Sri Lanka : The Hidden Face of the Attacks
Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith, Archbishop of Colombo, publicly blamed the Sri Lankan authorities for not doing their utmost to prevent the series of attacks that plunged the island into mourning, causing 359 deaths [the death toll has been revised down to 253 as of April 26], according to a provisory count. Since then, the principal heads of security of the country have been dismissed. Claims of responsibility for the massacres by the Islamic State organization sheds light on the new worldwide strategy of the jihadists the day after the loss of their caliphate.
“We have learned that all these deaths could have been avoided: why didn’t anyone prevent this?” The Archbishop of Colombo—the most respected and the most media wise religious authority in the country—expressed his anger over the events of April 23, 2019, condemning “an absolutely unacceptable performance by the senior officials of the government.”
The day after the murderous attacks, for which the provisory count currently stands at 253 dead and 500 wounded, indignation is alive in Sri Lanka, after the press published a notice from the intelligence service dated the previous April 11, warning that an Islamic organization planned “suicide attacks against important Catholic churches and the Indian embassy.”
The rivalry between Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, and President Maithripala Sirisena—both in open conflict since October 2018, as well as the electoral context—the elections must be held at the end of 2019—explains this tragic failure.
The Sri-Lankan press, by the way, has not been deceived: “the desire to weaken a political rival has jeopardized the security of the country,” laments the Daily Mirror, a local daily newspaper in its April 23 edition.
“If I had been informed of the threat of an attack, I would have cancelled all the Masses on Easter Sunday,” said Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith, who then warns the clergy and the faithful, adding, “the security forces have not gained control over the situation at this time; there could be other attacks…I ask my priests to not celebrate any office in their churches until I have given them permission.”
In order to calm the public anger, the heads of the country’s principal security departments have already been fired, and an inquiry commission directed by a judge from the Supreme Court is going to be formed with the goal of clearing up the situation.
It should be noted here that the attacks which plunged into mourning the minority Catholics in Sri Lanka have shown the new strategy of the Islamic State organization (IS), which has claimed responsibility for these massacres. Since the loss of its caliphate, after the fall of Baghouz in Syria, the IS is now in place through its peripheral networks in Asia, in the Gulf countries, in Africa, like the metastases of a cancerous tumor. Even in Europe—and notably in France—where the security services, whose terrorist experience could be of valuable help to the domestic networks in view of future attacks, dread the “ghosts” of Syria and Iraq.
It is also because these “metastases” of the IS are at work in Africa where, in 2019, they defy the internal security of the French State, that the latter, discreetly and expeditiously, is supporting men, who—like General Haftar, speaking only of Libya—have made the eradication of jihadists their priority.
The Catholics of Sri Lanka may seem far away, some 8,500 kilometers from Paris, but the jihadist barbarism that struck them, is already at our walls.
(Sources : Catholic News Agency/Le Monde/The Catholic Universe - FSSPX.Actualités – 04/26/2019)