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  1. #51

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    Islamic State Watch

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jun/25/islamic-state-fighters-enter-syria-kobani

    IS continue their tactics of suicide bomb attacks, suspicion on Turkey as to how they managed to get into Kobani.

  2. #52
    ursus arctos's Avatar
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    Presumed Islamist attack on a beach resort in Sousse on the Tunisian coast. Officials reporting as many as 19 dead.

    Coming after the Bardo Museum attack in Tunis in the spring, this is going to have a huge impact on the tourist industry.

    There's also been a suicide attack on a Shia mosque in Kuwait and an attack on a industrial estate in France in which some poor sod was beheaded.

    Bad day all around.

  3. #53
    ursus arctos's Avatar
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    Islamic State Watch

    Death toll in Sousse now up to 27.

  4. #54

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    Islamic State Watch

    What's really depressing with Islamic State and the increasingly frequent and widespread attacks by people inspired by them, is that no-one even has any ideas about what to do to stop days like today happening again and again. Not from the left or the right.

    Everyone knows that military action against ISIS will probably only make things worse. Not taking military action just allows them to get stronger. The action the West has taken has probably helped the Iraqi Kurds save themselves for now but does nothing for the long term. Obviously Iraq and Afghanistan were mistakes but we can't undo them. We already have more security at places like stations and airports so they just choose softer targets like a beach and a factory.

    I mean, is anyone actually suggesting a course of action that might stop things like this happening, either in the West or the Middle East? Is there anything we can do?

  5. #55

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    Islamic State Watch

    And 120 civilians killed when IS attacked Kobane again, meaning four of the top five stories on the BBC website are IS or IS-inspired murder.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-33285699

  6. #56

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    Islamic State Watch

    The Tunisia attack was on soft targets with the chances of Muslims being killed greatly reduced as we're in Ramadan.

    The suicide bombing of the Shia Mosque in Kuwait City was the first terrorist attack in Kuwait for nearly ten years.

    Cheers George and Tony.

  7. #57
    Rogin the Armchair fan's Avatar
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    Islamic State Watch

    The hotel we're booked into in September is about 200 metres down the beach from the one where everyone was shot today. We're seriously thinking of cancelling/re-booking to another country. A German package firm has already announced it's offering that option to people booked for Tunisia, I expect Thomas Cook (who we're with) will follow suit.

  8. #58
    ursus arctos's Avatar
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    Islamic State Watch

    Rogin, have you considered Montenegro, Croatia or the Caribbean?

    This seems to be becoming a pattern.

  9. #59

    Islamic State Watch

    You're probably still safer going to Tunisia than to many other popular resort countries like Mexico or the Dominican Rep. You'd also have a lot of space to spread on the beach...

  10. #60

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    Islamic State Watch

    IS have taken hostages in Kobani as they continue their assault there. YPG had previously made gains north of Raqqa so this appears to be a response to that.

  11. #61
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    Islamic State Watch

    linus wrote: You're probably still safer going to Tunisia than to many other popular resort countries like Mexico or the Dominican Rep. You'd also have a lot of space to spread on the beach...
    Weren't people saying that in March when 21 tourists were killed in the museum massacre in Tunisia?

  12. #62

    Islamic State Watch

    Yes, but there are 6M visitors to Tunisia every year.

    Death toll climbing to 37.

  13. #63
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    Islamic State Watch

    Is there a higher proportional level of tourist deaths in Mexico or the Dominican Republic? Genuine question.

    I try not to be alarmist about such things (I went to Egypt in April after assessing what the level of risk was - though we visited Karnak Temple which has had a suicide bombing since so maybe I misjudged it ) but I can understand how the two recent incidents in Tunisia would make people rule out going there.

    .

  14. #64

    Islamic State Watch

    Harry Truscott wrote: Is there a higher proportional level of tourist deaths in Mexico or the Dominican Republic? Genuine question.
    The idea that tourists are targeted in Mexico is absolute bollocks. Once in a while, some idiot from the US or Europe gets themselves killed by venturing into extremely murky places looking for hard drugs. That's all.

    There was one story a while back about a bunch of Russian tourists travelling on a bus in the state of Guerrero. The bus was stopped by bandits with the intention of robbing the Russians, who promptly kicked the shit out of them.

    Mexico is a huge place. You're totally safe if you stay away from certain parts of the northern border, and from three or four specific cities/towns. Even then, in those places if you happen to get killed as a tourist, it will either be by a freak accident, or by your own utter stupidity, rather than at the hands of the cartel.

    As for north Africa, I wouldn't go there these days if you paid me. This shit has been happening on and off for the last two decades. The Moroccan tourist industry was brought to its knees in the early 2000s by a string of suicide bombings, for example.

  15. #65

    Islamic State Watch

    There are nearly 30,000 homicides per year in Mexico, so even if tourists aren't targeted, there is an extensive hardcore criminal activity, I would guess 1% of those casualties are tourists. Cancun/Cozumel are quite safe, but on the Pacific side Acapulco, Ixtapa aren't as safe as they used to be.

