictures of the dead in a place like Paris, which is not a place where this shit happens on the regular. Or it didn't used to be. Paris is a city of light in more ways than one.

I'm almost numb to it now. Because I've been looking for so long. My heart has been broken a hundred times, and it's hard to look at pictures of the legs of a child sticking out of an LRA cookpot like a grotesque old image out of a cartoon and then go sit at Starbucks and listen to people prattle about the inconsequences of their daily lives. To hear my buddy Susan Oguya tell me about her roommate, whose fiance escaped Westgate, though he didn't - having to meet his parents and give them his things. To know that most of these things are the result of a chain of events so long and convoluted that almost nobody can really pick it apart and see all of it. Some of this shit goes back centuries, man. Centuries.

But this is the world, and nothing you do, no amount of petitions or social media posts or even votes are going to stop the machetes from coming out somewhere sooner or later. Sometimes you can make a difference; sometimes you can get the bear. But more often than not, the bear will get you. Why do you think relief workers end up burning out so quick? Band-Aids on bullet wounds, baby.

I want to make this very clear and I want you to listen to me: you will not end this. Ever. You will not stop the children from dying. You will not stop the knives from coming out. Not completely. Not ever. Not until the last homo sapien vanishes from this world... or at least, the next to last one.

So why shit on people who are mercifully sheltered from this horror by some lucky accident of birth or circumstance, who only ever have to see a little of this? They have empathy. They care. They want to help. But they don't know how to help everybody and they couldn't if they did know.

So let them see this little part of the dark that's been put in front of their eyes and do what good they can, and don't judge them for not just standing in the river of shit and letting it choke them.

Sooner or later, you're going to stop looking too. Or put a gun in your mouth. You're going to stop feeling outrage all the time, because we are not wired for that, and it will kill you. Trust me. I know.

I feel more sad about Paris than Baghdad or Beirut.  Not because it is any more tragic, as it's not.  But because it hits closer to home, for me.  I know Paris, very well.  I know people from Paris.  I speak French, watch French TV shows, read French newspapers and have an overall appreciation of French culture.  I'm geographically closer.  I have students who have family in Paris, who came rushing down to me last night, to use our phones to try and call their loved ones.  So it does hit me harder.  But that's because of me, not because of the event.  The event would've been terrible no matter where it happened.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Mesozoic Mister Nigel on November 14, 2015, 11:50:13 pm
So, I've found myself unusually affected by these attacks, in a way I haven't felt before. 

And then it occured to me that it was basically because it happened in a Western country that I could be familiar with.  These things happen daily in countries I only see on CNN (even if it's in a kind, Anthony Bordain style), and many times it's my own country doing it.

So yay for me, recognizing my bias.  And boo for me, because of my bias.

Yeah

Basically the entire country, which 14 years ago condemned France for refusing to join us in an unjustified war, is changing their Facebook avatars in solidarity over the deaths of 140 people because they recognize them as being like us; they are our tribe. They aren't dusky, anonymous aliens.

Yeah, I AM a little bitter, because this principle extends far beyond sympathy; it is at the root of what allows us (the national "us") to ignore poverty and starvation on reservations, to ignore disease and civil rights violations in the impoverished black South, and to bomb schools and hospitals in dusky countries with different religions, because we can't really identify with those people anyway.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: LMNO on November 15, 2015, 12:11:21 am
Yeah. That's what's fucking with my head.

Do you mind if I borrow that and post it on FB with attribution? It really nails it.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Mesozoic Mister Nigel on November 15, 2015, 12:52:11 am
Yeah. That's what's fucking with my head.

Do you mind if I borrow that and post it on FB with attribution? It really nails it.

Go right ahead.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Rembo on November 15, 2015, 12:55:17 am
Warning: written at 2am, in bed, on a tablet...
(calloused fingers + touch = hilarity)


It hits me hard because it's like a six hour drive away.

It hits me because here, in my little nook of Europe, many
people are trying to learn how to live together.
It hits me, because I feel that in many ways, things have been
improving. European society is changing, and in some ways, it
really looks like it'sbfor the better.

