We either destroy Islamic State or die
Like the rise of the Nazis, the Islamic State is a manifestation of pure human evil that we have a moral duty to destroy. Since the sabotaged Syria vote, courtesy of Ed Miliband and his Labour colleagues, Britain has become a spectator sitting by and watching wickedness and savagery beyond belief. This must change
Today Prime Minister David Cameron is to make a landmark speech underlining Britain’s support for France and calling for military action against Islamic State (IS).
It is an organisation that has successfully recruited a generation of global psychopaths, many of them from Britain, through the promise of bloodshed, power and online internet fame.
The atrocities of IS are already widely reported in the media from rapes to mass beheadings and burnings along with the destruction of architecture and everything symbolising civilisation.
Far too much time has been spent debating the origins of this organisation, with politicians pondering how it came to be instead of fighting it. The Iraq War, George W Bush, Tony Blair, or the blunders of former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki have all been cited as a root cause.
But I believe that this wicked Islamist ideology has been in existence long before Western intervention and has simply seized the opportunity to bring the horrific fantasises of its followers to life. Fanatics have and will always exist, but the sheer volume of followers who have joined IS does raise questions about the attraction to terrorism and murder by so many of those who practice Islam from around the world.
The likes of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn have recently stated that they strongly object to a shoot-to-kill policy and that drone attacks on wanted men like Mohammed Emwazi (Jihadi John) are less preferable than arrest and trial.
Such comments betray a naivety so extreme it would put Britain’s national security at risk and are detached from the reality of the evil we now face.
Britain has indeed been scarred by the causalities of the Iraq War and the recession. But hurting militarily and economically does not excuse us from our moral responsibility from protecting the innocent and fighting injustice.
The haunting memory of Iraq is a key factory in President Obama’s incoherent, piecemeal strategy which is framed around avoiding US casualities instead of getting the job done.
But we cannot be defined by our past wars and mistakes, however painful they have been, particularly with such a real and growing threat facing us.
I am told that Cameron’s call to arms is, “Do you want Britain to be Chamberlain of Churchill?” Given such a choice I sincerely hope that MPs, the opposition and the public will recognise that providing military airstrikes against IS in Syria is our minimum responsibility.
Two years ago, after a sabotage of the vote in the House of Commons, our country chose to turn a blind eye to the horrors happening in the Middle East. Well, I believe that we have a duty and responsibility to fight this evil, for our national security and the survival of the rest of the civilised world.
The people drawn into the world of the Islamic State cannot be bargained with. They will not negotiate or see reason, express emotion or remorse. They take pleasure in destruction of their fellow man, and revel in the horror they inflict on the innocent.
They have swept the bloodstained streets of Fallujah and Mosul in Iraq, they have terrorised the innocent in Syria and their ever-expanding army will continue to spread throughout the region if it is not hit, and hit hard.
Islamic State do not hate us because of what we have done in the past or in the present, they hate us because of who we are. The UN has given its support to fight this evil.
That leaves us with a simple choice, we either destroy Islamic State, or die.
Clare George-Hilley is Director of Communities and Social Justice, Parliament Street Research Council. She is a Contributing Editor to The Commentator. Follow Clare George-Hilley on Twitter: @ClareHilley
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