Terror in London: What is going wrong?

Now that the recent rise in “mental illness” related attacks has reached the UK, with Wednesday’s stabbing incident in Russell Square, so have the cries of “what’s wrong with the world?” But “the world” didn’t commit any of these attacks; individuals did. And these individuals all share an ideology which, when followed consistently, results in the kind of carnage we’ve been experiencing, and the much worse devastation that is certain to come. Unless we choose to stop it, that is. But how do we do that?

We can’t expect Islamic terrorism to just go away. No war has ever been won by the attacked side pretending that it hasn’t been attacked, or that the enemy isn’t actually the enemy. Had the United States responded to the attack on Pearl Harbor by saying that Japan is a nation of peace, or by attacking Canada, they would have been defeated, and we would be living in a very different world today.

So why are we told after every terrorist attack that the attackers aren’t “real Muslims”, that Islam is a religion of peace, and that the greatest threat we face is the threat of “Islamophobia”? Why are European countries actively and knowingly importing terrorists?

I don’t know when and where this erosion of the will to actually win the wars we fight began. But seeing the way the west has handled the issue of Islamic terrorism, it’s clear to me that we have reached boiling point.

The European response to the Islamic State’s promise to flood Europe with its terrorists and to export their ideology to us – welcoming migrants from Islamic State controlled territories with open arms, and without the slightest attempt at checking whether or not they are the terrorists we were promised – is, without a doubt, treasonous. A proper response would have been to wipe out the Islamic State, a feat the air force of any major European country, and certainly the United States, can achieve within hours. But that’s not how the west fights nowadays. When western countries do go to war, they do so apologetically, with no intention of actually defeating the enemy, and with more concern for the lives of civilians on the enemy’s side then the lives of their own soldiers.

During recent military campaigns abroad we’ve heard politicians tell us that they’re doing everything they can to minimise civilian casualties, that the population in the enemy-controlled territory is not our enemy, and that the ideology in the name of which we’re being slaughtered in the streets is really a force for good.

It’s important to remember, every single time a civilian is murdered in a European country, or in the United States, or in Israel, that the government of that country had the power to save his life, that that is what governments exist for, and that the politicians deem these lives not only expendable, but less worthy of saving than the lives of civilians in enemy-controlled territories.

Understanding that the west, by its values, is morally superior to the primitive, barbaric animals against whom we’re fighting is the only way we can begin to turn the tide in this war. Unfortunately, since no one in a position of power has the guts or the conscience to name the enemy, the ambiguity politicians are so eager to maintain will only be replaced by the clarity of our loss in this war.

21 Comments

  1. This is really disgusting. A demand for the government to murder innocent people, essentially committing war crimes. You don’t even care about the facts. There is so far no connection between Islam and the attacker in Russell Square. The west is only morally superior if it values individual liberty. This post is a demand to destroy the latter. It is a recipe for disaster and quite frankly the reason why we are in this mess in the first place.

    Also, if you fear ISIS, go ahead and fight them. Do it with your own money and in your own responsibility. Don’t demand others to do the dirty work for you with stolen resources.

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    1. This is certainly one part of the Objectivist analysis I am very uncomfortable with. However, it is not a call to murder, but to disregard enemy civilians in favour of our own when choosing weapons and tactics. Saying it is “murder” misstates the intent of the actors somewhat.

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      1. “However, it is not a call to murder, but to disregard enemy civilians in favour of our own when choosing weapons and tactics.”

        Yes, that is what murder is. Just because there is an allegedly higher goal to achieve does not make it anything different. The Nazis also locked people up who called the killings of jews murder. In their eyes they where just fighting enemies. But what they did to jews was murder, period, no matter what they like you to call it. And what Razi is promoting here is mass murder, period, no matter what else he things he is promoting. You need to call thing for what they really are. Just like the government objects to calling taxes theft. But that is what it is.

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      2. You misstate the case again. It is not murder because there is no intent to kill. I am I danger of misusing legal terms, but with my mind firmly on the ethics this is, at worst, culpable negligence.

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      3. Of course there is intention. He explicitly says that we should not worry about killing innocent people. If you are dropping a bomb, knowing that that is going to kill innocent people, you cannot say this was not intentional, as in accidental. It is not an accident. It is part of the plan. And as such it is murder.

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      4. You’re ignoring the full context. If you didn’t, you couldn’t possibly justify your position. Before dropping that bomb, you know that innocent people will die; the decision whether or not to drop the bomb is the decision whether those civilians will be on the enemy’s side or on yours.

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      5. I don’t care on which side innocent civilians are. You do not lose your right to live, just because you live on the wrong state territory. Because rights do not come from the state. If you, make innocent civilians part of your targeting, that is murder.

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      6. Well, I do care which side they’re on, especially if I’m on the other side. If their government starts a war, their government is responsible for all deaths on both sides.

