The year 2015 saw a series of distressing terrorist attacks in France. 2015 was also the 30th anniversary of the French Government's bombing of a civilian ship at port in New Zealand, murdering a photographer who was on board at the time. This horrendous crime has been chronicled in various movies including The Rainbow Warrior Conspiracy (1989) and The Rainbow Warrior (1993).
The Paris attacks are a source of great anxiety for the people of France but they are also an attack on Europe and all civilized humanity as well. Rather than using them to channel more anger towards Muslims and Arabs with another extended (yet ineffective) state of emergency, isn't it about time that France moved on from the evils of its colonial past and "drains the swamp" where unrepentant villains are thriving in its security services?
François Hollande and Ségolène Royal. Royal's brother Gérard Royal allegedly planted the bomb in the terrorist mission to New Zealand. It is ironic that Royal is now Minister for Ecology while her brother sank the Greenpeace flagship. If François and Ségolène had married (they have four children together), would Gérard be the president's brother-in-law or terrorist-in-law?
The question has to be asked: if it looks like terrorism, if it smells like terrorism, if the victim of that French Government attrocity is as dead as the victims of Islamic militants littered across the floor of the Bataclan, shouldn't it also be considered an act of terrorism?
If it was not an act of terrorism, then what is it that makes it differ? Why do French officials refer to it as nothing more than "a serious error", the term used by Prime Minister Manuel Valls during a recent visit to New Zealand in 2016? Was it that the French officials felt it was necessary for Liberté, égalité, fraternité? Or is it just a limitation of the English language that we only have one word for terrorism, while French officials have a different word for such acts carried out by those who serve their flag?
If the French government are sincere in their apology, why have they avoided releasing key facts about the atrocity, like who thought up this plot and who gave the orders? Did the soldiers involved volunteer for a mission with the code name Opération Satanique, or did any other members of their unit quit rather than have such a horrendous crime on their conscience? What does that say about the people who carried out the orders?
If somebody apprehended one of these rogue employees of the French Government today, would they be rewarded with France's highest honour, like those tourists who recently apprehended an Islamic terrorist on a high-speed train?
If terrorism is such an absolute evil, why was it so easy for the officials involved to progress with their careers? Would an ex-member of an Islamic terrorist group be able to subsequently obtain US residence and employment as easily as the French terror squad's commander Louis-Pierre Dillais?
When you consider the comments made by Donald Trump recently, the threats of violence and physical aggression against just about anybody he doesn't agree with, is this the type of diplomacy that the US will practice under his rule commencing in 2017? Are people like this motivated by a genuine concern for peace and security, or are these simply criminal acts of vengence backed by political leaders with the maturity of schoolyard bullies?