ISIS Takes Credit for Belgium, Republicans Pander to Fear

Police are seeking the man above in connection with the Belgian attacks. They also are trying to catch Laachraoui Najim, aka Soufiane Kayal, a Belgian national, whom they suspect of involvement in the Paris Attacks. Najim was in Syria since 2013. He was the subject of an international arrest warrant since March 18, 2014. (Use google translate.)

ISIS-linked news A'maq News agency reported ISIS has taken credit for the attacks in Belgium. Then ISIS issued its own statement in several languages promising "dark days ahead" for those in countries that aid the Coalition. Here's the Official ISIS statement in French.

Why Belgium? The Guardian explains why Belgium is so vulnerable.

A longer explanation from a paper on the fourth wave of foreign fighters released earlier this month:

Today’s foreign fighters phenomenon is indeed not the result of the radicalisation process as it is usually understood (and succinctly described above). The fourth wave of foreign fighters is essentially an alternative pathway for deviant behaviour or, for some, a journey to Utopia, rooted in a ‘no future’ subculture. Vulnerability, frustration, perceptions of inequity and a feeling that by travelling to Syria they have nothing to lose and everything to gain, are common traits among those involved.

....But the route that they choose is one that not only leads them to extremism and terrorist violence, but also engenders a fierce backlash in their home country by enhancing the animosity against Islam, Muslims and migrants – which is precisely part of the environment they fled from in the first place.

In the same camera frame at the airport, were these two men. Authorities say they were suicide bombers, killed in the attacks. (They are each wearing one glove.)

Reliable news and opinion sources: (Skip the U.S. fearmongers) My first stop for all things Belgian is still Pieter Van Ostaeyen. Also recommended, journalist Guy Van Vlierden. Here is Van Vlierden's 2015 article, How Belgium Became a Top Exporter of Jihad..

Here is today's U.S. Embassy alert for Brussels, recommending against traveling there for a week. Here is the State Department's Travel Alert today for Europe.

As always, opportunistic Republicans are calling for restrictions on Muslims. Their continued ignorance and prejudice becomes more appalling every day. I won't even link to Trump's comments, they don't deserve being promoted. Republicans pose a far greater danger to our freedom at home than ISIS. The LA Times editorial today calls for ignoring them.

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    Slow but Steady approach a Fail (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 04:10:40 PM EST
    - Roger Cohen, New York Times, March 22, 2016

    The Brussels attacks left at least 30 people dead at the city's international airport and a subway station adjacent to the European Union headquarters -- the symbolism could scarcely be more potent.

    President Obama's slow-but-steady strategy to defeat the Islamic State is clawing back a little territory in Syria and Iraq but is doing nothing to dent the charismatic appeal of the militant group, disrupt its propaganda or prevent it from killing Europeans.

    I agree with Cohen (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by Green26 on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:05:04 PM EST
    Obama is too cautious to protect US interests in the world, and the Middle East, in my view. He pulled out of Iraq prematurely and allowed most of the terrific gains to slip away. Many, including senior people in his administration, advised him not to do this. He ignored Syria and let it became a disaster, breeding ground for ISIS and humanitarian crisis. He again ignored advice of senior advisors, including Hillary Clinton. His current slow and understaffed approach isn't getting the job done and, while hurting ISIS some, isn't doing enough fast enough. His deal with Iran isn't working and isn't going to work. Another disaster in the making. His cautious approach just isn't getting the job down, isn't helping Europe, and eventually is going to increase chances of a bigger terrorist event in the US. Clinton would have been more aggressive and proactive on these things, and I wish she had been elected instead of Obama.

    All in my opinion.


    Brussels has not one effing thing to (5.00 / 1) (#66)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 10:07:09 AM EST
    Do with Obama...zero...nada...nothing. This is about the politics of Belgium and that nation's desire to not take any of this business seriously until it could no longer afford such willful blindness. Any Belgium officer serving with NATO special forces would have told you this was going to happen, the writing was on the wall for years now. The only thing that surprises me is that it took this long...and that's all.

    But all you $hit talkers like for everything to be Obummer's fault, because he chooses to respect the sovereignty of other nations instead of trying to kick off the next world war. You guys are such effing idiots, and dangerous....