It makes me think of Giang. She's an almost 50 year old professor
of Law from Vietnam. She's in my fine city doing research on the
Belgian Labour Codex. I know her through work. She does dishes
in the restaurant i used to work at. We've had conversations spanning
many, many different topics, and I can honestly say I've learned quite
A bit from her. But you should see how she's changed in the four years
That I've known her! When she first got here, she didn't want to be here,
but her husband brought her daughter here, so, there you go. Now, she
has embraced everything that I love about what I (double capital I) consider
to be 'western culture'. The love of 'freedom', equality,the search for
knowledge, the aversion to dogma. I've seen her change many of the
values she was taught from birth on the basics of reason and ethics!
I feel fucking priviliged to have been a small part of this process. a
And then
to see my frikkin neighbours attacked, at least in part because we hold these values...
 (clarificaTion: I fully realize that the aforementioned values are merely
a part of a, for lack of better term, 'enlightened humanist' ethical system which
any selfrespecting biped with a functioning brain could arrive at, if said biped
removes its cranium from its rectum before venturing to ponder ethical quandaries)

Most of all, this shit pisses me off.
Recognizing bias is all well and good, but if fuckers are going to keep
pulling this shit in my backyard, anybody that tells me I'm being biased
for being ripshit pissed that someone wants to turn Paris into Bagdad
can go take a long walk off of a short pier for all I care.

Why should we judge eachother for how this shit makes us feel instead
of focusing the negative energy towards the more deserving, or, better yet,
piss em off some more by, idk, improving education, tolerance, and understanding?
You know, all that flowerchild shit...



Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Good Reverend Roger on November 15, 2015, 01:04:49 am
So, I've found myself unusually affected by these attacks, in a way I haven't felt before. 

And then it occured to me that it was basically because it happened in a Western country that I could be familiar with.  These things happen daily in countries I only see on CNN (even if it's in a kind, Anthony Bordain style), and many times it's my own country doing it.

So yay for me, recognizing my bias.  And boo for me, because of my bias.

Yeah

Basically the entire country, which 14 years ago condemned France for refusing to join us in an unjustified war, is changing their Facebook avatars in solidarity over the deaths of 140 people because they recognize them as being like us; they are our tribe. They aren't dusky, anonymous aliens.

Yeah, I AM a little bitter, because this principle extends far beyond sympathy; it is at the root of what allows us (the national "us") to ignore poverty and starvation on reservations, to ignore disease and civil rights violations in the impoverished black South, and to bomb schools and hospitals in dusky countries with different religions, because we can't really identify with those people anyway.

I've been to Paris.  It does in fact seem more real to me than similar attacks in Kenya, as I have never been to Kenya, and thus it remains an abstract idea of a place.


Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Mesozoic Mister Nigel on November 15, 2015, 01:25:53 am
So, I've found myself unusually affected by these attacks, in a way I haven't felt before. 

And then it occured to me that it was basically because it happened in a Western country that I could be familiar with.  These things happen daily in countries I only see on CNN (even if it's in a kind, Anthony Bordain style), and many times it's my own country doing it.

So yay for me, recognizing my bias.  And boo for me, because of my bias.

Yeah

Basically the entire country, which 14 years ago condemned France for refusing to join us in an unjustified war, is changing their Facebook avatars in solidarity over the deaths of 140 people because they recognize them as being like us; they are our tribe. They aren't dusky, anonymous aliens.

Yeah, I AM a little bitter, because this principle extends far beyond sympathy; it is at the root of what allows us (the national "us") to ignore poverty and starvation on reservations, to ignore disease and civil rights violations in the impoverished black South, and to bomb schools and hospitals in dusky countries with different religions, because we can't really identify with those people anyway.

I've been to Paris.  It does in fact seem more real to me than similar attacks in Kenya, as I have never been to Kenya, and thus it remains an abstract idea of a place.

Yeah, exactly.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Wizard Joseph on November 15, 2015, 03:16:02 am
Two thoughts rattled through my brainñ but id need to really dig into Sharia to answer them.

Question: is God infallible?
ISIS: Of course.

Question: Is the prophet Muhammad, PBUH, infallible?
ISIS: Certainly.

