Sunday, June 17, 2018

Thomas Evans Breaks Silence: "They paid £143k on murdering my son and taking our lives away from us!!!! We are not done!"




Yesterday, in a post on the Alfies Army Official Facebook group, Thomas Evans, the father of Alfie Evans, broke more than six weeks of silence on the death of his son.

This followed posts by Sarah Evans and Daniel Evans, the child's aunt and uncle, revealing the results of a recent Freedom of Information Act request that Britain's National Health Service had paid at least £143,000 in legal fees to keep Alfie Evans at Alder Hey hospital.



As far as I understand it, the parents of Alfie Evans had been effectively silent since Thomas Evans had made an accommodationist "statement" on April 26th, a few hours before Alfie Evans would pass away. This came after weeks of angry words against Alder Hey and the NHS from Thomas and Katie, as well other family members. Many felt that the apparent turnabout was due to some sort of deal with the hospital, perhaps made in return for a promise - a promise which would be tragically unfulfilled - that Alfie Evans would be allowed to be taken home.

In the statement at that time, partly addressed to the family's supporters, Thomas Evans said:
We would now ask you to return back to your everyday lives and allow myself, Katie and Alder Hey to form a relationship, build a bridge and walk across it. 
We also wish to thank Alder Hey staff at every level for their dignity and professionalism during what must be an incredibly difficult time for them too... 
From this point onwards there will be no more statements issued or interviews given.
But yesterday on Facebook he wrote:
We wanted everyone to know that in time as we grieve, we will be speaking out further to the build up to alfies death and we will be speaking out the truth and in detail about the week that we had to go through... 
[Alder Hey] paid £143k on murdering my son and taking our lives away from us!!!! 
We are not done!
Alfie Evans was murdered by the state, and abandoned by his Church.

An online mob, many members of whom would rather see an infant killed than be caught making a grammatical error on social media, bayed for his death.

But on this Father's Day, I can't imagine how he could have been graced with better parents than Tom and Kate.   

Thomas Evans, June 16: 
It’s been 1month and 2 weeks since our gladiator was taking away from us, deprived,neglected,mistreated,and disrespected!!  
Me and Kate will never come to terms with it and will never accept alfies death or cause of death! But there is one thing that keeps us going and that’s our belief and faith that we will meet our angel again in the future, so we cherish the times we have had with him and look forward to the future to making more memories with him💙 
We wanted everyone to know that in time as we grieve, we will be speaking out further to the build up to alfies death and we will be speaking out the truth and in detail about the week that we had to go through, THAT NO OTHER PARENT SHOULD EVER EVER GO THROUGH OR IMAGINE!. 
The world need to know what happened in those five days and what we did and went through to have Alfie cared for when he proved drs wrong!! 
PLEASE DO NOT FORGET I FOUGHT AGAINST DRS AND ALDER HEY BOSSES FOR WHAT WE BELIEVED IN AND FOR OUR SONS RIGHTS.
I WOULD LIKE TO REMIND THE WORLD THOSE DRS TOLD ME AND KATE AND ALL YHE COURTS ALFIE WOULDN’T LAST LONGER THAN FIVE MINUTES!!!!! 
HE SURVIVED FOR A FURTHER FIVE DAYS AND FAUGHT HARD HE SHOULD OF BEEN GIVING RESPECT,CARE,DECENCY! 
Instead they paid £143k on murdering my son and taking our lives away from us!!!! 
We are not done! 
we are angry,upset,distraught,and truly heartbroken 😔 Alfie ment the world to us he’s been apart of our lives for 2 years and through the good and bad we have cherished him through every moment and always felt blessed to have him apart of us. 
We thank everyone for your amazing courageous support it’s helped us in the deepest struggles and in the hardest days but you along with Alfie have helped us get through it and we thank you all sincerely.
We will get JUSTICE FOR ALFIE 
#JFAJE #JUSTICEFORALFIEJAMESEVANS 💙💙

Friday, June 8, 2018

What is Darwinian Evolution?

