With unarmed first responders dead or wounded, second responders arrive at Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris in time to transport the injured, take away bodies, gather evidence and clean up the mess.
At least a dozen people have been killed and more were wounded by “terrorists” at the office of a French satirical publication in Paris on Wednesday, CBS and AP are reporting. Two men reportedly armed with machine guns and wearing masks entered the offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine and opened fire on whomever they encountered.
Per the report, officers initially arriving on the scene were unarmed and fled, unable to help themselves, let alone citizen victims. A video “shows two gunmen open fire on police in a small black car, and then shows them executing one officer as he lies on the sidewalk,” with cries of “Allahu Akhbar!” heard.
Charlie Hebdo is famous — some would say notorious — for publishing material that fundamentalist Muslims find offensive, including cartoons of the prophet Mohammad. This is not the first attack, as the offices were firebombed in 2011. And unsurprisingly, French citizens are pretty much powerless in the face of attackers who disregard their “gun control” laws.
Gun Policy.org, a project of the Sydney School of Public Health, which, while decidedly anti-gun nonetheless provides instructive and useful compilations of gun laws from around the globe, notes “The regulation of guns in France is categorized as restrictive.” The right to own guns is not guaranteed by law, and private possession of handguns, “semi-automatic assault weapons” and fully automatic weapons “is prohibited with only narrow exceptions.”
There is “genuine reason”-based licensing, which expires and must be renewed, criminal and mental health background checks, registration, as well as limits on how many guns and how much ammunition may be owned. It’s telling that with under three million “civilian” guns registered (in a country with a population of over 66 million), there are an estimated additional 16 million “illicit guns.” And while licensed concealed carry is permitted under “exceptional risks” circumstances (open carry is prohibited), authorization expires after a year, and if not renewed by authorities with the power to deny or rescind, the “holder must surrender the firearm and ammunition.”