Question: And the prophet was entirely a human, and not a manifestation of God in any fashion as is believed by Christians of prophet Issa(Jesus), PBUH?
ISIS: Any who believe otherwise are takfir(apostates, infidels) and must be put to death.

Question: Is the Caliph, Al-Baghdadi infallible?
ISIS: He is.

Question: Is it not apostasy to equate a man with God and assign attributes to the man that must only rightly belong to God?

ISIS:???.. this is where I need to do some digging. I'm seeking a cogent argument against ISIS's "traditionalist" version of Islam that may not take effect on those that have already drunk the ISIS Kool aid, but should provoke a strong argument in the Muslim mind against their legitimacy.

Forgot the other thought I'd had while writing that. Really need to fall over now.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Prelate Diogenes Shandor on November 15, 2015, 06:24:25 am
Have any politicians used this attack as an excuse to try and take away people's civil liberties yet?
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Rembo on November 15, 2015, 11:29:24 am
Not YET, but some of the more right wibg assholes want to
'close the borders' for the influx of refugees. As if that's even a viable
Option, even if it wasn't a terrible idea.
A few other people are realizing, on the other hand, that it is exactly
this kind of thing all those fplks are running from.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Bu☆ns on November 15, 2015, 04:27:36 pm
I'm barely educated with french politics but it would seem like this kind of event would set the stage for the national front party to gain some momentum with their conservative views on immigration and whatever else.  If someone knows more about the national front and how this might benefit them, i'd be curious to hear.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 15, 2015, 05:22:36 pm
It absolutely would.

At the very least, it will force the Republicans (the centre-right party led by Sarkozy) to try and co-opt some of their rhetoric and support.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: xXRon_Paul_42016Xxx(weed) on November 17, 2015, 10:21:08 pm
http://inthesetimes.com/article/18605/breaking-the-taboos-in-the-wake-of-paris-attacks-the-left-must-embrace-its

Zizek delivering some 10/10 trolling.

Quote
We encounter here the old problem: What happens to democracy when the majority is inclined to vote for racist and sexist laws? I am not afraid to conclude: Emancipatory politics should not be bound a priori by formal-democratic procedures of legitimization. No, people quite often do NOT know what they want, or do not want what they know, or they simply want the wrong thing. There is no simple shortcut here.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 17, 2015, 10:56:13 pm
He does love making that point.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Meunster on November 18, 2015, 01:29:33 am
Is there a problem with being biased towards france? I have more in common with them. I read their philosophers and listeen to their nusic. Parts of my government is based of philophers from their country.
I owe them more then I owe any country in the middle east.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Pæs on November 18, 2015, 05:02:15 am
So the argument that ISIS will pretend to be refugees as a means of getting into the US, obviously that's a desirable thing for them to do just to incite further hostility against refugees, but is it a more practical method of entering the US than whatever is currently available to them?

What's preventing ISIS supporters from travelling to the US at present? If potential attackers aren't making it into the states (I don't know whether they are or not) is it because border security is working or is it because there's limited attempts being made?

I'm trying to get a sense for whether accepting refugees could credibly increase the possibility of a terrorist attack in the US and if not, why not so I can respond to dicks on Facebook.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Mesozoic Mister Nigel on November 18, 2015, 07:13:12 am
So the argument that ISIS will pretend to be refugees as a means of getting into the US, obviously that's a desirable thing for them to do just to incite further hostility against refugees, but is it a more practical method of entering the US than whatever is currently available to them?

What's preventing ISIS supporters from travelling to the US at present? If potential attackers aren't making it into the states (I don't know whether they are or not) is it because border security is working or is it because there's limited attempts being made?

I'm trying to get a sense for whether accepting refugees could credibly increase the possibility of a terrorist attack in the US and if not, why not so I can respond to dicks on Facebook.

According to the same pundits who think accepting refugees could give ISIS an avenue into the country, ISIS already has training schools set up in the US.  They can't have it both ways.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Johnny on November 18, 2015, 09:19:05 am
Is there a problem with being biased towards france? I have more in common with them. I read their philosophers and listeen to their nusic. Parts of my government is based of philophers from their country.
I owe them more then I owe any country in the middle east.

