Here we are again in the aftermath of a horrific incident on our streets, this time in London. People enjoying themselves on a Saturday night out, at the pub, the restaurant or theatre, maybe even taking in London at night as they are on holiday.
Then three people decide to shatter that normal Saturday evening for that sake of their ideology.
How does this happen? How does hate grab such a hold on people that they commit these acts of barbarity? I don’t have any real answers only that I believe it’s the result of the proclaimed War on Terror that was launched in the early part of the century.
Here’s what terrorists want: to spread chaos, fear and make people change what they do. They want everyone to turn to anger out of fear, turn in on each other and even respond, which escalates the situation, dragging more and more people in as possible.
I’ve seen on social media people talking coherently, and not so coherently, that we should inter people we suspect of terrorism, put them away, deport them, round them up. And then what? We’re safe? The UK government did this in Ireland in 1914 by interring 1800 men in Frongoch Wales and again in 1971 with 342 people suspected of terrorism being rounded up.
In both cases it failed to stop terrorism. The evidence shows that not only did terrorist activity increase, recruitment increased and views hardened against the UK in general.
Do we really not learn?
As for deportation of suspected terrorists, where do you send them if they are born and bred in the UK? The Manchester bomber was from Manchester, with the majority of those committing heinous acts in the UK are born and grew up here, so the problem is not solved by simply ‘sending them home’ as home is here, in the UK.
Sending all muslims from our shores is another one. Where do we send this group of 3 million people? Who pays for it? We can’t seem to balance the books as a nation, so how will this mass exodus be completed?
Then there would be the skills shortage. Who would do the wide variety of jobs that the planned deportees do now? We don’t have the doctors, nurses, engineers, accountants, business people to fill the void that 3 million people would leave.
The more you look at these views in the spotlight, we see them for what they are: extremism. Which is ironic, as that’s the label that’s put on these terrorists. By spouting such ideas, you play into extremist hands and play their game. In other words, they win.
We simply can’t condemn a large swathe of the population for the actions of a few. If we stop and look at the Middle East, a situation the western allies created, muslims are killing muslims daily, armed by Saudi and other rogue regimes who are supplied by western governments. We can’t ignore Russia in all of this either.
I don’t have the answer as it is too complex for simplistic solutions but something does need to be done. Whoever our political leaders are on June 9th, they have a significant challenge ahead of them as the present way is not working. We have increased attacks and a hardening public attitude as fear and anger hits. We need leadership, not soundbites.
With all that’s going on in the UK and europe right now, we need to consider what kind of world we want for our kids, what kind of future to leave them. If the legacy is hatred and despair, we have failed and I am certainly considering what options are best for my two.
I just hope that someone a hell of a lot brighter than myself and the millions of others who are crying out for a solution gets on with it. I hope we find peace, stop the language of war and find a way to continue to live.
My thoughts are with the families of those affected by this atrocity.