    MT, as I said, Obama and his timid policies (none / 0) (#85)
    by Green26 on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 06:21:55 PM EST
    are not adequately protecting US interests. Europe has other issues, created largely by their own policies. It's hard to have discussions with posters that fly off the handle, like you do. Can you not have a civil conversation?

    One day he's timid (none / 0) (#94)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 05:44:28 PM EST
    The next day he's acting like an out of control emperor...it just depends on which depiction works best for wingers that day.

    The truth is Belgium is a sovereign nation that must serve it's citizens. Belgium special forces have been with Obama and NATO from day one that Obama took office.

    Belgium isn't a dictatorship though duh, and its citizens support specific policy until they choose something different.

    The next right thing is to grieve that Belgium has joined many other nations at a crossroads in the saddest of ways.


    MT, I have consistently said Obama is timid (none / 0) (#97)
    by Green26 on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 05:56:44 PM EST
    and overly cautious. Never ever out of control. And I am not a winger in any respect. You may want to pay more attention. You just can't seem to believe that someone can be independent, have his own views, support Clinton, and not agree with you.

    I think I pay plenty of attention (none / 0) (#99)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 06:10:26 PM EST
    Sometimes too much when I worry about a deployed spouse or our other family now deployed with European command. And that is why I hate $hit talkers who are clueless as to the real terrain out there and not just the one in their heads.

    Bush destroyed European alliances with the invasion of Iraq. I was startled at how quickly most of those same nations immediately embraced Obama to the best of their ability, you have to understand that 8 Bush doctrine years destroyed 8 years that we should have all been working together. And you have voting constituencies to deal with too.

    Belgium has a long hard road ahead that has nothing to do with the Obama presidency other than he is there to assist in any way he/we can. He always has been, but as stated before Belgium is a sovereign nation....duh. You act like the President of the United States holds sway over everything and everyone. I get so sick of it, and the lies


    MT, I have as much or more knowledge of (none / 0) (#100)
    by Green26 on Sun Mar 27, 2016 at 06:35:24 PM EST
    military actions and impacts in Iraq/Afghan than you do. Multiple family members and friends, including my son, deployed. He got a 4-inch deep hole in him and suffered other injuries in his first deployment. My wife and I know first hand the impact of deployments on families. I believe your husband is in the military, and I suppose in harms way in some respect, but he was not a sniper and door-to-door guy like my son was. That is harms way.

    I disagree with your comments on the impact of the Iraq invasion on European alliances. They were not destroyed, at least in the long run. I disagree that Europe has embraced Obama. I don't think many in Europe respect Obama. Clinton would have been much much better.


    This is so stupid (none / 0) (#101)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Mar 28, 2016 at 08:28:57 AM EST
    I can't even tell you where and the ranks of my family members serving. It is inappropriate, maybe even unsafe. But you don't have more exposure than I do.

    PS, Wes Clark was just on saying pretty much what I said about NATO and the sovereignty of countries and their constituencies being two entirely different systems.

    He didn't say what I'm about to say. I doubt he would disagree though. We LOST 8 yrs of those systems working together because of the Bush doctrine. Brussels probably happened because Europe had to protect itself from the corruption, torture, and murder for profit of the Bush regime by putting as much distance between us and them as possible. Shame on everyone of you rightwing nutcases too. You support that sort of thing. You are unethical, dangerous. Shame on all of you.


    MT, how many of your people (none / 0) (#103)
    by Green26 on Mon Mar 28, 2016 at 10:47:35 AM EST
    went door to door in the Anbar provence, how many fought in Sadr City, and how many were seriously wounded (or died)?

    Wesley Clark was a terrific leader and spokesman but is too biased at this point of his life to be credible, in my view. He's getting a bit on the old side too. He's on the opposite side of Fox News. Sorry, but that's not a good enough source for me.


    I understand you know people (none / 0) (#104)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Mar 28, 2016 at 10:58:37 AM EST
    Who were wounded and fired kill shots. I do too. I live with one.

    Everyone in my family was at 10 yrs on 9/11. They stayed in, for the whole thing. They are past 25 yrs in now Green. That means they have achieved highest ranks too. They have slogged through shit and they stuck because they felt responsible, they had to see it through. They are those sorts of people, made of impossible stuff sometimes.