Right, because not having cultural affinity to a group automatically makes them second class citizens.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 18, 2015, 11:25:56 am
So the argument that ISIS will pretend to be refugees as a means of getting into the US, obviously that's a desirable thing for them to do just to incite further hostility against refugees, but is it a more practical method of entering the US than whatever is currently available to them?

What's preventing ISIS supporters from travelling to the US at present? If potential attackers aren't making it into the states (I don't know whether they are or not) is it because border security is working or is it because there's limited attempts being made?

I'm trying to get a sense for whether accepting refugees could credibly increase the possibility of a terrorist attack in the US and if not, why not so I can respond to dicks on Facebook.

In the case of foreign fighters, I strongly expect that nations routinely share data about those they know and suspect have left to fight with ISIS.

In addition to this, I know representatives of Syrian groups in Europe also keep a close eye on refugees and try to account for their affiliations (as well as the Kurdish groups).

There will also be other screening processes.  Who did the person come in with?  Can other people vouch for their story?  How far back do they know them?  What are they carrying on them?  How is their overall condition (well fed, decent quality clothing).  Does their fitness level and pose suggest some form of paramilitary training?  Where in Syria did they come from?  What kind of funds do they have available to them?

The path most refugees take into Europe is also not one I suspect most terrorists would be willing to put up with.  It involves a lot of walking, a lot of bribes, a lot of hiding in cramped and squalid conditions...not a whole lot of fun.  I also would not be surprised if the people smuggler's did their own vetting...if they were found to have brought a terrorist into a country, they could well expect to end up in a far worse place than a prison cell for people smuggling.  Some groups wouldn't care, of course, but even people smugglers like to think of themselves as being baiscally decent people, and have a future career that doesn't involve extraordinary rendition and simulated drownings.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Bu☆ns on November 18, 2015, 10:06:19 pm
So the argument that ISIS will pretend to be refugees as a means of getting into the US, obviously that's a desirable thing for them to do just to incite further hostility against refugees, but is it a more practical method of entering the US than whatever is currently available to them?

What's preventing ISIS supporters from travelling to the US at present? If potential attackers aren't making it into the states (I don't know whether they are or not) is it because border security is working or is it because there's limited attempts being made?

I'm trying to get a sense for whether accepting refugees could credibly increase the possibility of a terrorist attack in the US and if not, why not so I can respond to dicks on Facebook.

In the case of foreign fighters, I strongly expect that nations routinely share data about those they know and suspect have left to fight with ISIS.

In addition to this, I know representatives of Syrian groups in Europe also keep a close eye on refugees and try to account for their affiliations (as well as the Kurdish groups).

There will also be other screening processes.  Who did the person come in with?  Can other people vouch for their story?  How far back do they know them?  What are they carrying on them?  How is their overall condition (well fed, decent quality clothing).  Does their fitness level and pose suggest some form of paramilitary training?  Where in Syria did they come from?  What kind of funds do they have available to them?

The path most refugees take into Europe is also not one I suspect most terrorists would be willing to put up with.  It involves a lot of walking, a lot of bribes, a lot of hiding in cramped and squalid conditions...not a whole lot of fun.  I also would not be surprised if the people smuggler's did their own vetting...if they were found to have brought a terrorist into a country, they could well expect to end up in a far worse place than a prison cell for people smuggling.  Some groups wouldn't care, of course, but even people smugglers like to think of themselves as being baiscally decent people, and have a future career that doesn't involve extraordinary rendition and simulated drownings.

Thanks for putting that into perspective.  It seems like the logical conclusion but i don't have anything to really back that up.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: LuciferX on November 18, 2015, 10:19:05 pm
So the argument that ISIS will pretend to be refugees as a means of getting into the US, obviously that's a desirable thing for them to do just to incite further hostility against refugees, but is it a more practical method of entering the US than whatever is currently available to them?

What's preventing ISIS supporters from travelling to the US at present? If potential attackers aren't making it into the states (I don't know whether they are or not) is it because border security is working or is it because there's limited attempts being made?

I'm trying to get a sense for whether accepting refugees could credibly increase the possibility of a terrorist attack in the US and if not, why not so I can respond to dicks on Facebook.

