Saturday, January 12, 2008

hearts but no minds

In Frederick Forsyth's latest article for the Daily Express, he is of course correct to compare the situation as regards Muslim terrorism in Great Britain to the one that pertained to Irish terrorism. Much has been made of the lack of a "hearts and minds" campaign in Northern Ireland, but that certainly took place in Britain. When politicians, throughout the conflict but especially in the 1980's, condemned the terrorists and extremists but made sure that ordinary, decent Irish people were welcome in the country, they created a space where peace-loving Irish people felt safe to condemn terrorism. This eventually brought the terrorists and their apologists towards the centre as they desperately pursued a popular mandate.

The similar process that FF proposes in relation to Muslims should be happening, but it isn't. In sacrificing the truth that some things are objectively right while others are objectively wrong on the altar of relativism in the temple of evangelical atheism, the present political masters of our country tolerate all sorts of human-rights abuses on the basis that to ban them would be a restriction of the human rights of the perpetrators. To get to this point requires not only application, stamina and a total disregard for one's voters, it takes a hell of a lot of therapy.

Government appeasement of extremists is only alienating white British people from ethnic minorities and undoing half a century of (mostly) good race relations work. Tragically, awfully, decent white people are being pushed into the waiting arms of the BNP, who are winning their own hearts and minds campaign with concepts such as that it is racist to presume that people of ethnic minorities will behave like white liberals if we treat them like white liberals.

Mr Brown, if you are unwilling to call a general election, then at least please banish the careerists from the Cabinet and bring in your seasoned backbenchers, who know the difference between mushy peas and avocado purée (unlike Peter Mandelson), and between the duty to keep peace on the streets and racism.

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