Saturday, November 2, 2013

Alice in Terrorland


The humor in Alice in Wonderland comes from her being unfailingly polite no matter what the situation. A somewhat hostile giant caterpillar on a mushroom? A surly talking egg? Oh, Dear! But, we mustn't forget our well-worn Victorian manners.
In the final week of the terrorism and counterterrorism course I am taking, we discussed "fear and impact management" – what authorities must do after an attack. We learned that, much like Alice, you must stay unfailingly polite to Muslims no matter what.
Immediately after an attack, our professor told us, we must establish partnerships with "spokespersons of ethnic, cultural, and religious minorities," to avoid, "distrust and stereotyping of certain groups in society," which could lead to "polarization, tension between groups."
Like Oscar Wilde's "love that dare not speak its name," even in the course, in presenting imagined scenarios, our professor, Dr Edwin Bakker, Director of the Centre for Terrorism and Counterterrorism (CTC) at Leiden University, could not specify which minority group might be causing terror.
Could it be the Hindus? Might it be the Mormons? It would be impolite to point fingers.
Dr Bakker warned that not following his rules of etiquette could lead to "Simple explanations for terrorism" that, in turn, could "lead to polarization of society", that could lead to "a negative spiral in which fear of terrorism leads to more terrorism."
This is the Franklin D. Roosevelt, "we have nothing to fear, but fear itself," defense against terrorism. But terrorism is not a delusional phobia, that feeds on itself, which we can ignore out of existence. Many Muslims aiming for world domination use terror, Jihad, as a tool to achieve our submission. These are facts. We have more to fear than fear itself.  
We are not in Wonderland, this is the real world.   
Israel has created an anti-terror wall, at which they can screen Muslim commuters. They will not allow uninhibited Islamic immigration into Israel – they recognize Israel as a Jewish state. After being polite while rockets fell for years, they launched an all-out assault on Gaza. That alone slowed the inflow of rockets.
I agree Dr Bakker, we do not want innocent Muslims to undergo unlawful attacks or excessive discomfort. But culturism is not vile racism. And to not screen Muslims at airports or to allow them to have airport jobs because we don't want to be rude is to implement a policy that is only fit for Wonderland.
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