Charles Darwin in 1880

Readers of this blog may have noticed that in the last few weeks I've written a number of posts on evolution and competing theories of origins. You can find them under the tags "evolution" and "creationism". Or for convenience, they are:

Evolution, Creation and Catholic Faith
Was Adam an Ape-Man?
Slumming with the Creationists
Was There a Biblical Flood?
The Biblical Literalism of English Catholic George Leo Haydock

I've jumped around a bit and I've also been, some might say, a bit cagey. I've been critical, in one way or another of all the alternatives. But one of them must be true. After all of it, what do I actually believe? What do I think a Catholic can believe or should believe? I've made some hints, but I haven't firmly taken a side.

I'm getting there. But before I do get there, if you'll indulge me, I want to clearly lay out the alternatives, with an emphasis on the alternatives for faithful Christians or Catholics.

I see five of them:

Darwinian Evolution
Old-Earth Creationism
Young-Earth Creationism
Intelligent Design
Theistic Evolution

In the next five posts, I want to look at each one of these in turn, briefly defining and describing them and then listing what I see as the strong points and weak points (or advantages and disadvantages - in opposite order) of each one.

For me, it's an entertaining break from Bergoglio bashing and Islam bashing. But of course I also think the topic is interesting and, in the end, incredibly important, especially for Christians and Catholics.

Again, I ask that you indulge me, but more importantly I hope you find the discussion interesting. As always, please tell me where you think I'm wrong.

And also as always, in the great Christian blogger moral tradition, I won't stop you from being abusive, but I just might get abusive back. (Insert your own mental smiley or frowny emoji, here.)

So, here's the first alternative:

DARWINIAN EVOLUTION

Definition:

All organisms and species, including Man, came into being via evolutionary descent from a common ancestor or set of similar common ancestors. The engine for this is natural selection operating on or against random genetic mutation.

Various evolutionary theories were proposed generations before Darwin and quickly acquired a certain cache in establishment and elite cultural circles. Charles Darwin's grandfather, Erasmus Darwin, wrote Zoonomia in 1794. While this work would soon make the Vatican's Index of Prohibited Books, it probably only became widely known after his grandson's works became popular. By contrast, Vestiges of Creation by the scientific popularizer Robert Chambers came out in 1844 and was wildly successful. It wasn't until the end of the 19th century that its total sales were surpassed by Darwin's The Origin of Species.

But while these and other works proposed evolutionary theories of life's origins, theories which were in convenient agreement with steadily growing secular zeitgeist, none of them could precisely explain why or how evolution occurred. It was Charles Darwin in Origin who first came up with a scientifically plausible mechanism for how evolution could occur. At that time, Darwin would speak of natural selection operating against the background of "slight changes" - the genetic mutation part would come later, partly as a result of the roughly simultaneous scientific discoveries of Gregory Mendel, a Catholic monk who, arguably, was opposed to Darwinism as a general theory   

Origin was published 1859. It is perhaps notable that this most modern of theories was publicly launched two years before the start of the American Civil War.

What are the disadvantages and advantages of Darwinian evolution in its contemporary (2018) form?

Disadvantages:

