Paris, France - Islamist Terror Attack on satirical magazine

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Paris, France - Islamist Terror Attack on satirical magazine

Post by sheddi » Wed Jan 07, 2015 7:23 am

Two gunmen, reportedly armed with automatic rifles "looking like Kalashnikovs", have attacked the offices of satirical magazine "Charlie Hebdo" in Paris.

Current reports are of 11 dead, including at least one police officer, plus 10 injured. The gunmen escaped the scene and are being sought.

BBC link:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-30710883

Quote of current page content:
Charlie Hebdo: Gun attack on French magazine kills 11

Gunmen have attacked the Paris office of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, killing 11 people and injuring 10, French officials say. Witnesses spoke of sustained gunfire at the office as the attackers opened fire with assault rifles before escaping.

President Francois Hollande said there was no doubt it had been a terrorist attack "of exceptional barbarity". A major police operation has been launched in the Paris area to catch the attackers.

Charlie's latest tweet was a cartoon of the Islamic State militant group leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The satirical weekly has courted controversy in the past with its irreverent take on news and current affairs. The magazine was fire-bombed in November 2011 a day after it carried a caricature of the Prophet Muhammad.

People had been "murdered in a cowardly manner", President Hollande told reporters at the scene. "We are threatened because we are a country of liberty," he added, appealing for national unity.

UK Prime Minister David Cameron said in a tweet: "The murders in Paris are sickening. We stand with the French people in the fight against terror and defending the freedom of the press."
Image from the scene:
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by sheddi » Wed Jan 07, 2015 8:26 am

Video of the attackers fleeing the scene:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-30712022

This is the BBC's PG-rated extract from a longer clip (available on YouTube, amongst others) which includes the two gunmen shooting a French police officer before the BBC clip of them returning to their car and driving off.
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by the_alias » Wed Jan 07, 2015 9:16 am

The barbarism is evident in the uncensored clip.

In early clips I saw one can clearly hear shouts of Alluh Akhbar.

These gunmen are still at large, expect this to continue until they are dead or captured.

If I were a betting man I'd say these attackers were 2 of the 700 'French' citizens who have gone to Syria or Iraq to fight. This also comes on the back of other attacks in France, pedestrians were targeted by an Islamist in a car and I believe shots were fired at a Police station. There was also an attack on the Jewish community.
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by Mikeyboy » Wed Jan 07, 2015 9:34 am

the_alias wrote:The barbarism is evident in the uncensored clip.
Ditto, Not only shooting down a what I'm assuming was a police officer, but to walk over to the cop who is clearly no longer a threat to them, just laying on the ground, and shooting him in the head at point blank range.

Bad stuff. Hopefully these terrorist will be caught soon. For those ZS member over in France, stay safe.

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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by the_alias » Wed Jan 07, 2015 10:03 am

Claim being made it was AQ in Yemen...
Cédric Le Béchec, a 33-year-old estate agent, witnessed the attack on the satirical magazine.

He said that the men arrived in a black car, stopping in the middle of the street. One of them was carrying a rocket-propelled grenade. They were dressed in black military-style clothing.

Mr Le Bechec said that before launching the assault, the attackers approached another man in the street saying, “Tell the media that this is Al Qaeda in Yemen.”
Source http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldne ... -live.html
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by sheddi » Wed Jan 07, 2015 10:15 am

Current reports are of twelve dead, including two police officers and four cartoonists. French police reported to be seeking three gunmen.

If you fancy English-language French rolling news coverage, France24 has a live stream on YouTube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BFwedk4dBCc
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by Boondock » Wed Jan 07, 2015 10:18 am

Wow. Real tough, guys. Shooting journalists armed with pens and pencils. A gang of gutless thugs. :roll:

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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by Apathy » Wed Jan 07, 2015 10:54 am

the_alias wrote:Claim being made it was AQ in Yemen...
Cédric Le Béchec, a 33-year-old estate agent, witnessed the attack on the satirical magazine.

He said that the men arrived in a black car, stopping in the middle of the street. One of them was carrying a rocket-propelled grenade. They were dressed in black military-style clothing.

