Tagged terrorism

By Elisa Lledó

Spain has celebrated its thirtieth anniversary as a member of the EU, in a family that has little time for parties. The country has extensive experience in matters related to terrorism and the management of illegal immigration, the two most pressing issues for Europe. Therefore Spain could take on a leading role within the European club…

by Evangelos Areteos

From the ashes of this ethical debris of the European civilization and the European project that were born after the Second World War and in reaction to all the ignominies of that past, the nation-state and its populist hubris are emerging as the big winners.

Brussels attacked

In recent months and years we have got used to witnessing attacks on Brussels, the city symbolizing the centre of the European Union that national leaders in government and opposition love to criticize for everything that goes wrong or is unpopular on the European continent. Today, though, 22 March 2016, it was not a metaphoric but a coordinated literal attack on the city of Brussels that dominated the headlines…

The hideous and deplorable attacks in Paris on November 13th have unleashed a wave of fear throughout Europe triggering the lockdown of the Belgian capital Brussels. The clocks were pointing at 1am on Friday 20th, when the Belgian government decided to raise the terror alert to its maximum, 4 out of 4, due to a “serious and imminent” threat similar to the tragic events in Paris claimed by the Islamic State, “with multiples attacks in different places,” said the Belgian prime minister Charles Michel.

The focus on terrorism is obscuring the issues of refugees, and it is important to consider its impact on Europe, after the shock of Paris. Of course, the impact of terrorism in the daily life of ordinary citizens is going to increase the culture of checks and control in place since September 11, 2001. Since the New York massacre, the 10,000 planes that take off daily carry citizens who go through vexing security check, and cannot bring liquid on boards, etc.

Geography and history, modern and older, internal fault lines as well as external interventions, have given rise to a perfect storm in the Eastern Mediterranean. In an arc of fire that stretches from Libya to Syria and can be extrapolated further North, all the way to Russia and Ukraine, a series of conflicts have made this an area of particular instability, for the world as a whole and more immediately for nearby Europe…

Terrorism will not prevail

The terrorist attacks in Paris, in the night of Friday, 13 November, have shaken France, the rest of Europe and beyond. Although not the first major attack on the French capital in the course of this year, with the Charlie Hebdo massacre only some ten months earlier, this took terrorism to another level, in terms of audacity and coordination on the part of the perpetrators, and number of victims. With more than 120 people dead and almost one hundred more fighting for their lives, several suicide bombers and indiscriminate killings, this was a scene of Baghdad or Beirut enacted in the heart of Europe, like never before…

No more excuses: either our continent really unites or it is destined to fall apart under external and internal strains. The ongoing refugee crisis is one more demonstration of the need for a Europe with one voice, one plan and pooled resources. Huge damage has already been done by interventions in countries like Iraq, Syria and Libya, with the acquiescence if not active participation of some European countries: interventions of dubious legality lacking a plan for the day after.

This Thursday (June 18, 2015) marks the first day of the month of Ramadan – the ninth and the holiest month of the Islamic calendar, which is very significant also for the European Muslims. Thousands are expected for the Ramadan opening prayers at the Islamic and Cultural Centre of Belgium (CICB). The building is located in the Cinquantenaire Park in Brussels and is sometimes called the ‘Great Mosque of Brussels.’ Curiously, it’s a gift from the Belgian King.

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