In the case of foreign fighters, I strongly expect that nations routinely share data about those they know and suspect have left to fight with ISIS.

In addition to this, I know representatives of Syrian groups in Europe also keep a close eye on refugees and try to account for their affiliations (as well as the Kurdish groups).

There will also be other screening processes.  Who did the person come in with?  Can other people vouch for their story?  How far back do they know them?  What are they carrying on them?  How is their overall condition (well fed, decent quality clothing).  Does their fitness level and pose suggest some form of paramilitary training?  Where in Syria did they come from?  What kind of funds do they have available to them?

The path most refugees take into Europe is also not one I suspect most terrorists would be willing to put up with.  It involves a lot of walking, a lot of bribes, a lot of hiding in cramped and squalid conditions...not a whole lot of fun.  I also would not be surprised if the people smuggler's did their own vetting...if they were found to have brought a terrorist into a country, they could well expect to end up in a far worse place than a prison cell for people smuggling.  Some groups wouldn't care, of course, but even people smugglers like to think of themselves as being baiscally decent people, and have a future career that doesn't involve extraordinary rendition and simulated drownings.

To betray my lack of knowledge on the subject, a scenario that crossed my mind is that of the refugee being radicalized after having been denied political asylumn.  Radicalized refugge is cleaned-up by dash and made to infiltrate higher-up 'merican military branch - taking page from israeli playbook.  [sounds facile yet has proven effective - I Think - this is not my intellectual forte']
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Pergamos on November 18, 2015, 11:22:08 pm
That sounds like a much longer term plan than Daesh usually usse Lucifer.  Also, radicalized refugees are not likely to be sympathetic to the group that they fled their homeland to escape.  Possibly one of Daesh's rivals, such as Al Queda, but not Daesh.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Good Reverend Roger on November 19, 2015, 03:47:23 am
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Meunster on November 19, 2015, 04:04:24 am
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.

UN and america. "no you can't bomb that place, they might have civilians. No you can't respond to a terrorist attack that's just what they want. No you can't take down the spooky terrorists, we're the worlds white knight."  To sum it up, but also internal political reasons.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 19, 2015, 04:31:31 am
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.

Russia's too busy killing the other rebels.

You know, the ones either we or the Saudis, Qataris and Jordanians are supporting.

Then Russia can turn around and say "well, shit.  Looks like the choice is between ISIS and Assad.  Guess we better have Assad after all."

The second bit is conjecture on my part, but the first bit is absolutely true.  Tracking information for Russian airstrikes show that, while they've done a couple of sorties against ISIS, probably for propaganda, the vast majority of their attacks have been on FSA/JaN and other rebel groups.  Excepting the Kurds, but Russia does have good links with the various Kurdish groups as well.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Bu☆ns on November 19, 2015, 05:30:49 am
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.

Right? 23,000 was one day at Antietam.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Freeky on November 19, 2015, 05:37:37 am
So Cain.  My friend wants to know why France would send in their police team with journalists instead of some specialist trained squad specially for this sort of deal to take out some people who they say were connected to ISIS.  What he read suggested that the French cops shots about 5,000 shots into an occupied apartment building, in two different locations.

I couldn't answer, but I wondered if you might be able to.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 19, 2015, 01:36:50 pm
The French did send in a specialist squad.  "Heavily armed", "elite" and "in military gear" is the description I got, which suggests Gendarme Nationale, a paramilitary unit who support French police operations.

They sent about 100 people into the building to secure it, so they were taking it was pretty seriously.  But that many people, and that size of operation...well, the press are going to hear about it, sooner rather than later.  Even at 4am, which is when the raids took place.

The police tried to take down the door to the apartment with explosives, a simple breach and grab.  However, the door was somehow reinforced, and they lost the element of surprise.  Hence the firefight that took place.  One of the suspects in the apartment donned a suicide vest and, well...
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Freeky on November 21, 2015, 06:23:24 pm
I'll pass that along, and see if he has further questions.  Thanks, Cain.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 21, 2015, 08:22:44 pm
No worries.  Note, since I said that, it has since transpired the woman in question did not suicide bomb the apartment, but a third person in there may have.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Freeky on November 24, 2015, 11:25:27 pm
Turns out, when I finally got back to him, he didn't remember he'd had a question about it.  He has memory issues, unfortunately.

