The Paris Attacks and the Syrian Refugee crisis both stem from a common problem.
The French people have been struck by tragedy. The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the recent catastrophic attacks on the French capital that claimed the lives of more than 120 individuals. As the NY Times reports, ISIS has called the attacks “the first of the storm” and degraded the city of Paris as a “‘capital of prostitution and obscenity,’ according to statements released in multiple languages on one of the terror group’s encrypted messaging accounts.” Using an acronym for the Islamic State (Daesh), the French President, François Hollande, placed blame for the attacks on the terror group. In regards to the attacks, he said, “It is an act of war that was committed by a terrorist army, a jihadist army, Daesh, against France.” Current intelligence suggests that Abdelhamid Abaaoud, a migrant from Syria to Belgium, was the mastermind behind the Paris attacks. Most of those alleged to have perpetrated the attacks have been identified as nationals of France.
At this critical juncture in time, emotions run deep, and there is a common grief shared with others due to the senseless loss of life and the wanton use of mindless violence. Yet, fully cognizant of this fact, the world has unfortunately seen such terror before, and the question we must now ask ourselves is how we ought to respond. Almost 15 years ago, in the aftermath of 9/11, America was in a situation similar to that in France right now. Former President Bush made the statement, “We’re taking the fight to the terrorists abroad, so we don’t have to face them here at home.” In essence, that meant sending people to kill so those targets don’t come over here to kill. This strategy did not work, as the interventions to thwart Al-Qaeda helped to build ISIS, which was succinctly summed up by a college student when she told former Governor Jeb Bush, “Your brother created ISIS.”
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