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tv   Fault Lines  Al Jazeera  January 7, 2015 12:30pm-1:01pm EST

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recognize that france is one of our oldest and strongest allies and they have been with us at every moment so this is around the world for us to see the kind of cowardly evil attacks that took place today, i think we have forces once again of why it's so important to stay in solidarity for them as they stand in solidarity with us. the fact this was an attack on journalists and attack on our free press and also underscores these terrorists fear freedom of speech and freedom of press. but one thing i'm very confident about is that the values that we share with french people a
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belief a universal belief of freedom of expression is something that the sees -- silence and senseless and our relationship with france is excellent and we will provide them with every bit of assistance we can going forward and i think it's going to be important for us to make sure that we recognize these kind of attacks that happen anywhere in the world and one of the things i will discuss with the secretary of treasure today is not just with americans living in paris but in europe and other parts of the world and to hunt
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them doin and bring perpetrators of this act of justice and help to advance in these kinds of spots. at the end though what i want to say is that our thoughts and prayers are with families and france and with the people of paris and the people of france. what that beautiful city represents culture civilization that is so central to us and those who carry things out and we will stay with the people of france through this time.
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thank you very much everybody. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> reporter: we have just been hearing from u.s. president barack obama and you can see there along with vice president joe biden describing this as a cowardly act saying that he says that it reenforces why it's important for american to stand in unity with france. he described this very much as an attack on journalist as a attack on the free press and said it's also an attack on the very values that the u.s. shares with france. let's speak to patty listening to that from washington d.c. and patty we have president barack obama describing counter terrorism cooperation with france as being excellent and said that the u.s. would do all it can to help authorities in paris track down the perpetrators of this attack. >> from the u.s. perspective the biggest question is what exactly does the u.s. provide. we heard from james and saying the f.b.i. is going to send a
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team to work and possibly send a team and work in his words with their counterparts in france and this brings up the question we may never get answers to but nsa we know because of edward snowden has a huge spying apparatus in europe and will they provide information on the mysterious attackers so obviously the president hinting at that with counter terrorism abilities and have a that relationship with france and that they are willing to provide the help in order as the president in his words to hunt down those responsible. >> how would you describe the general mood the sentiment there in washington d.c. obviously this attack is very different in its nature and its magnitude to 9/11 but nevertheless this does conjure up those memories if you like. >> well i think the bigger question right now is how can the u.s. help because as the president said and we don't always see the president come out and make statements after
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terror attacks and it's unusual and keep in mind this is france and they have been saying this is the u.s.'s oldest ally and there is a feeling in washington that the u.s. is obligated to help the french government in this especially looking back at areas of cooperation especially copying to the fight of islamic state of iraq and lavante and if they look like they are abandoning france, they are going to be very visible and providing any help they can obviously this is a very complicated situation and france investigators are very much capable but u.s. has these unique capabilities and able to suck up internet traffic and listen to phone calls and record phone calls and undoubtedly keeping an eye on certain players within france and know they are spying on people in european capitols and countries and how much information can they provide and we may never know and it could leak out and
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administration could take this as a chance to say what is the programs necessary and working but right now i can tell you the sense in washington is one of condole endss doeldole doeldolence and people are laying flowers at the embassy in washington and have a crew on the way and will bring it to you when we get it back but it's interesting that he felt not have the secretary of state condemn attacks but to make unscheduled appearance before the cameras and wasn't expected to do it and he may have had the meeting on the books but not on the public schedule and that is not unusual but in the middle of the day to layout agenda and going to michigan to do that he felt it necessary to go on camera and which is something we don't always see him do especially when it comes to terrorist attacks accross the globe. >> given the fact these two countries already allies for that are ready to be a level of security intelligence cooperation in place and you say what can the u.s. do to help and
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can we expect change in the nature of the relationship and strengthening of that cooperation? >> well, i think you will see the u.s. going to provide very publically any help at all france needs. i think they will highlight the fact of what we seen them highlighting is the fact that french pilots are fighting isil with u.s. pilots and talk how they expect it to continue. you heard the president focus on resilience of the french people saying this is not going to change their how they view freedom of expression pillar of democracy, and looking at reaction across the globe and arab states and the vatican and the message has been consistent that this is not just an attack on a french newspaper, that this really is an attack on democracy. we heard that again from the u.s. president. >> reporter: yes, that is definitely the sentiment being echoed around the world and patty in washington d.c. thank you. in terms of the target of the
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attack in paris the magazine spent the past 20 years lampooning in france and europe and criticized for attacks on organized religion and dominick cane has more. >> reporter: 20 years he shocked and amused people every week causing controversy with pieces on religion politics and public affairs and uses a combination of cartoons and articles to put across its message of freedom of speech and opposition to censorship. often with unflattering charactars and resent years it's criticized for depiction of islam. in 2011 it renamed itself for one addition with a cartoon relating to the profit mohamed and the offices were firebombed after the publication. at the time the editorial team expressed their determination to carry on.
