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Terrorist trauma will prove turning point for France

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Significance

Paris is on the highest terrorist alert after men armed with assault rifles killed twelve people at the office of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo -- eight journalists, a caretaker, a visitor and two police officers -- and wounded eleven others. Extra police officers and troops are guarding media offices, places of worship, transport and the writer Michel Houellebecq, who featured on the cover of the latest edition of Charlie Hebdo and whose new novel imagines a Muslim president of the Republic in 2022. It is unclear whether the murder this morning of a policewoman and injury of a second person by a gunman in the Paris suburb of Montrouge is connected to yesterday's massacre or a separate incident.

Impacts

  • Further attacks are likely and will be difficult for police and security services to prevent.
  • The media will maintain a commitment to free speech and solidarity.
  • The National Front (FN) will likely continue its performance of faring well at the regional elections in March.
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