    Sadr City was a tiny ugly sliver of what has gone down. No service is insignificant, but understand my family has a lot of knowledge of the entire scale of what has taken place militarily and continues. And they are still serving....it has been a bitter slog and now taking the uniform off feels almost impossible to them :( I speak of more than one soldier in these words.

    This has been such an enormous part of their lives and the intensity scarred them. More than one of them seems unsure what you do with your life after retiring out of this.


    Sorry, MT, some of what you say just doesn't ring (none / 0) (#105)
    by Green26 on Tue Mar 29, 2016 at 01:12:40 PM EST
    true. Why are you avoiding discussion of Fallujah and Ramadi, where my son fought during the surge? Head of a sniper unit and door-to-door guy, just like the scenes of American Sniper. Sorry but my recollection is that your husband was not a shooter like my son. Getting the call that our son had been hurt bad was no fun, I can assure you. The initial message on my wife's cell: "Mrs. X, this is captain Y of the ZZZ unit. I am calling with information about your son. Pause. You need to call me right away." Receiving information like that, and the subsequent information about his injuries, is a very important part of the impact of war on families. Doesn't sound like you ever got that call. My wife and I know the terror of learning that a son has taken shrapnel and has head injuries. "We don't know the severity of his injuries, but we know he is alive. We will provide more information as soon as we receive it."

    As I remember... (none / 0) (#51)
    by linea on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:12:55 PM EST
    Obama had to withdraw troops as the "properly and democratically elected" Iraqi government refused to sign a status of forces agreement. Keeping the doldiers there would have put them at risk of random arrest by quasi-legitimate Iraqi forces for any percieved crime including charges of murder.

    linea, that is just plain not true. (none / 0) (#86)
    by Green26 on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 06:26:10 PM EST
    I have not seen one senior person who was involved at the time, say that the US and Obama could not have kept troops in Iraq had Obama wanted to and had he tried harder. In fact, many have said exactly the opposite. Most of his senior advisors had advised to keep troops. You are just buying the untrue Obama supporter spin. Does the US even have a written status of forces agreement in place for our troops in Iraq now? The US certainly didn't have a written agreement initially in this phase, but I haven't tried to check recently.

    Bullsnot (none / 0) (#17)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:03:30 PM EST
    Belgium was always going to go....one way or another, it was always on this path

    Roger Cohen doesn't have a better idea (none / 0) (#37)
    by FreakyBeaky on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 08:56:15 PM EST
    Send our boys and girls into that sand place - again? Has he noticed our boys and girls are still in Afghanistan?

    The cure is worse than the disease. Iraq proved it. So did Libya. In Afghanistan we had only one enemy, and it was dumb enough to expose itself en masse to American firepower. Not going to work that way in the battle of a dozen armies that is Syria.


    Roger Cohen, (5.00 / 3) (#73)
    by KeysDan on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 02:09:00 PM EST
    is a London-native and educated Euro-based foreign correspondent.  As such, he often offers a special, but Euro-centric perspective.  In this case, I feel that he is off-base as I did in his support for the invasion of Iraq.

      I agree that Mr. Cohen offers no viable alternative to the strategy of President Obama, who has resolutely gone after extremists, yes, Muslim extremists, relying heavily on stealthy, small-footprint operations, while scaling down the disastrous wars Bush began.

    The Brussels terrorist attack, and, it seems to me, the clearly interconnected Paris attacks of Nov 13, need to be considered within the fragmented and fractious institutions of Belgium, as well as its weak government.  Brussels, with its parallel communities, and Belgium with its separate populations (in culture ad language) and lack of unity, provide a climate for disenchantment and a safe harbor for terrorist habitat. Roger Cohen reported from Brussels and knows, but seems to ignore, the terrain.

     Brussels, a city of 1.4 million, is organized into 19 communes or boroughs, each with between 20,000 to 150,000 people. And, each borough has its own police force. There has been a consolidation into six. But, still, the police, judicial and intelligence services are fragmented, often not speaking the same language.


    So well said (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 05:46:18 PM EST
    NYTimes editorial (March 24) (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by KeysDan on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 01:26:27 PM EST
    compares the fearmongering and bluster of Trump (waterboarding, maybe nukes) and Cruz (patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods in the US) with the substantive speech Mrs. Clinton gave at Stanford University on Wednesday, when she laid out ways to work with allies to defeat terrorist groups and cautioned against responses driven by panic.

