At the American Thinker, Jack Cashill writes that the open speculation by European talking heads was that the killer sought for the shootings at the Jewish school in Toulouse was a Neo-Nazi, thus someone on the “extreme right,” a possibility that energized the media. Cashill titles his post “A neo-Nazi named ‘Muhammed’?”
Cashill doesn’t actually name the suspect. Murray Wardrop is covering the siege that has been laid to the suspect’s apartment live for the Telegraph. Turning to Wardrop’s live coverage, we learn that the suspect is indeed named Mohammed — Mohammed Merah. He is 23 and of French nationality. Reuters reports that Merah was jailed for bombings in Afghanistan in 2007, but escaped months later in a mass prison break organized by Taliban insurgents.
Mohammed was fired up by causes including the desire to avenge the deaths of Palestinians. Wardrom reports on a telephone call apparently made by Merah in the early morning hours to a French journalist:
He is said to have told a journalist that he was motivated by France’s ban on wearing the Burka. Ebba Kalondo, the deputy head of the channel’s Africa service, says Merah wanted to “take revenge on the law against the full Islamic veil (in France) and also in France’s participation in the war in Afghanistan and to protest against the situation in Palestine.”
Kalondo said: He was a very eloquent young man. He wasn’t at all agitated, nor excited. Very, very calm, very convinced by what he was saying, very polite. He didn’t stop saying it was just the beginning.
He told her: “Either I go to prison my head held high or to death with a smile.”
You’d think French intelligence might have kept an eye on this guy, right? Actually, they did:
Claude Guéant, the interior minister, says Mohammed Merah, the alleged gunman, had been “followed for several years by the DCRI intelligence services.” He said: “They never had any proof that he was preparing a criminal act. He committed several acts of delinquency, a dozen, some with violence His radicalisation took place within a group with a Salafist ideology and undertook two trips, one to Afghanistan one to Pakistan.”
As of last report, Merah has not yet been taken into custody.