Mr Le Bechec said that before launching the assault, the attackers approached another man in the street saying, “Tell the media that this is Al Qaeda in Yemen.”
Source http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldne ... -live.html

The Hell did he get an RPG? And, why didn't he use it? I bet the Paris municipal police have a MRAP that can handle ordinance like that, but the violence they could do to the city's population is enormous. some RPG warheads are TB.
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by sheddi » Wed Jan 07, 2015 11:11 am

Apathy wrote:The Hell did he get an RPG? And, why didn't he use it?
Two good questions.

I'll note that we've only seen two attackers in the on-scene photos, and that despite suggestions in the press that they had a shotgun and a RPG the two attackers we've seen were carrying AKs. It's possible that a third as-yet-unseen attacker had the RPG and/or the shotgun, or it's possible that the witness accounts are flawed. We really don't know.
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by Boondock » Wed Jan 07, 2015 11:14 am

Apathy wrote:I bet the Paris municipal police have a MRAP that can handle ordinance like that ...
Not to derail the thread, but an RPG will cut through an MRAP like a hot knife through butter.

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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by the_alias » Wed Jan 07, 2015 11:16 am

sheddi wrote:
Apathy wrote:The Hell did he get an RPG? And, why didn't he use it?
Two good questions.

I'll note that we've only seen two attackers in the on-scene photos, and that despite suggestions in the press that they had a shotgun and a RPG the two attackers we've seen were carrying AKs. It's possible that a third as-yet-unseen attacker had the RPG and/or the shotgun, or it's possible that the witness accounts are flawed. We really don't know.
There is a clip where you see the third, I also haven't noticed an RPG.

Europe has porous borders, getting one over from the ungovernable messes of Libya probably isn't that difficult with a speed boat. Same way a lot of drugs end up in Europe as well from North Africa. Heck it could even have come from the East but that seems a bit less likely.
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by Mikeyboy » Wed Jan 07, 2015 12:32 pm

the_alias wrote:
sheddi wrote:
Apathy wrote:The Hell did he get an RPG? And, why didn't he use it?
Two good questions.

I'll note that we've only seen two attackers in the on-scene photos, and that despite suggestions in the press that they had a shotgun and a RPG the two attackers we've seen were carrying AKs. It's possible that a third as-yet-unseen attacker had the RPG and/or the shotgun, or it's possible that the witness accounts are flawed. We really don't know.
There is a clip where you see the third, I also haven't noticed an RPG.

Europe has porous borders, getting one over from the ungovernable messes of Libya probably isn't that difficult with a speed boat. Same way a lot of drugs end up in Europe as well from North Africa. Heck it could even have come from the East but that seems a bit less likely.
True, you can drive straight from Yemen to France via Turkey, but that is A LOT of country border crossings and checkpoints. Going westward from Yemen, cross the red sea and your in Sudan, which borders Libya. Libya and Sudan probably have plenty of AK-47s and other arms you can buy easily and for cheap. The Libyan Coast to the coast of France is still a hike, from Tripoli to Nice France its 811 miles, I don't think a speed boat would have the range but it could be done with a midsized (40ft to 50ft) powerboat and solid planning . Another possible route is Sudan, to Libya, To Algeria, then take a ferry to Spain, but I don't know how the security is on the ferry crossing. I am hoping its very good and they did this all with a private boat . If these terrorist were able to smuggle in AKs, RPGs, and themselves on a standard commercial ferry that runs on a regular basis, and not smuggled across on private boat that is bad news.

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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by phalanx » Wed Jan 07, 2015 1:40 pm