     "We can't allow terrorists to intimidate us into abandoning our values and humanitarian obligations," she said. As for Cruz, "loose canons tend to misfire."  Trump's day before idea to diminish NATO was greeted by.." If, Mr. Trump has his way, it will be like Christmas at the Kremlin."

     Mrs. Clinton proposed short-term steps for European nations and for the US. However, she noted, "It would be a serious mistake to stumble into another costly ground war in the Middle East," she said, "If we've learned anything from Iraq and Afghanistan, it's that people and nations have to secure their own communities."

    Shorter version:  Not the best idea to make Belgium waffles glow in the dark or carpet bomb Belgian chocolate shops. Or to string Muslims up with Belgian lace around the neck until they tell us all they don't know.

     And, a reminder to Trump and Cruz, that Brussels is in Belgium and is not a suburb of Atlanta.  And, a reminder to FOX news, a godsend to wingers, who never had an original thought and were waiting on what to think... that, yes, Mrs. Clinton may have spoken with wisdom and experience, but,...not so fast.. "She was a little too calm."  FOX.More hysteria, please.  If you want to be taken serious, show irresponsible panic.  

    NYTimes Magazine backgrounder from 2015: (none / 0) (#1)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 10:36:50 AM EST
    The Near-Impossibility of Assimilation in Belgium

    There is a Dutch saying, "Dat is ver van mijn bed": "That is far from my bed." As long as Molenbeek's many issues inconvenienced only its residents, the government was willing to ignore it.

    Assimilation has become a dirty word (none / 0) (#4)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:21:27 AM EST
    Multiculturalism is the order of the day. Belgium is a multicultural paradise. Multiple languages, religions, and value systems. The nay sayers see segregated neighborhoods as they observe the rich cultural mosaic.

    Assimilation = cultural genocide.


    This is bull (none / 0) (#6)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:28:05 AM EST
    Assimilation is the correct answer.  European Muslims see themselves as Muslims first and Europeans second.  Studies show just the opposite in the US.  They see themselves as americans first.

    This makes the idiotic comments by republicans even more dangerous.


    Neo-confederates (none / 0) (#8)
    by jondee on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 02:13:36 PM EST
    who sell guns to gangbangers at gun shows and post the Ten Commandments along the highway are considered assimilated into the 21st century America?

    Speaking of multiculturalism..


    Yes. (none / 0) (#48)
    by linea on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:01:18 PM EST
    I would think so.

    Howdy, that's actually called (none / 0) (#77)
    by Towanda on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 08:55:50 PM EST
    acculturation -- becoming American but not losing one's culture of heritage.

    Assimilation is becoming Americanized, losing one's culture of heritage.


    I am corrected (none / 0) (#96)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 05:54:26 PM EST
    Whatever it is it appears to be working way better that whatever is happening in Europe

    Assimilation takes time. (none / 0) (#45)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 09:50:20 PM EST
    Heretofore relatively homogeneous societies in Europe now have large populations of immigrants from Africa and the Middle East, which is a legacy of the Age of Imperialism (1880-1960). People nowadays seem to conveniently forget that it took European immigrant communities in the United States a significant amount of time to fully assimilate into American society, often a couple generations, and the first generation that arrived often faced serious discrimination from U.S. "Nativists" -- and in some cases, what they endured was far worse.



    Assimilation takes time (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 10:38:16 AM EST
    it takes more than time.  Leaving the Muslim community aside, the Flemish and the Walloons in Belgium have been living along side each other for centuries with barely a hint of assimilation.

    At a bare minimum, the new arrivals need to want to assimilate. As a personal example, my grandparents did not teach their children their mother tongue, but had their kids learn English.


    Why are you applying American standards ... (none / 0) (#68)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 11:18:57 AM EST
    ... to Europe? And what makes you believe that the Walloons and Flemish haven't had their own issues with one another?

    Your link goes to a sales pitch for the FT (none / 0) (#70)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 12:04:52 PM EST

    A discussion of Belgium, mostly (none / 0) (#72)
    by Mr Natural on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 01:26:50 PM EST
    conducted in English, by people who live across the channel, who work or have friends or family working there.  Not a perspective we get here.

    Warning: the language is not always family-friendly.