But I find that last bit interesting, if horrible.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Good Reverend Roger on November 25, 2015, 01:05:49 am
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.

UN and america. "no you can't bomb that place, they might have civilians. No you can't respond to a terrorist attack that's just what they want. No you can't take down the spooky terrorists, we're the worlds white knight."  To sum it up, but also internal political reasons.

If I wanted to hear your shit, I'd just turn on Rush Limbaugh.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Good Reverend Roger on November 25, 2015, 01:06:47 am
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.

Russia's too busy killing the other rebels.

You know, the ones either we or the Saudis, Qataris and Jordanians are supporting.

Then Russia can turn around and say "well, shit.  Looks like the choice is between ISIS and Assad.  Guess we better have Assad after all."

The second bit is conjecture on my part, but the first bit is absolutely true.  Tracking information for Russian airstrikes show that, while they've done a couple of sorties against ISIS, probably for propaganda, the vast majority of their attacks have been on FSA/JaN and other rebel groups.  Excepting the Kurds, but Russia does have good links with the various Kurdish groups as well.

Thank you, Cain.  Makes perfect sense, now that you've mentioned it. 
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: rong on November 25, 2015, 06:48:45 am
I don't really follow the news much, but the Paris attacks really got my attention - probably because the situation at the Bataclan was a . . . how do you say . . . relate-able environment?

Anyhow,  I did a bunch of reading and I found this article (http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-09-10/competing-gas-pipelines-are-fueling-syrian-war-migrant-crisis) which I feel is a pretty likely explanation for why this mess exists in the first place.

essentially saying that the syrian civil war and resulting jihadist bullshit started over conflicting interests regarding a pipeline through Syria.

I thought the article was enlightening, so I thought I would share.

Also, if anyone thinks the article is bullshit, I'd like to know about it and why.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Prelate Diogenes Shandor on November 25, 2015, 10:57:34 am
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.

UN and america. "no you can't bomb that place, they might have civilians. No you can't respond to a terrorist attack that's just what they want. No you can't take down the spooky terrorists, we're the worlds white knight."  To sum it up, but also internal political reasons.

If I wanted to hear your shit, I'd just turn on Rush Limbaugh.

You have to admit, this would all be a lot easier to deal with if we were evil
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Good Reverend Roger on November 25, 2015, 01:57:50 pm
I don't really follow the news much, but the Paris attacks really got my attention - probably because the situation at the Bataclan was a . . . how do you say . . . relate-able environment?

Anyhow,  I did a bunch of reading and I found this article (http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-09-10/competing-gas-pipelines-are-fueling-syrian-war-migrant-crisis) which I feel is a pretty likely explanation for why this mess exists in the first place.

essentially saying that the syrian civil war and resulting jihadist bullshit started over conflicting interests regarding a pipeline through Syria.

I thought the article was enlightening, so I thought I would share.

Also, if anyone thinks the article is bullshit, I'd like to know about it and why.

Thing is, I heard the same thing about a pipeline in Afghanistan, 10 years ago.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: The Good Reverend Roger on November 25, 2015, 01:59:08 pm
I just want to know how 30,000 ISIS freaks haven't been wiped out by the Russians by now.  They have a very Roman approach to this sort of thing.

UN and america. "no you can't bomb that place, they might have civilians. No you can't respond to a terrorist attack that's just what they want. No you can't take down the spooky terrorists, we're the worlds white knight."  To sum it up, but also internal political reasons.

If I wanted to hear your shit, I'd just turn on Rush Limbaugh.

You have to admit, this would all be a lot easier to deal with if we were evil

Evil isn't required.  Stupidity and/or SGitR works just fine.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 25, 2015, 02:21:56 pm
I don't really follow the news much, but the Paris attacks really got my attention - probably because the situation at the Bataclan was a . . . how do you say . . . relate-able environment?

Anyhow,  I did a bunch of reading and I found this article (http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-09-10/competing-gas-pipelines-are-fueling-syrian-war-migrant-crisis) which I feel is a pretty likely explanation for why this mess exists in the first place.

essentially saying that the syrian civil war and resulting jihadist bullshit started over conflicting interests regarding a pipeline through Syria.