I was reading about this on Reddit, and a poster mentioned the presence of weapons being smuggled due to the Balkan conflicts. I thought that sounded a little fishy but after a little research I found out a bit about weapon smuggling in Europe. From the 2012 EU conference “Fight against illicit trafficking in firearms”:
Legally owned weapons in the EU continue to feed the illegal market, powerful and highly dangerous weapons continue to be smuggled - apparently without great difficulty - over our external borders, notably from countries in the EU’s neighbourhood, where weak management of stockpiles, looting, and corruption fuel the illicit market. There is evidence that criminal groups creatively exploit new technologies, for example making and distributing weapons from spare parts bought legally on the Internet, by converting lawful air guns into more dangerous weapons, and by re-activating neutralized weapons bought both outside and inside the EU
Okay, not super specific. But then I found this from a WSJ article in 2010, sources come from Europol:
Rocket launchers or assault rifles such as AK-47s are available in the European Union for as little as €300 to €700, according to Europol, the European police agency based in The Hague.
Europol says organized crime groups and street gangs are “routinely using firearms in populated areas, posing a significant threat to the general public and law enforcement personnel.”
In a statement released this morning, Europol said the firearms mostly come in through suppliers in South East Europe.
“The establishment of firearms ‘pools’ in major cities in Western Europe has significantly increased the local availability of weapons to criminal hubs. This system of shared access gives criminals a rapid route to firearms that can be hired for a given period of time, as well as lowering the cost and the risk of being caught in possession,” the statement said.
I also found a really interesting report on Italian mafias that detail where they get their weapons:
http://www.smallarmssurvey.org/fileadmi ... r-4-EN.pdf
This chapter from a larger report indicates that criminal gangs in former Yugoslavia and Albania are a major source of weapons, which sometimes includes RPG’s.
So yeah, I guess I buy the argument that there could be RPG’s floating around Paris and one or more of them are in the hands of these terrorists. Unfortunately, I have a bad feeling that this might turn into a Mumbai-style run and gun series of attacks. Time will tell.

Sources:
Fight against illicit trafficking in firearmshttp://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_SP ... 841_en.htm
Going Cheap in the EU: AK-47shttp://blogs.wsj.com/brussels/2010/07/1 ... eu-ak-47s/

Edited to add this bit I just read in the linked PDF on Italian mafia arms:
Police seized two underground
bunkers that contained, among other weapons, 10 missiles, 10 bazookas, 50 AK-pattern rifles, 35 pistols, 7 sub-machine guns, 10 anti-tank bombs, 400 kg of explosives, and some bulletproof jackets; most of these weapons originated in Eastern Europe, the former Yugoslavia, Iran, and Afghanistan (Viviano, 1996, p. 20).
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mass shooting?

Post by Stercutus » Wed Jan 07, 2015 2:44 pm

Is there anyway we can just call this what it is; "Islamic Terrorist Attack" vs "Mass shooting"?

Mass shooting makes it sound like some kid who went off his meds as opposed to what it was: Retaliation and intimidation of non-Islamic people by Islamic Fundamentalists attempting to destroy and cower non-Islamic media that runs counter to their faith. Various groups have threatened to do this exact event for years and then finally carried it out and took credit for it already. So it is kind of ridiculous to not call it what it is.

When we look at how we prepare for events "mass shooting" paints a completely false picture of the event. Having dealt with both personally I can tell you there is quite a bit of difference between the two both in how you prepare for and how you react to the event. By some similar logic I could call the the Battle of New Orleans a "mass shooting", but that is not what it was.

I think here at least we owe ourselves that much honesty.
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Re: Paris, France - mass shooting

Post by smgeaghan » Wed Jan 07, 2015 2:57 pm

Mikeyboy wrote:
the_alias wrote:The barbarism is evident in the uncensored clip.
Ditto, Not only shooting down a what I'm assuming was a police officer, but to walk over to the cop who is clearly no longer a threat to them, just laying on the ground, and shooting him in the head at point blank range.
Absolutely absurd, It legitimately pains me to watch that happen. I hope they catch these people soon
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Re: mass shooting?

Post by phalanx » Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:00 pm

Stercutus wrote:Is there anyway we can just call this what it is; "Islamic Terrorist Attack" vs "Mass shooting"?

Mass shooting makes it sound like some kid who went off his meds as opposed to what it was: Retaliation and intimidation of non-Islamic people by Islamic Fundamentalists attempting to destroy and cower non-Islamic media that runs counter to their faith. Various groups have threatened to do this exact event for years and then finally carried it out and took credit for it already. So it is kind of ridiculous to not call it what it is.

When we look at how we prepare for events "mass shooting" paints a completely false picture of the event. Having dealt with both personally I can tell you there is quite a bit of difference between the two both in how you prepare for and how you react to the event. By some similar logic I could call the the Battle of New Orleans a "mass shooting", but that is not what it was.

I think here at least we owe ourselves that much honesty.
I think it's just semantics at this point. Yes, it's terrorism fueled by extremist religious ideals. It is also a mass shooting. I don't think we need to tiptoe around calling it religiously-motivated, but discussion of what it means being perpetuated by Islamic jihads gets us nowhere.
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Re: mass shooting?