    Apples and oranges? (none / 0) (#50)
    by linea on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:07:24 PM EST
    German farmers in Wiconsin weren't citing a religious doctrine for the mass killing of Norwegean farmers in Minnesota.

    Wait, what? Mass killings (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by Towanda on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 08:57:29 PM EST
    of Norwegian farmers by Wisconsin farmers?

    How did I not know of this?  Do tell the story.


    That was the beginning of cheese (5.00 / 1) (#80)
    by caseyOR on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 09:19:36 PM EST
    curds. Wisconsin farmers weaponized dairy products and loosed them on Norwegian farmers. The Norwgian farmers were just a little too slow to release the lutefisk.

    Are you people teasing me? (none / 0) (#81)
    by linea on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 09:38:12 PM EST
    The point I was trying to communicate is that there simply wasn't the sort of hostile radicalized religious ethic sub-groups in early America compared to the degree that Europe is experiencing in the modern era.

    "Blood, rage & history:" (none / 0) (#2)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 10:57:40 AM EST
    "The World's First Terrorists" - Johann Hari, The Independent, 10-11-2009

    "History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme." - Mark Twain

    "To those who say hate does not give birth to love, I reply that it is love, human love, that often engenders hate." - the anarchist Emma Goldman

    Imagine it. A network of violent radicals is picking off the world's leaders one by one. They have killed the American President, the Russian head of state, the French President, the Austrian head of state, and the Spanish Prime Minister.

    Bomb attacks are ripping through the world's richest cities: explosions devastate Wall Street, the London Underground, a theatre in Barcelona, cafés in Paris, parades in Moscow. There is panic, and governments launch programmes of torture and deportation targeted at immigrant communities. Yet still the radicals wash defiantly across the world, killing as they go. They say they have "only one aim, one science: destruction".

    Does this anarchism bear any relationship to the jihadists who bomb the very same targets today? When the film-maker Joe Bullman got young British Muslims with some sympathy for the 7/7 bombers to read the words of anarchists put on trial at the Old Bailey a century ago, they showed an exhilarated recognition. Adam Munevar Khan says: "It was written 100 years ago, but it is happening today...

    Guardian Coverage (none / 0) (#3)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:07:38 AM EST
    updated regularly.

    The Belgian state broadcaster RTBF is reporting that two of the suspected terrorist suicide-bombers at Brussels airport were Khalid and Ibrahim el-Bakraoui.

    The Belgian el-Bakraoui brothers were well-known to the police as longstanding criminals in the Belgian capital and more recently it emerged they had clear links to November's Paris attacks.

    This connection to the Paris attacks and to recent police raids in Brussels, in which some suspects escaped from police, is a very significant development. If the Brussels bombers prove to be part of the same cell as the Paris attackers, this will raise serious questions about potential police and intelligence failings.

    You know what (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:23:36 AM EST
    IMO  Obama is in danger of appearing even more tone deaf than usual.

    I get the whole "we can't let the terrorists win" thing.  I do.  But IMO doing the wave with Castro while they are still counting the dead in Brussels was not good.  In fact IMO it was bad.  Just dumb.

    Ask yourself this, would Hillary have participated in that particular photo op?  IMO she would not have.  There is a difference in not letting the terrorists win and looking clueless.


    Interesting (none / 0) (#7)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:31:18 AM EST
    As I type that hear Obama live trying to sound engaged.  A good sign I suppose.

    The optics got worse... (none / 0) (#36)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 08:49:20 PM EST
    Ok ok (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 08:57:08 PM EST
    It's the Daily Mail.  But seriously........

    For a guy who's biggest, and most successful,  knock from his opponents is that he neither gets this stuff of take it seriously enough......

    It just seems to me that, ONCE AGAIN, he hands his enemies a club to beat him with.  

    I get this is a family trip.  I get not letting them win.  I get it.  It just seems tone deaf to me.  


    Actually (none / 0) (#56)
    by TrevorBolder on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 05:29:35 AM EST
    I believe I saw General Poindexter, and read other articles yesterday, that it was not a gaffe on the  photo ops, it is part of the Obama policy on terror.

    Just poor optics, imagine the French President doing the wave at a soccer match the day after 9-11.


    Not for Nothing... (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 04:23:50 PM EST
    ... but there were like 3 suicide bombers this month in other parts of the world that killed in the neighborhood of the number in Brussels.  Is every foreign leader to take a week off from the schedule to satisfy the America's right ?

