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World View: People in Germany Are Reeling After a Week of Violence

This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

  • ISIS takes credit for terror attack in Ansbach, southern Germany
  • Germans in a state of shock after four violent attacks in one week
  • Knife-wielding massacre near Tokyo Japan kills 19
  • Germany’s Der Spiegel asks: Is this the Apocalypse Now?

ISIS takes credit for terror attack in Ansbach, southern Germany

Germany's week of violence (CNN)
Germany’s week of violence (CNN)

The Amaq News Agency, the public relations arm of the so-called Islamic State (IS or ISIS or ISIL or Daesh) has taken credit for the terror attack in Ansbach, southern Germany, on Wednesday evening, saying that the attack was carried out by “one of the soldiers of the Islamic State.”

The ISIS public relations statement was issued after the police searched the mobile phone of the perpetrator, known only as “Mohammed D,” and found a video declaring loyalty to ISIS and announcing a “revenge act against Germans because they are standing in the way of Islam.” However, it is believed that Mohammed D was a “lone wolf” inspired by ISIS, but unknown to ISIS prior to the attack.

Mohammed D exploded a bomb on Sunday evening outside a large music festival in Ansbach, injuring 15 people. He was prevented from entering the music festival by police since he did not have a ticket. There was heavy security at the festival because of three previous violent attacks in Germany during the week.

Mohammed D was a 27-year-old Syrian national who had arrived in Bulgaria in 2013, and was granted refugee status by Bulgaria in September 2013. He left Bulgaria in mid-2014, and came to Germany, where he applied for protection, which was denied. He received deportation warnings from Germany between December 2014 and July of this year, threatening to deport him back to Bulgaria, although it’s unclear whether Bulgaria would have accepted him.

Mohammed D had spent time living in a mental care facility and had twice attempted suicide, but failed. On Sunday, he was successful. Deutsche Welle and BBC and Novinite (Sofia Bulgaria)

Germans in a state of shock after four violent attacks in one week

Until this summer, Germany had been largely untouched by the wave of terror that hit France and Belgium in recent years. But now, the attack in Ansbach was the fourth violent attack in a week, and Germans are becoming increasingly anxious. Many are blaming Chancellor Angela Merkel for permitting close to a million refugees to enter Germany last year.

On Monday, July 18, a teenage Afghan refugee hacked at passengers on a train in Würzburg with an axe and knife, wounding five. He was shot dead by police. ISIS claimed credit for the attack.

On Friday, July 22, a German-born teenager of Iranian descent shot dead nine people in Munich before shooting himself dead. According to police, gunman David Ali Sonboly was inspired by other mass shootings that had no political motivation, such as a school massacre carried out by 17-year-old Tim Kretschmer in Baden-Württemberg in 2009. It would be surprising if someone whose heritage is Iran, which is a Shia Muslim country, were inspired by ISIS or al-Qaeda, which are Sunni Muslim terrorist groups.

On Sunday, July 24 in Reutlingen, a few hours before the Ansbach attack, a 21-year-old Syrian refugee took a long knife from the kebab shop where he worked, and used to kill a 45-year-old woman whom he had claimed to be “in love” with. Some unconfirmed reports indicate that the woman was pregnant. Five others were injured as well. A witness hit the attacker with his car, knocking the man to the ground so that police were able to arrest him seven minutes after the first attack. The attacker was previously known to the police for assault and drug offenses.

There is a thread of mental instability that runs through these attacks. The Ansbach attacker had spent time in a mental care facility, and had previously attempted suicide twice, as we mentioned above. David Ali Sonboly carried out his attack on the fifth anniversary of the 77 murders by far-right extremist Anders Behring Breivik in Norway in 2011. The Reutlingen attack was apparently related to an affair with a woman.

This has led some people to suggest that these attacks would all have occurred anyway even without being “inspired” by ISIS, in the same way that one public murder can lead to copycat murders.