Post by LowKey » Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:01 pm

Stercutus wrote:Is there anyway we can just call this what it is; "Islamic Terrorist Attack" vs "Mass shooting"?

Mass shooting makes it sound like some kid who went off his meds as opposed to what it was: Retaliation and intimidation of non-Islamic people by Islamic Fundamentalists attempting to destroy and cower non-Islamic media that runs counter to their faith. Various groups have threatened to do this exact event for years and then finally carried it out and took credit for it already. So it is kind of ridiculous to not call it what it is.

When we look at how we prepare for events "mass shooting" paints a completely false picture of the event. Having dealt with both personally I can tell you there is quite a bit of difference between the two both in how you prepare for and how you react to the event. By some similar logic I could call the the Battle of New Orleans a "mass shooting", but that is not what it was.

I think here at least we owe ourselves that much honesty.
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Re: mass shooting?

Post by the_alias » Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:03 pm

Stercutus wrote:Is there anyway we can just call this what it is; "Islamic Terrorist Attack" vs "Mass shooting"?

Mass shooting makes it sound like some kid who went off his meds as opposed to what it was: Retaliation and intimidation of non-Islamic people by Islamic Fundamentalists attempting to destroy and cower non-Islamic media that runs counter to their faith. Various groups have threatened to do this exact event for years and then finally carried it out and took credit for it already. So it is kind of ridiculous to not call it what it is.

When we look at how we prepare for events "mass shooting" paints a completely false picture of the event. Having dealt with both personally I can tell you there is quite a bit of difference between the two both in how you prepare for and how you react to the event. By some similar logic I could call the the Battle of New Orleans a "mass shooting", but that is not what it was.

I think here at least we owe ourselves that much honesty.
I agree with you and it's changed.

I think at first it was just a mass shooting though, when there isn't much info to go on.
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Re: mass shooting?

Post by sheddi » Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:08 pm

Stercutus wrote:Is there anyway we can just call this what it is; "Islamic Terrorist Attack" vs "Mass shooting"?
When starting this thread off I considered what to call it. I went with "mass shooting" since that seemed a factual description of the event; there were multiple gunshot casualties. Due to the limited information available at the time, anything more seemed to involve making assumptions about the gunmen's motivations, politics and religion.

Since then, French President François Hollande has labelled the shooting "undoubtedly a terrorist attack" and eyewitnesses report the gunmen as claiming to be from Al Qaeda so I can see why you're asking the question. I'll go back and edit the title (if I can).
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Re: Paris, France - Islamist Terror Attack on satirical maga

Post by Stercutus » Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:19 pm

Thanks, by the time I heard it was already confirmed.


This was a well planned and well executed attack. I wonder if the timing was linked to their new issue? If so it reeks of inside information.
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Re: Paris, France - Islamist Terror Attack on satirical maga

Post by sheddi » Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:31 pm

Mashable has a page reporting what is currently known about the victims.

http://mashable.com/2015/01/07/charlie-hebdo-victims/
Quoting selectively:
Ten people who worked at or with the satirical French newspaper Charlie Hebdo and two police officers were killed on Wednesday in an attack at the publication's Paris offices. At least 11 others were wounded, four of whom are in critical condition, and a massive manhunt for the gunmen is under way.

Below, we've rounded up what we know about the victims who were killed.

Stéphane Charbonnier ("Charb"), editor in chief and publisher of Charlie Hebdo.
Stéphane Charbonnier, known simply as "Charb" to readers of the magazine, faced years of death threats over the publication's various lampoons of the Prophet Muhammad. He began living with police protection after the Charlie Hebdo offices were fired-bombed in 2011, and was named as one of al-Qaeda's "most wanted" in a 2013 issue of "Inspire." But Charbonnier refused to relent. "I'd rather die standing than live on your knees," he said in a 2012 interview, adding that he had "no fear of retaliation."
He was the first person killed in what French President Francois Hollande has condemned as an act of "extreme barbarity." The gunmen reportedly asked for Charbonnier by name while the staff assembled in an editorial meeting, according to Christophe Crepin, a police union spokesman on the scene.

Jean Cabut, lead cartoonist at Charlie Hebdo.
Jean Cabut, 76, was the magazine's lead cartoonist. He was known by his pen name Cabu. “Sometimes laughter can hurt, but laughter, humor and mockery are our only weapons,” he said in 2012 interview. His death was confirmed by a company lawyer.

