French police continued a manhunt today for a gunman who opened fire at a Jewish school in the southwestern city of Toulouse on Monday, killing three children and an adult. New evidence suggests the shooter may have filmed his attack (WSJ), French Interior Minister Claude Guéant said. Police are investigating a potential link between the incident and two similar attacks on soldiers in the area that left three dead last week. A .45-caliber gun was reportedly used in all three attacks. Officials said the suspect was "cold blooded" and anti-Semitic, but suggested his larger motives were still unclear.
"All of those who have been shot or killed in and around the city in the past eight days have had one thing in common. They are from visible minorities. They had names or faces that marked them out as not being descended, as Jean-Marie Le Pen would say, from 'our ancestors the Gauls.' Their roots--both Jewish and Muslim--were in the Maghreb or the Caribbean," writes Fiachra Gibbons for the Guardian.
"Prior to the Jewish school attack, anti-racism groups had been pointing to what they saw as the troubling xenophobic, anti-Muslim, and perhaps even anti-Semitic subtext of the presidential campaigns by the far-right National Front party as well as Sarkozy's 'respectable right' ruling party. Both have criticized Muslims--and, to a lesser extent, Jews--during the controversy over halal and kosher meat," writes Eric Pape for Foreign Policy.
"Until the motivation behind the attacks is known this incident also seems likely to reignite a discussion in Europe more broadly. Though the victims in this case are less numerous, this incident comes in the same year-long period that saw Anders Breivik's attack on the government buildings in Oslo and the Workers' Youth League camp, as well as the uncovering of the neo-Nazi terrorist cell in Germany," writes Heather Horn for the Atlantic.
North Korea to Allow Visit by UN Inspectors
North Korea invited inspectors with the UN's International Atomic Energy Agency to visit the country as part of an effort to implement a deal with the United States (BBC) to suspend its nuclear weapons program. However, Pyongyang last week announced a rocket launch for next month, a move the United States called "highly provocative."
A Pakistani parliamentary commission called on the United States to issue an "unconditional apology" over a NATO strike (Dawn) along the border with Afghanistan that killed twenty-four Pakistani soldiers late last year. The commission also insisted on the cessation of U.S. drone strikes inside Pakistan.
Pakistan's stability is of great consequence to regional and international security. Examine the roots of its challenges, what it means for the region and the world, and explore some plausible futures for the country with this CFR Crisis Guide.
Insurgents set off a coordinated series of car bombs and improvised explosive devices across Iraq today, killing at least thirty-six people (WaPo), a week ahead of an Arab League summit to be held in Baghdad.
ISRAEL: A classified U.S. war simulation held this month indicated that an Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear facilities (NYT) would lead to a wider regional war that could draw in the United States, U.S. officials said.
RealClearPolitics' Erin McPike notes that recent remarks by Romney and Santorum on the economy "suggest that the candidates are in a bit of a bind: They seem uncertain how to tailor their messages on improving key economic indicators as they challenge an incumbent president who is leading the recovery--albeit a slow one."
Editor's Note: For more information on the presidential election and foreign policy check out CFR's campaign blog, The Candidates and the World.