#Würzburg

Germany’s first official act of terrorism in the course of the migrant crisis and the ongoing War on Terror.
On the 18th July 2016, 17 years old Riaz Khan Ahmadzai (or Muhammad Riyadh, according to IS) – first believed Afghan, now assumed Pakistani – attacked several people on a train, armed with axe and knife. Four tourists from Hongkong were gravely wounded in the train itself, as well as a local resident on his espace route, before the police could apprehend and shoot him dead. A short time after, clear connections to radical Islam and IS were found. Two out of the five people wounded are still in mortal danger. [1]

It was just a question of time before these violence acts would hit Germany. The necessity of people to suffer and die before countermeasures are being taken is not only regrettable, but a pathetic display of everyone involved, who could’ve prevented it. Besides the rotating discussion about Islam, terrorism and security, i’d like to shed some more light on a few other points to make.

Because of a Pakistani passport found in his home and a linguistic analysis of a published video from the attacker, it is safe to assume that he lied about his country of origin. Even if there is clear proof this, for both cases of evidence can be explained by geographical and linguistical proximity. Pakistan is a safe country of origin – diminishing the chances of asylum seekers in Europe who originate from there, compared to the war zone Afghanistan.
The age, as well af the country of origin, has to be questioned under these circumstances. The minority is a big factor, granting special rights and a high propability of gaining asylum. With there being several known cases of blatant lying, faked, forged or stolen documents, it has to be paradigm to examin and verify consistently who applies for asylum – and to whom it was already granted. Otherwise, the damage this abuse will deal, financially and socially, will be staggering. For the country it concerns, for the people involved whose trust gets exploited and who should benefit rightfully from this system, and for the system of giving asylum in itself, which degenerates to an authority of social benefit fraud for all those, who are willing to exploit it.
This, as well, is an argument for a precise and thorough investigation of all asylum seekers; against uncontrolled immigration; and for a flow of people, that the concerned country can actually handle, without having to rely on shady deals with aspiring autocrats.

riaz-khan-ahmadzai

The second point to make, fueling the never-ending discussion, is, of course, integration – or the obvious failure of it in case of the attacker. The known facts are as follows:
On the 30th June 2015, he crossed the german border. Because of his age, he received special treatment, applied for asylum at the end of the year, and had it granted on the 31th March 2016. He was housed in a religious facility, later on in a foster family in a small, scenic village. Local residents describe him positively, he learns the german language, plays in the local football club and starts an apprenticeship in the local bakery. He continues to exercise his Sunni religion.
Through home sickness and the sudden death of a friend killed in action in Afghanistan, he seems to radicalize himself in a short amount of time and acts on behalf of his fallen bretheren and to enact vengeance on the infidels. A suicide note and farewell letter to his father was found in his home, speaking about religious themes, about revenge and the hope of reaching heaven and fellow muslims, who need to defend themselves against foreign powers. German soldiers in Afghanistan are mentioned as well. A self-made flag of the IS is found, which later claims responsibility for the attack.
Now, the question is: How does succesful integration look like? Considering the goals of the integration policy, which was reviewed here earlier, Riaz Khan Ahmadzai fulfilled all, if not every single condition. He lived in a empowering, positive environment without direct radical influences, learned the german language, had an apprenticeship and participated in local activities. According to the federal government, he should have been succesfully integrated – or would have been enroute to this goal. Until some day, he decides to end the lives of several foreign people and ultimately his own. The conclusion that the Sunni believe is responsible for these actions couldn’t be more obvious. It matters little if he entered Germany with the initial plan of exercising violence or only radicalized himself after certain events. The circumstance that such a sudden change of heart is possible and legitimated by the Sunni faith identifies the ideological foundation for what it is: The faith was the defining, if not the only reason for these actions, as well as the motivation. How can someone be looked at as succesfully integrated, when such a faith may negate and ruin all efforts and progress in an instant – and how can we detect and fight this menace?

Last point. Reactions, from public life and politicians as well. After Renate Künast initiated the public debate with a bizarre tweet, in which she questioned the necessity of shooting the attacker dead, and earned herself quite a blowback, i would like to present a small selection of additional comments – and comment them myself, if deemed necessary.

The Bishop of Würzburg:
When dealing with those, that come to us parentless, we have to further contemplate on how we can accompany them, how we integrate them and how we help them to withstand their traumata. [2]
The integration policy should have explained the How in this. The foster family who adopted the young man and seemed to care for him lovingly tried their best to help him integrate. The environment was beneficial, activities and work was provided.
How does Bishop Hofmann think we can do more or better, to accomplish a level of integration that is not dangerous to anyone anymore? What more is needed?
Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann:
We can’t let this go on. [3]
Regarding his statement that immigrants, who can’t prove their identity and origin, have to be stopped at the border and detained, until everything is cleared. He also lamented the ongoing status of ignorant and disorganised authorities, as well as thousands of undocumented migrants who roam the country.
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[Working for years with unattented Afghan youths. How do i explain the victims of #Würzburg, that most of them just want peace? #bitter]
Shouldn’t it be more important to explain to the own populace how such actions can be prevented, instead of focussing on the damage that is done to Afghan youths? Curiously, Pakistani youths aren’t mentioned.
Lorenz Caffier, Interior Minister of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern:
Young refugees stand out ever so often with violence and criminal acts, cause police operations and insecurity in the population [..] Extremistic salafists are looking for those young people without social stability, to instrumentalize them for their cause. [4]
Even it is still unknown if Riaz Khan Ahmadzai had any contact with salafists or other radical islamists, this case should open talks about the possibility of muslims radicalizing themselves via internet and social media. Direct contact is not a necessary factor.
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[What must a 17 year old experienced, to take an axe and .. ? Who is not(!) asking themselves this question, AfD, Pegida, press?!]
The Antifa was never known to follow a logic that is comprehendable for non-members. The question is, of course, of rhetorical nature; still, only a few selected groups or organizations are supposed to answer it. There are plenty of answers though: Special treatment from authorities, intensive care, family life and playing football in Ochsenfurt, apprenticeship in a bakery, the islamic community in Würzburg .. – it has to be one of it.
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[We should be ashamed, that we didn’t integrate him better!]
Collective guilt as an accusation and verdict. #NotAllGermans would be an adequate counter-argument i assume.
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[My condolence goes to the only casualty of #Würzburg, the 17 year old that was manipulated by ISIS]
The systematic contortion of victim and perpetrator is a symptom that keeps spreading for quite some time now in correlation to terror attacks. Naturally, one can see a victim when looking at a young refugee with severe traumata or a rough way of life and advocate comprehensible for such a case. If the distress that caused the acts of the attacker is getting uplifted above the suffering of the innocent victims and prioritized, something is very wrong with the general perception of blame and responsibility. To acknowledge the susceptibility of manipulation, to misappropriate the consequences, and then praise the ways and means that led to these circumstances and demand their continuation, is a display of a dangerous disorder, which in itself is partly responsible for creating this problem in the first place. Looking at the events in Munich, this resumes to be the case.

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