Bernard Velhac, cartoonist at Charlie Hebdo.
Bernard Velhac, known by his pen name Tignous, was also killed in Wednesday's shooting, according to the same company lawyer. He was 58.

Georges Wolinski, cartoonist at Charlie Hebdo.
Georges Wolinski, 80, was a Tunisia-born cartoonist who died alongside his colleagues Cabu, Tignous and Charb. Le Monde called him a "living embodiment of the freedom of the press" and a "dean and the spiritual father" to many cartoonists on Wednesday.
Wolinski once said that a humorist doesn't belong to any political party or religion. Asked about his own eventual death, Wolinski replied, "I want to be cremated. I said to my wife, you throw the ashes in the toilet so I see your ass every day."

Bernard Maris, economist at Charlie Hebdo.
Bernard Maris, a French economist, author and columnist who wrote under the pen name "Uncle Bernard," was killed in the attack, according to the BBC and Radio France. He was 68.

Michel Renaud, a guest.
Michel Renaud, creator of Carnet de voyage, a travel journal, was at the offices of Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday to work on an upcoming project. He was a friend of Jean Cabut, the cartoonist, who was guest of honor in the latest edition. One of Renaud's colleagues reportedly survived the attack by hiding under a table. Renaud was killed in the attack, according to a Paris prosecutor.

Ahmed Merabet, police officer.
Ahmed Merabet, age 42, was named by a Paris prosecutor as one of the victims of the Charlie Hebdo attack.
He was killed outside the building after he encountered the gunman while patrolling the 11th arrondissement. It is unknown if he is the same officer seen being shot at close range in eyewitness video that aired on French television earlier on Wednesday. "He leaves behind a wife," departmental secretary of the union SGP Police Unit, Rocco Contento, said. "We are all extremely shocked."

Franck D., special protection service.
Franck D., 49, was named as the second police officer killed in the attack.
French media say he was a member of the special protection service (SPHP) assigned to Stéphane Charbonnier. Colleagues told Le Figaro he leaves behind a young daughter.

Unnamed victims.
Three journalists and a receptionist remain unidentified.
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Re: Paris, France - Islamist Terror Attack on satirical maga

Post by sheddi » Wed Jan 07, 2015 3:51 pm

I've only a single reliable-ish source, but metronews.fr has published the names and ages of the three suspects.

http://www.metronews.fr/info/attentat-a ... jYdgLbxjQ/
Il s'agirait de trois hommes âgés de 18, 32 et 34 ans. Les deux trentenaires, de nationalité française, sont des frères nés dans le 10e arrondissement de Paris. Ils se prénomment Saïd et Chérif K.. La nationalité du plus jeune, Hamyd M., SDF, n'est pas encore connue. On sait en revanche qu'il était inscrit l'an dernier en Terminale S dans un lycée de Charleville-Mézieres, dans l'académie de Reims (Champagne-Ardennes).
Rough translation with my notes [in brackets]:
[The suspects are] three men aged 18, 32 and 34. The two in their thirties, French nationals, are brothers born in the 10th arrondissement [district] of Paris. They are named Said and Cherif K. [other sources state Kouachi]. The nationality of the younger Hamyd M. [other sources state Mourad], SDF is not yet known. We know however that [someone of that name] was registered last year in Terminale S [science education for 17-18 y.o.s] in a school in Charleville-Mezieres, in the Academy of Reims (Champagne-Ardennes).
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Re: Paris, France - Islamist Terror Attack on satirical maga

Post by Kommander » Wed Jan 07, 2015 5:20 pm

Interesting that they were able to identify the attacked so quickly. I also find it concerning that the police protection didn't seem to help a whole lot in this case. If this kind of thing happens enough I think that some of the more firearm adverse European police agencies are going to need to reexamine how they equip their officers.
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phalanx
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Re: Paris, France - Islamist Terror Attack on satirical maga

Post by phalanx » Wed Jan 07, 2015 5:39 pm

It seems the Paris Prefecture of Police is an armed force. They carry Sig Pro's, but it seems like their police are a weird mish-mash of civilian and sworn, so who knows what the deceased officer's were armed with.
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