Thursday, March 22, 2012

Fortunately, the French police shot him dead

The New York Times is reporting that the anti-Semitic Islamist murderer, Mohammed Merah, who assassinated a rabbi, his two children and another little girl at a Jewish school (the victims are pictured above), was killed in a shootout by French police in Toulouse, France, after a standoff which lasted more than 30 hours.

A 23-year-old Frenchman who claimed responsibility for killing four men and three children was shot dead on Thursday after security forces stormed the apartment where he had been holed up for more than 30 hours, French officials said.

François Molins, the prosecutor in charge of the investigation, said the man, Mohammed Merah, was struck in the head by a bullet. Mr. Merah was found dead on the ground after jumping out a low window, according to Interior Minister Claude Guéant. He was still firing a Colt .45.

Just before noon, officers entered the apartment through a front door and windows that had been blasted out, according to Mr. Guéant. They searched each room using video equipment, coming finally to the bathroom, Mr. Guéant said. As the police began to inspect it with the cameras, Mr. Merah emerged from a bathroom “firing with extreme violence,” Mr. Guéant said.

“At the end, Mohammed Merah jumped out a window with a weapon in his hand, still firing,” he said. “He was found dead on the ground.”

Clearly, with its large Muslim population, France needs to do a much better job monitoring those who are violent extremists. The United States had put this anti-Semite on its "no-fly list," due to his affiliation with al-Qaeda.

In a televised address shortly after the operation, President Nicolas Sarkozy praised the work of French security forces and said the he would seek changes in the law to criminalize travel abroad by French citizens for training or “indoctrination” by terror groups. Mr. Sarkozy also indicated plans to criminalize the viewing of Web sites that “applaud terrorism.”

Any young Muslim male who is not Pakistani but travels back and forth to Pakistan should be watched closely.

A former garage mechanic, Mr. Merah made two trips to Afghanistan and Pakistan in recent years, and said that he had been trained by Al Qaeda in South Waziristan. On Thursday, a spokesman for Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry categorically denied that claim.

But a senior commander for the Pakistani Taliban in North Waziristan claimed that many French citizens were that area to train with Al Qaeda. Responding to a message seeking comment, the commander responded: “There have been more than 80 French nationals working in different areas of Waziristan, mainly in North Waziristan’s Mirali and Miranshah. Five of them left from here in January 2012.”

It turns out radical violence runs in this family:

The authorities said they initially suspected both Mr. Merah and his brother Abdelkader, 29, who was known locally for his radical religious ideology and had been detained for questioning outside Toulouse on Monday.

Explosives were found in Abdelkader’s car on Wednesday, the police said, and Mr. Merah was tracked in part because his mother’s computer had been used to make contact with his first victim, a French soldier selling a motorbike online, whom Mr. Merah says he killed on March 11.

The usual comments that Islam is a peaceful religion have been made by various leaders in France. That is not really the question. The issue is the culture of extremism in Muslim countries and in Muslim communities in Europe and elsewhere. Muslims need to step up and stamp out the extremists their culture produces.

Mohammed Moussaoui, the president of the French Council for the Muslim Faith, who also met with Mr. Sarkozy, said, “These acts are in total contradiction with the foundations of this religion.” And the head of the Grand Mosque in Paris, Dalil Boubakeur, urged France not to stigmatize Muslims, saying “99.9 percent” are law-abiding and loyal citizens.

If 99.9 percent are decent people, then they need to keep an eye on the other 0.1 percent and report them to the police.

At this point, I am mostly thankful that the mass murderer is dead. I don't trust our own judicial system to properly deal with a son of a bitch like Mr. Merah. I trust a European court even less. I can imagine if he had been convicted and sent to prison, the same folks who idolize the Philadephia cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal (aka Wesley Cook) would start calling for the release of Mohammed Merah, under the pretense that he is a political prisoner. Many of them would blame Israel for Merah's "mistreatment." To avoid all that I think the French police did the world a great favor in shooting the bastard in the head.

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