    The Dominican Republic has a similarly high crime rate, and tourists do get mugged there. The government underreports crimes on foreigners. To put things in perspective, there are about 2,250 homicides per year there, ten times as many as in Tunisia today (a country with twice the population). I'd imagine that the past rate in Tunisia must have been much lower before the political turbulence. The government is going to have to upgrade security on the ground.

  16. #66

    Islamic State Watch

    There are nearly 30,000 homicides per year in Mexico, so even if tourists aren't targeted, there is an extensive hardcore criminal activity, I would guess 1% of those casualties are tourists.
    If tourists were being whacked at the rate of one per day in Mexico, its tourism industry would have gone down the shitter long ago.

    I think you're confusing deaths with killings. Doing a Google search for tourist deaths in Mexico results in page after page after page of results about . . . a Canadian woman perishing when her boat collided with a humpback whale near Cabo San Lucas.

    It would make about as much sense for the cartels to start shooting tourists as it would for them to start shooting squirrels. That's why the murder rate in Mexico City is the same as it is in Albuquerque.

  17. #67

    Islamic State Watch

    Looking at the stats, it's around one US visitor killed per week, not per day. Still pretty high.

    http://www.fodors.com/community/mexico-central-america/how-safe-is-mexico-data-on-us-citizen-deaths-from-the-us-state-dept.cfm

    http://www.mexicovacationawareness.com/victims.html#

    http://dominicanwatchdog.org/page-Too_many_tourists_killed_in_the_Dominican_Republic

  18. #68

    Islamic State Watch

    One a week, out of 19 million visits a year, in a huge country that has a native population of 123 million no, that's not pretty high. In fact, it's tiny. And most of those are accounted for by people going over the border looking to score cheap drugs, failing to use their brains, and picking fights with the wrong people. Or stupid fuckers drunkenly acting the maggot in red light districts, trying to haggle a few dollars off the price of a hand job.

    Comparing these things which happen to tourists in almost every developed country in the western world to what happened in Tunisia this morning is beyond ludicrous. Certain parts of Mexico are dangerous if you happen to live in a terrible area where the cartels have a lot of manpower and resources. It's not dangerous if you're a tourist unless you're in the habit of consistently behaving like a complete fucking moron, and even then you still have to be catastrophically unlucky in statistical terms.

  19. #69

    Islamic State Watch

    You probably have a better grasp of things directly south of your state's border. this being said, it's hard to get the real picture from all those stats. Do those 19M visits include dual citizens residing in the US visiting relatives (probably includes a lot of second-generation Nortenos)? What's the ratio of inebriated meatheads finding trouble to "innocent" tourists getting preyed upon?

    Also, by nature, terrorist massacres like yesterday's are more deeply etched in the public's mind, while ongoing "background" violent crimes, which cumulatively might take more victims, are seldom reported and do not register.

  20. #70

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    Islamic State Watch

    linus wrote:

    Also, by nature, terrorist massacres like yesterday's are more deeply etched in the public's mind, while ongoing "background" violent crimes, which cumulatively might take more victims, are seldom reported and do not register.
    And isn't this exactly the point about going to North Africa right now? That it's almost impossible to shake things like this from the back of your mind, so whatever the maths does or doesn't say about how safe it is it's going to spoil your enjoyment.

    As an analogy, rollercoasters are obviously safer than cars but if you went to Alton Towers right now then you're going to be freaked out by the slightest unexpected noise on any of the rides, whereas you think nothing of driving.

  21. #71

    Islamic State Watch

    linus wrote: You probably have a better grasp of things directly south of your state's border.
    I'm not American. But I'm married to a Mexican woman and I've been there several times in the last few years, in the north, the south-east and the west.

    The cartels are perfectly happy to have loads of tourists coming in. It's extra business, extra trade, an expanded market.

  22. #72

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    Islamic State Watch

    Green Calx wrote: As for north Africa, I wouldn't go there these days if you paid me. This shit has been happening on and off for the last two decades. The Moroccan tourist industry was brought to its knees in the early 2000s by a string of suicide bombings, for example.
    Green Calx wrote:
    Comparing these things which happen to tourists in almost every developed country in the western world to what happened in Tunisia this morning is beyond ludicrous.
    agree.

    Tunisia attack: Majority of dead were British, says Tunisian PM

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  24. #74

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    Islamic State Watch

    http://m.thenation.com/blog/206697-was-us-party-ethnic-cleansing-syria

    Linus I was aware of the ethnic cleansing by the YPG but presumed it was revenge against perceived IS supporters and not something else.

    Just goes to show that there is no good side in the war in Syria and that each side had their own agenda which may often be different from the US narrative.

    It's common knowledge that Israel supports the Kurds in Northern Iraq so to see them push that to include the Kurds of Syria isn't so far fetched, hence the reason why Israel and Turkey have just met in Rome.

  25. #75

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    Islamic State Watch

    The suicide bomber in Kuwait City has been identified as a Saudi citizen. IS is apparently going to be targeting Bahrain next, another country with a large Shiite population but one that is more active and likely to react than the one in Kuwait.

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