Friday , June 21 2024

Terrorism: Time to leave the EU Counter Terrorism Strategy

The EU Counter Terrorism Strategy was adopted by Member States in 2005.   “Prevent” and de-radicalisation are essential features of this strategy.

The EU Counter Terrorism Strategy was based on the idea that the Political Establishment has correct beliefs and that serious deviations from these are effectively a form of mental illness.  This attitude led to the concept of “de-radicalisation” where potential and actual terrorists are shown the error of their ways and re-educated to be citizens with correct views.

This approach is not British.  In Britain we believe in democracy and liberty  (liberty not “Rights” that are defined and delegated to you by the powerful).  You have liberty.  You can believe anything you want.  If this results in you becoming a terrorist or otherwise breaking the law then the law will deal with you.

The new UK counter terrorism strategy should involve public discussion of Islamic beliefs, not secret de-radicalisation training in jail.  Islamic Extremism should face the same media attacks as Christianity faced in 1950-1980 in the UK.  Richard Dawkins is given carte blanche to attack Christianity, he should be given regular slots to tackle Islam. Or are our broadcasters too timid to cover politics and religion?

Is our broadcast media so weak that a couple of threats from extremist groups are sufficient for them to declare “it is not our role to undermine beliefs” or take the view that “the greatest unkindness is to undermine the beliefs that constitute a person’s way of life”?  You could almost sympathise with such views were it not for the fact that the broadcast media devote extreme venom against the beliefs of those who do not threaten them.  There can be no doubt that the alleged sympathy of the media is actually based on cowardice, what happened to “I am Charlie Hebdo”?

It is not just the broadcasters who are afraid of the Extremist Islamists.  The Government is terrified that if the beliefs behind extremism are exposed it will provide fuel for those who are violently opposed to them.  The Left have no name for such people because they have already exhausted “Far Right” on Conservatives.  At present about the same number of people are killed by terrorists as are killed by bees and wasps in the UK so a responsible media should be able to cover the Extremist Islamists and the violent opponents of Islam in context, as extreme and unpopular beliefs.  Journalists who fail to place these beliefs in such a context and give a false impression that the beliefs imply that there are terrorists around every corner would surely violate the law in the UK.

On the subject of bee stings, the Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation’s Annual Report said that:

“During the 21st century, terrorism has been an insignificant cause of mortality in  the  United  Kingdom.  The annualised average of five deaths caused by terrorism in England and Wales over this period compares with total accidental  deaths in 2010 of 17,201, including 123 cyclists killed in traffic accidents,  102  personnel killed in Afghanistan, 29 people drowned in the bathtub and five killed by stings from hornets, wasps and bees.”

The risk of drowning in the bath is five times greater than dying from terrorism.

Large numbers of British people support the beliefs of terrorists but only a handful become terrorists.  It is only when the broadcast media exposes terrorist beliefs to scrutiny and reduces the large hinterland of support for terrorist beliefs that the small number of terrorists will decrease to zero.

The measures against terrorists should be in line with the law.  If you are part of a plot to kill people you should go to jail for a very long time and, given the fact that you believe your actions are right and you have no remorse, there should be no remission.  You should be isolated from people who share your beliefs to avoid further conspiracies and plots.

On release from prison those who are opposed to the people and government of this country should be offered assisted relocation in a suitable country.  Those convicts who, in the context of their beliefs, were working for foreign countries or groups based in foreign countries should be encouraged to live in those countries.

It is time to escape from the EU approach to many things but we urgently need to escape from their anti-terrorist policies which, charitably, are ineffective and less charitably betray the same approach to politics as the Soviet Union showed with its “Psychiatric Hospitals” for dissidents.

This post was originally published by the author on his personal blog:

About John Sydenham

Dr John Sydenham has worked in International Pharmaceuticals and for one of the "big four" International Consultancies. He ran a successful company for 15 years and after selling the company devotes his time to travel, science, black labradors and freedom.

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