Explosions at Brussels airport and metro

Discussion in 'World Events' started by Plazma Inferno!, Mar 22, 2016.

  1. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

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    17 people have reportedly been killed and dozens wounded after two blasts rocked Brussels’ Zaventem airport.
    A suicide bomber was responsible for one of the blasts, Belgian broadcaster VRT said. Three suicide belts packed with explosives have been found at the Brussels airport by police, local TV reported.

    https://www.rt.com/news/336519-explosions-hit-brussels-airport/

    Another explosion has been confirmed at metro station near EU building.

    Here's live center (in Dutch): http://deredactie.be/cm/vrtnieuws/Livecenter/1.2607821
     
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  3. Bells Staff Member

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    I wonder if there will be more in the coming hours since this was early in the morning in Brussels.

    Could this be a revenge attack after the Paris bomber was arrested? Horrific news. Absolutely horrific.

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  5. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

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    It could. But I think they'd announced these attacks some time ago. So arresting may have just triggered them.

    Indeed.

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  7. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Yeah, I'm afraid the next few years are going to be like the IRA bombing campaign. We will all just have to learn to live with the risk of periodic bombings, until Daech is either defeated or brought to the negotiating table in some way - however far-fetched the latter prospect may seem.

    The important thing will be to maintain business as usual, and not to dignify the situation by describing it as a war. Better to use police terminology throughout, i.e. the police will bring these murderers to justice.

    This latest bomb however will not help at all the issue of resettling refugees from Syria etc. People will understandably look askance at Middle Eastern foreigners.
     
  8. Bells Staff Member

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    I had heard that there were rumours around the time the Paris bomber was arrested, that something was in the works.

    The BBC has a very good live section on this situation at the moment and one journalist had this to say:

    BBC security correspondent Frank Gardner says it is "not a surprise" that this attack has taken place but says it is "shocking it was so successful".

    He said since the Since Charlie Hebo attacks in Paris in January last year, which killed 12 people, there had been a number of terror cells "on the loose" that had been inspired by so-called Islamic State and had access to weapons and explosives.

    He said Belgian intelligence services had been playing "catch-up" since then and did not have a "very good system" of sharing information across the various authorities.

    He said attacks in Britain had been prevented by Muslim communities reporting suspicious behaviour to police but this was not yet happening in Belgium.

    I was reading somewhere that this occurred near an American Airlines check in area. But with this having just happened, the information seems to be coming from everywhere and nothing can be confirmed as yet.

    I think it is surprising, given everything that's happened in Belgium in the last week or so, that these bombers were so successful. I have to agree with Frank Gardner in that regard.

    And given the fact that it is still early in Belgium, I would not be surprised if more attacks happened today. There were apparently detonations at the Metro Station (according to the BBC live updates), apparently by the bomb squad, so it's possible there were more explosives put about the place.

    Sadly yes.

    I had to take my mother to the airport today as she is spending the Easter holidays with her family in Sydney and taking a break after a very stressful last 12 months due to my father being ill and she needed to have a break, so we surprised her with a ticket a few days ago, and while waiting for her plane to board, there was a Muslim couple sitting nearby and the husband took out his prayer mat and started praying in the seating area while the wife was playing on her ipad. And I have to say, there were a lot of uncomfortable glances from people waiting for their plane to board. It was obviously nothing and it was just his prayer time, but yeah, a lot of people looked worried, even a Muslim family seated nearby, who looked distinctly worried. And it's sad that it is like that now.
     
  9. sculptor Valued Senior Member

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    Imho:
    We created this mess
    "We" being usa (and allies), nato, saud, qatar, etc.
    "We" decided to destabilize the middle east---------and did a damned "good" job of it.
    and now
    ..................................................................................................................?
     
    origin and exchemist like this.
  10. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Sadly, I have to agree this is largely a Frankenstein's monster of our creation. Many of us foresaw chaos of some kind developing when the Iraq invasion was first proposed, though I for one did not foresee the actual form it has taken. I thought Iraq would fragment along religious and ethnic lines into 3 parts, which is not what transpired - though it nearly did at one stage.

    Muslim fanaticism has replaced communist fanaticism as the source of today's terrorist scourge.
     
  11. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    The news here in the US are reporting 31 deaths at this point. Eleven at the airport and 20 at a subway station outside the EU buildings. I think that the death toll will rise, since there are reports of people with grievous injuries.

