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Mohamed Merah,  the French terrorist who claimed to belong to Al Qaeda and who murdered in cold blood French soldiers as well as Jewish people, including 3 children in front of a school, is dead.

It has been confirmed by the French presidential Elysee Palace.

I'll add additional information as it comes.

After over 32 hours of a stalemate, with the accused being barricaded in his flat surrounded by French police, the order was finally given to assault the flat. The accused terrorist resisted the attack and was killed in the process.

At first, it was unclear whether Merah was still alive or not. Throughout the long night, the police had been detonating loud explosive charges in order to keep awake the wanted presumed terrorist. However, Merah had stopped giving indications that he was still alive late in the previous evening. He had not responded to the police provocation, leading the police administration that he had committed suicide. However, during previous negotiations, he had clearly said he wanted preferred to "live and kill" or, if it came down to it, "die fighting" rather than finish his own life by himself.

The French government had wanted to capture him alive in order to bring him to justice. The police had been playing a restrained strategy in order to wear him down and cool down his aggressive instinct.

However, under pressure to finish the job (as there was no hostage held), and especially since throughout the night Merah had stayed quiet, the police cautiously entered the flat. All rooms appeared to be clear but for the bathroom from which the heavily armed terrorist erupted, shooting at the police while attempting to escape through the window. Merah was soon lying dead on the street, in front of his apartment building. (He either lived on the 1st, or 2nd floor -  I have read contradictory information).

3 police officers got shot during the final push, one of whom is critically wounded. 3 more police officers had already been wounded during the initial assault attempt, 32 hours earlier.

This whole tragedy occurs in the context of the upcoming French presidential elections, the first round of which will take place one month from now. Already, extreme right candidate Marine Lepen is using this as an opportunity to boost her campaign, calling for a referendum to restore the Death Penalty. It is as yet unclear how much president Nicolas Sarkozy himself, who is campaigning for a second term and who had been trailing badly in the polls, will benefit from the fact that the alleged terrorist has been found, and ultimately killed.

4:35 AM PT: The exact circumstances of Merah's death are not yet confirmed: whether he was shot dead by the police or if he died because of his jump from the window of his 2nd floor apartment.

7:09 AM PT: Merah was shot in the head by the police in self defence.

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Comment Preferences

  •  This individual was (0+ / 0-)

    a known radical islamist who should never have been alllowed to live in France in the first place.

  •  They should have just killed him (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    johnny wurster, cryonaut

    outright rather than risking officers' lives to take him alive.

    Hopefully they all recover.  

    Good riddance to a particularly foul piece of rubbish.  

    "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

    by Geekesque on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 04:19:05 AM PDT

    •  Hijack alert! (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bulldawg, augustin, weasel, wu ming

      Geekesque, you effectively hijacked last night's diary on this topic with comments like that, don't do it again.

      Everyone else: don't reply to Geekesque's comments to this effect.

      Bottom line is, the officers could have legitimately killed him in self-defense, but that is not the same thing as killing him if he is not attacking them, and we do not support the latter.

      BTW Wednesday was the anniversary of the 2009 murder of three Oakland CA police officers by a wanted felon, and I will not soon forget the utterly horrible depressed vibe in town after that occurred.  

      No sane person wants to see cops taking needless risks with violent suspects, or hesitating to defend themselves when attacked.  And at the same time, no sane person wants to see justice rendered in the street rather than in a court room.

      "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

      by G2geek on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 05:18:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Who the fuck are you to tell people (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cryonaut

        what they can say and to whom?  The Daily Kos Church Lady?  

        I will express my opinion whether or not you approve.  It is not off-topic, ergo not a hijack.

        Take your meta bullshit and stick it where it belongs, Herr Kommissar.

        For the record, before the guy opened fire taking him alive was the right approach.  But, it's unclear whether other officers were Hutton the final push.  

        If not, and the only casualty is the terrorist, they did things exactly right then.

        "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

        by Geekesque on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 05:32:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Oh!, just a wee bit twitchy now, aren't we? (0+ / 0-)

          To paraphrase:

          "Who the fuck are you to tell people they can't fart in crowded elevators, smoke at gasoline stations, or bring sharp objects onto airplanes?  Miss Manners?

          I will fart anywhere I choose, regardless of how many people are in the elevator!  It only goes up and down, ergo it can't be hijacked to Cuba!"

          Right!  So fart up a storm, poopypants.  Make a great bit stink and everyone will pay attention to you!  That's what you want, isn't it?  

          Frankly you just made an ass of yourself, and your comment is hideworthy.  Have a nice day!

          "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

          by G2geek on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 09:01:38 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, I was expressing my opinion on the (0+ / 0-)

            very subject of the diary.  You came in and deemed my opinion too inflammatory to be voiced.

            So, yeah, having someone dishonestly characterize my on-topic opinion as an effort to 'hijack' will raise my hackles.

            Next time you wish my opinion to be ignored, STFU and ignore me.

            "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

            by Geekesque on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 09:17:04 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  just like last night... start a fooferoo.... (0+ / 0-)

              .... advocating extrajudicial killings, which is also arguably a TOS violation having to do with advocacy of violence... thereby making it a hijack...

              Anyway, you started enough of a fooferoo last night to last a week, and I'm not going to give you the pleasure of continuing it by replying to it any further.

              As for STFU, you really do take the cake for rude.  

              I'm glad we don't have smellavision or you'd probably be posting nasty smelleos with your nasty comments.

              G'night!  Or g'day!  Or g'dammit!   Buh-bye!

              "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

              by G2geek on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 09:31:41 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Enjoy your projection (0+ / 0-)

                and ignorance of site rules.