I thought the article was enlightening, so I thought I would share.

Also, if anyone thinks the article is bullshit, I'd like to know about it and why.

Zerohedge is....not an entirely reliable source.

There's always pipeline politics in the Middle East.  Sure, that's part of the picture.

But it ignores basic human agency on the part of...well, everyone.  The Syrian people rose up because of the Arab Spring in other countries, because they were suffering economic malaise while under a dictatorship.  That dictatorship responded with extreme cruelty to demands for more political freedom (they kidnapped and tortured kids, to death.  Then they dumped the bodies on the streets).

The Arab Spring then got co-opted by conservative Middle Eastern states, who hoped to use it to destabilize the Shia Crescent, the arc of alliances that was forming from Hezbollah held territory in Lebanon, through Syria, central Iraq and into Iran.  They saw a chance to take out a major Iranian ally, and they jumped at the chance.

Conservative Muslim states = code for Saudi Arabia and Qatar, btw.  Turkey also saw an opportunity to spread its own influence in the Middle East.

But it backfired in their face.  Assad's regime was more durable than they gave it credit for.  They put Assad's back against a wall, funding the most extreme jihadist elements against the regime, such as the Islamic Front and Jabhat al-Nusra.  That it turn meant elements in Syria who feared Sunni Islamic extremism, including the Alawites, had little qualms about throwing in with the regime.  They were only going to be killed anyway, right?

Al-Qaeda in Iraq takes advantage of the chaos.  Sends experienced fighters across the border, captures large swathes of territory in the poorly held eastern regions of Syria.  Creates a special division, Jabhat al-Nusra, to fight in Syria.  Al-Qaeda Central see AQI as cowboys, assert control over their Syrian puppet via the Khorasan Group of advisors they sent in-country to aid the fighting.  AQI tries to reabsorb JaN....unsuccessfully.  Creates the ISIS-Al-Qaeda split.

Add into the mess the Kurdish desire for their own homeland.

Add into that mess intervention by Hezbollah, Iran and Russia on behalf of the Syrian regime.

Add into that mess intervention by Western powers against ISIS.

Add into that mess the whole civil war potentially boiling over into the clusterfucks that are Iraq and Lebanon, with their own histories of sectarian violence.

Everyone's too invested to back down, the moderates (the Free Syrian Army) are mostly slaughtered, (though the Syrian Democratic Front has made some promising moves of late) and lines of mutual alliance and distrust are so tangled that the early 20th century Balkans is impressed.  And then you have a crazy as fuck faction which happens to be sitting on most of the oil and has a penchant for genocide.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: LMNO on November 25, 2015, 02:40:56 pm
That can't be right, because there's no way to make it into an easily digestible soundbite.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: rong on November 25, 2015, 09:26:53 pm
That can't be right, because there's no way to make it into an easily digestible soundbite.

"SHIT IS FUCKED"

 :lulz:

But, seriously, thanks, Cain.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Bu☆ns on November 25, 2015, 09:31:07 pm
This seemed relevant:
(https://4thwayorthehighway.files.wordpress.com/2014/09/wpid-wp-1411744375501.jpeg)
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on November 26, 2015, 01:56:29 am
That can't be right, because there's no way to make it into an easily digestible soundbite.

"SHIT IS FUCKED"

 :lulz:

But, seriously, thanks, Cain.

No worries.  It just pays to remember, everyone has some form of agency.  Ethno-linguistic groupings, history, religion, culture and resource division matter as much as geopolitical rivalry and oil, if not more so.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on March 18, 2016, 05:35:01 pm
They got Salah Abdeslam.

Just arrested him in the Molenbeek area of Brussels.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on March 22, 2016, 10:03:42 am
And...the backlash.

Two explosions at Brussels airport have killed at least 13 people.  Suspected suicide attack.  And a further bombing has taken place at a metro station near some EU buildings.