    Right now, all the news is coming from the airport, and no photos or reports from the metro station.

    The Belgian security agencies (hopefully assisted by its EU partners' security people) need to quickly identify the bombers (several apparently blew themselves up so there's forensic evidence), find out where they lived, who they associated with, what's on their cell phones, and trace it all back. From all appearances their bombs were professionally made, so at the least there's probably a bomb-maker still out there.

    This is going to put even more pressure on Angela Merkel and her foolish open-door policy towards Middle Eastern migrants. And well it should. There needs to be some way of vetting these people, of determining who has radical Islamist associations and/or received military training wherever they come from. That's doubly true, given that they are disproportionately young males.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2016
  12. Yazata Valued Senior Member

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    Raids are underway in Brussels. CNN is showing at least two helicopters shining spotlights at points on the ground in Schaerbeek. ~7:30 PM local time. There appears to be a sniper with a long gun in one of the copters. The helicopters have been hovering for some time, apparently concentrating on one point on the ground. Speculation is that security forces are raiding a building and the helicopters are watching to see who runs.

    CNN is saying that a nail-bomb, bomb-making chemicals and an ISIS flag have been recovered. CNN is speculating that this building might be where the airport and subway bombs were made.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2016
  13. origin In a democracy you deserve the leaders you elect. Valued Senior Member

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    I said I liked your post - what I meant was I agree, there is nothing actually to like about it!

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  14. pjdude1219 screw watergate i want to know about zaragate Valued Senior Member

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    the only thing foolish here is your blind hate. the idea of terrorist using the refugee process as a main avenue to get in is idiotic. world wide refugees tend to be the most scrutinized. Merkel has made poor decisions, treating the refugees like people is not one of them. do seriously think continuing the same stupid ideas that caused this mess will fix it?
     
  15. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    It has been reported that one of the bombers apparently decided at the last moment he was going to pass on the virgins. He apparently left his bomb jacket at the airport rather than detonating it and getting the virgins, and ISIS has claimed responsibility.

    The police response needs to be quick and it needs to be effective. But it doesn't and shouldn't be irrational as some right wing (i.e. Republican politicians) are urging. An irrational response would delight ISIS. The danger here is that this could move some European states in the wrong direction. That's what ISIS is hoping for, no one ... no country should oblige them.
     
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2016
  16. Bells Staff Member

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    I think to ignore the possibility that they would disguise themselves as refugees is a dangerous proposition. Of course they can do it. And there is enough evidence that they have managed to do it.

    A Syrian man suspected of being an Islamic State terrorist, is believed to be in hiding among refugees in Calais' Jungle migrant camp. The man, who is being hunted by armed police, is described as a 'category S' criminal who poses a threat to national security.

    The suspect is believed to have left Syria in late August and travelled overland to northern France. It is feared he is planning to cross the Channel, either by ferry or on the Eurostar, to commit acts of terror in the UK.

    Details of the 'Lone Wolf' extremist, who is said to be sleeping rough in Calais, were published in France's La Voix du Nord newspaper this morning. La Voix du Nord's report read: "An Islamic State combatant believed to be in Calais is being actively hunted by the authorities. He left Syria at the end of August and hopes to reach Britain where he intends to commit terrorist acts ... He is the subject of most wanted person notice and is considered a threat to state security."

    The French police dossier on the alleged terrorist includes a photograph of the suspect and a physical description. The newspaper claims that French police have been ordered to locate the man and apprehend him, but have been instructed to proceed with caution in view of the threat he poses.

    The French had earlier tried to claim that this would not be possible. But it is. Of course it is. The French authorities have tried to deny it, but people who work in these refugee camps have confirmed that a manhunt is underway.

    One ISIS operative has advised that there are possibly thousands who have disguised themselves as refugees and have entered Europe.

    The news comes amid claims ISIS are using Europe's refugee crisis to smuggle thousands of terrorists into Europe. An ISIS operative claims 4,000 gunmen have already been smuggled into Europe.


    More to the point, to ignore the fact that they could radicalise refugees is dangerous.

    I would say that the refugees, especially the male youth who have little prospects by way of education and employment, are simply ripe for the picking.