Nonetheless, pressure is growing on Angela Merkel to revise her policies on refugees. Her political allies point out that these attacks were not directed by ISIS, but only claimed by ISIS after they occurred. Her political enemies are blaming the attacks directly on her policies. Germans will go to the polls about a year from now, and Merkel has not yet announced whether she plans to run for a fourth term. The Local (Germany) and Deutsche Welle and BBC and The Local (Germany)

Knife-wielding massacre near Tokyo Japan kills 19

In one of the worst mass attacks that Japan has seen, a man wielding a knife went on a stabbing rampage in a care facility near Tokyo for people with disabilities, killing at least 19 and wounding 25 others.

Satoshi Uematsu, 26, later drove to the police station and turned himself in. He had a bag full of knives, some bloodstained, when he turned himself in. He had been an employee of the care home, but had been sacked. He told police that he wanted to rid the world of disabled people.

Police say that there is no connection to terrorism. Japan Times and BBC

Germany’s Der Spiegel asks: Is this the Apocalypse Now?

“I’m tired of living in interesting times,” a Twitter user wrote several days ago. According to an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel, people on social media ask every day: What is wrong with 2016? When will it be over? What more does it have in store for us?

In just the last few weeks, there was a mass shooting in Orlando on June 12, a huge Istanbul airport attack on June 28, a massive terror attack in Dhaka on July 1, a deadly July 7 shooting in Dallas, and the horrific Bastille Day attack in Nice on July 14. The next day, on July 15, was the attempted coup d’état in Turkey.

And now, in the last week, there have been four violent attacks in Germany, including two on Sunday, and a major knife attack in Japan on Monday.

The article says:

This year, international political events have overlapped in an unsettling way. Something seems to be coalescing and brewing, though it’s not yet clear what. Each new development seems to come a bit faster than the last. It may have begun with the Arab Spring in 2011, but it also continued with the wars in Libya and Syria and was further exacerbated by the conflict between Ukraine and Russia and the latest terrorist attacks. We are witnessing the destabilization of the world as we’ve known it since 1989.

In fact, this is exactly what always happens in a generational Crisis era. There are many reasons, but there are two major ones. First, the last of the Silent generation of survivors of World War II have all but disappeared, and their wisdom is no longer available to prevent geopolitical catastrophes, leaving the world at the mercy of increasingly nationalistic, racist and xenophobic younger generations.

The second reason is the Malthusian reason. As the population continues to increase exponentially, with 200,000 people added to the global population every day, there have been massive flows of refugees in the Mideast, Africa and Asia, destabilizing societies and nations everywhere. Furthermore, growing populations are displacing more and more farmland, and the population is growing faster than the food supply, resulting in constantly increasing poverty and starvation. Both of these reasons give rise to desperate people who are willing to kill in order to get what they believe they’re entitled to, and that means increasing chaos and war.

I had to chuckle when I heard the media commentary on Donald Trump’s speech last week, characterizing it as full of “doom and gloom.” I watched the speech live and didn’t think that it was particularly gloomy at all, since all of those doom and gloom things are things that I’ve been predicting for years, based on Generational Dynamics analyses. Generational Dynamics also predicts that there are no solutions to these problems except another world war.

The article concludes:

Many of us simply don’t understand the world anymore. It will probably be up to the historians of future generations to accurately categorize what exactly it is that we’re experiencing in these times of transition. This is, however, not the time to give in to panic — it is time to have confidence in one’s own values and keep fighting for the society one believes in. Geopolitical turmoil is best overcome when one is grounded in clear convictions, which holds true for both citizens and countries as a whole. First of all, a clear compass is needed in order to take responsibility for foreign policy, confront dictators and manage the crises that we’re witnessing.

I would respond by saying that those who study Generational Dynamics understand the world only too well, but just aren’t happy with what they understand. As Solomon, who had an excellent intuitive understanding of generational theory, says in Ecclesiastes: “For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief.” Der Spiegel (Berlin)

KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Germany, Ansbach, Mohammed D, Syria, Bulgaria, Islamic State / of Iraq and Syria/Sham/the Levant, IS, ISIS, ISIL, Daesh, Amaq News Agency, France, Germany, Afghanistan, Angela Merkel, Iran, David Ali Sonboly, Reutlingen, Tokyo, Japan, Satoshi Uematsu, Der Spiegel, Donald Trump, Solomon, Ecclesiastes
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