Two armed suspects burst into a church in Normandy, France, today, taking two nuns hostage and slitting the throat of 86 year-old priest Father Jacques Hamel. The Islamic State later claimed responsibility for the attack.
And in what has become a near ritual in these situations, at least one of the suspects was not just known to authorities, but had attempted to travel twice to Syria to join ISIS and was considered a national security threat.
EXCLUSIVE: One France church attacker tried to go to Syria in 2015, was placed under surveillance, French intel source tells me.More to come
— Christiane Amanpour (@camanpour) July 26, 2016
France church attacker radicalized after Charlie Hebdo killings, was associated w/ French jihadi Maxime Hauchard, says French intel source.
— Christiane Amanpour (@camanpour) July 26, 2016
Western terror suspects already being known to authorities has become so pervasive that I coined the term “known wolf” back in October 2014 to characterize the phenomenon.
This will be the sixth “known wolf” terror attack targeting France in the past two years.
The Daily Mail reports:
One of the two ISIS knifemen who stormed a church to behead a French priest was a convicted terrorist and was meant to be living with his parents with an electronic tag.
The pair took the 86-year-old priest, two nuns and two parishioners hostage at the church in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray near Rouen in Normandy during morning mass at 9.45am, killing the priest and critically injuring another hostage.
One of the terrorists, a 19-year-old Frenchman who lived close to the church, is said to have tried to leave for Syria twice to try and join Islamic State, but he was arrested.
He was jailed for terrorist offences following a short trial in France, before being released on March 2 this year.
He had tried travelling to Syria to join ISIS twice, but failed both times.
On his first attempt as a 17-year-old, he attempted to travel to the war-torn Middle East via Munich, but was sent back to France.
The second time he tried, he got kicked out of Turkey and was sent back to Switzerland where he was arrested at Geneva airport on May 14 last year.
After his second failure, he was jailed for a few days in in the prison of Champ-Dollon in Swizterland before being extradited to France and convicted of conspiracy to prepare acts of terrorism.
His conditions included returning to live with his parents, wearing an electronic tag, and reporting to his local police station.
But this did not stop him becoming involved in today’s atrocity, in which Father Jacques Hamel, 86, had his throat cut.
Additional details of the terror attack indicate that the suspect was on France’s terror watch list, and that the church in question had appeared on an ISIS list of targets last year.
French attacker was apparently on fiche S list, considered to be a threat to national security. https://t.co/KEZbRiqqPe
— Björn Stritzel (@bjoernstritzel) July 26, 2016
More: #SaintEtienneDuRouvray attacker arrested in #Turkey & deported back to #France. Was freed on March 2 & was wearing an ankle bracelet
— Anna Ahronheim (@AAhronheim) July 26, 2016
Now on our Facebook:
Normandy Catholic church was on ISIS terror ‘hit list’ found LAST YEAR https://t.co/cfeslKZqzg pic.twitter.com/9vSP53WtMf
— Voice of Europe (@V_of_Europe) July 26, 2016
In fact, the incident where the list of ISIS targets was found occurred after an attempted attack on a Parisian church in April 2015, where the suspect was also under investigation for murdering a 32- year-old mother whose car he was trying to steal.
The area where today’s attack occurred has been known to be a hotbed of jihadist activity:
In Nov 2014 police arrested 3 suspects that were radicalised in a Salafist mosque in village near #Rouen where terror attack occured
— Olivier Guitta (@OlivierGuitta) July 26, 2016
I’ve reported here at PJ Media extensively on the “known wolf” terror problem:
Oct. 24, 2014: ‘Lone Wolf’ or ‘Known Wolf’: The Ongoing Counter-Terrorism FailureDec. 15, 2014: Sydney Hostage Taker Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome
Jan. 7, 2015: Paris Terror Attack Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome
Feb. 3, 2015: French Police Terror Attacker Yesterday Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome
Feb. 15, 2015: Copenhagen Killer Was yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism
Feb. 26, 2015: Islamic State Beheader ‘Jihadi John’ Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism
Apr. 22, 2015: Botched Attack on Paris Churches Another Case of “Known Wolf” Terrorism
May 4, 2015: Texas Attack Is Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism
June 26, 2015: France’s Beheading Terrorist Was Well-Known By Authorities
July 16, 2015: Report: Chattanooga Jihadist Was Yet Another ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorist, Anonymous Feds Dispute
Aug. 22, 2015: European Train Attacker Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism
Oct 14, 2015: Yet Again: Turkey, Israel Terror Attacks Committed by “Known Wolves”
Nov 14, 2015: One Paris Attacker Was Previously Known to Authorities, Marks Fifth ‘Known Wolf” Attack in France This Year
Feb 16, 2016: Machete Attack in Ohio Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism
May 16, 2016: News Reports Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ U.S. Terrorists
June 12, 2016: Orlando Night Club Attack by “Known Wolf” Terrorist Previously Investigated by FBI
July 14, 2016: Senate Intelligence Committee to Investigate “Known Wolf” Terrorism Problem
With little action being taken by Western intelligence and law enforcement authorities to acknowledge, let alone address, the “known wolf” phenomenon, we will very probably see these attacks by known suspects continue.
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