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      7. No, just because you are in a situation of self defence does not mean you have no responsibility for your actions anymore. With that logic you can justify any totalitarian action. If you decide to target civilians as your strategy, even though there are alternatives, then you are responsible for that. But there isn’t even in a real self defence situation. There is no ongoing attack, no foreign army invading. All there is, is sporadic attacks by individuals, that do not appear to have any central coordination. We do not even find clear demands behind these attacks, which even makes the label ‘terrorism’ questionable.

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  2. There is a core problem with collectivising large numbers of others as ‘the enemy’ based on their religion or nationality. The problem is that to have ‘them’ you also need ‘us’, thus you instantly collectivise yourself when demonise a population in such a way.

    Bombing is an indiscriminate tool that requires the value of the life of one of ‘them’ to be far less than the life of one of ‘us’.

    All this is acceptable if you follow a strong and centralised state political view, such as neo-conservatism or communism, but if you support such violence don’t be surprised that the same state regards your individual liberty as expendable to the common good, or feels justified in intervening in money creation, health, education etc for similar reasons.

    George Orwell understood this well.

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    1. A (legitimate) government must defend lives within its borders. So the idea that the government of a country that was attacked should avoid defending its citizens because they should regard the life of every individual on earth as having equal value to this particular government makes the whole operation of a country impossible. It would mean that British police can’t fight crime in London unless they fight crime in Nauru. Yes, everyone should be treated equally before the law. And the innocent civilians in terrorist controlled areas and in terrorism-sponsoring countries should do everything they can to get to countries that would treat them so. But that’s their personal responsibility, not the responsibility of our government. I want to live, and I expect the government to prevent foreign powers from taking my life.

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      1. You are confusing nationality, religion, state actions and individual terrorism. Islamic terrorism was around before ISIS. Religious terrorism can be homegrown as well as imported.
        You might as well advocate bombing Leeds as 2 of the as the 2005 London bombers were from there, or Northern Ireland when the IRA were active.
        As a response to most terrorism I see no difference in the ethics, or indeed efficacy, of bombing one group of people over another because they live under a different flag rather than just a different postcode.

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  3. I’ve a 2nd point that people with mental health problems incorporate current events into their delusions.
    Police around Buckingham Palace, for example, have strong relationships with a local psychiatric unit as so many people with mental health problems incorporate the Royal Family into their delusions.
    I’m not sure of the details of this incident but there will be cases where this occurs, given the high profile of ISIS and related terrorism.

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  4. This clip at 2′ 46″ on from a 1989 drama documetary about ‘Bomber’ Harris (in 8 parts on YT) captures the essence of the debate on bombing.

    The real-life chaplain went on to be a founder of CND.

    And if you cannot see a politicised angle to police pronouncements, almost Soviet in style, then you are a bloody fool.

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      1. Julie,
        Sorry for not expanding, ‘the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament’, who sought to remove nuclear weapons from the UK and let the Soviets have a free hand with theirs.

        Remember that in 1994, a US Army colonel met a Ukranian officer at some symposium and the Ukranian told him that under the Soviet Army a few years before, he had been in an echelon tasked with attacking Denmark with a pre-emptive strike of 500 tactical nukes on Denmark alone. Clearly they wanted their bacon crispy.

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      2. Thanks, Mr Ed. As it happens, I just finished watching the movie about 5 minutes ago, and at the end of the Question was answered. It is very strange to me that people who take that sort of position don’t seem at all conflicted…but there we are.

        Speaking of The Question, it was gratifying to see Sir Arnold in the movie. At least, in his first appearance. After that it seemed Sir Arnold rather disappeared, and a much more serious bloke showed up wearing his face. I’m afraid, though, that I will always think of Mr Nettleton as Sir Arnold (my favorite character in the show).

        Back to Serious. Thanks also for passing on the Ukrainian’s inside info on the Soviets’ idea of war morality. It figures.

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  5. Is there any data on the incidence of stabbing attacks like the London one in Islamic countries where the ‘perp’ would be attacking, in all probability, those he would presumably consider co-religionists? And data on incidence in populations of psychiatric conditions known to predispose to violent behaviour e.g. A recently tried road tage attack in Sussex that clearly was not being blamed on ethnicity or religion.

    This sort of data might assist in sorting the wheat from the chaff in the discussion of causation and risk factors.

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  6. I think the ideological side of this struggle is horribly neglected.

    Bombing and shooting people in Syria (no matter how evil those people are) will not stop someone in London (or some other Western city) killing people for Islam.

    Only proving that Islam is WRONG and that Mohammed was a BAD man will do that – that one will NOT go to Heaven by killing infidels.

    Yes I believe that people can be convinced by evidence and argument.

    Even “uneducated” people.

    But the effort is not even being made (apart from by a few individuals such as David Wood).

    On the contrary – the Western establishment says “Islam is wonderful”, and “Mohammed was a good man”.

    Whilst that remains the line – expect more and more attacks in the long term.

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  7. ‘It’s important to remember, every single time a civilian is murdered in a European country, or in the United States, or in Israel, that the government of that country had the power to save his life’

    I wouldn’t trust a government that promised this, in the same way I would run away from a Dr who claimed to be able to prevent death.

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