Greenwald’s critical look at media’s coverage of Paris terror attacks

The last few days have seen wall to wall coverage of the gruesome terrorist attacks in Paris, France. Reporters are live on the scene; experts are being trotted out to provide the viewers analysis and rationale for these senseless killings. A lot of interested parties are taking this opportunity to forward their agendas and views. The average media consumer is being bombarded by facts and opinions and directed to believe a particular narrative but not Glenn Greenwald. He believes that the level of propaganda is at its highest level since the PR campaign to justify the invasion of Iraq after 9/11.

Glen Greenwald may be a polarizing figure but this interview from the Democracy Now show is very clear, insightful and raises some good points. Who conducted these attacks? Why did we have another failure from an intelligence apparatus flush with resources? How was ISIS/ISIL allowed to get this powerful? Why is this tragedy is being used/abused to forward agendas? Why are reporters not asking any tough questions?

It would be well worth the reader’s time to watch the interview of Greenwald conducted by Nermeen Shaikh and Amy Goodman. It should  provide some deeper analysis and facts – more than what the talking media heads are.

(The interview with Glenn Greenwald starts a few minutes after the initial news report on the Paris attack.)

“As France and Belgium move to expand state power in the aftermath of the Paris attacks, top U.S. officials have renewed a push to defend mass surveillance and dismiss those who challenge it. On Wednesday, FBI Director James Comey said intelligence and law enforcement officials need to have access to encrypted information on smartphones, despite no evidence that the Paris attackers used encryption. Meanwhile, others have used the Paris attacks to criticize NSA whistle blower Edward Snowden.”  (Democracy Now)

“The problem is, is that there are a lot of journalists in the United States who, as we all know—anyone who lived through the Iraq War knows this—who have used their role in life as being mindless servants to military and intelligence officials in the U.S. government. And their careers, in their view, are advanced when they kneel down and crawl on their hands and knees over to these officials and get whispered into their ear what they’re supposed to say, and then they go and print it. “ (Glenn Greenwald)

Paris news collage

Collage of French newspaper front pages after the Paris terrorist attacks


Horror and terror in Paris

Friday the thirteenth saw the largest act of terrorism to have been perpetuated in Western Europe in the last decade. 129 people were killed and 352 injured (with 99 in critical condition) in a series of shootings and suicide bombings conducted by Islamic terrorists (ISIS has taken credit for these terror attacks). This is the second major terrorist incident in Paris this year (first was the Charlie Hebdo killings). The attack is also eerily similar to the 2008 attacks carried out by the Pakistan based terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba in Mumbai. In both cases we see a string of sustained terrorist attacks carried out by a group of trained terrorists in the manner similar to small special operations teams.

We have not seen a lot of good analysis in the media on the similarities between the attacks in Paris and those previously experienced in Mumbai. This attack may have been conducted by Islamic terrorists from ISIS/ISIL but if there is a parallel to Mumbai, it will be some time (if ever) before the organizational structure behind the well planned heinous attack comes to light.

Is there someone who played the role of David Headley in these Paris terror attacks?

Tragic terrorist attacks by Islamic terrorists in Paris kill over one hundred and injure hundreds more

Tragic terrorist attacks by Islamic terrorists in Paris kill over one hundred and injure hundreds more

Click here for ongoing live web coverage of the attacks and subsequent events by the BBC. The Mirror also has some good eyewitness accounts of the carnage.


72 hour terror siege ends in France

The last three days have been chaotic, dramatic and deadly for France. It started on Wednesday morning when two masked gunmen forced their way into the offices of the weekly magazine Charlie Hebdo and massacred 12 people, including one policeman and injured numerous others. In a related incident another policewoman was killed on Thursday and then today, four innocent shoppers and three (of the four) perpetrators were also killed. All in all, a low point in recent French history as the “homegrown Islamic terrorist” struck at the heart of France. Cherif and Said Kouachi were the Charlie Hebdo murderers and were killed north-east of Paris. Amedy Coulibaly is suspected of killing the policewoman on Thursday and killed four shoppers at Hyper Cacher, a kosher (Jewish) grocery store in Porte de Vincennes, eastern Paris. Initial reports were that he had an accomplice, Hayat Boumeddiene but there is no information on whether she was killed or escaped or even part of the supermarket murders.

For now, this ended today. There will be a lot of analysis of this tragedy, some blow-back in France, a lot of condemnation from around the world – but the question of how to tackle Islamic terrorism within free, liberal democracies will continue to prevail. The radical Islamists tend to use liberal laws that will extend their agendas, while preaching preaching that their religion supersedes all other rules and laws of their countries. France has a lot of “baggage” when it comes to its former colonies, especially Algeria and with it Islam, that will make things harder in the wake of these deadly terrorist attacks.

The 72 hour terror siege of France

The 72 hour terror siege of France

“By attacking the freedom of expression, the perpetrators of the Charlie Hebdo killings – and, separately, the murderers of a young policewoman – struck a raw nerve that brought the people, this time united, into the streets with the sympathies of the rest of the world firmly behind them in support.” (Euronews)