    In Germany the country's fundamental Islamists have identified those arriving from the embattled nations to the west as ripe for radicalisation. Bavaria-based preacher Pierre Vogel, a proponent of strict Sharia law but who does not advocate violence, has published guidelines in a YouTube video on how his followers should best capitalise on the arriving refugees. He suggests they should form teams to help refugees build shelters and visit them often.

    Vogel instructs his fellow Salafists to "bring gifts" and try to gain access to accommodation where refugees are staying. If they are refused they are told to engage with refugees in their local mosques. The Salafists are also concerned that refugees might convert to Christianity.

    The German newspaper Die Welt has quoted a member of the country's secret service who has been observing the Salafists as saying: "Our study shows that Salafis have tried in individual cases, to establish contact with refugees on the pretext of alleged offers of help."

    In other parts of the country, Salafists have engaged in similar activities as refugees arrive in North Rhine-Westphalia and Hamburg. Secular groups in Germany have claimed the goal of the extremist group is to hamper the integration of refugees into German society.

    Professor Anthony Glees, the director of the Centre for Security and Intelligence Studies at Buckingham University, told IBTimes UK that he thought Germany had radically underestimated the impact the arrival of so many refugees could have when it said it would process 800,000 asylum seekers this year.

    "There is a possibility that perfectly straightforward migrants from Syria could be radicalised in Europe. Every which way, the security aspects of Germany's emotional response to the crisis spells a real security nightmare for all of Europe," he said.

    In other parts of the country, Salafists have engaged in similar activities as refugees arrive in North Rhine-Westphalia and Hamburg. Secular groups in Germany have claimed the goal of the extremist group is to hamper the integration of refugees into German society.

    Professor Anthony Glees, the director of the Centre for Security and Intelligence Studies at Buckingham University, told IBTimes UK that he thought Germany had radically underestimated the impact the arrival of so many refugees could have when it said it would process 800,000 asylum seekers this year.

    "There is a possibility that perfectly straightforward migrants from Syria could be radicalised in Europe. Every which way, the security aspects of Germany's emotional response to the crisis spells a real security nightmare for all of Europe," he said.

    "This is a problem because of the dereliction of duty on the part of the Germans. The Germans have prevented the Hungarians from doing what the law, Schengen and the Dublin accord says has to be done. People have to be screened in the first Schengen European Union country they get to," he added.

    Germany announced last week that it would no longer follow the Dublin accord which stipulated refugees and asylum seekers had to be processed in the first EU member state they arrived in. The move was precipitated in part by the unfair burden posed to "front line" nations such as Italy, Greece and Hungary where refugees were arriving in unprecedented numbers.


    They do need to be screened. And they aren't being screened properly, if at all. The poor decision Merkel made was in preventing them from being screened.

    And there is a very very real risk and danger of many refugees being radicalised in Europe itself. Screening them properly would allow the authorities to be able to identify those who fall within the parameters of being in danger of radicalisation and providing extra support where it is needed. Because at present, it is desperately needed. Because the radicals do not want them to be integrated into European society and German authorities and those who are trying to help the refugees are now on the back foot, with little knowledge of who needs that extra support, to protect the refugees who need help, from being radicalised.

    Most importantly, lack of screening means that it is much easier for terrorists and their sympathisers to get in. And they are getting in.

    And I think denying this and denying the possibility of their getting in is silly. It is a pipe dream. They needed and need to be screened. No one is saying refugees should not be allowed in or be given help. But for their own safety and well-being, they do need to be screened because ISIS and radical Islamists will target them first and foremost, and in the end, it will be the refugees who become the first victims when they become radicalised.
     
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  17. sculptor Valued Senior Member

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    and
    The police should eschew the bragging for the media. The bombers and their associates should be denied their 5 minutes of world wide fame.
    The media makes icons of them, and the messenger was an iconoclast.
     
  18. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    Agreed.
     
  19. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    [QUOTE="Bells, post: 3368271, member:

    Most importantly, lack of screening means that it is much easier for terrorists and their sympathisers to get in. And they are getting in.

    And I think denying this and denying the possibility of their getting in is silly. It is a pipe dream. They needed and need to be screened. No one is saying refugees should not be allowed in or be given help. But for their own safety and well-being, they do need to be screened because ISIS and radical Islamists will target them first and foremost, and in the end, it will be the refugees who become the first victims when they become radicalised.[/QUOTE]

    So how do you screen them, what is the objective to find .
    I would not allow younger then 40 years old without family and kids no older then 15 years old , then stop temporary muslim believers.
     
