When I heard of the knife attack in Paris, near l’Opéra, I immediately wondered what was playing that night. Was it Wagner?
One can see how even a basically nonviolent man can develop uncontrollable homicidal tendencies after hearing just one act of any of the Ring operas. But that was just the first guess, one admittedly out of the left field.
The second guess proved spot on: the murderous knifeman accompanied each thrust with the scream ‘Allahu Akbar!’, which has become de rigueur under such circumstances. A closer examination revealed that the murderer was from Chechnya, a republic that these days exports terrorists high and wide, from Boston (remember the Marathon?) to the Middle East.
It’s interesting that the Chechens, while traditionally Muslim, used not to be particularly pious. For example, they could match their Russian enemies drink for drink.
They fought Russians to protect their independence, not their faith. However, the Chechens’ religiosity was heightened courtesy of the two wars thrust down their throat first by Yeltsyn, then by Putin.
I witnessed the first one, or rather its by-product, by visiting a refugee camp on the Chechen border in 1995. My prior life had resembled not so much a bed of roses as a clump of nettles, but even so I was unprepared for the gruesome misery I saw in that converted school, where hungry and ill people were piled up on mattresses 60 to a room.
I heard stories, later covered in Western papers, of whole villages massacred and torched, of innocent people tossed out of helicopters at 300 feet, of tortures, rapes, torture. One old woman died before my very eyes: after seeing her whole family perish to Russian brutality, her roommates explained, she no longer wanted to live.
The only help they were getting, explained the man who ran the camp, came from their “Muslim brothers in Saudi Arabia”, and that was the first time I heard a Chechen refer to his faith. But then people finding themselves in extreme circumstances often turn to God. We hugged when I left, even though I’m not often given to sentimental gestures.
The Chechens became even more devout after the second war, that one launched to entrench Putin in the Kremlin. But this time something else happened: Putin eventually managed to install his close ally Ramzan Kadyrov as Chechnya’s supremo.
Now Kadyrov represents another strain of traditional Chechnya: full-time banditry. The Russian government fought Chechen raiders throughout the nineteenth century, but only with variable success. Whole armies were involved, led by such heroes of Napoleonic wars as Generals Yermolov and Paskevich.
Putin, on the other hand, chose to act according to the old adage: if you can’t beat them, join them. Or, in this case, make them join you. The birds of a feather stuck together, and make no mistake about it: they are birds of prey.
Kadyrov’s gangs have been given the freedom of Moscow, where they’ve largely monopolised the traditional nice earners of organised crime, with the government turning a blind eye (when not actively participating). In exchange, the Chechens carry out little assignments for the Kremlin, such as ‘whacking’ dissidents, journalists and political opponents.
The relationship is symbiotic, and Kadyrov recently announced that he regards as a personal enemy anyone who’s against Putin. And believe you me, you don’t want to be Kadyrov’s personal enemy.
Meanwhile the newly radicalised and Islamised Chechens have formed a river feeding the raging sea of Islamic terrorism. You can find them murdering (often in the ranks of ISIS), suicide bombing and extorting all over the world. For the first time in their history the Chechens regularly scream ‘Allahu Akbar!’ as a battle cry, not as a prayer.
The slasher of l’Opéra, whose name hasn’t been released, managed to stab five people before he himself was shot by the police. One of his victims died, two others are critical. All we know so far about the murderer is that he was 21 years old and a naturalised French citizen.
The police had known all about him, and he was in their database of Islamic radicals. But, in the good tradition of police forces all over the West, they could do nothing about it until the Muslim actually killed somebody. Prevention may be better than cure, but not when it goes against the grain of multi-culti diversity.
Intern or, Allah forbid, deport any Muslim radical, and there will be not just demonstrations but barricades in the street, manned, no doubt, by the entire faculty and student body of the Sorbonne. The events of 1968 will seem like a picnic by comparison.
ISIS claimed responsibility for this one, saying that the attack was a retaliation for whatever it was they felt like retaliating against. Obviously, outrages calling for revenge abound, for another ISIS gang has just used suicide bombers to blow up three churches in Surabaya, Indonesia’s second-largest city.
Bombs being more efficacious than knives, they scored a higher death toll: 11 dead, in addition to 40 wounded. Those Indonesian Christians clearly had a lot to answer for.
The picture is almost complete, but one critical piece is still missing, until later today at any rate. So far we haven’t heard any Western leader, not even young Manny, announce that the murders neither had anything to do with Islam nor could have possibly done so. Islam, as we all know (especially those of us who haven’t read the Koran) is a religion of peace.
The murders are always the work of mentally unbalanced loners – presumably like those who overran half of Europe back in the old days. If the murderers only knew how un-Islamic violence is, they wouldn’t shout ‘Allahu Akbar’.
I wonder what they should shout instead. Long live diversity?