Just woken up, going to get something to drink, and watch some footage.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: LMNO on March 22, 2016, 12:18:05 pm
Attacking the Belgians is almost unsportsmanlike.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on March 22, 2016, 01:48:10 pm
Oh, I don't know.  I know Belgium doesn't have reputation outside of Europe, but, well...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brabant_killers#Official_complicity

Quote
The Belgian "stay-behind" network SDRA8 (Gladio) — operating as a secret branch of the Belgian military service was suggested by some to have links to the gang. Some units of the stay behind network were made up of members of the Belgian Gendarmerie. One theory was that the communist threat in Western Europe was taken as justifying Operation Gladio being activated. However, the Belgian parliamentary inquiry into Gladio found no substantive evidence that Gladio was involved in any terrorist acts or that criminal groups had infiltrated the stay-behind network.[5][6] The Belgian Gendarmerie were abolished in reforms that came as a result of a perceived lack of satisfactory performance in the Brabant killers case, and that of Marc Dutroux.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgian_stay-behind_network

Quote
In 1950, the assassination of Julien Lahaut, chairman of the Communist Party of Belgium (PCB) had doubtless both a national and international signification, in which Gladio's influence has been suspected.[19] Repeated requests have been made in the Belgian Chamber of Representatives for an investigation into Lahaut's death. Only recently it has become known that François Goossens, a Leopoldist, was his killer.

Quote
A September 10, 1973, note from the Belgian Brigade de Surveillance et de Renseignement intelligence agency described the organization of a coup d'état by certain "financial networks and far-right organizations", naming among others Emile Lecerf, boss of the Nouvelle Europe magazine (NEM) and political godfather of Francis Dossogne (future leader of far-right Front de la Jeunesse - FJ) and Paul Latinus, founder of the Westland New Post extremist group, in which Gladio's influence has been suspected, although ultimately never proved in justice. Paul Latinus would escape to Pinochet's Chile for a few months in 1981, before "committing suicide" in 1984. On the other hand, Emile Lecerf was also a member of the Jeune Europe far-right group.

Quote
In 1996, Le Soir newspaper caused a public uproar by revealing the existence of a classified document, dated August 1995, and titled "Plan de base de la défense militaire du territoire" ("Base plan of the military defense of the territory"). The newspaper quoted some passages of what it called a "racist plan": "Many communities of immigrants have settled themselves in large agglomerations. If these population groups should reach a position of strong disagreement with Belgian politics, they could launch actions destined to counteract these policies or to make their concerns known [...] We consider that there exists no open threat in Belgium [...] But there is a clandestine threat with a permanent character" (French: "Nombre de communautés immigrées se sont fixées dans les grandes agglomérations. Si ces groupes de population devaient entrer clairement en désaccord avec la politique belge, ils pourraient déclencher des actions visant à contrarier cette politique ou visant à faire connaître leur mécontentements (...) Nous considérons qu'il n'existe aucune menace ouverte en Belgique (...) Mais il existe bien une menace clandestine avec un caractère permanent" - sic).

The dissolved SDRA-8 had been replaced by the "Commandement territorial interforces" (CTI), a military intelligence agency organized by provinces and essentially composed of about a thousand reserve officers. Its goal was to infiltrate civil society and find informants, with the mission to be especially concerned by the "immigrant communities which represented a permanent clandestine threat". According to Le Soir, if the CTI is not closely linked to the military agency Service Général du Renseignement et de la Sécurité (SGRS), then it is "nothing else than a new structure of military intelligence... particularly suspicious of anything that is foreign to it".[23][24] Defense minister Poncelet replied in the Belgian Senate that the plan was only an internal draft proposal, which was never approved by the military command or the defense minister himself.[25]

Belgium is a place where people mysteriously die with distressing frequency and no credible explanations are made.

Quite frankly, I was surprised Abdeslam was captured alive.
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: LMNO on March 22, 2016, 02:08:13 pm
That's more mysterious than I had imagined.  Thanks for that!
Title: Re: Paris attacks thread
Post by: Cain on March 22, 2016, 03:40:35 pm
There's a whole ton of political corruption there as well.  Belgium is racing Italy for the position of EU's very own Florida.

However, speaking seriously for a minute, Belgian security services are overwhelmed by the jihadist situation there.  I'm not entirely sure how it got so bad...but it's compounded by a Belgian bureaucracy that makes intelligence sharing difficult.