The Belgian connections to Islamic radicalism

An armed policeman stands guard at the entrance of Belgium’s federal prosecutor office in Brussels on Friday.

Two days before 9/11, in the foothills of the Hindu Kush, Osama bin Laden pulled off one of his boldest assassinations. And there was a Belgian connection. Two “Belgian journalists” had been in the Panjshir valley of northern Afghanistan for weeks, supposedly waiting to interview Ahmad Shah Massoud, the so-called Lion of the Panjshir, leader of the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance, an al-Qaida adversary.

The killers, Tunisians, arrived bearing Belgian passports, posing as journalists for a Belgian TV station. When they were eventually granted their audience, their cameras turned out to be packed with explosives.

Islamic radicalism has a long pedigree in Belgium. The country’s geography makes it easy to travel back and forth between France, Germany, and the Netherlands.

Verviers, the town where on Thursday police killed two Belgian “foreign fighters” not long back from Syria, bestrides the Dutch and German borders. Like much of Francophone eastern and southern Belgium, it is a town down on its luck. Its heyday as a centre of the textiles and wool business is long gone. Now it is one of the poorest towns in the country, and 20% of its population of 55,000 is of immigrant origin…

Related: Europe Terror: A tale of 2 separate but similar plots (compares the French and Belgian episodes).

  • mauser 98

    …..the US connection to Islamic radicalism

    Pentagon to deploy 400 troops to train Syrian rebels

    Reuters) – The U.S. military is planning to send more than 400 soldiers to train
    Syrian rebels to fight Islamic State along with hundreds of U.S. support

    are rebels not ISIS? rebels fight Assad? am i missing something?

    • Frau Katze

      I saw it. Thought, oh no, here we go again. When will we learn?

      • mauser 98

        train them to kill us..

    • Frau Katze

      That is such a weird pic. I’ve seen it before. Does anyone know WTF the camel is doing there?

      • mauser 98

        some ones wife came home early

  • Linda1000

    There are estimated to be about 180 extremist or radical jihadis who have returned to the EU and about 20 sleeper cells in various locations ready to take action. The IS jihadis from EU now using a different strategy of faking their own deaths in Syria or Iraq and then sneaking back into their home countries. One or maybe both of the recent Belgium terrorists shot a day or so ago had faked their own death. Another one had this to say about Belgium security:
    “Don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings, but Belgian intelligence agency is the laziest and the dumbest in the world probably…”

    • Frau Katze

      Belgian incompetence? I’m simply stunned and shocked!

  • BillyHW

    But is this diversity sustainable?