Global Independent Analytics
Joshua Tartakovsky
Joshua Tartakovsky

Location: USA

Specialization: Israel and the Middle East, US politics

The Paris Attacks: A Few Open Questions

A big tragedy

In light of the ongoing tragedy in Paris, it is still premature to draw broad or definite conclusions, as we are left at the moment with more questions than answers. Still, just as in the case of the tragic crash of the Russian airliner in Sinai, and due to the obstructionist official narratives conveyed both by the Western corporate media and NATO state-members, one is forced to put forward several questions and thoughts, if only to bring a bit more clarity and make some limited sense of the mess we are in.

Firstly, the attackers carried out attacks in five different locations in the city of Paris, as well as in Stade de France, where a football game between France and Germany was taking place, attended by President Hollande. So far, 129 people have been killed, and 352 wounded. The attackers carried out their attacks with guns and explosives.

How is it possible that these sophisticated terror attacks taking place in multiple locations, that would require the collaborations of tens of people, the need to spy on given areas in advance, communication networks and securing guns and explosives, were not discovered earlier by the French intelligence or police, nor have conversations been intercepted or suspicious movements caught in advance? Why were the actions of tens of conspirators coordinating sophisticated attacks throughout the city, including near a stadium where the president of the republic planned on attending, not prevented or detected earlier?

This is a question that President Hollande must answer and the French people must demand accountability from the president, who is supposedly in charge of their security.

Secondly, the Charlie Hebdo attacks in January 2015, were carried out by highly professional attackers who hit their targets with incredible accuracy and operated cooly and systematically, with their professionalism evident. There is more than one question to ask about those attacks, especially how highly trained attackers managed to train this well for their attack in France. It is too early to see similarities with the current mood of attacks, but what appears as the rapid shooting to death of 89 people in the Bataclan theatre over the weekend, suggests that here too, the attackers were very highly trained, which makes one wonder how such highly trained people managed to enter France or train there, without being detected.

Thirdly, a passport of one of the attackers was supposedly found on his body after he blew himself up. It was from Syria. How did a passport remain intact after an explosion and why would an attacker carry his passport with him as if he is heading to a terminal?  More significantly, will the horrible attacks now be used as justification to supposedly go to war against ISIL in Syria but actually will result in operations to topple President Bashar al Assad, who warned Europe of the dangers of supporting terrorists in Syria earlier and whose army is fighting ISIL? After all, the US has been creating ‘safe havens’ in Syria where now takfiri fighters can receive supplies via Turkey without interruption. Placing US fighters in Syria will help them take over segments of land where the Syrian army will be unable to operate and where a no-fly zone is likely to be declared, leading to a gradual fragmentation of the state and to the area being occupied by “moderate” rebels. We are told that the US is supposedly fighting ISIL in Syria, but is it not bizarre that it has been delivering them weapons, as the Washington Post reported, apparently by accident?

French President Hollande already declared that the attacks in Paris were “acts of war” committed by Da’esh, thereby hinting at NATO’s Article 5, according to which an attack against one member is an attack against all, and all must join in a common front. It remains to be seen whether the attacks in Paris will now be used as a justification for NATO to wage a war in Syria. Pope Francis believes the attacks are yet another stepping stone for World War III, Foreign Policy said. In the meantime, the magazine is advocating a war by NATO, even without UN Security Council approval.

Fourthly, in light of Western support for terrorism inside Syria, what has been the strategy of US actions in the Middle East in the past decade? From Iraq, to Libya, to Syria, the US has been working to remove secular rulers, knowing full well that radical jihadists will take their place. If one puts the puzzle together, it becomes increasingly difficult not realize that the US is seeking not stability but instability in the wider Middle East and that its economic model prospers as a result of a world in chaos, as has been argued convincingly by the former Greek foreign minister Yannis Varoufakis and in a different way by journalist Thierry Meyssan

Fifthly, due to the fact that capitalism is currently in a global crisis as argued convincingly by Professor Immanuel Wallerstein, a world - renowned sociologist at Princeton University, that we are witnessing a militarization of police, the emergence of a security state and the crackdown on civil liberties worldwide, and that the global elite in order to maintain its power, as the middle class diminishes and the cost of living rises, will need to result to a greater repression of dissent, there is little doubt that the Paris attacks will be used to justify and enhance the militarization of police, the placing NATO soldiers in the streets of Paris, and a crackdown on civil liberties. The fact is that immense US economic interests will profit from such an attack and the subsequent crackdown, even if this link cannot be immediately proven. This is not  a simplistic “they did it” argument, but when one looks at the broad picture it is clear is that we are seeing Western democracies turning more and more into police states, and that this these developments make far more sense if one realizes that capitalism is in crisis. That fascism would serve best capitalism in crisis, has been clear in the past, and that migration crises can be engineered in order to reach certain goals has also been argued.

Either way, the immense US military-industrial complex is in need of constant wars to maintain its existence and see profits expand and wars drive growth and have lifted the US out of depression or crisis at least twice. In light of these two basic facts, we are likely to see wars intensifying, not diminishing.

In any case, while the French must be certain that they are a sovereign country, the truth lies elsewhere. Philippe de Villiers exposes in his new book a less known fact: France is deeply indebted to Qatar. Since Qatar, the owner of Al Jazeera, has been supporting terrorism in Syria in an effort to topple the president of the country, it may also have far more control over France than one may realize. As far as political control is concerned, gone are the days when France practiced a fully independent foreign policy during the leadership of De Gaulle, and for a brief moment, under Chirac as well. Now France is deeply controlled by the US, not only via NATO that physically occupies the country with its various bases, but also via the NSA that keeps a close tab on everything that is taking place in the country.  France recently was considering warming up its relations with Russia and rejecting the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Whether it will be able to pursue a more independent foreign policy remains to be seen. It should also be mentioned that France remains a potent force calling for a regime change in Syria and supported terrorism there.

One would hope that the French, who have seen darker days, will not accept blindly the official narrative given to them by their government and corporate media but will seek answers for pressing questions that the latest attacks provoke.
 

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