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less than 12 months later the editor spoke to al jazeera about what motivated him and his colleagues. >> translator: it's been 20 years that we have quote unquote been provocative on subjects and every time we deal with radical islam we have a problem and get violent reactions. >> reporter: it's now been confirmed that he was one of the editorial team who died in this attack. the threat of violence against him had prompted the police to provide security for some members of staff. something the french president mentioned when he visited the scene of the crime. >> translator: there can be no doubt this was a terrorist attack on a newspaper that had been threatened several times which was provided because of that. >> reporter: in one of his last cartoons he talked about the lack of attacks in france so far. but now he and many of his
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colleagues are dead. dominick cane al jazeera. and it's worth looking at french foreign policy in resent years because it has had a turn around and 2003 it led opposition to the iraq war and ten years later it is the first to join air strikes in iraq and against the islamic state of iraq and lavante and syria and i ran and sent troops to central africa republic for violence there. in libya france was part of the international operation with gadhafi but france is cautious with action in europe and suspicion that action overseas may be because of the country weakness and popularity sinking and i'm joined with assist and professor of international affairs at kata university and i want to discuss prospects with you in a moment but let's look at what is happening in paris
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right now multiple rallies across the country and not just in the french capitol, how much national consensus is there behind these demonstrations? >> right now spontaneous rallies and almost every city in france and also have those outside of france. there is consensus about acting on this. the event is supposed to be at 10:00 a.m. and got a call from wing parties and includes his own party because he was closer to the left wing parties traditionally calling demonstrations in the streets. the question will be whether the party will join that march or not. >> reporter: we have not heard from cmub yet? >> a brief declaration and should be some kind of national alliance on issues and france should be extremely strong in its answers but on his quest to regain power and support along. >> reporter: eye to 2017. >> exactly.
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announcer: election. >> and now already said she would not join the rally. >> reporter: how significant is that? >> well she is definitely trying to play her own card and always said that if it's right or left wing or politics and moving away from republican pack and her claim is she is trying to say he was a failure for minorities and playing a political card at expense of defense of traditional values such as freedom of press which has equality and eternity. >> how will the message be for the public? >> interesting to see if there is rejection to the position which is to isolate herself or instead attempt to use islam and build it on see i told you there was a threat from islam he will get more support and i cross my fingers people open their eyes and see it has not been one leader for freedom of the press and he was one of the
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journalists of the magazine attacking it for not openness and democracy and total democracy. >> reporter: the party hasn't joyed a series of victories of the past few years. >> it has had some. >> reporter: non-position. >> much more on participation of traditional voters. the amount of voters now has slightly increased but not multiplied. the plan we had in frangs and people waiting for socialist party and are turning their backs to it because of that. >> reporter: how can they be motivated to get out and vote? >> this is one woman and we awake the republican forces in france to not turn back to democracy but strengthen democracy and this is a main pillar. >> playing devil advocate for a moment and how realistic with looking at disillusionment and
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he has record-breaking poll ratement and with the european project and globalization and anti-islam sentiment which you could argue is a symptom of the things and a weakening economy in the country. >> a very tiny increase of optimism in france over the last couple of months because growth is just starting to rise again 1% and not talking crazy here but better than what we had before. whether they will back them they will back a republican party that will try to protect freedom of speech. i'm hopeful there will be an awakening of the french society behind this and we have seen the rallies, spontaneous rallies everywhere we have not seen in history since 2002 since the round of elections and never managed to get a better score in the second than the first round. maybe this will be a huge factor of change of trying to support freedom of press and democracy
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against extremist parties and play against them down the road. >> reporter: we will continue our conversation very shortly but i think we can look at live pictures coming from paris right now, a vigil if you like and seen them taking place and many spontaneous in paris and not just paris but major cities in the country and people standing together wanting to show they are uniting and wanting to show they stand in solidarity. this attack on abdul and office of this magazine seen not just as a physical attack on this building and on these journalists but very much on french values and french society very much on their identity and you see people are gathering in solidarity trying to really show a message of unity if you like but the slogan to accompany these gathers has been here and really a message of unity being
