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There was no sense of recrimination at the Paris solidarity march in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attacks. AAP/Francois Pauletto

A million march in Paris with not a dog-whistle between them

On Sunday, millions of people turned out to reaffirm the unity of France in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack. About 1.5 million people came to the march in Paris. For two hours before the march started…
A wave of small-scale assaults has shaken public confidence in governments’ capacity to protect citizens from terrorism. AAP/Yann Korbi

Bonds of trust are terrorists’ target in the age of ‘leaderless jihad’

The Charlie Hebdo massacre and the subsequent attack on the Hyper Cache kosher market in France are merely the latest and most bloody jihadist atrocities to have traumatised the West. From Ottawa to Sydney…
Disillusioned young people are being conned into fighting for a global army. EPA

Why jihadism appeals to religiously illiterate loners

After killing 12 people at the offices of Charlie Hebdo, brothers Chérif and Saïd Kouachi were heard proclaiming, “we have avenged the Prophet Muhammad”. Amateur footage also revealed the killers invoking…
A man holds a placard reading “I am Charlie” to pay tribute to the victims following a shooting by gunmen at the offices of weekly newspaper Charlie Hebdo in Paris. Reuters

Prisons, Muslim memory and the making of a terrorist

The media spotlight on Cherif Kouachi’s life rekindles questions about prisons and radicalization. As an alleged participant of the Charlie Hebdo attacks, Kouachi has seemingly led many lives. In one incarnation…
Award-winning French author Michel Houellebecq is no stranger to controversy. kojoku/Shutterstock

Paris attack brings focus to French author Michel Houellebecq

When gunmen (thought to be radicalized Muslims) burst into the offices of Charlie Hebdo on the morning of January 7, the front page of the satirical newspaper’s most recent edition featured a caricature…
Division is what the Charlie Hebdo attackers want. Emma Foster/EPA

Charlie Hebdo attack: this is not a clash of civilisations

The attack on Charlie Hebdo was an abominable tragedy. It struck the heart of one of our capitals and symbols of our democracies as terrorists attacked our freedom of the press. It is now essential to…
When violence erupts, we can be tempted to make judgements about collective responsibility based on our own allegiances, rather than consistent moral principles. EPA/Ian Langsdon

Charlie Hebdo attack: when should we hold a group responsible for a member’s evil?

When should we hold a group morally responsible for a member’s evil? In the wake of the Charlie Hedbo attacks, many will demand answers about Islam’s role in promoting violence. As we brace for the inevitable…
Man Haron Monis, the hostage-taker in the Sydney siege, in 2009. AAP/Sergio Dionisio

Radicalisation and the lone wolf: what we do and don’t know

The events of the Sydney siege this week evolved amid a torrent of speculation and theorising about the motivations and intent of the hostage-taker Man Haron Monis. Some media reporting during the Sydney…

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