Stuck in a traffic jam the day after France’s 9-11, I listened to the LBC radio host trading arguments for over an hour with callers on the subject of free speech and the equivalence of Mohammed cartoons as against Holocaust denial and burning Remembrance Day poppies.
Why is it that every time a heinous crime is committed, we get into this hand-wringing analysis of what motivated the perpetrators and how we must be responsible for provoking such acts? This reflexive inquest into our own failings and culpability distracts us from the simple truth that gross evil has been done.
Wednesday’s slaughter in Paris was, deep down, no more about a Mohammed cartoon than the US embassy massacre in Benghazi was about a Mohammed video. In both cases the killers were incited by the same Islamist preachers of hate as inspired 9/11, 7/7, Madrid, Mumbai and Bali.
The twin towers weren’t brought down because someone insulted a prophet. They were brought down as a symbol of Western culture that Islamists abhor and want to subdue and totally destroy. Cartoons and videos, Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib are just convenient excuses by which we are expected to blame ourselves.
The proper debate on talk shows should be about the stark choice such murderous events present to us. The simple and eternal choice between good and evil.
The chants of ordinary people in France and other world cities saying ‘We are all Charlie Hebdo’ will not carry much weight if they are the same people as were ‘All Hamas Now’ just a few months ago.
You have to be blind, deaf or a hopeless anti-Semite to deny that Hamas and Hezbullah are part of the same Jihadist death cult as Al Qaeda, ISIS, Boko Haram, the Taliban and whichever group incited this week’s massacre in Paris.
Instead of waving symbolic placards and cartoonist’s pencils, the good citizens of Europe should be calling on their leaders to take bold steps to seriously confront and subdue the Islamist enemy within.
Before it's too late.