1. From a scientific standpoint, the theory has proven to be an utterly bankrupt failure. (And someday I'll tell you what I really think.) Far from the case for Darwinian evolution becoming stronger in the last 150+ years, it has steadily become weaker. Here are some of the major problems:
  • The continuing gaps and oddities of the fossil record, completely at odds with what Darwin predicted. Instead of species gradually changing, they abruptly appear, remain unchanged and then abruptly disappear. There is no general trend from simplicity to complexity beyond a few discreet points in an allaged four-billion year timeline. There are rapid mass "explosions" as well as mass extinctions of species, etc.
  • The failure, even after 150 years, to come up with a firm evolutionary timeline for Man's origins. Despite the popular conception, there is still no agreed upon sequence of species for how man progressively evolved from ape-like ancestors. New discoveries, rather than "filling in the blanks," tend to simply make things more puzzling. If Darwinian evolution is true, then there must be such a sequence, but scientists are no nearer to having one now than they were three generations ago.
  • The failure to solve the problem of irreducible complexity. Darwin argued that evolution proceeded in small steps, each one of which had to be to the advantage of the organism or species. Indeed, in the Origin of Species he claimed, " if it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down." Critics have claimed that many complex organs, such as the eye, have this feature, though this has been disputed by Darwinists who have come up with ingenious (while arguably implausible) proposals for how such complex organs could have been formed in successive stages. But the best example is the cell. Darwin and his contemporaries thought of the cell as a simple blob of protoplasm. We now know it to be akin to an incredibly complex miniature machine. The design of the machine is coded in the DNA of the organism, but no account has as yet been given of how the code builds the machine, or how a succession of different machines could have gradually "evolved" via beneficial changes at each stage from simpler origins.
  • The failure to explain how life could have arisen from non-life. This is somewhat related to the above. Various "just-so" stories have been proposed, but no evidence for them has ever been produced.
  • The failure to show how mere random mutation could steadily produce beneficial changes at the genetic level. Genetic protein sequences are incredibly complicated, and virtually all of them "don't work," in the same way that, say, virtually all random sequences of a page worth of letters and punctuation marks don't work to produce a page of intelligible prose. The mutations that do arise, almost always hurt an organism, rather than helping it
  • The failure to produce long-term beneficial mutations even in a laboratory. This is in a sense the empirical conformation of the previous claim. While it well-known that, say, bacteria can develop "new" resistances to hostile agents, the actual mechanism involved is the creation of a genetic "glitch" that masks recognition by the agent of, say, a particular protein. But no changes may be seen to occur past that point or "edge."
  • Finally, we might add that many of the best historical evidences adduced for Darwinian evolution have been exposed as intentional hoaxes or mistakes. This is not completely determinative, of course, but it should give any honest Darwinian evolutionist pause. Some examples of actual fraud include Piltdown Man, the Haeckel embryos and even the famous peppered moths. Even the evidence for the beak growth on Darwin's finches has been shown to be problematic.          
Darwinian evolutionists have reacted to each problem by doubling-down, and sometimes even boldly incorporating disconfirming evidence as confirmatory. Thus the independent evolution of distinct and complex organs such as the eye or similar animal morphologies, something that Darwin argued the theory probably ruled out, have been labeled "convergent evolution" - evidence for how wonderful and rich the theory is. The non-gradual timeline shown in the fossil record has been explained as "punctuated equilibrium." And so on.

With all of these problems, why has Darwinian evolution continued to be the dominant theory? See Advantages, below.

2. Darwinian evolution is strictly incompatible with conventional Christianity. This is of course only a problem for Christians. And indeed, it is celebrated by many atheist Darwinians. What do I mean by "strictly incompatible"? All Christians believe a) there is a God, b) God created (somehow, by some means, directly or indirectly) the world and all life in it, including Man, and c) God intended to create the world, life and Man in a certain way, according to His plan. But now recall that standard Darwinian evolution asserts that the engine for evolution is random mutation. Random means, well, random, or accidental. Or to see it another way, as the evolutionist Stephen Jay Gould put it, if we were to rewind the tape of life, say, two billion years, and then started things again, we'd get something, but it would be something completely different from what we actually have.

But why couldn't God have used evolution as His method of creation? That He could not have is not to invoke the infallible authority of some 19th century pope or to put a limitation on Gos's power, but simply to express a claim of logic, in the same way that we might say that God could not make 1 + 1 = 3. Random processes do not produce planned outcomes, unless there is some power or tendency or law also simultaneously in force. Again, this is not an empirical point but a logical one. If I randomly throw different colored paint at a board,  I could not produce the Mona Lisa. And neither could God (!), at least if we say that He randomly threw the paint. Christian evolutionists often claim that on their theory, the hand of God (somehow) guides the process, or that life as we know it, including the existence of Man was (somehow) front-loaded into things at the beginning. Why can't they say that? Well, they can, of course, but if they do, they're not anymore putting forth Darwinian evolution, which by definition incorporates a random process. Instead they would be (at a minimum) defending some sort of theory of Intelligent Design (see future post).

You can't have your cake and eat it, too.

Sorry, Christian evolutionists.

Advantages:

1. Darwinian evolution is still the overwhelmingly dominant theory or paradigm within the scientific and cultural establishment. If you dissent from the theory, you run the serious risk of torpedoing your career (or your career may fail to launch completely) in academic science and related fields. If you dissent from the theory as an actual or prospective scientist, not only will you probably not be popular or hip but you might also starve (at least if you're also unwilling to or unable to drive for Uber). Is this an "advantage" for the theory? Damn right it is. How could it not be?

