Copenhagen attacks and Western mixed messages
After Copenhagen, we are tragically reminded that our leaders are sending mixed messages about terrorism both in their dithering about Islamist terror against Israel, and their absurd statements that Islam is an irrelevant factor
Following Saturday's deadly attacks in Copenhagen, on a meeting on free speech at a cafe and then outside a synagogue, the condemnations have, of course, been rolling in fast. They are not insincere. Who, after all, outside terrorist circles, actually welcomes murder?
But that has never been the problem. The problem is that our leaders, from the White House, through Westminster and across Europe continue to lack clarity about what this is all about.
Here is what this is all about. For decades now, the Islamic world has been producing ideas and groups who believe there is a world-historic zero sum game at play between Islam and Western-style liberal-democracy, with the Jewish people in general and the State of Israel in particular right in the front-line of the war.
Anyone who follows this debate here at The Commentator will immediately see what our leaders, and the mainstream media which supports their narrative, are having problems with.
The first is the relationship between Islamic extremists and the Islamic religion. It is a constant theme coming from leaders such as US President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron that these kinds of attacks have "nothing to do with Islam". This is obvious rubbish.
The attacks plainly have something to do with Islam and to say otherwise makes us look ridiculous, not just to the terror groups but also to potential recruits who only have to be shown the relevant verses from the Koran about what Islam may allow in a war against Infidels, or more generally about Christians and Jews.
The message we are thus sending, is that we don't know what we are talking about. Tragically, radical imams risk ending up looking to their would-be recruits as though they have greater credibility than our leaders.
The other deep-seated failing obviously concerns Israel where, once again, we send mixed messages about terrorism as a matter of routine.
We support, and fund, a Palestinian Authority that glorifies terrorism -- by naming streets and squares after terrorists, for example. Our governments adopt a stronger line against Hamas.... until Hamas starts attacking Israel in which case we dither and squirm about whether Israel has a genuine right to defend itself.
Operation Protective Edge in 2014 is a quotable example of how Western leaders (and even some in the media) started out by adopting a seemingly robust line about Israel's efforts to diminish Hamas's terrorist infrastructure in Gaza, but just couldn't hold the line.
Within a week or two, all the rhetoric was about "disproportionate" Israel, and how the Jewish state should effectively pull back and allow Hamas to rebuild.
With Israel, it never seems to end. And again, we are sending out the message to sections of our own populations that in some cases Islamist terrorism may not be quite as reprehensible as others.
It is still too early to say whether the killer in Copenhagen was a so-called lone wolf, a returnee from Syria or whatever. But if we don't drop the mixed messages, one thing's for sure: events like this are going to be an ever more common sight all across the West.
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