By Bill Van Auken:
A Potemkin gathering of world leaders in Paris
14 January 2015
A photograph posted on social media has revealed that the “world leaders” who had supposedly led the march in Paris on January 11, in the aftermath of the attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo, were in reality assembled for a massive staged photo-op.
While in the media, photos and video of the leaders were almost invariably angled to give the appearance of massive crowds in their wake, one shot taken from above shows them standing bunched tightly together in barely a dozen rows in an empty street, cordoned off from the marchers by a heavy ring of security.
Nothing could more accurately symbolize the reactionary character of this assemblage of state officials and the fraud of their attempt to posture as defenders of human liberties.
Prime Minister … Davutoglu of Turkey, which imprisons more journalists than any other country in the world http://www.theguardian.com/media/greenslade/2013/dec/18/journalist-safety-turkey
Mr Davutoglu’s repression of Turkish journalists is not the only reason why it is hypocritical for him to pose as a defender of free speech and “JeSuisCharlie” in France.
At the same time while Mr Davutoglu says “JeSuisCharlie” in Paris, fellow members of his AKP governing party say “Je suis the murderers at Charlie Hebdo“.
From ANF/OKTAY CANDEMİR – BİTLİS, Turkey, 11-01-2015:
AKP municipality declares Kouachi brothers to be ‘martyrs’
Posters have been put up on municipal billboards in the Tatvan district of Bitlis province declaring that the Kouachi brothers who carried out the attack on the Charlie Hebdo office in Paris on 7 January are martyrs.
The posters, put up in the AKP-run municipality, declared that: “Greetings to the Kouachi brothers who took revenge for the prophet of Allah. May Allah accept your sacrifice. …”
While it is not clear who put the posters up yesterday afternoon, the AKP municipality has neither made any comment, nor removed the posters, despite public reaction.
By Noam Chomsky:
The world reacted with horror to the murderous attack on the French satirical journal Charlie Hebdo. In the New York Times, veteran Europe correspondent Steven Erlanger graphically described the immediate aftermath, what many call France’s 9/11, as “a day of sirens, helicopters in the air, frantic news bulletins; of police cordons and anxious crowds; of young children led away from schools to safety. It was a day, like the previous two, of blood and horror in and around Paris.” The enormous outcry worldwide was accompanied by reflection about the deeper roots of the atrocity. “Many Perceive a Clash of Civilizations,” a New York Times headline read.
The reaction of horror and revulsion about the crime is justified, as is the search for deeper roots, as long as we keep some principles firmly in mind. The reaction should be completely independent of what thinks about this journal and what it produces. The passionate and ubiquitous chants “I am Charlie,” and the like, should not be meant to indicate, even hint at, any association with the journal, at least in the context of defense of freedom of speech. Rather, they should express defense of the right of free expression whatever one thinks of the contents, even if they are regarded as hateful and depraved.
The Kouachi brothers did not speak for Muslims any more than self-professed Christian Anders Breivik spoke for Christians, says John Haylett: here.
Police from several UK forces seek details of Charlie Hebdo readers. Newsagents in three counties questioned about sales of the French magazine’s special issue: here.