Wednesday, July 13, 2005

The Conditions That Breed Terror

The London terror attacks teach us something about the genesis of terrorism, which some of us already knew. Here are the profiles of the terrorists. All educated, middle-class young men with economic opportunity available to them, living in a neighborhood not too different from mine. Which means that I probably ought to watch my neighbors more carefully--or not.

It was not economics that did it, but good old fashioned hate. No, socialism and a welfare system won't make these people any happer than it has in America. The inner cities remain a violent, crime-ridden problem. The left also likes to argue that fighting terror encourages it. And it may indeed steel up some testosterone-loaded young men. But failing to fight it because it may upset a bad guy is like failing to fight the Nazis because it may make them fight harder in their effort to take over the world. Guess what folks...same thing.

Terror comes from one place. Hate. An individual's choice to be of bad character. No social program, other than a proper upbringing, will fix that.

3 Comments:

Blogger Fluffy Bunny said...

Whoa Nelly!

You've made a huge, unsubstantiated leap. How do you know they had economic opportunities available to them? The article you linked does mention that. Are you assuming that just because they lived in Great Britain, and were educated that they had economic opportunity? I’m not saying that they didn’t have economic opportunities, I don’t know. Nothing that I’ve seen indicates that they did.

And hate alone isn't the deciding factor. Hell, this country is full of hate. Conservatives hating liberals. Liberals hating conservative. Your blog comes off as being full of hate. But (with very few exceptions) conservatives and liberals aren't committing violence against each other.

It seems to me to be a cultural and religious (and maybe even a little bit of an economic) problem that not only breeds the hate, but encourages individuals to act violently on their hate.

Moreover, your gross generalization that "The left also likes to argue that fighting terror encourages it" is simply hyperbole. It's not the fighting the terrorists; it's how we are fighting the terrorists that is raising the ire of most of the left. A vast majority of the “left” supported our actions in Afghanistan. But we didn’t finish the job there, and are now fumbling our way around the world. I’m glad Saddam is out of power, but I’m holding my breath to see it Iraq and Afghanistan turn out well. And mean while, we’ve alienated most of our traditional allies, our allies during WWII and the Cold War, that we are having to fight these battles practically on our own.

As for social programs not being able to fix the cultural, religious, and economic problems that lead these individuals to commit such terrible acts, that seems to be a truism.

1:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

O so much to say to fluffy bunny above. The identified London bombers were decently if not lavishly housed and clothed and educated and not in any reported way limited in their ability to live and prosper in England. Lack of a Porsche is not an excuse for murder. Read sky.com and even the bbc online and other London news outlets on line: they will tell you about the families who loved and nurtured these deluded fellows. Then go read the bios of the missing and dead -- hardworking people on their way to work, people of different religions and heritage, but all Brits. God bless them and their families.

The murdered were not hating anyone; it was the murderers who wronged and sinned. The devil can quote scripture, and can also exploit a religion. Foolish young men have been misled into believing killing is the way of Allah. It's so senseless that perhaps you feel the need to look for excuses for these murderers, but some things are just wrong. Period. No excuses. Stop blaming the victims. The blame lies with the perpetrators.

I was just in London a few days before the bombings, and I have seldom seen such a textured and interesting city, all different kinds of people and cultures and foods and stores -- and all getting along reasonably well. Except for soreheads like the bombers. If there's such awful discrimination to cause these guys to 'act out' as they did, why haven't the masses risen up? Because there's no reason to.

Have you ever been to the Middle East? A miserable place for the most part. Interesting, yes, but nowhere you'd want to live. England is a gift to these immigrants, and the ones who seek to destroy it are wrong, evil, misguided, jealous, whatever: but they are not mistreated to the extent you assume.

You say 'we've alienated most of our traditional allies'? I don't think so. Rational players are happy to let us do a lot of the dirty work, but do you know how many countries are supporting the efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan? About 30 at last count. Who have we 'alienated'? And even if we have, so what? Since when does group-think replace the imperative to do the right thing? I suspect the lefties like you see Iraqis as second class humans, suitable for woodchipping by Saddam. You are undoubtedly shocked by such a statement, but really, don't you see them as less important than yourself? And set aside the self-interest of the US in cleaning out the hornet's nest of the Middle East instead of swatting at aspirin factories in the Sudan a la Clinton.

It would be so nice if we could just apologize sweetly and have the grumpy bin Ladenites leave us alone. Our very existence offends them, not anything more or less. How did we and the French and the Brits offend Hitler? Or the Emperor of Japan in 1941? Not everything that happens in the world occurs as a direct result of our behavior -- that self-centered, infantile view of the world is not realistic. There are bad people, and they want to hurt us. How did the Kurds offend Saddam? How do children offend child molesters and inspire molestation? How do rape victims offend their rapists? Your statement "It seems to me to be a cultural ... problem that not only breeds the hate, but encourages individuals to act violently on their hate" seems especially foolish in these latter contexts.

The murderers in London may have been misled and misguided by those religious and political leaders they trusted and were influenced by, but that does not excuse their actions nor make them acceptable. You're either on the side of living and loving and taking care of each other and trying to make the world a better place, or you're not. Come join the party. The other choice is a sucker's bet.

12:16 AM  
Blogger Fluffy Bunny said...

Anon,

Why do you think that I'm not sympathetic to the dead? What a knee-jerk reaction. I never said that the murdered were hating anyone. Did you even read my post?

I never made any excuses for the murders. I never said that they were mistreated. Trying to understand why people murder isn't trying to make up excuses for their acts.

And where, where in my post do I blame the victims. Reference it please.

And as for your statement, "the lefties like you see Iraqis as second class humans, suitable for woodchipping by Saddam" I didn't support the Reagan or Bush I administrations supporting Saddam back in the 1980s! You talk about protecting the Kurds from Saddam, where were you when the U.S. sold chemical weapons technology to Iraq in the 80s? Where were you when the U.S. sat back as Saddam gassed the Kurds in the 80s.

You should becareful about SLANDERING people you disagree with. Is this what modern policital discourse has reduced to?

Finally, I whole-heartily agree that there is nothing that could "excuse [the murderers] actions nor make them acceptable". I'm not sure how you could construe my first post to imply such a sentiment. The desire to understand the cause of evil actions should not be confused with condoning those actions.

8:46 AM  

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