    9/11 had 100 fold the casualties as Brussles, which included people from most European countries.  Would you expect the premier of France to take a week off after San Bernardino, which is far more in line than 9/11 ?

    Istanbul, Nigeria, this month and last month 70 killed in Baghdad twin suicide bombs.  Why no whining form the right about Obama during those mass casualty events.  

    I know why, just curious if you do.


    Didn't ask me (none / 0) (#87)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 06:41:56 PM EST
    But I don't.   I do think the baseball and tango photo ops were .....unnecessary.    Both events could have been handled a bit more seriously and still worked.

    I get the opposite idea.   He is unbowed and unconcerned.   I get it.  The thing is lots of people are concerned and some of them are concerned that he is not concerned.  I personally have no doubt that he is concerned.  And engaged.   That's not my point at all.  But when people say Obama has some responsibility for the rise of Trump, I think this is one of the things they are talking about.  Bottom line, people are idiots.  They want to think the president is worried about them.  That he will protect them.  This is why the strongman routine works.  IMO.  Is this right?  No.  Is iit fair or logical?  No.  I believe Obama is a great man and a great leader.   One shortcoming IMO is that he gives people too much credit.   He really doesn't understand how stupid most people really are.  

    He thought people would never believe He was not an American citizen.  He thought states would without doubt expand Medicaid if it was free and in their interest.  He think people just know he's got this.


    And I am aware (none / 0) (#88)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 06:45:02 PM EST
    He did try to make Medicaid expansion necessary ....



    Please Howdy (none / 0) (#89)
    by FlJoe on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 07:30:06 PM EST
    If this isn't concern trolling I don't know what is  
    The thing is lots of people are concerned and some of them are concerned that he is not concerned.

    The fact is 99.9% Americans saw the news, shrugged their shoulders and went on with daily life, most of them couldn't even find Belgium on the map anyway, most of them surely are not feeling any more threatened than they were last week, just the reinforcing violent backbeat of our modern world.  

    Nothing to get hung about.


    You caught the concern trolling (none / 0) (#90)
    by CaptHowdy on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 07:34:51 PM EST
    1 point for you.

    Whatever.  Opinions are opinions.  Everybody got one


    Ps (none / 0) (#39)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 08:58:26 PM EST
    I am NOT saying this for 5s from Trevor

    Yet another thing (none / 0) (#40)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 09:01:24 PM EST
    Hillary would not have done.  At least for the cameras.

    Turkey Deported Brussels suicide bomber (none / 0) (#9)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 02:40:30 PM EST
    to the Netherlands last year.  - USA Today

    400 IS fighters trained to attack Europe (none / 0) (#11)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 04:45:16 PM EST
    say "officials", somewhere, according to Chicago Tribune article.

    The network of agile and semiautonomous cells shows the reach of the extremist group in Europe even as it loses ground in Syria and Iraq. The officials, including European and Iraqi intelligence officials and a French lawmaker who follows the jihadi networks, described camps in Syria, Iraq and possibly the former Soviet bloc where attackers are trained to attack the West. Before being killed in a police raid, the ringleader of the Nov. 13 Paris attacks claimed he had entered Europe in a multinational group of 90 fighters, who scattered "more or less everywhere."

    I was just listening to (none / 0) (#12)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 04:53:34 PM EST
    Graeme Wood who wrote this, What ISIS really wants, discussing this.

    The guy seems like he's has some understanding of the subject.  He says that "losing ground in Syria and Iraq" will unfortunately result in exactly this kind of thing.  And that sadly the things described in that are a sign they are losing.  At least militarily.  And that it may well get worse before it gets better.

    After listening to him I read that.  It's pretty interesting.


    For me (none / 0) (#13)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 05:33:33 PM EST
    The most interesting part of that Atlantic piece was the Apocalypse section.  It's disturbing how similar the beliefs are to apocalyptic Christian beliefs.