                Toodles.

                "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

                by Geekesque on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 09:51:07 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  P.S. He died in an extrajudicial killing. (0+ / 0-)

                http://www.bbc.co.uk/...

                A police sniper shot and killed the gunman who carried out a spate of murders in southern France, prosecutors say, after a 32-hour siege in Toulouse.

                Mohammed Merah, 23, who claimed to have al-Qaeda training, opened fire on police commandos after they stormed into his flat at 09:30 GMT.

                Prosecutors said he was shot in the head as he tried to flee.

                I support this decision and action.

                Go ahead and HR me.

                "[R]ather high-minded, if not a bit self-referential"--The Washington Post.

                by Geekesque on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 10:54:26 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  Responding to Geekesque (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Geekesque

      Because I can.

      Also, there is no hijack here.  "Hijack" means to take a diary off-topic, not to say something some self-appointed comment-cop doesn't like.

      Done with politics for the night? Have a nice glass of wine with Palate Press: The online wine magazine.

      by dhonig on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 09:48:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The French are way too patient. n/t (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Geekesque, johnny wurster, cryonaut

    But nobody's buying flowers from the flower lady.

    by Rich in PA on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 04:19:08 AM PDT

  •  Funny how seldom you see "Radical Athiest" (7+ / 0-)

    in stories like this. I just googled "Athiest Terrorist" and except for the ones made up by the right, there isn't much there.

    We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance.

    by PowWowPollock on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 04:26:30 AM PDT

    •  How about... (4+ / 0-)

      a Radical Agnostic? ; -)

      FREEDOM ISN'T FREE: That's why we pay taxes. I Had A Thought

      by mole333 on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 04:52:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not that anything would come up regardless (5+ / 0-)

      but the result would be more convincing if you spelled "atheist" right.

      "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

      by kyril on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 05:07:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You used to, though (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wu ming

      Back when the declared enemy was godless communism, you used to see the stories about those nihilists with no love for god or life or decency all the time.

      "How did you go bankrupt?" "Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly." - Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises.

      by weasel on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 07:14:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Depends on the historical period (0+ / 0-)

      Look back to the 1970s and '80s, and you will find several instances of Leninist terrorism -- the Baader-Meinhoff gang in Germany, the Red Brigades in Italy, the Provisional wing of the IRA in Ireland, some Leninist-influenced Palestinian groups.  Sendero Luminoso in Peru was avowedly Maoist.  It is likely that most of the individuals involved in these organizations thought of themselves as atheists.

      •  Just because the perpetrator is atheist (0+ / 0-)

        doesn't mean it's atheist terrorism.

        The ideology that motivates Communist terrorists is (drumroll) Communism. Which is unusual, among ideologies that spawn terrorism, for being atheist - but atheism is only a small part of it, and not the part that motivates the violence.

        KKK ideology is explicitly Christian, but KKK terrorism is racist, not religious. Communist terrorism is Communist, not religious.

        "Let’s just move on, treat everybody with firmness, fairness, dignity, compassion and respect. Let’s be Marines." - Sgt. Maj Michael Barrett on DADT repeal

        by kyril on Fri Mar 23, 2012 at 12:03:11 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agreed, atheism is merely a part, but (0+ / 0-)

          a part that is important enough to motivate killing or imprisoning clergy, and seizing their churches.  It is not tenable to claim that Leninist terrorism against religious people and organizations was simply an incidental by-product of their struggle for power -- particularly in situations where they had already attained power and clergy were hardly in a position to mount a meaningful challenge to the regime.

  •  One more deranged fanatic dies by his own hand... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bulldawg

    ... jumping out a window from the 2nd floor, which is a known-effective way to end up dead.  

    Here's to hoping that his death is seen as thoroughly ignominious and dishonorable by anyone who might otherwise have been tempted to go down the same trail.  

    It would have been better to catch him alive, whereby to use clever interrogation to get useful intel on whoever he's affiliated with, and then get justice in a court room and a life sentence, so he could spend the rest of his days in some dank French prison, with body lice as his constant companions.  

    However as it is, he is no longer a threat to anyone.

    "Minus two votes for the Democrat" equals "plus one vote for the Republican." Arithmetic doesn't care about your feelings.

    by G2geek on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 05:22:57 AM PDT

  •  Wouldn't the title have been more informative as (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Geekesque, augustin

    Breaking: Islamist terrorist killed during police assault

    That he was French isn't relevent to what happened. That he was Islamist is relevent as it explains motive.

  •  confusion continues in the media (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    augustin, wu ming

    on Mosaic, there were reports that the shooter claimed membership in al Qaeda and the Taliban, which makes little sense.  While there was cooperation in providing training camps, ideologically and theologically, they are quite far apart and cooperation seems to be a marriage of cooperation for each.

    Also much attention is given to the children and rabbis, it seems that many media outlets are missing the fact that the 3 paratroopers who were murdered were of North African ancestry.  I cannot state with absolute confidence that they were all Muslim but only one had served in Afghanistan.

    I do note that RW sources are already trying to tie the shooter to Iran as either supplying him with weapons or training or unspecified support

  •  Merah felt himself to be in danger. He stood his (0+ / 0-)

    ground and fired.  You can't win 'em all.

  •  In the immortal words of Ned Ryerson... (0+ / 0-)

    Here's hoping by some cosmic coincidence he has to relive those 3 seconds from top floor to pavement over and over for all eternity. I wonder if he made sounds like a chipmunk...

    Follow Me on Twitter! https://twitter.com/#!/TarantinoDork

    by TarantinoDork on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 08:38:05 AM PDT

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