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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 11/19/15

Breaking the cliched Western Narrative on Terrorism

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"With the communist bogey exhausted, we are told of an insidious peril in our midst: the fearful prospect of minarets and Sharia law marching across the European landscape, destroying civilization. But for fear to work in a tangible form, we must have the visible impact of terror all around us. That is where we are now."--Richard Cottrell,British journalist. [i]

There is a chilling sense of deja vu about the massacre in Paris which claimed 129 lives and left nearly 200 injured.

The terrorists reportedly fired on innocent civilians in a Cambodian restaurant, detonated explosives near the Stade de France where the French President Francois Hollande was watching a soccer match between France and Germany, and fired randomly at the Bataclan concert hall where terrorists held up to 100 hostages. When the police stormed the concert hall the terrorists set off the bombs in their suicide belts and killed the hostages. There were other incidents of senseless killings of passersby on Rue de Charonne, Louvre and Les Halles.

The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the terrorist attacks in the heart of Paris. After the initial confusion and panic among the Parisians, the French Government got into the act of showing the bewildered people that that the government was in charge. A long drawn worried face of Hollande appeared on French TV assuring the French people that swift and terrible retribution would follow, and that France was at war with Islamic terrorism.

While the shootings and bomb detonations of the terrorists in the heart of Paris hogged world media attention, the burning of refugee camps in Calais was played down, indicating perhaps the less worthy victim status of refugees mainly from Syria.

The media went along scripted lines by claiming that the French principles of pluralism, tolerance and broadmindedness was under attack by the "Planet of the Arabs".

Soon disconcerting facts emerged bearing uncanny resemblance to the Charlie Hebdo killings which took place in Paris in January this year. One of the most troubling facts to emerge was that the French Security police in charge of counter-terrorism had prior knowledge about the goings on of a terrorist who was put under surveillance. But they took no action.

Moreover, the gang of terrorists had sophisticated guns and explosives and conducted the series of attacks with military precision. Also, the attackers left identification papers like passport and other such documents which were found at the scene of carnage.

Add to that another pattern emerges: at least five attacks centered on the 11tharrondissement part of Paris which has young people such as bohemian artists espousing leftist causes. As ironies go, the Islamic militants spared the power elites of Paris and instead mowed down the progressive young who stood against militarism and Islamophobia.

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C R Sridhar is a lawyer from Bangalore,India.He writes for the Economic and Political Weekly and has contributed to the Monthly Review.He's a fan of music,movies and websites with alternative views.His writings are available at
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