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expressed over there. let's take a different perspective now because joining me from london is steve park a terrorism and security analyst and thanks for speaking to us. from what we know of the way in which this attack was carried out, the circumstances surrounding this attack, is there anything that surprises you? is there anything that came to your attention that you are watching particularly closely? anything that might give a clue as to identity of attackers and what their motivation might have been? >> well i think in answer to the question i think the world has just been introduced perhaps to an al-qaeda kill score. i think this is perhaps a new approach if it is al-qaeda that they are taking. it's very audatious and organized and a military content to it by the way they supported each other, the way they were wearing their clothes and also the guns they had on them i can't can't firm they are ak-47s
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which is the -- an easy gun to get your hands on in europe and obviously out of russia or previous checks of slovania and harder to get the bullets and motivation is fairly clear. certainly on the newspaper has been obviously well publicized there has been threats. they do have protection officers protecting some staff at the newspaper. therefore perhaps obviously the intelligence by the officers who are conducting the close protection may have missed intelligence or may have been misinformed or just completely unaware that an attack would have been implement because they certainly would have been prepared with firearms themselves enough to protect themselves. if we look at the fire power from the attackers, it clearly
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they have both have ak-47 and some side arms 9 millimeters glocks or something like that. and maybe even grenades and we have heard of a missile launcher. some of the items are not easy to get your hands on. it's clear preparation is involved here. >> reporter: right and we will get back to you and continue this conversation sorry to interrupt you, but i understand we can hear from british prime minister david cameron. >> we stand absolutely united with french people against terrorism and against this threat to our values free speech, the rule of all, democracy and it's essential we have the values today and everyday. i'm delighted to welcome the chancellor and welcome angela back here and enjoyed the visit to the british museum the oldest public museum in the world and a stunning exhibition by kneel mc-greger about german history and german memories and
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very enjoyable to have that tour of the museum together. it's a testament, the exhibition to the collaboration between our two countries and i believe that collaboration will get stronger particularly as the queen will make her visit to germany in june and exports are up since 2009 43 billion pounds and exports to the brit countries combined but there is always more to do with the oldest and strongest partners. we meet today against a back drop of instability in the global economy. as leaders of the fast growing economies we are sure to come out of the financial crisis stronger than at the start and took steps to pay down or debts. >> reporter: we will keep an eye on that press conference taking place and david cameron and angela merkel in london and echoing what we have heard from international leaders around the
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world condemning what has taken place and stand in solidarity with the people and a message of unity from world leaders saying this attack is not just an attack on paris and not just a physical attack on this publication, but and on these journalists but it's attack on the values of free speech and democracy which are global values and heard pretty much the same from u.s. president barack obama and u.n. chief ban ki-moon saying the same thing and putin of russia expressing deep condolecon condolecon condolecon condole edges and solidarity around the world, i want to get back to a security terrorism analyst from london now and steve you were telling me about the fact that this attack is significant because it could represent a new cell a new
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approach, a change in strategy possibly by a group that we are not aware of or there is still much that we don't know. the weapons that were in use and the way in which this attack was organized, what could that suggest about possible professional military training? >> well see we don't know if the professional military training is such but we can say they certainly know how to use those firearms. they knew how to hold them the ak-47 is the weapon of use for this kind of event unfortunately and it really can do two things. it can spray bullets or shoot one bullet when it's locked into a particular state which means they knew what they were doing and knew the target was obviously a single target they were sitting otherwise they would have sprayed several bullets, what happens when you spray several bullets with this gun is you hit with the first one and the others go everywhere
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and ask anybody who fired an ak-47 will know that and i think if we go back slightly and seem to be supporting each other and it's indicative of a signature and they certainly had some training and it's carried out in open daylight and the vehicle they were driving was stopped in the middle of the street to stop emergency vehicles coming by and they have a preparedness about them and an extraction plan and evacuation plan so when they did have to leave the venues they knew where they were going and have not been found and obviously there will be a massive police search in paris which will more than likely be fairly unprecedented in paris and therefore it caught the police authorities by surprise and in paris it's national that will look after these kinds of
