Things have taken a sinister turn in the Syrian conflict as the Assad regime launched retaliation rockets into Israel, forcing the Jewish State to launch its highly developed Arrow interception system for the very first time in real-time combat. Israel has bombed Syrian territory before, targeting Hezbollah weapons convoys to the Lebanon and has drawn retaliation from from Syria in response although this has never caused the downing of an Israeli jet.
Syria’s response to the interception of Israeli jets over its territory this time is to fire rockets at the intruding fighters. This time, the threat from the Syrian rockets has forced the use of the Arrow defence system and Israel are not happy.
The recent attack on a Paris airport left one man dead. His last words were apparently
“I am here to die for Allah – there will be deaths”
Fortunately, the only death was his yet the media are quick to report that the dead man had high levels of drugs in his bloodstream, including alcohol and cocaine. He was cited as being known to the police and having convictions for robbery and theft. He was described as being ‘radicalised’.
But what does this tell us, if anything?
The fact he was high as a fucking kite means that he cannot have been a good Muslim and the media is ready to use this clearly terrorist act as a tool to distance radical Islam from the mainstream sects. By painting the man as a habitual criminal with a drug dependency, he is invalidated from the model of mainstream Islam and even set apart from the mandates of the Islamic State which forbid the use of drugs and alcohol. He is given a isolated and pariah-identity, a lone-wolf element with clear mental health problems. As more details become clear, there will be a theory about mental illness, I’m certain of that much.
The dead man was on a terrorist watch-list, apparently; another one to slip through the net of the French Counter-terrorism services and left at least two people needing hospital treatment.
What is Putin up to now? Not satisfied with trying to add Ukraine to part of the Russian federation he is beefing up military presence on borders with the Baltic states. Estonia, Lithuania and other states feel threatened and rue a return to the days of Soviet occupation. In response, NATO is stepping up its presence in the Baltic countries with Britain sending troops and war equipment to the vulnerable Estonian border. America has already sent troops and equipment to the Baltic states as part of the NATO response as have Germany and Canada. Will Trump continue to pressure Putin or, as the Baltic states fear will he sanction the annexing of the Estonia, Lithuania, Belaruse and other countries in an effort to curry favour with the Russian leader?