November 13th, 2015, has marked yet another crucial day in the timeline of the history of international relations. A sting of terrorist attacks across Paris, that killed almost 120 people, has been the limelight of almost all the news agencies’ coverage across the world and is being marked as the prime concern for all the superpowers of the world. Minutes after the attacks, the world was lured together in support of France and remorse for the lost souls. The Islamic State vibrantly took the responsibility for carrying out these dreadful attacks.
Within a span of less than 12 months, terrorism by the IS has managed to strike the nation twice. Earlier this year, on January 7, two gunmen allied with the Yemini branch of the internally banned al Qaeda, opened fire at the office of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, consequentially killing 12 people. Similarly, on November 13, Paris witnessed yet another horrific terror attack in which the Islamic State (ISIS) recruits launched coordinated assaults on innocent French people.
The ISIS, as the reasonable indications suggest, made these terror attacks as a retaliation against the decision made by the French Government to join the American led coalition against the ISIS group in Iraq and Syria. This is just one major indication that might have led to the recent killing in France. Several other socio-political factors might have triggered such reasons for the group. France is still considered to be the most tolerant towards the Islamist population within the Western European countries, yet the secular attempts (as the country claims to be) and drawing a strict line between the church (religion) and State, France has resorted to exclude religious symbols like crosses and headscarves from public schools in 2004 and also banned the wearing of Burqa in Public in 2010. The nation seems to be the most tolerant towards satirical and political humor. The satirical descriptions of Prophet Mohammad made by the leading Magazine, Charlie Hebdo was an illustration of such tolerance towards religious mockery. Be it the banning of Burqa and face veils in public or the representations made by Charlie Hebdo of the Prophet Mohammad, it does not bounce enough motivations for any religious outfit to carry out such brutal attacks on the country and claiming innocent lives. Clearly, there can be no justification regarding these killings.
In response to the attacks, President François Hollande vowed to be merciless with the enemy and that the attacks constituted a war on their country. The borders are being sealed altogether across Belgium, Italy and France to marginalize any Syrian refugees to enter the county and take asylum, as a move to strengthen internal security and also as a move to prevent the attack planners to escape the country. The Syrians have painstakingly reacted to such strict moves by stating that they too had lost lives in a similar fashion, since the beginning of the Syrian war back in 2011. Reports suggest that almost 2, 00,000 Syrians have died since 2011 due to the war. Jean Claude Juncker, President, European Commission has negated the view and has raised the concern that the public should not ‘give in to such basic reactions’. He further added that the ones who carried out the attacks were criminals from the terror groups and not refugees seeking asylum. But here again, it can be said that the majority of civil deaths in Syria were due to the actions of the security forces in control of President of Syria, Bashar al-Assad.
The major question that this horrific incident raises are crucial with respect to the issue of the refugees, the increasing role of terror outfits like ISIS and al Qaeda, the strategic moves and attempts made by the U.S and other western nations to wipe off such terror outfits, etc.
To begin with, initially it can be said that shutting the doors for the refugees taking asylum in the western European countries has not been the righteous response, even though the general public sentiments against such terror attacks mean the closure of doors for outsiders, and specifically Muslim refugees, keeping in mind the image that has been set in general eye of the world against Muslims. The other and final alternative to the issue is that the International security agencies must collaborate with the nations and wipe out such terror outfits once and for all. This will ensure that, there are no more such organizations to brainwash the young minds in the name of religion and carry out such attacks. It is obvious, that in response to such attacks, France, instead of stepping back from the actions against the ISIS territory, will rather involve itself with the U.S. forces to ameliorate their fight against the group. This was clearly evident when President François Hollande vowed to be merciless against the enemy.
A day before the attacks on the French capital, there were similar attacks on the Lebanese city of Beirut where a Bombing by ISIS claimed more than 40 civilian lives. The international media and the community failed to remorse and express their concerns over the lives of Lebanese people when compared to that of Paris. Pertaining to the position of France as powerful secular nation of the Western European circuit, the incidence of November 13th has grabbed a strong media attention. Hours after the incidence the entire International community covered itself with the colors of the French flag, showing an international outrage against the actions of the ISIS. This particular incidence, at France, will also spark international communities to join hands against the Islamic State (ISIS). The Russian news agency reports that Russian air force carried out a ‘mass strike’ on Islamic State positions around Syria. ‘The international community must rally around that spirit. I know very well that each country doesn’t have the same interests’, President Francois Hollande said as an support to the Strikes made by the Russian Air Force, in an assembly to the city mayors post the strikes made by Russia. He made such a statement as Russia is an ally to Assad, yet such moves are necessary to end the Syrian war.
The attacks have not just been an incidence, it has been a representation of clash of power and dominance, where the ISIS has tried to impose its claims against the international pressure and to its response it is the entire international community which is showing its integration to against all such outfits and stop them from claiming innocent lives. Whether the integration will formally end the ISIS chapter and the Syrian war is still a question of concern, even though the recent integration of the communities together and the concerned international outrage against the terror attacks seems alarming against the ISIS.
Featured Photo Courtesy: Musicaltoronto.org