Geopolitics

Jihad Makes Anti-Semitism Deadly Again In Europe

Like the Toulouse shootings two years ago, the cold-blooded killings at Brussels' Jewish Museum show radical Islam mixing with anti-Semitism to target Jews 70 years after the Nazis' demise.

Tel Aviv funeral of the Israeli couple killed in the Brussels Jewish Museum shooting
Tel Aviv funeral of the Israeli couple killed in the Brussels Jewish Museum shooting

-Editorial-

PARIS — In early 21st century Europe, men, women and children are being killed for the sole reason that they are Jewish. These are not random attacks. They are targeted with precision and perpetrated against victims chosen for who they are, not for what they do or might have done.

The truth about the May 24 shooting at the Jewish Museum in Brussels is brutal and tragically simple. On the eve of the European Parliamentary elections, in the European Union's "capital" and just two weeks before the 70th anniversary of D-Day — a crucial step in the defeat of Nazism — anti-Semitism killed, again.

It will be up to a court to decide whether the Frenchman arrested yesterday in Marseille is responsible for last Saturday's killings. In mid-afternoon on that day, a man entered the Jewish Museum in Brussels' city center. He was carrying a bag from which he withdrew a gun before opening fire. He shot a dozen times before leaving, less than two minutes later. Four people were killed.

The events remind us of the March 19, 2012, crimes committed by Mohammed Merah at a Jewish school in the southern French city of Toulouse. He killed one teacher and three children in the school's playground because they were Jewish. As one girl tried to escape, Merah grabbed her by the hair and shot her in the head.

What's clear from both the Brussels and Toulouse shootings is that the pure racist hatred that is anti-Semitism is back.

The evidence strongly suggests that the suspect arrested Sunday is the killer. In his luggage, the police found an Kalashnikov assault rifle bearing inscriptions from a jihadist group fighting in Syria, a revolver, ammunition and a camera similar to that used by Merah to film and "sign" his crimes.

Like Merah, the young man seems to have combined gangsterism and jihadism, killing in the name of an al-Qaeda-inspired Islamist fight, for which Syria is the newest battlefield. He is said to have gone there for a year, like hundreds of other young Europeans, many of whom have north African origins. Syria has become a jihad training camp for these new terrorists.

The Internet, and more particularly Facebook, have served as recruitment and communication platforms. That's where jihadist groups broadcast their implausible ideological jumble, inspired by old-fashioned European anti-Semitism and conspiracy theories that flourish online. And these online meeting spaces are where they have resurrected the most horrific racist archetypes.

The liberalization of anti-Semitic rhetoric is a sign of the times, and it cannot simply be reduced to one or another geopolitical explanation. It is relayed by radical Islam and the diatribes of a too-famous French "humorist." Seeing it as mere police business would be like shirking our responsibilities.

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Geopolitics

In Sudan, A Surprise About-Face Marks Death Of The Revolution

Ousted Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok was the face of the "stolen revolution". The fact that he accepted, out of the blue, to return at the same position, albeit on different footing, opens the door to the final legitimization of the coup.

Sudanese protesters demonstrating against the military regime in London on Nov. 20, 2021

Nesrine Malik

A little over a month ago, a military coup in Sudan ended a military-civilian partnership established after the 2019 revolution that removed President Omar al-Bashir after almost 30 years in power. The army arrested the Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok and, along with several of his cabinet and other civil government officials, threw him in detention. In the weeks that followed, the Sudanese military and their partners in power, the Rapid Support Forces, moved quickly.

They reappointed a new government of “technocrats” (read “loyalists”), shut down internet services, and violently suppressed peaceful protests against the coup and its sabotaging of the 2019 revolution. During those weeks, Hamdok remained the symbol of the stolen revolution, betrayed by the military, detained illegally, unable to communicate with the people who demanded his return. In his figure, the moral authority of the counter-coup resided.

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