2. Darwinian evolution is still the only even remotely plausible naturalistic theory of origins. By "naturalistic theory," I mean a theory that doesn't invoke supernatural agents or causes such as, most obviously, God. This of course provides the answer to why theory is still believed despite the massive amount of disconfirmatory considerations discussed above. The current philosophical and cultural zeitgeist will simply not allow God into "science" - for reasons independent of any scientific considerations themselves. And thus atheist or secular evolutionists are strictly correct when they assert that whatever it's problems, Darwinian evolution is the only game in town. If we assume away God at the beginning, it is the only game in town, at least so far. Why we should assume away God at the beginning is another question. But regardless, it has already been done for us.

And if you have a problem with that, I have an Uber pick up for you.

3. All else said, Darwinian evolution is a very clever theory. I mean that sincerely. True or false (and I obviously think it's false) it's ingenious. It has an undeniable superficial plausibility. Richard Dawkins famously claimed that Darwin finally made it possible to be an intellectual fulfilled atheist. What he meant by that is that before Darwin's theory, the atheist or secularly inclined philosopher or scientist had to confront a major problem - there simply was no good non-supernatural explanation for how all of life, up to and including Man, came to be. That the world and all the life on it had always existed was proposed of course. But that, as they say, didn't quite cut it. Life itself was a seemingly insurmountable obstacle to atheism. Darwin changed that.

In the interests of fairness, I should also add that the Darwinian paradigm has clear applications outside of biology. That some of these applications, or in this case, rather, alleged applications were subsequently used for morally horrific purposes is undeniable. But it's also true that it has been and can be used, if applied carefully and correctly, to better understand some phenomena in the social sciences. For those interested, I recommend David Axelrod's The Evolution of Cooperation, as just one of many examples of where the use of a sort of Darwinian theory can have positive and fruitful results.

Darwin and Darwinism was a huge wrong turn for science. I have previously described it as perhaps the greatest hoax in history. But that doesn't mean there aren't some positive things that honest and curious thinkers can get out of it - and yes, that even goes for Catholics.

That's the way it goes, sometimes.

Next: Old-Earth Creationism

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

CLOCKWORK ORANGE: London saw 16,000 Moped Gang Attacks in 2017 - Up 1,000 Percent in 3 Years

Diversity: Moped gang, convicted in December, 2017

In Anthony Burgess's 1962 novel A Clockwork Orange and Stanley Kubrick's subsequent 1971 film of the same name, London is terrorized by youth gangs who rape, steal and murder with impunity.

The criminals speak in a Cockney-foreign argot and often wear foppish costumes or uniforms. The main character, a thug named "Alex," likes classical music.

Great Britain is a socialized police-state where dissidents are monitored and politicians attempt to use the violence to manipulate elections. There appears to be little difference between the dominant political parties.

The story was satire, but many saw it as a sort of prediction.

Has it come true?

I would argue that the reality is getting closer.

What are some of the differences?

In the story, while all of London and the surrounding countryside were to some extent dangerous, there were no "no-go zones" where the police would not venture.

In the story, there were no terrorist groups engaging in random mass-atrocities.

In the film, all of the gang members were white. Today, it's a mix, though probably dominated by "Asians."

In 2018, the criminals supplement the broken bottles, clubs and knives of the story with hammers, deadly acid and sometimes firearms.

If there is an argot, it's Cockney-Arabic or -Urdu, not Cockney-Russian.

There are no foppish costumes. Beethoven is out. Urban rap and Islamic chant are in.

In 2018, if there is a form of aversion therapy, it's only practiced on the dissidents.

Though in 2018, the government is apparently attempting to murder dissidents by imprisoning them with the thugs. This didn't happen in the story.


***

I went to school in London for two years and subsequently visited many times as an adult. My wife and I honeymooned there.

But I doubt I will go back. I don't think I would send my children to school there. And, of course, if I were a bit more prominent as a blogger, I would be banned from returning, anyway.

But, man, I have some very fond memories.

Is all of Great Britain now a dystopian hell-hole? Of course not. I have many online friends who, as far as I can tell, live fairly happy and normal lives, in between being banned from YouTube or fired from their jobs for dissident activities.

But a more nasty dystopia and perhaps civil war are coming.

That didn't happen in the story, either.