    After its battle in Dabiq, Cerantonio said, the caliphate will expand and sack Istanbul. Some believe it will then cover the entire Earth, but Cerantonio suggested its tide may never reach beyond the Bosporus. An anti-Messiah, known in Muslim apocalyptic literature as Dajjal, will come from the Khorasan region of eastern Iran and kill a vast number of the caliphate's fighters, until just 5,000 remain, cornered in Jerusalem. Just as Dajjal prepares to finish them off, Jesus--the second-most-revered prophet in Islam--will return to Earth, spear Dajjal, and lead the Muslims to victory

    It's unnerving to think about two different and powerful and equally delusional groups who hate each other and seem to want the same thing for different reasons.


    What (none / 0) (#14)
    by TrevorBolder on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 05:43:26 PM EST
    Two groups are you talking about?

    Sorry (none / 0) (#15)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 05:55:00 PM EST
    Thought that was obvious.  Christian and Muslim apocalyptic fundamentalists

    I am (none / 0) (#24)
    by TrevorBolder on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:40:12 PM EST
    Unaware of any Christian group hating Muslims,
    Killing Muslims, Beheading Muslims.

    There are over 2 billion Muslims, of which approximately 7% are radicalized.


    Not the point (none / 0) (#25)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:50:17 PM EST
    The point was they both what to bring about the end times and the accompanying apocalypse.   This is just a fact.  

    Tactics are not the point.


    And if you are "unaware" (none / 0) (#26)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:51:55 PM EST
    Of Christians hating Muslims .......

    I'm not sure how to finish that.


    Just think (none / 0) (#27)
    by TrevorBolder on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:59:42 PM EST
    That you are way off in the numbers, the tactics, and the "hatred". I believe that is a 1 way street

    The messianic fundamentalist christians (none / 0) (#16)
    by jondee on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:00:05 PM EST
    and fundamentalist muslims who are looking forward to the future armageddon that heralds the return of the Christian and Muslim Mighty Quinn the Eskimo.

    One should add that there are (none / 0) (#20)
    by jondee on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:04:36 PM EST
    a not insignificant number of End Times Jews nestled in the settlements on the West Bank and elsewhere.

    Can't imagine they want Jesus returning (none / 0) (#22)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:11:21 PM EST
    He would probably be pissed

    What did Blake say? (none / 0) (#23)
    by jondee on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:20:02 PM EST
    The Vision of Christ that thou dost see is my Vision's greatest enemy.

    And so on and so forth.


    Well yeah, of course (none / 0) (#47)
    by FreakyBeaky on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 10:46:53 PM EST
    They're losing, slowly but surely, thanks in part to relentless air strikes they can't fight back against coordinated with the efforts, such as they are, of the Iraqi army and Kurdish and Shia militias. They are hard to hit because they are highly mobile and tend to disperse, but the relentless rain of precision-targeted munitions continues and takes its toll. So they switch to a greater emphasis on low-tech ways to hit their "far" enemies at home.

    And to stay in the news. They've got to attract new recruits to replace their losses. Like The Donald, they must constantly win, or pretend to. They can't be losers. It's poison.


    I wrote about it here (none / 0) (#83)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 09:27:50 AM EST
    What ISIS Really Wants

    At the time he wrote it I thought it was very good. I'd have to go back and look again to see if it still holds up.


    Juan Cole on nomenclature: (none / 0) (#18)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 06:03:35 PM EST
    How not to talk about Muslims after a Fringe Terrorist Group attacks, - Juan Cole, Informed Comment, March 23, 2016

    Call the terrorists "Muslim" if you have to characterize them, not "Islamic" or even worse, "Islamics." There is no such thing as "Islamic" terrorism. The word "Islamic" has to do with the ideals and verities of the religion of Islam, and is analogous to "Judaic." There are Muslim criminals and Muslim terrorists, just as there are Jewish criminals and Jewish terrorists. But there are no Judaic terrorists, and there aren't any Islamic ones either. But it is all right just to call them terrorists or cultists.

    Well... (none / 0) (#53)
    by linea on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 11:57:25 PM EST
    I disagree with the entire premise. Also, Israel does arrest and convict the occasional Judaic terrorist.

    I did like reading "Year 501" however.


    The guy in the pic (none / 0) (#41)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 09:20:20 PM EST
    At the top of the post has been officially counted as among the dead.  I guess the found parts big enough to identify.

    Chicago Tribune (none / 0) (#42)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 09:34:22 PM EST
    European security officials said one of the suicide bombers was Najim Laachraoui, a Moroccan-born Belgian whom police have hunted as the suspected bombmaker in the Nov. 13 attacks on Paris by the Islamic State that killed 130 people.



