Paris Terror Attack - Tom Toles and Irshad Manji

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1 Sahil Badruddin = ""The reported January 7, 2014 attack by three unidentified gunmen on the office of "Charlie Hebdo," a French satirical newspaper known for publishing material mocking radical Islamists, has triggered widespread celebration across the online jihadist community—particularly on Twitter.In an overwhelming wave of responses, fighters and supporters of different jihadist groups rallied behind the attackers, characterizing them as heroes and "Charlie Hebdo," along with all of France and the West, as perpetuators of oppression and blasphemy toward Islam.Common in jihadists' responses was the claim of justice toward France, which the users regarded as as oppressive to Muslims and facilitating of blasphemous speech. The same user followed up by mentioning the "#NotInMyName" hashtag, with which moderate Muslims decry Islamic extremism, tweeting in part that "the murtadeeen [apostates] and munafiqqqqqn [hypocrites] will be raising their voices #notinmyname..."Similarly, user "Abu Jandal" tweeted:From another angle, user "abu khattab australi" tweeted, "There can be no condemnation of this attack on #CharlieHebdo. 100% Islamic whoever says otherwise is a clear liar." In an earlier tweet, the user stated of the attack, "Allah(swt) defends the honor of his messenger and so do the believers," to which another user, "Ahalulldhikir," responded, "Anybody insult prophet (saw) must be killed even if it just minor word."Notable in early responses has been a seemingly competitive desire between al-Qaeda (AQ) and IS supporters to attribute the attack to their respective groups. User "Abu Sumaya Al-Khalidi," for example, tweeted that "Eye Witness reportedly heard a gunmen saying 'you tell the media it was Al Qaeda in Yemen'!"Such competitive-spirited statements, however, were also met with calls for unanimous celebration and a putting aside of contention between AQ and IS.“Several arrests” were made overnight as part of the hunt for the two gunmen suspected of killing 12 people in yesterday’s attack on the offices of the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo in Paris. [France 24] Two brothers suspected of conducting the attack are yet to be apprehended, but a third suspect who drove the getaway car turned himself in late last night. [New York Times’ Andrew Higgins and Maia de la Baume] France 24 and The Guardian have live updates as the situation develops.A Parisian policewoman has died due to injuries sustained in a shootout overnight; it is as yet unclear whether the incident is linked to the earlier Charlie Hebdo shootings. [France 24]The attack was “more sophisticated” than most recent anti-Western attacks, according to early indications, particularly due to the shooters’ apparent training and organization. It is not yet clear whether they were part of a small group or larger plot, report Wall Street Journal’s Damien Paletta et al.The attack “fits well within the old al-Qaeda playbook,” reports Jytte Klausen, who explores the future of al-Qaeda in light of the shootings. [Foreign Policy]International reactions to the attack. President Obama condemned the “terrorist attack” and emphasised that freedom of expression cannot be “silenced because of the senseless violence of a few.” World leaders, including the Australian, British and Russian leaders, similarly denounced the attack. [Sydney Morning Herald’s Alice Ritchie] Leaders from Muslim countries and organizations also joined the international condemnation, stating that the attack should not be associated with the Islamic faith. [Bloomberg News] And UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon cautioned the international community against falling into the divisive “trap” intended by such attacks. [UN News Centre]President Obama’s statement was a “fierce” defense of free speech, a “sharp contrast to his more tepid response to previous [similar] attacks,” writes Josh Gerstein.""