From The Sun:
HELL ON WHEELS London moped gangs – how many crimes have there been and where have they happened? 
London saw 16,000 moped attacks in 2017 while scooter-related crime is up 1,000 per cent in three years across the UK 
By Mark Hodge, 5th June 2018, 9:55 am, Updated: 5th June 2018, 10:30 am 
THUGS riding mopeds have helped fuel the rise in violent crime in the UK. 
London is proving to be a hot bed for the scooter attacks which are up 1,000 per cent in three years across the country.
How many moped gang attacks have there been in London? 
London saw 16,000 scooter attacks in 2017 - up from just 1,053 in 2014. 
Motorcycles have been used in crimes such as phone snatches, gem store raids and acid attacks. 
Authorities told The Guardian last year that one gang carried out 30 robberies in the capital within an hour period. 
In October 2016, a man was jailed for snatching 21 phones in one hour while riding a moped before he was chased down by a police helicopter. 
When and where have the London attacks happened?
  • April-May 2017: A gang of three teenage boys – aged 15, 16 and 17 – committed over 100 crimes while riding mopeds in the boroughs of Camden, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea and Westminster.
  • July 13, 2017: Five people were attacked with acid in a 90-minute period by two men riding scooters.
  • The victims, who were all riding mopeds, had their bikes hijacked in the assaults in Hackney, Stoke Newington and Islington.
  • July 14, 2017: A moped rider was attacked with a "noxious substance" by two men riding a scooter in Dagenham, East London.
  • July 15, 2017: A man was stabbed to death by a moped gang in Greenwich.
  • October 2017: Charity worker Abdul Samad, 28, was stabbed to death in Maida Vale, West London, by a scooter gang who were attempting to steal his phone. In April, 2018, two teenage robbers, dubbed the “highway men for the 21st Century”, were convicted of murder following Abdul’s death.
  • December 2017: A ten-strong moped gang were jailed for 110 years after a series of £1.2m raids across the capital.
  • June 2018: Comedian Michael McIntyre had his Rolex watch stolen by hammer-wielding moped thugs in North West London.
What has caused the rise in moped attacks? 
Authorities believe the surge in moped-related robberies could be driven by an increase in the value of smartphone parts. 
Met Police officials say criminal gangs are also getting better at bypassing the security of stolen handsets. 
Aside from mobile phones, many of the attacks involve the criminals hijacking others scooters. 
Police stats in 2017 showed that around 1,500 mopeds or motorcycles are stolen in London every month. 
The poor security of these vehicles, coupled with their ability to easily mount curbs, is thought to be behind the surge in robberies. 
Experts, such as former Metropolitan Police chief inspector Peter Kirkham, also believe budget cuts to cops have contributed to a rise in violent crimes in the city. 
Speaking with iNews, Kirkham said: “Cuts to police officers mean fewer officers on the street and fewer officers investigating crimes. 
“There is no time for officers to carry out stop and search, and the bad guys have noticed. 
“They know they can get away with more and more… It’s not rocket science."

Monday, June 4, 2018

Cardinal Sarah's Image Crop


I confess to doing a double-take when I noticed this earlier today on my computer's Twitter feed. The above is an undoctored screenshot of the full Tweet. You can see the original for yourself here or here.

Was it intentional?

I doubt it.

The fact that the third photo on the bottom right is not cropped when I view the Tweet on my iPhone would seem to speak against it, among other things.

Then again, you would think that the Cardinal's media person would have at least also viewed it on a computer and noticed the oddity.

Also, with God there are no coincidences.

I would show you what the uncropped version looks like except that, frankly, the juxtaposition of Our Lord with Bergoglio turns my stomach.

"Do you like Pope Francis?" New Italian Families Minister: "Let's just say I prefer Cardinal Burke"

Lorenzo Fontana

In the first post-war Italian elections of 1948, Pope Pius XII told Catholics that they could not vote for the socialist and communist left.

A few generations later, in the elections of 2018, the current occupant of the Papal throne sided with the socialist and communist left.

This would have been a stunning development if we had not already become so used to the radical and bizarre directions Francis has attempted to take the Church in the last five years.  

Fortunately, the majority of Italian voters were on the other side.

Lorenzo Fontana, 38, became the Minister for Family and Disability in the new Italian coalition government of Giuseppe Conte on June 1.

