Two heavily-armed Muslims attacked the offices of the satirical Paris weekly Charlie Hebdo this morning, killing twelve people, including the magazine’s two most famous cartoonists. The attackers were heard to shout “Allahu Akbar!” and “The Prophet is avenged!” CNN reports that the killers’ motives are still unknown. These are the murdered cartoonists:
Here are the basic facts as reported so far:
Paris is on high terrorism alert after shootings Wednesday at the offices of French satirical weekly magazine Charlie Hebdo left at least 12 dead.
At least 12 people were killed in what French President Francois Hollande called “an act of exceptional barbarity” against the press. Four more people are in critical condition and an additional 20 were injured, police said. …
Most of those shot were part of the magazine’s newsroom, Matthieu Lamarre, a spokesman for the Paris mayor’s office, said.
Two hooded attackers entered into the offices and started shooting at random before several journalists fled to the roof, according to witnesses cited by Europe 1 radio, Agence France-Press and I-tele television.
The same magazine’s offices were firebombed in 2011 following a series of satirical treatments of Islam.
Several videos have emerged. This one shows the two terrorists. I believe one of the policemen is being murdered in this clip. There is an actual “hands up, don’t shoot” moment. Better watch it soon, before YouTube takes it down lest people get the wrong idea:
Already, some news outlets are blurring the images of Mohammed that Charlie Hebdo has published, like this one:
Not exactly profiles in courage. Remember when President Obama said that “The future must not belong to those who slander the Prophet of Islam”? This could be a rare instance where one of Obama’s predictions turns out to be true.
No word yet on who the terrorists are–they are still at large as of this moment, and may well commit more murders–but most likely, they are just a couple of lone wolves. Those damned lone wolves are getting so thick on the ground, pretty soon we will have to put up traffic signals for them. French police could have a lot of suspects: an ICM poll in August found that 27% of French citizens aged 18-24 express a positive opinion towards ISIS. Here’s a hint: they aren’t named Pierre.
We will have more as the day goes on.
UPDATE: It is being reported that Charlie Hebdo‘s editor in chief and three cartoonists were all murdered. Also, a car bomb has exploded outside a synagogue in Sarcelles, in northern France. No information yet on whether that has any relationship to the terrorist attack in Paris.