  20. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    (Thumper Rule Suspension)

    Honestly, as an American, there are a couple of things bugging me, and neither at this moment has anything to do with the bombing itself.

    (1) It really is starting to feel like racism. Ask most Americans, you'll hear about Paris, and then Brussels. If it's in Mali, or Kenya, or the Middle East, though? No pervasive news coverage. No lighting of institutions. There is not a day on which we are all African. I'm sorry, Belgium; you have my best hopes, but damn it, if I'm only supposed to stop and mourn for white Europeans, I'm not going to bother. If the world is at war, as such, then tally up the dead and I will mourn them all later.

    (2) It really is starting to feel like capitalism. No, really, can someone tell me what is actually going on? I've got a report from today, through NBC News↱, telling me, "European authorities are searching frantically for terrorism suspect Najim Laachraoui amid fears he has escaped authorities’ clutches — again." Meanwhile, I have a USA Today report from several hours earlier telling me, "Najim Laachraoui, who is also believed to have ties to the November Paris attacks, was arrested in Anderlecht, Belgium, on Wednesday". No, really. The news is the news is the news, except in America, where it is a competitive product. Because I also have a CBS News↱ report telling me Najim Laachraoui "has been identified as one of two suicide bombers who died in the Brussels airport blasts".​
     
  21. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

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    So how do you screen them, what is the objective to find .
    I would not allow younger then 40 years old without family and kids no older then 15 years old , then stop temporary muslim believers.[/QUOTE]
    Well, it's more than screening. The fact is, the migrants are there. There was no screening, there was no opportunity for screening. There wasn't any planning. Europe got caught with their pants down. The refugees just showed on on their doorsteps. The EU is years late and more than a few Euros short.

    The EU needs to be more proactive about these things. The time to fix this problem was long before these refugees found their way to Europe's door step. The EU should have been actively involved in Syria and Africa long before the refugee problem materialized. If people were safe at home, there would have been no need for them to migrate. There wouldn't have been a migration problem, thus no need to screen them.

    Additionally, the EU needs to become better at integrating immigrants into their communities. The US is pretty good at this in comparison to our European cousins. The EU needs to tighten up controls. It needs to be more decisive. The EU needs more central governance. Getting the EU to do something is somewhat analogous with trying to herd a flock of birds. The EU needs stronger central leadership.
     
  22. Bells Staff Member

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    Well at present, they aren't even being finger-printed and they aren't even collecting even basic information about the refugees coming into Europe.

    Yes, screening takes time, but even basic searches of the many databases that exist could provide some information. But at present, nothing is being done. They aren't even collecting fingerprints. You have hundreds of thousands of refugees flooding into many European countries with virtually nothing known about them. No one is saying that they should be as stringent as the US system of checks, which is impossible in Europe given the mass migration of refugees they have seen, but better systems need to be implemented at the points of entry, where information can start being gathered before they are moved to other processing centers around Europe.

    Nevertheless, the EU can learn one thing from the US: collective admission programmes like the UNHCR-coordinated resettlements as such can be a good way to manage migration flows and to have better control over who is entering EU territory. They allow for a comparatively orderly process of screening and admitting refugees. Moreover, states can explicitly decide whom they want to admit: what kind of refugees (e.g. vulnerable groups like elderly, minors or minorities), how many refugees, for how long, of which nationality, with which level of education, etc. In case of the EU, making more use of resettlement programmes and humanitarian visa would also take pressure off the EU’s external borders, reduce the trafficking in people and potentially reduce the number of refugees choosing irregular and often dangerous ways to flee in direction of the EU. And when it comes to security checks of refugees in the framework of such programmes, it is simply important to find a balance between the legitimate interest of states to screen refugees and the humanitarian aim to allow for a swift admission of people in urgent need of protection.

    There needs to be an improvement in resettling the migrants, and during that process is when the screening can occur. Even Human Rights Watch have clearly stated that security screening has to occur and the resettlement and programs need to be implemented to speed up the process.

    Joepistole makes an exceptionally good point here also:

    Human Rights Watch have a good article about your points Joe. Well worth the read.
     
  23. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    Gut wrenching video......
    The best and worst of humanity.

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    My optimistic outlook for humanity is certainly stretched to the limits by such predicaments and carryings on of late.
     

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