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things. several intelligence services. we know the police look after the outskirts of the major cities. so it's the police national who this is going to affect deeply. obviously if we go back to the close protection provided to the newspaper i think they were police officers so they were caught off guard which i find incredible when the attackers didn't seem to move as quick as i thought they might had they been actual military people. i think you would have found military personnel trained by governments to move much more quickly and swiftly and seem very audatious and reminds me of the attack in india and that was random killings. this has been selective killing. this has been organized and plenty of preparation has been involved here in order to carry
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this out, execute it and disappear. >> reporter: and you mentioned your surprise that the police that were on the scene at the time were caught off guard. given the level of organization and planning involved in this attack, could these people have already been on the radar of intelligence services there should this attack have been anticipated in some way? of course these things is be very difficult to predict. >> a couple of questions to answer there. it should have been predicted, yes. most definitely. although they have had threats of the people and editors had specific threats against them and nothing has been carried out and mean their threat level should be on high. france's level has not been at the highest. i think it is a color coded system and i think crimson is the same as our critical which is the highest which it should be at this moment so three
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terrorists which have evaded arrest at the moment. i think that the police were protecting the editors depending on where their position was, you know perhaps needs to be rethought and there is absolutely no way that two or three terrorists should be able to execute something like this as swiftly as they did, i would expect a fire fight to have occurred between the police being caught by surprise by people with ak-47s which are not covert as we know and full military style uniform. i would have seen them coming from some distance away. to be called out like this one suggests that there is you know perhaps the attackers have more intelligence than the -- in terms of information than the actual police protecting the
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editors. maybe they caught sleeping a little bit. >> reporter: yes, there will be possibly more pressure on security forces in the aftermath of attack and questions asked about why the magazine didn't have additional protection as you said there have been threats of attack made. from what we know of the attackers' actions so far, this is a very difficult question to answer but just drawing on your expertise, what might their priority be at this point, would it be to lie low and just disappear in paris which is a large european capitol city or try and cross a border possibly target you know target someplace else what could we expect? >> they will lie low and sit low. let me the dust settle slightly but it won't settle for some time, i'm sure there is a ring around paris at the moment
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looking for any suspicious activity looking for known people in the area people will be interviewed, houses will be -- the doors will be knocked on of many people who might sympathize with this kind of attack just asking questions. and money may be exchanged in order to pry information out of people. guaranteed they will lie low and not stick their heads above the parapit to get out of the country and there is no need. they have an evacuation plan and carried out and executed it. it's clear to me that there is a lot of planning there and i think in a city like paris much like london or berlin it would be easy to disappear off the radar unless somebody comes forward with some important information and that is what the police are going to be heavily relying on. obviously they have cctv and an idea of what these people look like, they will be able to assess some type of age to put to the people obviously geographic location where they
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come from they have heard their voices so they will be looking at certain parts and left their own signature and intelligence authorityings may have information to link up with what is going on on ground and it's agencies working together and previously let me tell you doesn't always work just as smoothly as the public thinks. however exchange of communication is of importance to track down attackers. i would imagine this goes further than just attackers with the amount of preparation that has gone on and they will be looking much further afield searching the internet and looking at radio messages coming in, try to find out what has been happening today in order for them to affect moving on the ground quite so swiftly and must have been radio contact, a sleeping cell i doubt if that was a case. a cell comes in works very covertly and leaves fairly silently. here we have -- they have told
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us we are here in a different form and you know we need to look for that more closely now. >> reporter: steve park thanks very much for sharing your analysis with us and let's rejoin assist and professor of public policy in the department and affairs at katar university and steve raising questions there but i suppose one big fear in france is the longer these attackers manage to vanish does that increase the likelihood of them not being caught? >> i think you have to look at other actions in the recents past for the shooting in brussels and the first actions were to disappear and to vanish and caught after taking a bus from brussels and maybe to turkey so the idea here is definitely those three attackers are going to try to vanish. possibly the french season for example or belgium so the way to make sure they are off the radar is to make sure they complicate the task for the services and
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international cooperation between eu countries in sharing information and data they have and sharing potential data on key individuals will be paramount because you need cooperation to operate in a global terrorism. >> reporter: we will continue our conversation shortly, let's listen in to david cameron saying a few words about the attack in paris. [switching captioners]