An uncomfortable history for some.
Of all the attacks in Paris yesterday, the attack on the Bataclan Theater was the most devastating.
French authorities said more than 80 people died in the club where California-based band Eagles of Death Metal had been playing for about an hour. When the shooting started after four gunmen entered the front of the 1,500-seat theater, dozens struggled to flee out the back alleyway as shots were being fired.
Gunmen who had entered, dressed all in black and armed with AK-47 rifles, calmly opened fire randomly at patrons who dived for cover on the floor, according to radio reporter Julien Pearce, who was near the stage when the shooting started. “The terrorists were very calm, very determined, and they reloaded three or four times,” Pearce said. “I saw 20 to 25 bodies lying on the floor.”
But why the Bataclan, of all the theaters and gathering places in Paris?
The answer may lie in the fact that it is Jewish-owned, and has been a target for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions BDS movement and terrorist threats for years.
This history was first publicized yesterday by the French Le Point magazine (via Google Translate):
“We had a planned attack against the Bataclan because the owners were Jewish. “This sentence, chilling under the taking of hostages and the carnage that would have made this Friday,” a hundred dead, “according to police sources, was delivered to the offices of the DCRI, in February 2011. The French services then questioned members of “Jaish al-Islam,” the Army of Islam, suspected of the attack that killed a French student in Cairo in February 2009. They were planning an attack in France and had therefore taken targeted the famous Parisian theater.
In 2007 and 2008, the Bataclan was already under the threat of more or less radical groups.At issue: holding regular conferences and galas of Jewish organizations, including the “Magav”, a border guard unit depending on the policy of Israel. In December 2008, whereas the Israeli military operation takes place in the Gaza Strip, the threats around the Bataclan are more accurate. On the Web, a video showing a group of a dozen young, face hidden by keffiyehs, threatening officials Bataclan about the organization’s annual gala Magav. At the time, Le Parisien devotes an article without this handful of activists to be truly identified. In the process, the annual meeting will be postponed.
Since then, whenever a Jewish organization meets at Bataclan, many hostile comments flourish on the Web. Yet in recent years, they seemed to have faded. Nevertheless, the Israeli press recalled that the rock band Eagles of Death that occurred Friday evening 13 had toured Israel. The group was then faced more calls for a boycott, which had not prevented from producing it.
The Tower Magazine provides this video from 2008:
Israel’s i24 News reports:
The threats against the Bataclan go back several years, with the venue often being a target of anti-Zionist groups. In 2007 and 2008, the theater received threats from radical groups due to its regular hosting of the conferences and galas of Jewish organizations, including one for the Israeli border police.
In December 2008, during Israel’s Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip, threats to the Bataclan intensified and became more specific. A video was posted on the internet showing a group of youths with their faces masked, threatening the concert hall for its support of an event in honor of the Israeli border police.
Furthermore, pro-Palestinian associations have launched numerous petitions and encouraged their supporters to write to the authorities to protest the Bataclan’s hosting of pro-Israeli military events.
In 2011, Le Figaro reported that Farouk Ben Abbes, a Belgian national arrested in Egypt after the terror attack on a group of French students in Cairo in February that killed 17-year-old Cécile Vannier, had confessed that he “was planning an attack against the Bataclan in France.”
Three days after the attack on the French students, a report written by the General Directorate for External Security (DGSE) in Cairo indicated that the teenagers had been targeted by a militant group who wanted them “to pay for France’s participation in Germinal boat blockade of Gaza” [a French-Israeli operation to stop the transfer of weapons to the coastal enclave].
In a series of arrests in May 2009, Egyptian State Security arrested seven suspects in connection with the attack on the French teens, one of whom justified possible attacks on the Bataclan on the grounds that “the owners are Jews.”
(Added) Via Gateway Pundit, who indicates the theater may have been sold to new owners a few weeks ago, another video of BDS/Palestinian attacks on Bataclan:
Needless to say, BDS supporters are uncomfortable with this history.
— Ali Abunimah (@AliAbunimah) November 14, 2015
— Max Blumenthal (@MaxBlumenthal) November 14, 2015
But as we know from the Paris riots in the summer of 2014 directed at the Jewish community, and subsequent violence connected to BDS, there is a connection between the frenzy directed at Israel, and violence against Jewish institutions and Jews. See several of my posts:
- Paris Synagogue attacked by Pro-Palestinian crowd carrying boycott message
- France’s Jews Fled As Rioters Burned Shops To Chants Of ‘Gas The Jews’
- Just more “pro-Palestinian” protests: Nazi salutes in Paris, “death to all Jews” in the Hague
- Boycott Movement Gang Attacks Two Jews on Paris Street
That connection may not have motivated ISIS, it’s too early to tell.
But it’s still part of the ugly history of anti-Semitic violence in France, and needs to be discussed as France and Europe decide what types of societies they will have. And whether there is a place for Jews.