Last Friday, Nov 13, Paris experienced what French President, François Hollande, called the event an “unprecedented terrorist attack on France.” The various coordinated explosions paired with shootings and hostage-takings mounted in over 120 people dead and dozens more injured.
All seven Millersville University students currently studying in Paris were accounted for and are safe. Millersville’s spokesperson, Janet Kacskos, stated, “That is our utmost concern, their safety.”
The students along with millions more in the Paris area are now dealing with the traumathey experienced only a week ago.
One of the bombs was detonated in Stade de France, the Paris soccer stadium where Germany was facing-off against France. Kevin Lubin, a MU student studying at the American Business School of Paris was attending that same game.
Mercifully, Lubin was safely transported back to his apartment. “As I speak, terrorist attacks of an unprecedented scale are taking place in the Paris region,” said President Hollande in a nationally televised address. “There are several dozen dead, lots more wounded, it’s horrific.”
Millersville alum and French-native, Marie-Catherine Le Gall, stated that she felt “Sadness. Disgust. Heartbroken. Even though I’m not there I feel so much a part of it because it’s my home. The entire country is being targeted and it’s horrible.”
Terrorists involved in the attack included, Omar Ismail Mostefai, 29, Bilal Hadfi, Ahmad Al Mohammad, Sami Amimour and Belgian, Abdelhamid Abaaoud.
In the days following, police have been looking for suspected accomplices – citizens were asked to stay safe at home.
President Obama stated in a news conference, “Once again, we’ve seen an outrageous attempt to terrorize innocent civilians. This is an attack not just on Paris, it’s an attack not just on the people of France, but this is an attack on all of humanity and the universal values that we share.”
American intelligence confirmed that a group called the Islamic State was behind the attack. The IS covers areas in Syria and Iraq and is headquartered in Raqqa, Syria, the de facto capital of the “caliphate.”
Since the attack, the U.S. has shared intelligence with France. This has resulted in France launching more than 20 airstrike attacks on Raqqa.
These strikes have caused some concerns among the Millersville community.
Hiram Martinez, assistant director for the center for student involvement and leadership, stated his concern if these airstrikes and continued involvement in Syria will lead to war.
“How many students will go to war in Syria,” Martinez asks. “That affects us all.”