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Paris attack deplorable, inexcusable and deceitful

The deadly attack against a satirical newspaper in Paris on Wednesday is yet another stark demonstration of the grave threat of terrorism haunting the world.

Twelve people were murdered and 11 others injured in the Charlie Hebdo massacre, which also left the whole country bleeding and the entire world appalled.

The brutal carnage sounds a sharp alarm that terrorism and extremism remain rampant and still pose a severe threat to all mankind.

Alone, every country is vulnerable. But together, the international community can win the battle, which is not only of men and arms but -- fundamentally -- of hearts and minds.

All nations inhabiting the planet should close ranks and fight shoulder to shoulder against terrorism in all forms, forging a closer partnership to eliminate both its symptoms and its root causes.

No excuse whatsoever, be it to defend a religious belief or to revenge a provocation, can justify any cold-blooded killing of innocent lives. Terrorism is a crime against humanity and can in no way be warranted.

Some might pin the blame on the deep differences between Western values and the norms of some religions, and the alarming lack of recognition and respect of them on the part of many on both sides.

Some others might point to the fine line between satire and insult and the fact that caricature could easily turn into a blasting fuse attached to a powder keg of resentment between peoples of different cultures and, especially, religions.

The differences and delicacy are real indeed, but they in no account qualify as a permit for violence. They can be mitigated and handled by dialogue in a peaceful manner.

On the other hand, they do form a reality that demands basic respect and prudence be exercised in mass communication so as to reduce inter-culture and inter-religion misunderstanding and distrust, which can easily be exploited by terrorists.

Dialogue and respect cannot eliminate terrorism in the short term, but in the long run they can cement mutual understanding and trust and thus squeeze and even wipe out its breeding ground.

It also needs to be noted is that the religion the Charlie Hebdo killers claim to defend is also a victim. Such a barbarious carnage is tolerated by no religion, and the culprits will only profane the name of whoever they claim to defend.

Thus it is imperative that the terrorists be denied the opportunity to stoke hatred and divide society. They might be capable of hurting the people, but they should never be allowed to fool the people.

[Source: Xinhua, Beijing, 08Jan15]

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small logoThis document has been published on 09Jan15 by the Equipo Nizkor and Derechos Human Rights. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.