CLOSE THE BORDERS!!! The Westminster Attacker was from, er… Kent
March 23, 2017
by Martin Odoni
“Well what more evidence do we need?” cry the foam-at-the-mouth racist brigade. “With a name like that he must be a Muslim from the Middle East! He must be an immigrant! A refugee from Syria! Let’s close the borders now…!”
One problem, and it is a very familiar one. Yes, he was a Muslim, I will grant you that. But the thing is, he was not from Syria. Nor from Yemen, nor from Saudi Arabia, nor from the wider Middle East. Come to that, he was not even from abroad.
Khalid Masood was in fact born in the rolling desert wastelands of sun-scorched… Kent. He was living in the mighty, oil-rich Arabian Sheikdom of the West Midlands at the time of his death. He had a record of non-political crimes as long as the average elephant trunk, and that record arguably raises doubts about how appropriate it is even to call the attack yesterday ‘terrorism’. He may just have been a very unstable man who lost control of himself. In truth, terrorism has a very broad definition, and his crime of killing five people, while horrific, is not noticeably worse than, say, Thomas Hamilton at Dunblane, or Derrick Bird‘s rampage in Cumbria. Neither of those atrocities are seen as ‘terrorism’, even though they took more lives.
The reason I call Masood’s nationality ‘a very familiar problem’, by the way, is the historical pattern of terrorist attacks in the name of Radical Islam. Even if we are to assume that this was indeed Masood’s motivation – and we have yet to see any firm evidence that it was – that history shows that Radical Islamic terror, quite simply, does not cross borders all that much. The 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington DC may give the impression otherwise, but in practice, the majority of atrocities are committed by people who originated in the country where the attack is taking place. These include most (though not all) attacks in Europe. The Paris Attacks of November 2015, for instance, were not carried out by Syrian refugees, but by French and Belgian nationals. As another example, the London Bombings of 2005 were carried out by a group of radicalised and foolish young men from Yorkshire.
This pattern is cardinal, as many people misunderstand the plural nature of Radical Islam. It is not a single, coherent organisation, or even two or three organisations. There are hundreds of very small military groups, and while they share an ideology – based on the Wahhabist ideas of an Egyptian academic called Said Qutb – they have little to do with each other on any practical level. Most of these groups’ goals are very localised, and can even contradict each other’s. (Where the goals are international, they are more about trying to intimidate Western countries against interfering in ‘The Holy Land’ than trying to destroy the West.) So when an attack happens in Europe or the USA, it is far likelier to be by someone from Europe or the USA in the first place, than by someone from the Middle East.
This is why I have argued, and will continue to argue, that the constant, self-absorbed and paranoid hysteria in the media and the wider British public against refugees, is as much futile as it is deceitful, hyperbolic, and cruel. Closing borders to refugees altogether – and let us not forget while the Radical Right bemoan our largely-mythical ‘open borders’ just how few refugees Britain has taken in during the post-‘Arab Spring’ crisis – will have very little positive effect, and considerable negative effect. It is very unlikely indeed to stop terrorists getting into the UK, because any terrorists we are at risk of facing are probably already here, and have probably lived here all their lives. Far from protecting anybody, all it is likely to achieve is increased stigma felt by many desperate people, and thus raise the chances of them becoming radicalised too. Turning away refugees is like trying to heal a broken bone by kicking it.
It does not matter what Nigel Farage or Katie Hopkins want viewers of Fox News Channel to think about this. Khalid Masood was not a refugee, and what happened in London yesterday does not add any weight at all to the case for banning refugees (such as there is one).
One only-loosely-related note to end on; the Islamophobic accusations have extended to attacking a by-stander in the aftermath of yesterday’s attack. A hooded woman was photographed apparently walking past one of the victims, ignoring him as she fooled about with her cellphone, apparently full of ‘Muslim indifference’ to his suffering. In fact, the woman was a nurse, and the below picture takes an example of this attempt to smear her and explains the real reason she had a phone in her hand; –