16 Arrested in Terrorist Raids Across Belgium

I don’t know if all of these arrests of terrorists around the planet are making me feel safer or more worried. On the one hand, it sure is nice to see the law enforcement agencies around the world working so hard to get these people off the streets as quickly as possible. We’ve seen dozens of arrests in France, Turkey, Honduras, Costa Rica, the USA, Germany and Belgium over the last week or so… but what does this say about the President Obama’s notion of having the terrorists “contained”?

Sunday night, police in Belgium coordinated to conduct a series of raids across their nation, which netted them some 16 suspected terrorists (though their Most Wanted man, Paris terrorist Salah Abdeslam, was not one of them).

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From the BBC:

Belgian police have made 16 arrests in anti-terror raids, but suspected Paris attacks gunman Salah Abdeslam remains at large, the authorities have said.

Some 22 raids were carried out Sunday across Brussels and Charleroi, the federal prosecutor’s spokesman said.

Brussels remains on the highest level of terror alert. Universities, schools and the metro system will stay closed on Monday.

Meanwhile, the search for Salah Abdeslam continues throughout Europe as the media continues to do everything they can to learn more about the villain who helped bring terror to Paris. Over the weekend Abdeslam’s brother Mohammed was a guest on Belgian TV, where he urged his brother to surrender and discussed how his family missed the signs that he had been “radicalized.”

Starting at about 1:30 into the video:

Journalist: Were you close to your brothers? Did they talk to you?

 Mr Abdeslam: Yes, of course, my brothers and I were close. I was living with them, we had standard conversations between brothers.

Journalist: And you say that you didn’t see anything coming, that you never had any suspicion. A slight change six months ago, as you told me.

Mr Abdeslam: Yes, a slight change, indeed. But this change wasn’t worrying, not for me, nor for my family. When your brother begins to pray, it’s not necessarily a radicalisation. When your brother tells you he’s stopped drinking, it’s not a radical change. These are people who, for us, just wanted to calm down and show more respect in their practice of religion.

Journalist: And apparently, they became radicalised.

Mr Abdeslam: They became radicalised. Personally, I wouldn’t use this term. Nowadays, a lot of young people can be easily influenced. I deeply believe that my brothers weren’t radicalised. That’s the reason why we didn’t see anything. I rather feel like my brothers were manipulated.

Journalist: Salah Abdeslam was being watched by Belgian state security, Brahim probably tried to go to Syria. You weren’t aware of this?

Mr Abdeslam: Salah was being watched by Belgian state security, but we didn’t know that and we didn’t know either that Brahim had tried to go to Syria. He’s apparently been interviewed by police services on that subject, and we were never told about what he said.

Journalist: Brahim is dead, he blew himself up in a cafe in Paris. Salah has disappeared from the radar, and investigators are wondering if he didn’t change his mind at the very last moment, before doing anything. Do you hope he didn’t kill anyone?

Mr Abdeslam: It’s more than my hope, it’s what I believe. Salah is someone who is very clever. I think that, at the last minute, Salah decided to turn back. Maybe he saw or heard something that he didn’t expect. And he decided not to see the plan through. I have to remind you that today, we are not aware of the latest elements of the investigation, but we do not know yet whether Salah did kill people or not, we do not know if Salah was at the scene of any of the attacks.

Journalist: You called on him to surrender. And he didn’t do so, until now. What would you like to tell him, today?

Mr Abdeslam: I’d like to tell him that we aren’t afraid. And that’s why I’m expressing myself in front of the press. We want Salah to surrender…


You can read the rest of the interview here.

This is the problem that many conservatives have long been speaking of – even among their own family, it is hard to spot the difference between a “moderate” Muslim who wouldn’t harm (or support the harm) of their non-Muslim neighbor, and a “radical” Muslim who’d be willing to commit terrorist atrocities. How are we outside of Islam supposed to be able to spot the difference in the refugees that we take in – when they can’t even spot the difference among themselves?

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