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Experts Focus on Terrorist Practices, Intellect in Europe | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Bullet imacts are seen on the heavy truck the day after it ran into a crowd at high speed killing scores celebrating the Bastille Day July 14 national holiday on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, France, July 15, 2016. REUTERS/Eric Gaillard – RTSI17P

The recent attack that took place in Nice while people were celebrating their country’s national day has recalled many security concerns and provoked experts in terrorist intellect’s development and practices in Europe and the Middle East.

The terrorist Mohamed Lahouaiej didn’t only chose the public square to implement his attack, but he also chose a symbolic political and historic memory for the French people, which definitely carries out an important message. Therefore, tagging the Tunisian-native young man with terrorism and the use of “Islamic terrorism” expression by the French President Francois Hollande were not a surprise.

Apparently, developments of terrorist incidents since 2015 till 14/7/2016 impose new challenges on the French cultural and political elite. Lahouaiej’s behavior shows that whether he committed his attack because of extremist incentives, or because the French state’s intervention in his marriage, the public policies and the legal and security procedures taken by the government were expeditious and unable to prevent the increasing attacks against the country.

This attack means that the terrorist groups’ strategy has overtook its traditional style in its war with Paris that used to base on kidnapping some French people in the African deserts or by attacking some French interests in the Middle East. These groups succeeded in creating an environment of intellectual and emotional support among the members of the fourth generation of the west’s Muslims.

This new path explains the reality of development and the new tools of the battle between new terrorists and Paris, and also explains the reason behind terrorists moving from Belgium to Paris to implement terrorist operations.

As expected, the new incident has recalled the tense discussions launched by Charlie Hebdo’s attack among the French elite and their dealing with this complicated complex phenomenon.

Few hours after the incident of Nice, a French professor and expert in terrorist movement severely criticized the political French elite and accused it of failure, saying that the only factor they can count on, is the capacity of the French people on building a strong interior partnership to beat the challenge of terrorism.

The expert sees that a genuine change is happening in the programs and plans adopted by the terrorists, which allows them to fulfill bloody scenes. He adds that terrorist groups are choosing simplicity to implement their attacks and they are not interested in finding new weapons anymore like what happened in the Stade de France’ operation.

Yet, the French government doesn’t understand these developments and retakes the same measures that failed before, which may lead to discord among different sects and categories in the French community, that may lead to a civil war.

According to the same expert, challenging terrorism is possible by mobilizing the society and not only the state that faced the attack, which will create a partnership among different French components.

Camille Grand, president of the Strategic Research Foundation said that many factors, which are more powerful than the French policies themselves, are nurturing terrorism. He continues that the terrorism is a global phenomenon and that the powerful countries in the Middle East play an important role in combating it. Grand considers that contrast among the global policies and interests, allows terrorism to spread and to gain new members and supporters.

The Head of FRS stresses on the importance of surpassing the limited involvement of USA and some of the Middle Eastern countries in combating terrorism and says that French-Russian- American-Turkish- Saudi cooperation is a must in the origins of ISIS like Syria and Iraq and not in the affected regions like France.

The French Philosopher Michel Onfray considered that frequent attacks in his country is the result of the French authority’s intervention in interior affairs of many countries that witnesses political violence and conflict on power and fortune. The Philosopher asked why his country would choose weak countries like Libya and Mali to intervene in their affairs. He pointed that the problem is not in Islam, yet it is in racism, and that France should admit its racism.

The terrorist attack on Nice that killed 84 people and wounded 100 others is one of the new violent trends. Although the attack enjoys an individual feature, its political results represent a challenge for the political elite in France. The frequent attempts to use terrorism in political and elective purposes will provide ISIS’s intellect with new supporters and will make the political violence and terrorism a pure western phenomenon.