Nov 14, 2015

We mourn the victims

A victim outside the Bataclan concert hall in Paris on Friday night


“A body fell on me—it emptied blood on my legs. . . . My neighbor, a man of about fifty, was shot right in the face, in the head. Bits of brain and flesh fell on my glasses,” one blessed escapee from the theatre recollected. “I tried to keep my eyes on the floor, it was an immense flood of blood.” Another concertgoer, named Célia, recounted, “I saw the assailants clearly. I think there were four. Their faces weren’t hidden. All very young, in their twenties. Not especially handsome, but not at all devilish looking. They wore big tunics, one beige, and two all in black. The one in the beige tunic had a short beard. They were all Middle Eastern types but spoke French without any accent.” And another survivor remembered one of the attackers saying, “You have killed our brothers in Syria, now it’s your turn,” while they fired at the crowd. It was a non-stop fusillade, and a gunman shouted, “The first person who moves his ass, I’ll kill him.” Célia added, “My cell phone was lit because I was going to film parts of the concert, but I didn’t have it out. Good thing, because those who took theirs out were killed immediately.”

(Eyewitnesses, quoted in an article in The New Yorker)

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