Charlie Hebdo Slaughter: The World Unites Against Extremism

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The world stood in solidarity with the 12 journalists, from the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, executed yesterday as three Islamic terrorists charged the Paris headquarters known for its offensive and humorous caricatures of extremists’ leaders.

 

In the wake of the carnage, 12 including the majority of the editorial staff would be murdered. 11 others were wounded in the brazen early morning attack carried out by military trained jihadists who remained calm throughout the five minute execution that ended with a police officer murdered in cold blood on the street.

Charlie Hebdo Editor Stephane Charbonnier,  47, known by his pen name Charb, had been the target of death threats in the past and was accompanied by a police escort, Franck Brinsolaro, 49, who was stationed inside the offices. Both were executed.

According to witnesses, who credit their survival by hiding under desks, said the men screamed the editors name and the two were the first massacred.

Over the next four minutes four of the nation’s best cartoonists, Jean ‘Cabu’ Cabut, Bernard 'Tignous’ Verlhac, Philippe Honore, Georges Wolinski and six others including Mustapha Ourrad, Michel Renaud, Elsa Cayat, 54, police officer, Ahmed Merabet, who happened on the scene, and economist Bernard Maris, the magazines Deputy Editor, and a building maintenance worker, Frederic Boisseau, 42, would be systemically murdered in the attack.

After the murder of Charbonnier and his police escort, which appears to be an assassination, the scene appeared more random without specific assassination targets.

Names of the wounded have not been released. Pictures of the offices have been circulated and reveal terror and a chaotic bloodbath with pools and splatter throughout the hallway and main office.

The suspects, one of which has been arrested after he turned himself into to local authorities, were videotaped from a patio above the street which captured the Black Citroen C3, waiting with doors open, in the middle of Boulevard Richard Louis, in the 11th arrondisement section of Paris. The shooters, extremely proficient, were brandishing Russian Kalashnikov automatic weapons and a rocket launcher.

The owner of the tape, who refused to be identified, fearing for his safety, indicated he thought, until he saw the execution of the wounded police officer, the men were members of the French elite terror squad.

The footage which has been widely released shows the shooters, calmly, without any concern, shouting “Allahu akbar” (God is great) and “We’ve avenged the prophet” and then casually getting into the car, picking up a sneaker that had fallen from inside and driving away. The two shooters are believed to be brothers.

The two, Cherif Kouachi and Said Kouachi were immediately recognized moments after the attacks after they ditched the car and hijacked another. Leaving the metropolitan area, the two headed north and robbed a service station. Police are on high alert.

In the 24 hours since the worst terror attack on French soil in more than two decades, the citizens known for passion have mobilized the world against tyranny and terrorism.

The poignant pictures of mass gatherings, weeping journalists, thousands from every nations, holding pens, and signs in French “Je Suis Charlie” which translates to “I am Charlie” as the world stands united against the assault on free speech, freedom of the press and terrorism in all its forms.

Charbonnier said after the 2012 bombing of the offices, "I am not afraid of retaliation. I have no kids, no wife, no car, no credit. It perhaps sounds a bit pompous, but I prefer to die standing than living on my knees."

The assault on freedoms continues and the encroachment tolerated as citizens and leaders are concerned about offending the zealot or setting off a powder keg of hate. Well respected and known news agencies including the New York Times and the Associated Press refused to use the Charlie Hebdo caricatures. Cowering, caving or negotiating with terrorists is not free.

Murder for the written word and for the poor taste lampoon is offensive.  Freedom is our inherent right, losing it we, as society, lose our very life. Living in a more secure society, is the exchange to remain free. The press must remain free; and society must increase security.

The magazines attorney Richard Malka has confirmed the next edition of Charlie Hebdo would run next Wednesday and print 1million copies instead of the normal 60,000. The weekly readership usually ran closer to 45,000.

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