View Full Version : France, incl. terrorism & counter-terrorism (catch all)

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11-12-2018, 09:36 PM
A really interesting France24 (TV) report that opens with:
When Paris was hit by two major terrorist attacks in 2015, France embarked on a painful journey to understand the radicalisation of its youth. Three years later, researchers have discredited initial theories about the “typical” home-grown terrorist.

I suspect other interested parties, including "experts" will not be pleased. At least the French have learnt faster than other nations - hopefully.

01-07-2019, 06:15 PM
A report from Globsec, a NGO based in Slovakia (who have appeared before here IIRC). Perhaps their observations have appeared here before; anyway:
A pattern seems to emerge. Indeed, our research found out that:

97% of jihadists that carried out the 22 successful attacks in France since 2012 were known either for radicalisation (82%) or by the police
79% were either on France’s terror watch list (61%) or on that of other European nations
Out of 78 French jihadists either arrested for terrorist offences, killed while staging terrorist attacks or fugitives from justice, 49% had previous convictions and 19% had been multiple offenders, just like Cherif Chekatt, with long track records of classical criminal activity.

A few policy recommendations:

15% of the individuals on France’s terror watch list are foreigners: this calls for France’s following of the successful Italian model when possible, i.e. deporting all the non-nationals or dual nationals to their country of origin when convicted of radicalisation. Despite being at the top of the list of targets of Islamic State, Italy has not witnessed a single jihadist attack.
The French government is refusing to look into this while leaving the field open for the far-right to suggest this. A measure that is supported by 83% of the French population.
Focus on monitoring radicalised multiple offenders that may have a higher probability to carry out a terror attack (as seen in the case of Chekatt).


Philip Morris plc sponsored the research.

02-02-2019, 08:28 PM
The Yellow Vest protest movement in France has attracted considerable media reporting, sometimes with decent comments; his article by John Lichfield, an experienced British journalist living in Paris beats them all.

He describes why this protest, sometimes violent, has it's geographical roots beyond the cities and reflects the frustration of many. Plus the reaction of the government, the police and the extremes. One of the unreported aspects is the widespread damage to speed cameras.

This is not a France-only phenomenon. It sits best here for now.

He ends in part with:
What scares me is not the fact of the GJ movement – not the fact of the anger – but the fact of the fury, the white-hot fury. We speak a great deal about radicalisation, especially of young Muslims etc. But what explains the radicalisation of home carers and garage mechanics in small towns who don’t understands the basics of how their own country’s political and tax system works but know they’re out of the loop, left behind. They have been persuaded that they are being cheated, conspired against. This is partly explained by lack of trusted guides such as political parties, media, church, unions – to shape public opinion. But the white-hot anger can only be explained by the facing mirrors, the multiplier effect, the compound or viral effect of social media. Thus, the Gilets Jaunes is a French crisis but also part of a wider, existential crisis for all 21st century economies and democracies.

Thanks to 'Red Rat' providing the pointer.

Bill Moore
02-02-2019, 08:43 PM
but what explains the radicalisation of home carers and garage mechanics in small towns who don’t understands the basics of how their own country’s political and tax system works but know they’re out of the loop, left behind.

First blame a particular group (Muslims, Jews, homosexuals, white males, the rich, cops, the homeless, pick your adversary), groups then form around this hatred and begin to reinforce their beliefes leading to radicalization and violent action in the pursuit of political power. Nazis, Maoists, etc., provide examples of where it can lead over time.

02-20-2019, 08:51 PM
A book review of the 2017 book by Gilles Kepel, a French academic expert on terrorism, by Aaron Zelin and yes the book is in English. The title is from the last sentence of the review.
Link:https://www.academia.edu/38395664/A_Review_of_Gilles_Kepels_Terror_in_France_The_Ris e_of_Jihad_in_the_West_

03-24-2019, 04:29 PM
Temporary separate thread, as we see which way the wind blows on this.

Caveat: plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4K1q9Ntcr5g)

From March 16th

PARIS — French yellow vest protesters set life-threatening fires, smashed up luxury stores and clashed with police Saturday in the 18th straight weekend of demonstrations against President Emmanuel Macron. Large plumes of smoke rose above the rioting on Paris’ landmark Champs-Elysees Avenue, and a mother and her child were just barely saved from a building blaze.

French police tried to contain the demonstrators with tear gas and water cannon with limited success.


Yellow vest groups representing teachers, unemployed people and labor unions were among those that organized dozens of rallies and marches Saturday in the capital and around France.

Protesters dismiss Macron’s national debate on the economy as empty words and a campaign ploy by Macron to gain support for the European Parliament elections in May. Protesters are angry over high taxes and Macron policies seen as coddling business.


From March 23rd -

PARIS — Thousands of French yellow vest demonstrators were marching through Paris on Saturday as authorities enforced bans on protests in certain areas and displayed enhanced security measures to avoid a repeat of last week’s riots in the capital.

The crowd gathered peacefully Saturday at Denfert-Rochereau Square in southern Paris and then headed north. The protesters are expected to finish Saturday’s march in the tourist-heavy neighborhood of Montmartre around its signature monument, the hilltop Sacre-Coeur Cathedral.

French authorities have banned protests from the Champs-Elysees Avenue in Paris and the central neighborhoods of several other cities including Bordeaux, Toulouse, Marseille and Nice in the south, and Rouen in western France.


The new Paris police chief, Didier Lallement, who took charge following the destruction wrought by last week’s protests, said specific police units have been created to react faster to any violence.

About 6,000 police officers were deployed in the capital on Saturday and two drones were helping to monitor the demonstrations. French authorities also deployed soldiers to protect sensitive sites, allowing police forces to focus on maintaining order during the protests.


Plot twist - yes, source is World Socialist Work Site.

Yesterday, the governor of the Paris military district told France Info that soldiers of the Operation Sentinel counter-terror mission had been authorized to fire today on the “yellow vests.” Asked about whether soldiers were capable of carrying out law enforcement duties, General Bruno Le Ray replied: “Our orders are sufficiently clear that we do not need to be worried at all. The soldiers’ rules of engagement will be fixed very rigorously.”

“They will have different means for action faced with all types of threats,” he continued. “That can go as far as opening fire.”