Gloria TV just reported on a 2016 interview he had with Italian media:
In November 2016, he told liberoquotidiano.it that he impressed his future wife Emilia on her first visit to Verona by taking her to the Old Latin Mass. 
To the question whether he is "ultra-Catholic" Fontana replied, “I try to be Catholic. It is not easy.” 
Asked, if he likes Pope Francis, Fontana said, “Let’s say that I prefer Cardinal Burke.”
Here is the current Wikipedia entry on Fontana's politics:
Fontana is widely considered a social conservative. He calls himself a "crusader" who fights against abortion, same-sex civil unions and stepchild adoption, which he considers as a "weakening of the family". He is also against "pro-LGBT" sexual education, stating that Vladimir Putin's Russia "is the reference for those who believe in a nationalist model of society". On 2 June 2018, the day after becoming minister, he added that "gay families do not exist". 
He strongly opposes illegal immigration to Italy, claiming that it is, together with the "gay marriages and the so-called gender theory in schools", a serious threat that "aims to erase the Italian people along with their communities and traditions". 
Fontana is married and has one daughter. He is a Roman Catholic.

H/t Hilary White at What's Up with Francis Church @WUWTS

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

"Allah Akbar de merde!" Fearless Woman Taunts Liege Terrorist From Window


From a fourth or fifth story window, a woman captures 50 seconds of video of the Liege terrorist calmly walking down the street, brandishing two stolen handguns. At the same time, she shouts a series of taunts at the man, who presumably could have shot towards the window at any time. Oddly, he doesn't seem to hear her or care.

The attacker, a Muslim convert, killed two police officers and one 22-year old civilian, yesterday, in the Belgian city of Liege. A number of other police were injured before the man was shot dead.

This video was put up on Twitter by Loopsider, and it was then picked up by the French patriotic website Fdesouche. It appears that Loopsider has not yet made it available on YouTube.

For now, you can watch the video at Fdesouche here:

EDIT (5:30 PM CST, 5/30/18): For whatever reason, the video now only seems available on the Loopsider Twitter account, though other video clips and photographs of the attack appear to contain some of its footage. Click either of the Loopsider links to go directly to the video.    

The attacker walks back and forth along a crosswalk.

Woman: Abattez-le! Abattez-le! Shoot him! Shoot him! 

Holding a gun in each hand, the attacker turns and begins walking down the sidewalk, directly under the woman taunting him from the window.

Woman: Tu as de la chance: je ne suis pas armee! Tu aurais déjà un pied dans la tombe, connard! You're lucky I'm unarmed! You already have one foot in the grave, you bastard!

The attacker raises his gun and starts walking across street.

Unidentified Man: Attention! Watch out!

The attacker shoots at something across the street. The camera wobbles and the woman presumably ducks.

Attacker: Allah Akbar!

Woman: Allah Akbar de merde, va! Fuck your Allah Akbar,* get out!

The attacker walks back under the window and then continues down the street.

Woman: Fous-moi le camp, connard! Get out you bastard! Allez, foutez le camp! Come on, get the hell out! Foutez le camp! Get out!


*Yes, according to two French speakers, this is the most accurate translation.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Muslim Terror Attack in Belgium Kills Three

The alleged attacker and two of his victims (source: HLN.be)

This morning's Muslim terror attack in Belgium, the seventh such attack in that country in four years, is notable for a number of reasons:

The attacker appears to have been a "white" Muslim convert.

He was "radicalized" in prison where it is estimated that 35% of the inmates are Muslim.

He attacked two police officers with a knife, disabling them, before stealing their firearms and shooting them both dead.

He then appears to have shot a civilian dead, apparently at random, as the victim sat in a parked car. 

News articles report the man was either on "day-release" from prison or had just been paroled the previous day.

For some recent background on Islam in Belgium, see "Belgium: First Islamic State in Europe?" published last month by the Gatestone Institute.

