The crime was gruesome, yet, or maybe just because of that, the perpetrator is celebrated. “May I introduce: the lion from France,” writes a German user of the Messenger Service Telegram about the young Islamist who beheaded the teacher Samuel Paty last Friday in the Parisian suburb of Conflans-Sainte-Honorine.
Nothing but the honour of the Prophet Mohammed ” moved his devout heart,” another Muslim posted on Telegram, “may Allah add you to his Shuhada. Truly you are to be envied for your vigour.” Shuhada is the Arabic plural for “martyr”.
The police had had to kill the 18-year-old murderer shortly after the crime, when he threatened the officers who wanted to arrest him. For militant Islamists, the Russian-Chechen assassin Abdullah Anzorov is an idol. And a role model that possibly other young, radicalised Muslims will follow.
Just one look at the relevant criminal offences shows how dangerous this milieu is in Germany. In March 2011, Arid Uka, a Kosovar who has just celebrated his 21th birthday, committed the first fatal Islamist assassination in the Federal Republic of Germany. Uka shot two US soldiers at Frankfurt airport and seriously injured two others. The night before the attack, the man, who had been living in Germany for some time, had spurred himself on with Islamist videos.At least four and a half million Muslims live in the German Federal Republic, and the Office for the Protection of the Constitution has identified just over 12,000 men and women in the Salafist scene. The growth was rapid, in 2011 it was only 3800. The proportion of women had risen to more than 13 per cent, according to the report of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution for 2019. The authorities are not much relieved by the fact that the scene is apparently stagnating this year, as security circles say.