    Sorry (none / 0) (#59)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 07:10:41 AM EST
    Not correct.  According to what I just saw the person named, Laachraoui, was actually the slimmer guy in black with one glove.  

    The OTHER guy, the one in the pic at the top of the post who was misidentified as Laachraoui,  is still the subject of a massive manhunt.


    Have they looked on the ceiling? (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by Mr Natural on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 07:51:33 AM EST
    Really? (none / 0) (#46)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Wed Mar 23, 2016 at 10:27:52 PM EST
    TrevorBolder: "Radical Islam does not compare to Fundamentalist Christian[.] In number, in hatred, in actions. NONE[.]"

    And you know this to be the case -- how, exactly? Because that news would most likely come as a surprise to:

    • Those persons who so happened to be at the Sikh Temple in the Milwaukee suburb of Oak Creek, WI on the afternoon of August 5, 2012 (6 dead);
    • The families of late Drs. John Britton, Barnett Slepian and George Tiller (3 dead in three separate assassinations of abortion providers in 1994, 1998 and 2009, respectively);
    • The families of the late Planned Parenthood clinic receptionists Shannon Lowney and Lee Ann Nichols (2 dead in Brookline, MA bombing on Dec. 30, 1994);
    • The family of the late Denver talk radio host Alan Berg (Ambushed and shot dead in June 18, 1984);
    • The thousands of people who were in Atlanta's Centennial Olympic Park on the evening of July 27, 1996 (1 dead and 111 wounded);
    • Parents and family who attended a chidrems play at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Church in Knoxville on July 27, 2008 (2 dead and 7 wounded); and
    • The survivors of the Oklahoma City Bombing on the morning of April 19, 1995 (168 dead and over 600 wounded).

    Please don't make definitive declarations which can be so easily refuted with a simple Google search -- unless, of course, you enjoy being told that you don't know what you're talking about.


    Let the finger-pointing begin... (none / 0) (#62)
    by Mr Natural on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 07:55:18 AM EST
    NYTimes: As Terrorists Cross Borders, Europe Sees Anew That Its Intelligence Does Not - Adam Nossiter, March 23, 2016

    By now it is abundantly clear that the terrorists who work for the Islamic State think, cooperate and operate across borders, ignoring national boundaries. The increasingly urgent question for Europe in its struggle against them is, Can it do the same?

    Hillary (none / 0) (#64)
    by Ga6thDem on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 08:00:08 AM EST
    was talking about this the other day.

    This really is stunning (none / 0) (#65)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Mar 24, 2016 at 08:06:22 AM EST
    After what we have seen how is this even possible?

    thread cleaned of (none / 0) (#84)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Mar 25, 2016 at 09:41:22 AM EST
    personal attacks on commenters and off topic screeds. This thread is about Belgium and ISIS not Trump and christians.

    OH good (none / 0) (#91)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 10:46:33 AM EST

    BRUSSELS -- As a dragnet aimed at Islamic State operatives spiraled across Brussels and into at least five European countries on Friday, the authorities were also focusing on a narrower but increasingly alarming threat: the vulnerability of Belgium's nuclear installations.

    The investigation into this week's deadly attacks in Brussels has prompted worries that the Islamic State is seeking to attack, infiltrate or sabotage nuclear installations or obtain nuclear or radioactive material. This is especially worrying in a country with a history of security lapses at its nuclear facilities, a weak intelligence apparatus and a deeply rooted terrorist network.


    I (none / 0) (#92)
    by FlJoe on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 10:58:24 AM EST
    still shudder at the fact that if the 9/11 hijackers had targeted the Indian Point NPP much of the NY metro area might still be uninhabitable.

    Want to talk about WWIII? (none / 0) (#93)
    by CaptHowdy on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 11:28:56 AM EST
    want to talk about the dreams of in any way containing this conflict going up in smoke?

    Various countries in Europe are now (none / 0) (#98)
    by Green26 on Sat Mar 26, 2016 at 06:02:37 PM EST
    fully waking up to the fact that they have a huge problem in their midst, with large unassimilated immigrant (and in some cases second generation), and open borders. This is not to indicate that I believe they should close borders, should never have opened borders or should not have allowed large immigrant populations. I am commenting only on the current situation.