May 27, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Terrorism Expert Says Paris Attacks ‘Shocking, Not Surprising’:

A Santa Monica-based terrorism expert said today that although Islamic State might be responsible for the shootings and explosions that rocked Paris Friday, it’s also possible the coordinated attacks were an “homage” to the extremist group.

“We shouldn’t automatically think it was planned by one of the extremist groups operating out of Syria and Iraq,” said Brian Michael Jenkins, a terrorism expert and senior adviser to the president of Santa Monica-based Rand Corp. “Some extremist groups will carry out these operations in homage to other groups like ISIS. There’s no evidence yet that links this to any kind of central planning.”

Jenkins said the tactics used in Paris — “multiple attackers in coordinated attacks at multiple locations” — echoed recommendations published over the summer in ISIS’ online magazine.

“We’ve known for a long time this sort of scenario is on their minds,” Jenkins told City News Service. “What happened today is shocking but not surprising.”

Shooting broke out at several locations, including at a concert hall where the Palm Desert band Eagles of Death Metal was playing. News services reported that as many as 100 people may have died there.

“Targeting a public gathering is nothing new,” Jenkins said. “There have been a number of previous attacks at music festivals, restaurants, shopping areas. We know these kinds of attacks are in their play book.”

Jenkins said the Paris attacks were reminiscent of the November 2008 assault on the densely crowded Indian city of Mumbai, where teams linked to an Islamic militant organization carried out a series of coordinated shooting and bombing attacks lasting four days.

“These sorts of attacks are a matter of determination and the ability to acquire weapons,” Jenkins said. “In some of these European countries, anyone with criminal connections can acquire an AK-47. It doesn’t require a great deal of skill to shoot diners at a restaurant or spectators at a rock concert. You don’t need to go through training.”

Jenkins warned not to over-analyze the timing of the attacks.

“Some people are connecting it to the fact that we may have killed ‘Jihadi John’,” the British Arab member of ISIS seen in videos beheading hostages, Jenkins said, adding that he doubted such a theory based on the timing of Thursday’s announcement that the executioner had been killed in a drone strike.

“These attacks (in Paris) would have required coordination and planning,” he said. “It was not spontaneous.”

Jenkins said France and other European countries have much to fear from residents who have become radicalized and traveled to Syria and Iraq — and returned home with training in terrorism.

“In places like France and Belgium, that number totals in the thousands,” he said. “Our numbers are a fraction of those. While they’re looking at thousands since 9/11, we have only a few hundred.”

in News
Related Posts

Three Juveniles in Hosptial Following Overdose in Santa Monica

May 26, 2022

May 26, 2022

Two females in critical but stable condition, third victim “alert and recovering” By Sam Catanzaro Three juveniles suffered an overdose...

John Adams Middle School Student Selected to Perform at Carnegie Hall

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

JAMS Student Grayson Fitzgerald named junior finalist for the 2022 middle school honors performance series at Carnegie Hall By Staff...

SMC Student Film “The War Within” Accepted into 2022 American Pavilion at Cannes

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Three Santa Monica College Films Will Screen at In-Person Festival, including 2021 Best Student Film Winner “Broken Layers” and 2020’s...

Santa Monica City Council Looks to Shorten Meetings

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Council to consider changes at Tuesday meeting By Dolores Quintana Santa Monica lawmakers are considering taking steps to shorten City...

Landmark Theater Official Closes on Pico

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Pico Boulevard location closes Sunday By Sam Catanzaro The Landmark Theater on Pico Boulevard in Westwood has officially closed.  The...

Road Closures Expected During Demolition Of Parking Structure Three: Santa Monica Beat – May 23rd, 2022

May 23, 2022

May 23, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* Free Donuts At Randy’s Donuts For National Doughnut Day* Road Closures Expected...

Los Angeles Metro Sees 15.9 Percent Increase in Median Rent

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Median rent of $2,258, according to recent report By Dolores Quintana The ongoing pandemic has exacerbated the issues of housing...

New Renderings for Frank Gehry Hotel Development in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Project would include hotel, apartments, retail and a museum By Dolores Quintana Slowly but surely, plans for a  Frank Gehry-designed...

Shared Mobility Plummets in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Recent report also shows that nearly half of riders make over $100,000 By Sam Catanzaro Shared mobility use in Santa...

Christopher Dishlip Selected as Santa Monica’s New Assistant Director of Public Works

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Public Works Director Rick Valte announced the selection of Christopher Dishlip as Santa Monica’s new Assistant Director of Public Works....

Letter to Editor: Response to Himmelrich’s “We Walk the Talk” Column

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

By Beau Marks As a Santa Monica resident, I am dismayed by Sue Himmelrich’s response (“We Walk the Talk,” Santa...

Motional And UberEats Launch Autonomous Deliveries In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

There Are Plans For Expansion Into The Rest Of Los Angeles Motional, a global driverless technology leader, and Uber Technologies...

Winston Pies Opening Third Location In Santa Monica

May 18, 2022

May 18, 2022

The restaurant used to be known as ButterCrust Pies Winston Pies is staying in Santa Monica when opening their third...

Only 10 Vaquita Porpoises Survive, But The Species May Not Be Doomed

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

Hope remains for the porpoise species not only survive but thrive with human help. By Stuart Wolpert The vaquita porpoise,...

The American Cinematheque Brings “Bleak Week” To Santa Monica’s Aero Theatre And The Los Feliz Three Theatre

May 17, 2022

May 17, 2022

33 Films From 18 Countries In One Week. By Dolores Quintana Sometimes when things are tough and you’re feeling down,...