The neo-Nazi Frenchmen who were originally focused on had never been accused of any actual violence against anyone, unlike the actual killer, Mohammed Merah.
Starting on March 11 and ending on March 19, a terrorist wearing a motorcycle helmet that covered his face conducted a vicious killing spree in Toulouse, France, murdering three French military officers (two of Arab ancestry, one of Caribbean ancestry) and four French Jewish civilians (a 30-year-old Rabbi, his 5-year-old son, his 4-year-old son and an 8-year-old girl). Much speculation as to the possible motives and background of the terrorist followed. On March 21, 2012, the French armed forces surrounded an apartment in Toulouse where the killer lived and released his identity: It was a French Islamist named Mohammed Merah. On March 22, Merah was shot dead while jumping out of his apartment window.
What was most disturbing about this terrorist act — aside from its occurrence — was that the elite Western public officials’ and media’s speculation about the true killer, prior to the discovery of his identity, heavily focused on the belief that he was a white European neo-Nazi, or perhaps another Anders Breivik, a white, European Christian killer who hated Islam and may have hated Jews.
Granted, the fact that both French Muslims and French Jews had been killed, and the fact that some neo-Nazis had recently been dismissed from the French military, made this a plausible assumption. But it was not the only possible assumption, and it was almost certainly not the most likely one.
The most likely assumption was what was eventually found to be true — that the killer was a Muslim jihadist who hated Jews and hated those “traitorous” fellow Muslims who served in the “infidel” French army. Indeed, not to toot my own horn, but this was my initial belief. The neo-Nazi Frenchmen who were originally focused on had never been accused of any actual violence against anyone, unlike the actual killer, Mohammed Merah.