The cat i' the adage

"The growth of knowledge depends entirely on disagreement" Karl Popper (1902 - 1994)

Friday, July 08, 2005

War in Iraq, bombs in London

I find it difficult to disagree with the Sun when it calls George Galloway “a disgusting slimeball” for his claim that “Londoners have paid the price” for Tony Blair’s policy on Iraq and Afghanistan, but there is a more modest and insidious form of the link between the war in Iraq and yesterday’s tragic events in London. The Guardian puts it thus:

Robin Cook, elsewhere on these pages, will speak for many when he writes: "President Bush is given to justifying the invasion of Iraq on the grounds that by fighting terrorism abroad it protects the west from having to fight terrorists at home. Whatever else can be said in defence of the war in Iraq today, it cannot be claimed that it has protected us from terrorism on our soil."

There appears to be something in this. It is very probable that Britain has raised itself higher on the list of terrorist targets as a result of our engagement in the war on terrorism, but, rather than seeing this as a failure of policy, I regard it as a source of great pride. As usual Britain has been tackling evil while other nations, equally at threat in the long term, have advocated or practised appeasement. To paraphrase Churchill, they have been feeding the crocodile in the hope that it will eat them last.

In judging whether our country is made more or less secure as a result of our military intervention in the Middle East we should take a longer view. Islamic extremism must be extirpated. In the short term it may be inflamed by our engaging with it but we shall need to do this in order to defeat it. There is no accommodation that we can make with militant Islam that would not surrender our essential freedoms. This is the thought to have clearly in mind as we reflect on yesterday’s slaughter.

UPDATE

Christopher Hitchens in today's Mirror:

I know perfectly well there are people thinking, and even saying, that Tony Blair brought this upon us by his alliance with George Bush.


A word of advice to them: try and keep it down, will you? Or wait at least until the funerals are over. And beware of the non-sequitur: you can be as opposed to the Iraq operation as much as you like, but you can't get from that "grievance" to the detonating of explosives at rush hour on London buses and tubes.

2 Comments:

At 8 July 2005 at 13:27, Blogger Jorgen said...

I would think that the Islamic terrorists see Blair as an appeaser, partly because he happily negotiated with the IRA and partly because he always has been trying to modify the War on Terror in Iraq and teried to appear to be a friend of the Muslims (reverse discrimination). London has for years been a safe heaven for terrorist groups and for Muslims so fanatic that even their own (Islamic) countries banned them. The next few days will show if Blair will do more than talk about the problem.

 
At 8 July 2005 at 18:54, Blogger Jorgen said...

I was right. Nothing is going to happen: "British Prime Minister Tony Blair also emphasized that claims that terrorists committed cruel incidents on behalf of Islam were a "lie"".

http://www.zaman.com/?bl=international&alt=&trh=20050708&hn=21482

 

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