Just days after arresting French-born Belgium national and terror suspect Salah Abdeslam in Brussels, a coordinated terror attack unfolded in the very same city, killing at least 28, and injuring many more.
The Guardian’s “Brussels attack: were they revenge for Abdeslam’s arrest?,” attempted to link the bombings in Brussels to the arrest of Abdeslam and the Paris attack terror network. The op-ed acknowledges that these terrorist attacks are being carried out by locals – Europeans – using local resources.
Should the Brussels attack be linked to this same terror network, it will greatly complicate efforts by some to leverage this tragedy to further their agendas against refugees and even to change the dynamics of the war in Syria itself.
Europeans are clearly already being radicalized and then leaving to Syria to fight alongside ISIS and then returning – rather than a torrent of foreigners streaming in from abroad and carrying out violence against European targets.
Should the Brussels attack turn out to be the work of this ISIS-linked terror group, considering the familiarity European security agencies had with all the suspects long before even the 2015 Paris attacks, indicates criminal negligence at best, and complicity at worst.
But even if the attacks are the work of foreign ISIS militants, one should consider the West’s admitted role in the creation and perpetuation of ISIS in the first place.
Far from a “conspiracy theory,” it would be the US’ own Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) that would admit as much in a leaked 2012 report (.pdf) which stated:
If the situation unravels there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime, which is considered the strategic depth of the Shia expansion (Iraq and Iran).
The West, Gulf countries, and Turkey support the opposition; while Russia, China, and Iran support the regime.
Between this admission, and an earlier exposé in 2007 by veteran journalist Seymour Hersh in his New Yorker piece titled, “The Redirection” where US and Saudi plans to use Al Qaeda to wage proxy war on Syria and Iran were revealed, it is clear that both Al Qaeda and ISIS are being used by the West to wage war on Damascus, Baghdad, Tehran, and even Moscow.
ISIS supply lines clearly, even admittedly run from NATO territory in Turkey where the US and its regional allies have categorically failed to interdict them and even appear to be aiding and abetting the flow of men and materiel into ISIS-held territory in Syria and Iraq. These supply lines are what has allowed pressure to be continuously placed upon Damascus and its allies over the past 5 years in ways nonexistent “moderate rebels” couldn’t.
In Indonesia, as Jakarta clearly began re-balancing toward Beijing, ISIS carried out its first deadly attack on the Southeast Asian nation. Thailand’s similar re-balancing also prompted threats from the US that an “ISIS attack” was imminent.
In Europe, where the flames of a “clash of civilizations” are being furiously and intentionally fanned, ISIS serves as a constant implement to empower extremists on both sides, while drowning out the voices of unity, moderation, and peace in the middle. It allows for a growing police state and xenophobic tendencies to flourish at home, while justifying further war abroad.