From the Daily Mail:
Attacker shouting 'Allahu Akbar' kills two policewomen and a man, then takes a school cleaner hostage before being shot dead in Belgium while on DAY-release from prison
  • Attacker stabbed two policewomen, took their guns and shot them and a civilian dead in Liege, Belgium
  • He then took a female cleaner hostage inside a nearby high school, before he was killed by special forces
  • Belgian prosecutors say the attacker 'came out firing' from the school and was shot dead outside 
  • The incident in the eastern Belgian city on Tuesday morning is being treated as a terror attack 
  • The male attacker had reportedly been released from prison the day before the attack
  • Belgian broadcaster named attacker as Benjamin Herman, 36, who they say had been 'radicalised' in jail
By Sara Malm In London and Peter Allen In Paris for MailOnline 
PUBLISHED: 05:16 EDT, 29 May 2018 | UPDATED: 09:11 EDT, 29 May 2018 
Two female police officers and a civilian have been shot dead by a man shouting Allahu Akbar, which led to a hostage situation at a high school in Liege, east Belgium. 
The attacker, who is understood to have been released from prison yesterday, approached the two female officers from behind, and stabbed them several times with a knife at around 10.30am local time. 
Belgian prosecutors say the attacker then disarmed the officers and used their own guns to kill them, before shooting dead a 22-year-old man in a nearby vehicle. 
The alleged terrorist then reportedly fled to a nearby secondary school and took a female cleaner hostage inside, before being shot dead by an elite police unit. 
He was later named by Belgian broadcaster RTBF as Benjamin Herman, 36, a violent drug dealer let out on day-release from a local prison on Monday, and who they claim had been 'radicalized' in prison. 
Local news website DHnet.be reported that he had shouted 'Allahu Akbar' as he fired on on Liege's central Boulevard d'Avroy, citing police sources. 
The civilian shot dead in his car has since been named by local media as 22-year-old Cyril Vangriecken, a 22-year-old from the nearby town of Vottem. 
Videos posted on social media showed people scurrying for safety on Liege's central boulevard d'Avroy with shots and sirens being heard in the background. 
One video show emergency services and police officers in body armour moving into position, another sees the two police officers shot dead in the street. 
Minutes later, anti-terrorist special forces police could be seen surrounding the area, which went into lock down. 
Philippe Dulieu, spokesman for the Liege prosecutor's office, told reporters the man had come out firing from the high school, before he was 'neutralised'. 
'Armed with a knife, the suspect followed and attacked two police officers, and used their own firearms to kill them,' Mr Dulieu told a news conference. 
'He continued on foot, attacking a parked vehicle where he opened fire on a 22-year-old man in the passenger seat. The young man died. 
'He then continued and entered the Leonie de Waha school. He took a woman working there as hostage. Police intervened, he came out firing on the police officers, wounding a number of them, notably in the legs, before he was killed.' 
All students in the school were successfully evacuated, and the female hostage released without being caused any harm. 
Officials say they are now considering the attack on Tuesday morning to have been an act of terrorism. 
Catherine Collignon, a spokesman for Liege prosecutors, confirmed 'four deaths in total', with two other police officers seriously wounded. 
She confirmed that 'terrorism' was currently considered the principal motivation for the attack by those leading the judicial enquiry. 
Belgian Interior Minister Jan Jambon said Belgium's Federal Crisis Centre was monitoring the situation. 
'Our thoughts are with the victims of this horrible act. We are in the process of establishing an overview of exactly what happened,' Jambon wrote on Twitter. 
The crisis centre said a security cordon had been set up around the area and urged people to stay away. 
French President Emmanuel Macron has condemned the 'terrible' suspected terror attack and expressed the 'solidarity of the French people with the Belgian people' after hosting an international peace conference on Libya. 
British Prime Minister Theresa May also expressed her sympathies in a tweet posted on Tuesday afternoon, saying: 'My thoughts are with the victims of today's cowardly attack in Belgium and their grieving families. The UK stands resolute with our Belgian allies against terror.' 
Liege, an industrial city close to the German border in the French-speaking Wallonia region, was also the scene of a shooting in 2011. 
A gunman killed four people and wounded over 100 before turning the gun on himself. 
Belgium has been on high alert since a Brussels-based ISIS terror cell was involved in attacks on Paris in 2015 that killed 130 people, and Brussels in 2016 in which 32 died. 
The UK Foreign Office advises British citizens that 'terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Belgium.' 
The Foreign Office's travel advice website adds that 'attacks could happen anywhere, including on public transport and transport hubs and in other places visited by foreigners'.